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11:50 AM ET, May 19, 2010

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
The Politico:
The GOP's special failure  —  All the evidence pointing to monster Republican House gains this fall—the Scott Brown upset win in Massachusetts, the scary polling numbers in once-safely Democratic districts, the ever-rising number of Democratic seats thought to be in jeopardy—was contradicted Tuesday.
RELATED:
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
‘WHERE IS THE WAVE?’....  Arguably the most important election yesterday wasn't a primary race, but rather, the congressional special election in Pennsylvania's 12th — a contest to fill the vacancy left by the late Rep. Jack Murtha (D).  —  Observers in both parties considered the race something of a bellwether.
New York Times:
Specter Defeat Signals a Wave Against Incumbents  —  WASHINGTON — Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, who left the Republican Party a year ago in hopes of salvaging a 30-year career, was rejected on Tuesday by Democratic primary voters, with Representative Joe Sestak winning the party's nomination …
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Resultsblogging II: PA-12  —  Former John Murtha staffer Mark Critz's win in the PA-12 House election is just straight-up embarrassing for Republicans.  The Democratic strategy was straight out of the 2006/2008 playbook.  Find a moderately conservative House district and run a somewhat heterodox Democrat.
Discussion: TalkLeft and Dennis the Peasant
Reuters:
Activists seize control of politics  —  For any politician with the usual instincts for self-protection, the lessons of Tuesday's primaries could not be more clear: This could happen to you.  —  Arlen Specter lost in Pennsylvania even though the party-switching Democrat was recruited and backed by a sitting president.
Daniel Larison / Eunomia:
PA-12 and The Single Greatest Pushback in American History
Thomas M. Defrank / NY Daily News:
Sen. Arlen Specter's primary loss continues bad 2010 for President Obama, Democrats
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Alexander Burns / The Politico:
Sestak, Paul score wins as Lincoln faces runoff  —  Upstart Senate candidates claimed two stunning victories in primary elections Tuesday night as Pennsylvania Rep. Joe Sestak denied incumbent Democrat Arlen Specter renomination to a sixth term and Kentucky insurgent Rand Paul easily bested …
RELATED:
Marc Ambinder / The Atlantic Online:
Is Rand Ron's Son?  Or the Most Powerful Republican in the Woooorld?  —  Rand Paul is in the spotlight tonight.  He's enjoying Scott Brown-like status as the Most Powerful Republican In The World.  And look: he says he represents the Tea Party movement.  So that must be the end of it, right?
Jay Cost / HorseRaceBlog:
No, This Isn't an “Anti-Incumbent” Year
Discussion: The Save Jersey Blog and Hot Air
Katharine Q. Seelye / New York Times:
After 30 Years and Party Switch, Career Curtain for Specter
New York Times:
Blumenthal's Vietnam Claims Grew in Time, Colleague Says  —  Former Representative Christopher Shays of Connecticut found it puzzling: over time, his friend Attorney General Richard Blumenthal kept revising how he talked about his military service during the Vietnam War.  At first, in the 1980s, he was humble.
RELATED:
Jim Geraghty / National Review:
I Believe Richard Blumenthal
James Hohmann / The Politico:
VFW leader rips Blumenthal
Alex Rodriguez / Los Angeles Times:
Pakistan arrests army officer linked to Times Square bomb suspect  —  The major's involvement with Faisal Shahzad remains unclear, but authorities say the two met in Islamabad and were in cellphone contact.  —  Reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan  —  Investigators have arrested …
RELATED:
Dina Temple-Raston / NPR:
Jamaican Imam Said To Inspire Times Square Suspect
CNN:
Official: Times Square bomb suspect eyed other targets
Discussion: Jihad Watch
Patrick Gavin / The Politico:
HOUSE PASSES BEER RESOLUTION  —  While most of Washington was focused on Tuesday's election results, the House was busy doing something else: Passing a resolution about beer.  —  House Resolution 1297, sponsored by Rep. Betsy Markey, supports “the goals and ideals of American Craft Beer Week.”
