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12:10 PM ET, February 4, 2010


 Top Items: 
Laurie Goodstein / New York Times:
National Prayer Breakfast Draws Controversy  —  For more than 50 years, the National Prayer Breakfast has served as a prime networking event in Washington, bringing together the president, members of Congress, foreign diplomats and thousands of religious, business and military leaders for scrambled eggs and supplication.
Jeff Zeleny / The Caucus:
Obama Calls for ‘Civility’ at Prayer Breakfast
Discussion: Raw Story and AMERICAblog Gay
Ben Frumin / TPM LiveWire:
Obama Makes Birther Joke At Prayer Breakfast (VIDEO)
Discussion: Newsalert
Obama criticizes Ugandan anti-homosexuality bill
Discussion: The Hill and Washington Monthly
Chicago Sun Times:
Details surface of Scott Lee Cohen's 2005 domestric violence arrest  —  Scott Lee Cohen — a pawnbroker who shocked state Democratic leaders Tuesday night by winning the party's nomination for lieutenant governor — was arrested about four-and-a-half years ago and accused of holding a knife …
Matea Gold / Los Angeles Times:
Comedian Jon Stewart takes the hot seat with Bill O'Reilly  —  In a vigorous, policy-laden debate, ‘The Daily Show’ host blasts Fox's ‘panic attack’ coverage of Obama and the economy.  O'Reilly says ‘the narrative of a couple of guys’ doesn't represent the whole network.
David Neiwert / Crooks and Liars:   Jon Stewart to O'Reilly: Fox foments 'full-fledged panic attack …
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Tough talk comes after Obama exits  —  Senate Democrats held back from asking President Barack Obama about healthcare reform during a carefully scripted question-and-answer session in front of television cameras.  —  With the cameras rolling, a group of senators selected in advance …
Philip Terzian / Weekly Standard:
Clarence Thomas on Why He Skips the State of the Union  —  I don't go because it has become so partisan.  —  One final contribution to the post-mortem on the State of the Union address.  —  In a question-and-answer session at Stetson University College of Law in Florida this week …
Adam Liptak / New York Times:
Justice Defends Ruling on Finance  —  WASHINGTON — In expansive remarks at a law school in Florida, Justice Clarence Thomas on Tuesday vigorously defended the Supreme Court's recent campaign finance decision.  —  And Justice Thomas explained that he did not attend State of the Union addresses …
E.J. Dionne Jr / Washington Post:
Off-message, Biden recasts the Obama agenda  —  Vice President Biden is tired of seeing the Obama administration's economic stimulus plan demeaned, derided and dismissed, and he wanted to talk about it.  —  But a funny thing happened in the course of an interview at Biden's White House office on Tuesday afternoon.
Jim Treacher / The DC Trawler:
Last night I got hit by a car and broke my knee  —  Sometime between 7 and 7:30, not long after I got home from work, I walked to the CVS on 22nd and M to get some bread, milk, and a SmartTrip card.  I was right across the street from the CVS, and I waited for the crosswalk light to tell me to go before I crossed.
Tyler Cowen / Marginal Revolution:
Medicare vouchers  —  Ross Douthat surveys and evaluates the debate over Paul Ryan's “Medicare vouchers” plan.  Here Ezra interviews Ryan.  —  I am very interested in voucher plans but here is one source of my unease.  Let's say you are given a voucher for a health insurance plan …
Discussion: Ezra Klein, EconLog and Obsidian Wings
Neil King Jr / Wall Street Journal:
Deficit Hawk Turns Dove at Home
Discussion: Beat the Press
Larry O'Connor / Big Journalism:
James O'Keefe vs. Max Blumenthal: How the Left Distorts, Invents and Lies  —  It started with a blog post at something called One People's Project, in which someone named Daryle Jenkins claimed: … The photograph that One People's Project shows as its proof (above) is cropped and just shows O'Keefe from the shoulders up.
Ben Webster / Times of London:
IPCC chief Rajendra Pachauri under pressure to go over glacier error  —  The head of the UN's climate change body is under pressure to resign after one of his strongest allies in the environmental movement said his judgment was flawed and called for a new leader to restore confidence in climatic science.
