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7:55 PM ET, February 8, 2010


 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
Rep. John Murtha dies at 77  —  Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.), 77, a Vietnam veteran who staunchly supported military spending and became a master of pork-barrel politics, died today at Virginia Hospital Center following gallbladder surgery last month.  —  Elected to Congress in 1974 …
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
John Murtha dies, special election looms  —  The death of longtime Pennsylvania Rep. John Murtha (D) this afternoon will set off a special election in his very competitive western Pennsylvania 12th district.  —  According to state law, the governor has ten days once the vacancy …
Kate Phillips / The Caucus:
Congressman Murtha Dies  —  Representative John P. Murtha, the longtime Democratic congressman from Pennsylvania, has died at age 77.  —  His aides released a statement saying that he died shortly after 1 p.m. today at Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, a suburb of Washington …
BREAKING NEWS: Congressman John Murtha Dies At Age 77
John Feehery / Pundits Blog:
John Murtha  —  John Murtha was one of those guys whose influence …
Discussion: Washington Wire
Ezra Klein:
The six Republican ideas already in the health-care reform bill  —  At this point, I don't think it's well understood how many of the GOP's central health-care policy ideas have already been included as compromises in the health-care bill.  But one good way is to look at the GOP's …
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Cantor: Only Route To Bipartisan Cooperation Is If Dems Fully Embrace GOP Plan  —  Eric Cantor's office responds to Obama's announcement of a bipartisan summit on health care with the most explicit and direct assertion I've seen yet that the only way Dems can win bipartisan cooperation …
The Huffington Post:
Exclusive: Sebelius Says Obama Will ‘Accelerate’ Health Care Reform After Bipartisan Meeting  —  WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?  —  Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said on Monday that President Obama is willing to “add various elements” to health care legislation suggested …
Discussion: The Politico and TPMDC
Jeff Zeleny / New York Times:
Obama to Convene Summit on Health Care
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
America Is Not Yet Lost  —  We've always known that America's reign as the world's greatest nation would eventually end.  But most of us imagined that our downfall, when it came, would be something grand and tragic.  —  What we're getting instead is less a tragedy than a deadly farce.
Alex Seitz-Wald / Think Progress:
Fox News: Palin's ‘Telepalmer’ Notes Were A Clever Plot To Call Attention To Obama's Teleprompter  —  As ThinkProgress reported on Saturday night, paid Fox News contributor Sarah Palin was caught using “hand"-written notes during a Q & A session at the National Tea Party Convention this weekend.
Gabriel Sherman / New York Magazine:
Times Paterson ‘Exposé’ Will Be ‘PG-13, Not XXX’  —  For days now, buzz has been building that the New York Times was prepping an explosive exposé that would lead to Governor Paterson's swift resignation.  The blog hysteria peaked over the weekend, when Business Insider reported …
The Huffington Post:
Meghan McCain Calls Out Tea Party For Racism, On ‘The View’ (VIDEO)  —  WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?  —  Racism in the “tea party” is a why young people are turned off by the movement, according to Meghan McCain.  —  McCain weighed in on recent rhetoric from the group's first convention when she guest hosted “The View” Monday.
Alan Colmes' Liberaland:   Meghan McCain Takes On The Tea Partiers
Frank Newport / Gallup:
Obama Approval on Economy Down, on Foreign Affairs Up  —  Obama does best on education, foreign affairs; worst on the economy, healthcare, and the deficit  —  PRINCETON, NJ — At 36%, Americans give President Barack Obama his lowest job approval rating yet on his handling of the economy.
Rasmussen Reports:
75% Are Angry At Government's Current Policies  —  Voters are madder than ever at the current policies of the federal government.  —  A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that 75% of likely voters now say they are at least somewhat angry at the government's current policies …
Media Matters / Media Matters for America:
CNN contributor Erick Erickson: “Ugly feminists return to their kitchens” after Tebow Super Bowl ad  —  From Erick Erickson's Twitter feed:  —  EXPAND ALL EXPAND 1ST LEVEL COLLAPSE ALL
Discussion: At-Largely and Pam's House Blend
Jessica E. Vascellaro / Wall Street Journal:
Gmail, Too, Seeks to Rival Facebook  —  Google Inc. is taking a swipe at Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc. with a new feature that makes it easier for users of Gmail to view media and status updates shared online by their friends.  —  Google could announce the new Gmail feature as soon as this week, said people familiar with the matter.
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Sarah Palin Needs Help  —  There's something which, if you've ever been in the business of trying to sell consulting services, you've probably grown accustomed to.  It's what I call the “consulting paradox”.  Namely, it's the idea that the people who are most in need of help are often the least aware of it.
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
House GOP Medicare Elimination Plan Puts Conservatives in a Pickle  —  It's subscription-only, but Roll Call has a nice little piece by Steven T Dennis about how House GOP budget chief Paul Ryan's plan to balance the budget by eliminating Social Security and Medicare is putting some of his colleagues on the hot seat:
Mark Warren / Las Vegas Sun:
Harry Reid's co-writer unloads while discussing polls, Obama quote  —  Editor's note: Mark Warren, co-author of Harry Reid's “The Good Fight” recently shared his thoughts on Reid's poll numbers, the infamous Obama quote, Republicans and more with “Las Vegas Weekly” editor Scott Dickensheets.
Jay Cost / HorseRaceBlog:
America is Not Ungovernable  —  Recently, some analysts have suggested that the lack of major policy breakthroughs in the last year is due to the fact that America has become ungovernable.  Ezra Klein argued that it was time to reform the filibuster because the government cannot function with it intact anymore.
Lee Fang / Think Progress:
Bachmann's Plan: To Deal With Debt, We Must ‘Wean Everybody’ Off Social Security, Medicare  —  This past weekend, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) addressed the right-wing Constitutional Coalition's annual conference in St. Louis.  She had dropped out of the Tea Party Convention occurring …
Thom Hartmann / The Huffington Post:
Globalization Is Killing The Globe: Return to Local Economies  —  Globalization is killing Europe, just as it's already wiped out much of the American middle class.  —  Spain and Greece are facing immediate crises that many other European nations see on the near horizon …
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 More Items: 
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
Discussion: The Plum Line and AMERICAblog News
David M. Herszenhorn / Prescriptions:
Risks, and Perhaps Rewards, in Obama's Health Summit
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Steve Krakauer / Mediaite:
Red Eye Celebrates Third Year By Topping CNN Prime Time Last Week
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
For Obama, Nuance on Race That Invites Questions
Matthew Vadum / Big Journalism:
Max Blumenthal, Equal-Opportunity Hater
Erick Erickson / RedState:
BREAKING: Mike Pence Endorses Marco Rubio
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Key Dem wants to pause discharges of gay service members
Discussion: KPBS San Diego and Wonk Room
Barbour to visit another key early voting state
Discussion: The Politico and Ben Smith's Blog
 Earlier Items: 
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Can Democrats dissuade Dan Coats from running?
Ezra Klein:
There's something new under the sun
Arthur Goldwag / The Huffington Post:
Cass Sunstein's Thought Police
Discussion: Boing Boing
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
If Marc Thiessen Doesn't Want to be Compared to the Spanish …