Discussion: JONATHAN TURLEY and Don Surber
New York Times:
Thesis Is Window on Roots of Kagan's Legal Creed  —  WASHINGTON — As a young graduate student, Elena Kagan wrote that it was “not necessarily wrong or invalid” for judges to “try to mold and steer the law” to achieve social ends, but warned that such rulings must be rooted in legal principles to be accepted by society and endure.
RELATED:
Jim Oliphant / The Swamp:
Elena Kagan: Money in the bank?
Discussion: CNN and SCOTUSblog
Chris Bowers / Open Left:
Crotchety Progressive Rant  —  I am outraged by this, because this is outrageous.  —  And yet, where are the street protests in response to this outrage?  No, not those protests—we need bigger ones.  There should be hundreds of thousands of people out there protesting this.  Every day.
Discussion: Dennis the Peasant and TalkLeft
Jane Horwitz / Washington Post:
Theater J pulls Madoff play after objections from activist Elie Wiesel  —  Bowing to objections from Elie Wiesel, the author, human rights activist and Holocaust survivor, Theater J has canceled its first production of the coming season — a play in which Wiesel is a character.
Bloomberg:
Conspiracy of Banks Rigging States Came With Crash  —  A telephone call between a financial adviser in Beverly Hills and a trader in New York was all it took to fleece taxpayers on a water-and-sewer financing deal in West Virginia.  The secret conversation was part of a conspiracy stretching across …
Nick Gillespie / Hit & Run:
Why We're Having an Everybody Draw Mohammed Contest on Thursday May 20  —  The deadline for submitting work to Reason's Everybody Draw Mohammed contest has passed; winners will be shown on Thursday, May 20.  —  All that remains is anticipation, both of the artwork that will be displayed …
Discussion: Balloon Juice
Steve Krakauer / Mediaite:
Campbell Brown Leaving CNN After Network Grants Release From Contract (UPDATE)  —  Mediaite has learned CNN has granted anchor Campbell Brown's request to be let out early from her contract.  —  She has agreed to stay on and anchor the 8pmET hour until a replacement is found.  Updated with statements.
RELATED:
Brian Stelter / Media Decoder:
Campbell Brown to Leave CNN
Discussion: Mediaite and Romenesko
J.P. Freire / Beltway Confidential:
DOJ Voting Rights attorney resigns over Black Panthers stonewalling  —  A trial attorney with the Department of Justice's Voting Rights Section has resigned, citing concerns about the government's refusal to prosecute a case involving voter intimidation by the New Black Panther Party.
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Scandals in the House Republican Class of 1994  —  When was it, exactly, that the Republican revolution merged with the sexual revolution?  —  With each passing year, the class notes for the famous House Republicans Class of '94 get more lurid.  The latest entry was submitted Tuesday morning by Rep. Mark Souder (Ind.).
Discussion: msnbc.com and Daily Kos
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Video: The most depressing commencement address ever?  —  I'm posting this for one reason only: If Specter wins, the blow will fall so heavily on some of us that it could prove fatal unless we're prepared for it first.  Consider this preparation.  After you watch, you'll be so bummed …
 
 
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 More Items: 
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Graham: Senate likely to revisit energy and climate bill next year
Discussion: The Politico
Reuters:
Obama rebukes Republicans for trying to block him
Discussion: Daily Kos and Beltway Confidential
Michael Barone / Beltway Confidential:
Republican lesson from Pennsylvania 12 special
Elaine Ganley / Associated Press:
Women protest as French Cabinet gets veil ban bill
Discussion: Gateway Pundit and Weasel Zippers
 Earlier Items: 
Democracy Now:
Audio From 1998: Rep. Mark Souder (R-IN) Hangs Up On Amy Goodman …
O.Kay Henderson:
Biden “embarrassed as hell” about the BFD
Yahoo! News:
Miss USA controversies storm the blogosphere