Walter Russell Mead / Walter Russell Mead's Blog:   UK Greenpeace Chief Calls on Pachauri to Resign: Al Gore Still Silent
Kristi Keck / CNN:
Fractures emerge as Tea Party convenes  —  (CNN) — As the Tea Party's first national convention gets under way, members are united in their anger but divided over the future of the movement.  —  The convention is marketed as an opportunity to bring Tea Party leaders from across …
Timothy Egan / Opinionator:   Grifters' Tale  —  Judson Phillips is a Tennessee lawyer …
Eli Lake / Washington Times:
‘Permission’ needed to kill U.S. terrorists  —  The U.S. intelligence community policy on killing American citizens who have joined al Qaeda requires first obtaining high-level government approval, a senior official disclosed to Congress on Wednesday.  —  Director of National Intelligence Dennis C. Blair …
Ellen Nakashima / Washington Post:
Intelligence chief acknowledges U.S. may target Americans involved in terrorism
Corey Pein / Santa Fe Reporter:
BORN POOR?  —  SANTA FE ECONOMIST SAMUEL BOWLES SAYS YOU BETTER GET USED TO IT  —  Consider these two numbers.  Don't worry, there won't be a quiz.  —  The first number is 3,500.  —  The second is 32.  —  The first is how many jobs Santa Fe County lost in 2009, according to the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions.
Gail Collins / New York Times:
Florida, We Have a Problem  —  The Obama administration's proposed budget holds many surprises.  —  O.K., you have to be kind of dorky to make that statement.  —  Still, how can you not be fascinated when the White House announces it wants to cancel plans to put an American on the moon by 2020?
Discussion: JustOneMinute
The Politico:
Dems protect backroom deals  —  The health care bill is in trouble, but a series of narrow deals — each designed to win over a wavering senator or key interest group — is alive and well, despite voter anger over the parochial horse-trading that marked the rush toward passage before Christmas.
Los Angeles Times:
Congressional Democrats are nay-saying Obama's budget  —  Lawmakers are railing against certain items as a campaign strategy, establishing their distance from controversial aspects of the administration.  —  Reporting from Washington - As Congress begins picking through President Obama's …
Discussion: Dennis the Peasant
Ariane De Vogue / ABCNEWS:
White House Prepares for Possibility of 2 Supreme Court Vacancies  —  SCOTUS Watchers Believe Justices Stevens and Ginsburg Could Decide to Step Aside  —  Lawyers for President Obama have been working behind the scenes to prepare for the possibility of one, and maybe two Supreme Court vacancies this spring.
Discussion: New York Times and Shakesville
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Sen. Sherrod Brown: Obama must push Dem lawmakers harder on healthcare  —  President Barack Obama hasn't pushed Democrats hard enough behind closed doors to pass healthcare reform, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said Thursday.  —  Brown said that Obama needs to step up his push for health reform …
Discussion: Glenn Thrush's Blog
Christopher S. Rugaber / Associated Press:
First-time jobless claims rise unexpectedly  —  Buzz up!  —  WASHINGTON - The number of newly laid-off workers filing initial claims for jobless benefits rose unexpectedly last week, evidence that layoffs are continuing and jobs remain scarce.  —  The rise is the fourth in the past five weeks.
Discussion: Hot Air, Financial Times and Wizbang
Front Page Magazine:
Islamic Nazis  —  Posted by Robert Spencer on Feb 4th, 2010 and filed under FrontPage.  You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.  You can leave a response or trackback to this entry  —  Robert Spencer is a scholar of Islamic history, theology, and law and the director of Jihad Watch.
Discussion: The Jawa Report and Atlas Shrugs
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
What Is the Education Reform Debate About?  —  In left-of-center education policy, there's a split between a self-styled “reform” camp that likes charter schools and standardized tests, and another camp that doesn't like the reformers and doesn't (I think) have a name for itself.
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 More Items: 
Dick Brass / New York Times:
Microsoft's Creative Destruction
Discussion: Engadget
Al Baker / New York Times:
Chaplain Is Found With Blades at City Jail
Discussion: New York Magazine and Gothamist
Jennifer Haberkorn / Washington Times:
Democrats pan payroll tax credit
Ben Smith / The Politico:
U.S. pondered military use in Georgia
Discussion: The Daily Dish
Rob Stein / Washington Post:
In ‘vegetative state’ patients, brain scanners show some alert minds
Discussion: Pundit & Pundette
 Earlier Items: 
Monica Davey / New York Times:
Illinois Senate Race Worries Democrats Anew
Peter Hamby / CNN:
Palin aide: Perry adviser's remark ‘crude’ and ‘disrespectful’
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog and Mediaite
Investor's Business Daily:
The White House's Illegal Piggy Bank
Devin Dwyer / ABCNEWS:
Obama's Aunt Seeks Asylum to Avoid Deportation
Discussion: Wonk Room and JammieWearingFool
Chris Isidore /
Poof: Another 800,000 jobs disappear
Discussion: Hotline On Call and The Page
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
GOP cash provides 2012 clues
Discussion: GOP 12