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2:05 PM ET, December 26, 2009


 Top Items: 
Faiz Shakir / Think Progress:
Hoekstra Quickly Politicizes Attempted Terrorist Attack, Suggests Obama's Clueless On National Security  —  Yesterday, the White House announced that there had been “an attempted act of terrorism” aboard a trans-Atlantic Northwest Airlines flight arriving from Amsterdam as it was preparing to land in Detroit.
Tom Liddy / New York Post:
Terror hero: I didn't hesitate  —  A Dutch airline passenger told The Post how he leapt into action when an alleged Muslim terrorist tried to blow up a Detroit-bound airliner packed with 300 people just moments before landing.  —  Chaos erupted as alleged terrorist Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab …
Discussion: Power Line and Associated Press
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
PETE HOEKSTRA, SHAMELESS BUFFOON.... Speculation about terrorist plots based on limited information is a fool's game.  We know very little about Abdul Farouk Abdulmutallab's attempts on Northwest Airlines Flight 253 yesterday, though there are some pretty obvious questions about how he got materials on board …
New York Times:
Passengers Took Plane's Survival Into Own Hands  —  Despite extensive spending since 2001 on intelligence and counterterrorism programs, sophisticated airport scanners and elaborate watch lists, it was something simpler that averted disaster on a Christmas Day flight to Detroit: alert and courageous passengers and crew members.
Discussion: Cato @ Liberty and The Daily Dish
New York Times:
Restrictions Rise After Terrorism Attempt  —  Transportation authorities began imposing tighter security measures at airports on Saturday and ordered new restrictions governing the activities of passengers during flights as investigators conducted searches to learn more about the Nigerian …
Discussion: The Agitator
Scott Butterworth / Washington Post:
White House: Failed plane attack an attempted act of terrorism  —  A Nigerian national, claiming to be acting on behalf of al-Qaeda, is in custody in Detroit after allegedly attempting to light an incendiary device aboard a Northwest Airlines flight after it landed Friday, federal officials said.
Man Attempts to Set Off Explosives on Plane, Law Enforcement Officials Say
Sebastian Rotella / Los Angeles Times:
Plane incident called an act of terrorism
Explosive device ignited aboard U.S.-bound airliner
Michelle Malkin:
Incident on NWA Flight 253? …
Discussion: The Hill and Riehl World View
BBC:   ‘Bomb attack bid’ on US airliner
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
The Obama Way  —  Every presidency is the subject of competing caricatures.  But almost a year into his first term, there's something particularly elusive about Barack Obama's political identity.  He's a bipartisan bridge-builder — unless he's a polarizing ideologue.
Discussion: TPMCafe and marbury
Walter Alarkon / The Hill:
Obama falls short on pledge to curtail earmarks, fiscal hawks say  —  Fiscal hawks in Congress say President Barack Obama hasn't followed through on a pledge to lower federal spending on local projects.  —  Earmarks are expected to total nearly $12 billion in fiscal 2010, according to fiscal watchdog groups.
Discussion: Hot Air and Riehl World View
Adam Nagourney / New York Times:
Debate Shows Obama Plays by Washington's Rules  —  WASHINGTON — Howard Dean ran for president in 2004 as the outsider ready to battle an entrenched establishment in Washington.  And so, four years later, did Barack Obama.  —  Now, one year into Mr. Obama's presidency …
Rajiv Chandrasekaran / Washington Post:
Civilian, military planners have different views on new approach to Afghanistan  —  Two days before announcing the deployment of additional U.S. troops to Afghanistan, President Obama informed Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal that he was not granting McChrystal's request to double the size of the Afghan army and police.
Discussion: Swampland, The Plum Line and Reuters
Alissa J. Rubin / New York Times:
Taliban Shows Video of Captured G.I.  —  KABUL, Afghanistan — The Taliban released a video of a captured American soldier on Friday, the second to surface since he was seized in southern Afghanistan about six months ago.  —  Pfc. Bowe Bergdahl, 23, of Idaho, was captured in late June in Paktika Province …
Discussion: The Daily Dish
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 More Items: 
Ezra Klein:
The rise of the filibuster: An interview with Barbara Sinclair
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias
David D. Kirkpatrick / New York Times:
Catholic Group Supports Senate on Abortion Aid
Discussion: Wonk Room
 Earlier Items: 
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Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Centrists set strict guidelines for Senate-House healthcare talks