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2:35 PM ET, December 24, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Ezra Klein:
Winning ugly, but winning  —  On Dec. 24, in an early morning vote, the United States Senate passed health-care reform.  It was the first time the body had been in session on Christmas Eve since 1963.  That's fitting, as it's arguably the most important piece of legislation the body has passed since 1963.
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Robert Pear / New York Times:
Senate Passes Health Care Overhaul Bill  —  WASHINGTON — The Senate voted Thursday to reinvent the nation's health care system, passing a bill to guarantee access to health insurance for tens of millions of Americans and to rein in health costs as proposed by President Obama.
David S. Broder / Washington Post:
A health-care victory that stinks  —  The health-care reform bill coming out of the Senate presents a real dilemma for spectators: How do you applaud while holding your nose?  —  There is so much that is wrong with it — and the way it was made — and, at the same time …
Jonathan Chait / The New Republic:
And the Rest Is Just Noise  —  Why the health care bill is the greatest social achievement of our time.  —  American liberals have a habit of withdrawing into cynicism and ennui at the most inopportune moments.  The 2000 presidential election, and subsequent recount, was one such moment.
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Health Care Woo  —  The health care bill passed!  As you know, my view is this: For all its flaws, if signed into law this bill would be the greatest progressive social policy achievement in over forty years.  It's fine not to be satisfied with this legislation, but it's perverse not to be happy about it.
Jeffrey Young / The Hill:
Senate passes historic healthcare reform legislation in 60-39 vote  —  The Senate approved sweeping healthcare reform legislation by the narrowest of partisan margins early Christmas Eve morning, placing President Barack Obama closer than ever to signing a longtime Democratic priority into law.
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David M. Herszenhorn / New York Times:
In Senate Health Care Vote, New Partisan Vitriol
James Oliphant / Los Angeles Times:
Senate passes healthcare overhaul
Discussion: Prescriptions, The Swamp and Truthdig
Reuters:
Yemen says Fort Hood-linked imam may be dead  —  SANAA (Reuters) - The leader of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and a Muslim preacher linked by U.S. intelligence to deaths at a U.S. army base are believed to have died in a Yemen air strike, a security official said on Thursday.
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Political Punch:
Sources: Air Strike in Yemen May Have Killed Imam Who Inspired …
U.S. Census Bureau News:
Census Bureau: Texas Gains the Most in Population  —  Texas gained more people than any other state between July 1, 2008, and July 1, 2009 (478,000), followed by California (381,000), North Carolina (134,000), Georgia (131,000) and Florida (114,000), according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau estimates
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Damien Cave / New York Times:
Recession Slows Population Rise Across Sun Belt
David Sessions / Politics Daily:
Texas Leads U.S. in Population Growth Since Recession Began
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
New York Times:
Banks Bundled Bad Debt, Bet Against It and Won  —  In late October 2007, as the financial markets were starting to come unglued, a Goldman Sachs trader, Jonathan M. Egol, received very good news.  At 37, he was named a managing director at the firm.  —  Mr. Egol, a Princeton graduate …
Alan J. Kuperman / New York Times:
There's Only One Way to Stop Iran  —  PRESIDENT OBAMA should not lament but sigh in relief that Iran has rejected his nuclear deal, which was ill conceived from the start.  Under the deal, which was formally offered through the United Nations, Iran was to surrender some 2,600 pounds …
William M. Daley / Washington Post:
Keep the Big Tent big  —  The announcement by Alabama Rep. Parker Griffith that he is switching to the Republican Party is just the latest warning sign that the Democratic Party — my lifelong political home — has a critical decision to make: Either we plot a more moderate …
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Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Pennsylvania House Democrat resists party-switching entreaties
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and OpEdNews
Jay Solomon / Wall Street Journal:
Kerry Floats Plan to Visit Tehran  —  White House Wouldn't Oppose Trip, First by Top U.S. Official in 30 Years, to Chagrin of Iran's Opposition  —  WASHINGTON — Sen. John Kerry has suggested becoming the first high-level U.S. emissary to make a public visit to Tehran since the 1979 Islamic revolution …
Charlotte Triggs / People.com:
Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins Split  —  One of Hollywood's most enduring relationships has ended - Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins have broken up after more than two decades together, PEOPLE has learned exclusively.  —  “Actress Susan Sarandon and her partner of 23 years …
Nancy Scola / American Prospect:
Lowering Commercial Volume.  —  My holiday gift to you is a topic of dinner table conversation that, if my experience is any guide, can bring about a rare moment of unanimity regardless of the politics of your assorted relatives.  I happened to casually mention during a holiday get together …
Associated Press:
Obama vents frustration at Senate delays  —  WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama on Wednesday expressed frustration with the way the Senate does business, saying the use of delaying tactics there harms the nation's ability to “deal with big problems in a very competitive world.”
Rachel Slajda / TPM LiveWire:
Transcript: Obama Talks With PBS' Jim Lehrer  —  President Obama today gave an interview with Jim Lehrer, the host of NewsHour on PBS.  Here is the full transcript, as released by NewsHour:  —  MR. LEHRER: Mr. President, welcome.  —  PRESIDENT OBAMA: Thank you so much for having me.
Discussion: RedState, Newsweek Blogs and Hullabaloo
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 More Items: 
Drew Sandholm / ABCNEWS:
Bernie Madoff Assaulted in Prison?
Discussion: Gothamist and Gawker
Jon Walker / Firedoglake:
Senate Health Bill Passes; US Senate Fails
Walter Alarkon / The Hill:
Senate approves $290B increase in debt limit
Discussion: The Politico and The Page
 Earlier Items: 
Jim Hoft / Gateway Pundit:
Michelle Malkin & Mark Steyn Report on the National Joker Outbreak (Video)
Annie Gowen / Washington Post:
For older believers, Santa's magic is ageless
Washington Post:
Gates proposes $2 billion in funds to aid unstable countries
Discussion: The Page
Jessica Ravitz / CNN:
‘Seinfeld’ over, but Festivus keeps giving
Dana Loesch / thedanashow.wordpress.com:
Protesters Gather for a Second Time Outside Claire McCaskill's Office
Discussion: Gateway Pundit
Chris Ariens / TVNewser:
MSNBC Cancels ‘Dr. Nancy’