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3:40 PM ET, May 11, 2010

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
David Brooks / New York Times:
What It Takes  —  About a decade ago, one began to notice a profusion of Organization Kids at elite college campuses.  These were bright students who had been formed by the meritocratic system placed in front of them.  They had great grades, perfect teacher recommendations …
RELATED:
Scott Lemieux / American Prospect:
Is Kennedy Easily Manipulated?  —  One important component of the liberal case for Elena Kagan seems to be that she could exert a strong influence on the Court's median vote, Anthony Kennedy.  Here's Jeffrey Rosen: … And half-seriously, Jonathan Zasloff:
Peter Baker / New York Times:
Kagan Nomination Leaves Longing on the Left  —  WASHINGTON — The selection of Solicitor General Elena Kagan to be the nation's 112th justice extends a quarter-century pattern in which Republican presidents generally install strong conservatives on the Supreme Court while Democratic presidents pick candidates …
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Dissents Of The Day, Ctd  —  They keep rolling in, you ornery Dishies.  A reader writes: … I always know when someone has no idea how being gay can affect one's entire life-experience when they use the term “sexual preference.”  It's like a taste in rock rather than country.
Robert C. Clark / Wall Street Journal:
Kagan and the Military: What Really Happened
Glenn Harlan Reynolds / New York Post:
Wise pick for a weak prez
Discussion: alicublog
Kevin Sack / New York Times:
Experts Split on State Lawsuits Over Health Care Law
Eugene Volokh / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Elena Kagan as Scholar
David Bernstein / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Isn't This a Bit Much?  —  The president went to Harvard …
BBC:
Gordon Brown resigns as UK prime minister  —  Gordon Brown has announced he is resigning as UK prime minister.  —  Mr Brown has officially tendered his resignation to the Queen at Buckingham Palace, and recommended Conservative leader David Cameron succeed him.
RELATED:
This Is London:
Gordon Brown quits as PM as Lib-Dem deal falls apart  —  Gordon Brown is set to resign tonight and allow David Cameron to be Britain's new Prime Minister.  —  The Labour leader's final desperate attempt to cling on to power with a Lib-Lab deal crumbled amid a rebellion on his own side …
CNN:
U.K.'s Brown to resign, recommend Cameron for Prime Minister
Discussion: The Politico
Dennis Cauchon / USA Today:
Tax bills in 2009 at lowest level since 1950  —  Amid complaints about high taxes and calls for a smaller government, Americans paid their lowest level of taxes last year since Harry Truman's presidency, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data found.  —  Some conservative political movements such as the …
David M. Herszenhorn / New York Times:
Senate Backs One-Time Audit of Fed's Bailout Role  —  WASHINGTON — The Senate on Tuesday voted unanimously to require a one-time audit of the Federal Reserve's emergency actions during and after the 2008 financial crisis as part of broad legislation overhauling the nation's financial regulatory system.
Discussion: Wonkette
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The Huffington Post:
96-0: Fed Audit Passes Senate
Ben Evans / Associated Press:
DeMint: A conservative kingmaker upends GOP order  —  WASHINGTON — Jim DeMint is becoming something of a tea party hero, even a potential conservative kingmaker, a status that is not making the freshman senator many friends among fellow Republicans in Congress.
RELATED:
Roger Alford / Associated Press:
Paul may not vote for McConnell as floor leader
Discussion: Daily Kos and Real Clear Politics
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Alan Mollohan fights for his political life
Marc A. Thiessen / Washington Post:
U.S. may be passing up chances to stop terrorist plots  —  Did a captured Taliban leader know about the Times Square plot and withhold this information from his interrogators?  —  On Sunday, Obama administration officials, including counterterrorism chief John Brennan …
RELATED:
Brad Thor / Big Government:
EXCLUSIVE: Mullah Omar Captured!  —  Through key intelligence sources in Afghanistan and Pakistan, I have just learned that reclusive Taliban leader and top Osama bin Laden ally, Mullah Omar has been taken into custody.  —  According to the State Department's Rewards for Justice Program …
Jon Ward / The Daily Caller:
Top Obama advisers Jarrett and Axelrod given car privileges traditionally reserved for national security officials  —  President Obama has expanded the very small group of top aides who are given the privilege of taxpayer-funded personal drivers — who take them from their house to work …
RELATED:
The Note:
McCain: Use Wall Street Bill to Wean Fannie and Freddie off Taxpayer Backing  —  ABC's Z. Byron Wolf reports:  —  Republicans in the Senate have their sights set on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and will force a vote as soon as Tuesday on whether to remove the implicit government backing from the bloated mortgage giants.
