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12:55 PM ET, February 4, 2010

memeorandum

 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.
RELATED:
Ben Frumin / TPM LiveWire:
Obama Makes Birther Joke At Prayer Breakfast (VIDEO)  —  At this morning's national prayer breakfast in Washington D.C., President Obama made a birther joke.  —  Calling once again for a return to civility in politics, the president declared that civility is “not a sign of weakness” …
Discussion: Newsalert
CNN:
Obama criticizes Ugandan anti-homosexuality bill
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
Obama slams Ugandan anti-gay law at National Prayer Breakfast
Jeff Zeleny / The Caucus:
Obama Calls for ‘Civility’ at Prayer Breakfast
Discussion: Raw Story and AMERICAblog Gay
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 …
RELATED:
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.
RELATED:
David Neiwert / Crooks and Liars:
Jon Stewart to O'Reilly: Fox foments ‘full-fledged panic attack about the next coming of Chairman Mao’  —  Tackling Bill O'Reilly on his home turf is never easy, yet Jon Stewart more than held his own last night.  —  The L.A. Times has more: … That is, of course, a whole lotta hooey, as Stewart himself has ably limned.
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 …
RELATED:
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 …
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.
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 …
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.
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.
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
RELATED:
Neil King Jr / Wall Street Journal:
Deficit Hawk Turns Dove at Home
Discussion: Beat the Press
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
Sen.-elect Brown to be sworn in at 5 p.m.  —  Sen.-elect Scott Brown (R-Mass.) will be sworn in to the Senate by Vice President Joe Biden Thursday at 5 p.m.  —  Brown's swearing-in ceremony was officially added to Biden's schedule Thursday after it was reported Wednesday that Brown would take his seat earlier than expected.
RELATED:
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 …
RELATED:
Timothy Egan / Opinionator:   Grifters' Tale  —  Judson Phillips is a Tennessee lawyer …
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.
Wall Street Journal:
Cuomo Charges BofA, Executives With Fraud  —  New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo filed civil securities fraud charges against former Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis and former Chief Financial Officer Joseph Price, alleging they decided not to disclose mounting losses at Merrill Lynch & Co …
Discussion: TPMMuckraker and New Jersey Online
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
Dick Brass / New York Times:
Microsoft's Creative Destruction  —  AS they marvel at Apple's new iPad tablet computer, the technorati seem to be focusing on where this leaves Amazon's popular e-book business.  But the much more important question is why Microsoft, America's most famous and prosperous technology company …
Discussion: Silicon Alley Insider and Engadget
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: Shakesville
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
Glenn Thrush / Glenn Thrush's Blog:
NAACP flunks GOP on civil rights  —  The NAACP is out with its annual report card, and Republicans have been awarded F's virtually across the board, thanks to their position on a variety of civil right issues, most notably their killing of the DC voting rights bill.  —  [PDF of the rankings.]
Discussion: Naked Politics
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.
Kate Hoit / The Huffington Post:
The Hurt Locker Doesn't Get This Vet's Vote  —  Military personnel everywhere should be celebrating: the war flick The Hurt Locker has been nominated for nine Oscar's.  American's were so curious about the war and the soldiers who fight in it they bought 10 dollar movie tickets.
Sean J. Miller / The Hill:
Candidate pledges his campaign will be a 'demon-sheep free zone"  —  A Califronia state assemblyman pledged Thursday to keep his campaign for the Senate “a demon-sheep-free zone.”  —  The tongue-in-cheek announcement came from Chuck DeVore, in response to a bizarre web video released …
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
 
 
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 More Items: 
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Asian-Americans Lean Left Politically
Ed O'Keefe / Washington Post:
Obama criticizes Senate Republicans for delaying confirmation votes
Discussion: YID With LID
Al Baker / New York Times:
Chaplain Is Found With Blades at City Jail
Discussion: Gothamist and New York Magazine
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Sen. Sherrod Brown: Obama must push Dem lawmakers harder on healthcare
Discussion: Glenn Thrush's Blog
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
Chris Isidore / CNNMoney.com:
Poof: Another 800,000 jobs disappear
Discussion: Hotline On Call and The Page