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12:10 PM 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 …
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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?
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
What Tuesday Really Meant  —  There were five races that we were tracking closely over the course of the evening — and I've already seen analysts drawing flimsy conclusions from each of them.  —  Pennsylvania — Democratic Senate primary  —  The results: Joe Sestak defeats Arlen Specter, 54-46.
David Weigel / Right Now:
Rand Paul wins, and libertarians rejoice
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
How (and why) Arlen Specter lost
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
Jim Oliphant / The Swamp:
Elena Kagan: Money in the bank?  —  White House staffers deliver Elena Kagan's questionnaire responses to the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday.  (AP/Harry Hamburg)  —  by David G. Savage  —  Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan says she has $1.76 million in assets …
Discussion: CNN and SCOTUSblog
RELATED:
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.
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
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
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
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 …
Michael Barone / Beltway Confidential:
Republican lesson from Pennsylvania 12 special  —  In Pennsylvania 12, so far the state shows 77,410 votes cast in the Democratic primary for Congress and 43,614 in the Republican primary—43% of them for 2008 Republican nominee William Russell, who pointedly did not endorse special election Republican candidate Tim Burns.
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
Ben Raines / Breaking News from the Press-Register:
BP told feds it could handle oil spill 60 times larger than Deepwater Horizon … In its 2009 exploration plan for the Deepwater Horizon well, BP PLC states that the company could handle a spill involving as much as 12.6 million gallons of oil per day, a number 60 times higher than its current estimate of the ongoing Gulf disaster.
Reuters:
Obama rebukes Republicans for trying to block him  —  (Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Tuesday accused Republicans of trying to score political points by attempting to block his economic policies but insisted that his agenda was working.  —  With public anxiety over high unemployment …
Discussion: Daily Kos and Beltway Confidential
RELATED:
Jay Cost / HorseRaceBlog:
No, This Isn't an “Anti-Incumbent” Year
Discussion: The Save Jersey Blog and Hot Air
 
 
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 More Items: 
BBC:
Full text: Clegg reform speech
Discussion: Guardian and Crooked Timber
Simon McGregor-Wood / ABCNEWS:
Rahm's Son's Bar Mitzvah Irks Some in Israel
Discussion: Jerusalem Post and Think Progress
People-Press.org:
Public's Priorities, Financial Regs
Discussion: Politics Daily
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Graham: Senate likely to revisit energy and climate bill next year
Discussion: The Politico
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Video: The most depressing commencement address ever?
Elaine Ganley / Associated Press:
Women protest as French Cabinet gets veil ban bill
Discussion: Gateway Pundit and Weasel Zippers
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Scandals in the House Republican Class of 1994
Discussion: msnbc.com and Daily Kos
 Earlier Items: 
Democracy Now:
Audio From 1998: Rep. Mark Souder (R-IN) Hangs Up On Amy Goodman …
J.P. Freire / Beltway Confidential:
DOJ Voting Rights attorney resigns over Black Panthers stonewalling
O.Kay Henderson:
Biden “embarrassed as hell” about the BFD
Yahoo! News:
Miss USA controversies storm the blogosphere
Steve Krakauer / Mediaite:
Campbell Brown Leaving CNN After Network Grants Release From Contract (UPDATE)