Discussion: CNN
RELATED:
Meredith Shiner / The Politico:   Senate approves Fed amendment
Silla Brush / The Hill:
Senate approves toned down audit of the Fed
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Why Sestak might really pull it off  —  Tomorrow, a third poll will come out finding Joe Sestak is leading Arlen Specter in the Pennsylvania Dem primary.  The poll, from Franklin & Marshall College, will mirror others showing Sestak ahead by around five points, the poll's director confirms to me.
RELATED:
CNN:
TRENDING: Obama stars in new Specter ad
Discussion: The Note and The Hill
Hilary Andersson / BBC:
‘Secret prison’ at US air base  —  The US airbase at Bagram in Afghanistan contains a facility for detainees that is distinct from its main prison, the Red Cross has confirmed to the BBC.  —  Nine former prisoners have told the BBC that they were held in a separate building, and subjected to abuse.
CNN:
Bill Clinton lends a hand on wife's debt  —  Former President Clinton is helping Sec. of State Hillary Clinton retire her remaining 2008 presidential campaign.  —  Washington (CNN) - If you supported Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during her 2008 presidential run, chances are you received …
Discussion: The Note
RELATED:
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Clinton campaign raffles Bill
Discussion: Vanity Fair
Fox News:
Thieves Steal Mojave Desert Memorial Cross in Nighttime Heist  —  The 7-foot-tall metal cross in a 75-year-old war memorial that withstood the heat of the Mojave Desert and a blazing battle in the Supreme Court over its legality was ripped down and stolen Sunday night, according to federal officials.
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Marshall, Cunningham closing on Burr  —  Elaine Marshall and Cal Cunningham have both gained ground on Richard Burr after building up their exposure during the Democratic primary campaign.  Burr is now in a weaker position than Elizabeth Dole was at the same point in the election cycle two years ago.
Jim Oliphant / The Swamp:
VP Biden's son Beau hospitalized  —  Vice President Joe Biden's son, Beau, has been hospitalized for reasons that have yet not been made public.  —  A terse statement released Tuesday morning by the vice-president's office said Beau Biden, Delaware's attorney general “is at Christiana Medical Center undergoing treatment at present.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Ezra Klein:
The problem of human lobbying
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Dem senators needle BP over its record in wake of oil spill
Discussion: CNN
Manu Raju / The Politico:
Bennett open to indy run
Discussion: Right Now
Mike Mandel / Mandel on Innovation and Growth:
A Bad Business Cycle for the Creative Economy
Walter Alarkon / The Hill:
Democrats poised to move measures with high price tags
The Corner on National Review Online:
California Carly — By: NRO Staff
Discussion: AmSpecBlog
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
No winners in boycott of Ariz. immigration law
Discussion: JammieWearingFool
 Earlier Items: 
Alex Isenstadt / The Politico:
Incumbent watch: Who's next to go?
Discussion: Taylor Marsh and Reuters
BBC:
Pope pins scandal on Church ‘sin’
Discussion: Shakesville
Colin Woodard / Christian Science Monitor:
'Tea party'-backed platform sails through Maine GOP convention
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Obama drug plan ‘firmly opposes’ legalization as California vote looms
Discussion: CNN and The Washington Independent
New York Times:
Drone Strikes Pound West Pakistan
Discussion: Weasel Zippers and Wonk Room