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9:55 AM ET, June 17, 2010


 Top Items: 
Dana Loesch /
The Playboy Article on the Tea Party  —  I can't wait to tell my Baptist mother that her daughter is in Playboy.  —  This month's issue of Playboy features an interesting article on the tea party movement and in particular, focuses on a particular group of activists, myself included.
Jack Mirkinson / The Huffington Post:
Chris Matthews: ‘Rise Of The New Right’ Special Will ‘Scare The Heck Out’ Of Liberals (VIDEO)  —  WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?  —  MSNBC host Chris Matthews says he is sure his new special, “Rise of the New Right” — which airs tonight at 7PM — will stir people up, no matter where they fall on the political spectrum.
Rasmussen Reports:
51% in New Jersey Approve of Governor's Performance
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
Armey: Avoid ‘tea party’ label, MSNBC
Discussion: Liberal Values and Hot Air
Language guru: Obama speech too ‘professorial’  —  (CNN) — President Obama's speech on the gulf oil disaster may have gone over the heads of many in his audience, according to an analysis of the 18-minute talk released Wednesday.  —  Tuesday night's speech from the Oval Office of the White House …
The Live Feed | THR:
Obama oil spill address draws 32 million
Discussion: Commentary and New York Magazine
Eugene Robinson / PostPartisan:
Obama disappoints from the beginning of his speech
David Gardner / Daily Mail:
Bullied into a £13bn cave-in: Obama forces BP to set up huge compensation fund for U.S. oil spill victims - and British pensioners will pick up the bill  —  The crisis engulfing BP plumbed new depths last night as President Obama bullied the company into depositing £13.5billion …
Jeff Zeleny / New York Times:
In Illinois Race, a Teaching Career Is Questioned  —  WASHINGTON — Representative Mark S. Kirk of Illinois, a Republican candidate for the United States Senate, has often reminisced about his time as a teacher.  —  On the floor of the House, in campaign commercials and during interviews …
New York Times:
Israel to Ease Gaza Land Blockade  —  JERUSALEM — Weeks after its commandos killed nine people aboard an aid flotilla trying to breach its blockade of Gaza, Israel on Thursday announced what it called a liberalization of the three-year-old restrictions, promising to ease the importation …
Janine Zacharia / Washington Post:
Israel announces easing of Gaza Strip blockade
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
New RNC ad: How many rounds did you golf while the oil was leaking, champ?  —  A snappy montage illustrating Obama's “bloodless quality” and “emotional detachment” from the spill, as rabidly right-wing NYT columnist Maureen Dowd put it this morning.  Sad to say, I don't think this meme's …
More Than 90 Banks Miss TARP Payments  —  More than 90 U.S. banks and thrifts missed making a May 17 payment to the U.S. government under its main bank bailout program, signaling a rising number of lenders are struggling to meet their obligations.  —  The statistics, compiled by SNL Financial …
Gail Collins / New York Times:
The Boring Speech Policy  —  On Monday night in Ohio, a 62-foot-tall statue of Jesus got hit by lightning and burned to the ground.  (The adult bookstore across the street was unscathed.)  Less than 12 hours later, Gen. David Petraeus — who is not God, although certain members of Congress …
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Mike Zapler / Mercury News:
Biden coming to Silicon Valley in July to raise money for Boxer  —  WASHINGTON — Vice President Joe Biden is coming to Silicon Valley on July 8 to raise money for Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer's re-election bid, her campaign said Wednesday night.  He'll attend a second fundraiser for her the following day in Los Angeles.
Discussion: Ballot Box
Jamie Brown / The Politico:
Navigating congressional hearings  —  Most congressional hearings don't possess the same drama or rivet public attention as many expect BP Chief Executive Officer Tony Hayward's testimony will today.  —  But for any company or interest group, the stakes of testifying at a congressional hearing can still be enormous.
Jordy Yager / The Hill:
GAO still encounters delays in access to federal agencies  —  Numerous government agencies are denying the investigative arm of Congress access to information, despite repeated attempts by officials and lawmakers to remedy the situation, according to a letter sent this week and obtained by The Hill.
Josh Rogin / Foreign Policy:
Twitterati report: Syria trip mixes work with play  —  The State Department's two leading Twitterati, Special Advisor on Innovation Alec J. Ross (@alecjross) and Policy Planning staffer Jared Cohen (@jaredcohen), are in Syria this week leading a delegation of tech companies hoping to …
John Schwartz / New York Times:
With Criminal Charges for Oil Spill, Costs to BP Could Soar  —  As BP watches its bill rise quickly for the oil spill, including $20 billion it is setting aside for claims, it could find the tally growing much faster in coming months if the United States Department of Justice files criminal charges against the company.
Jason Horowitz / Washington Post:
Pollster Scott Rasmussen's numbers are firing up Republicans and Democrats  —  ASBURY PARK, N.J. — Here is a fun fact for those in the political polling orthodoxy who liken Scott Rasmussen to a conjurer of Republican-friendly numbers: He works above a paranormal bookstore crowded with Ouija boards and psychics on the Jersey Shore.
Discussion: The Eye
David S. Broder / Washington Post:
Red ink, not oil, is the best focus for Obama  —  Far be it from me to tell the crew of public relations officials who now occupy those West Wing offices as a reward for running one of the best presidential campaigns anyone has ever seen, but . . .  If there is any value in President Obama's knocking himself …
Discussion: Commentary and Wizbang
Robert Skidelsky / Financial Times:
Once again we must ask: ‘Who governs?’  —  In 1974, Edward Heath asked: “Who governs - government or trade unions?”  Five years later British voters delivered a final verdict by electing Margaret Thatcher.  The equivalent today would be: “Who governs - government or financial markets?”
Boston Globe:
Amy Bishop charged with murder for 1986 shooting of brother  —  CANTON — Amy Bishop has been charged with murder for the 1986 shotgun slaying of her 18-year-old brother in their Braintree home, Norfolk District Attorney William R. Keating said this afternoon.
Glenn Reynolds / Instapundit:
BRIAN TAMANAHA: Wake Up, Fellow Law Professors, to the Casualties of Our Enterprise. … Just casualties of the recession?  Or more signs of a bursting bubble?  The only positive angle I can contribute is this: With a college degree now functioning, essentially, the way a high-school diploma used to …
Sean J. Miller / Ballot Box:
House Democrats set to retire aren't paying their party's dues  —  House Democratic leaders want a going-away present from the members who are leaving Congress next year — their committee dues.  —  A dozen retiring House Democrats have racked up almost $2 million in outstanding balances …
Bizarre getaway as student hurls puppy at German biker gang  —  A German student “mooned” a group of Hell's Angels and hurled a puppy at them before escaping on a stolen bulldozer, police have said.
Gulf Oil Spill, Day 57: House: BP Cut Corners; Pickens: Investigation Can Wait … More revelations emerged Monday about BP's cost and safety decisions during the days leading up to the oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico.  —  The disclosures are from internal documents released by a House committee.
Discussion: Right Wing News and Erick's blog
Jim Geraghty / National Review:
It's Too Early for Christie, but Americans Are Yearning for His Style  —  It seems like every week or so, you see blogs and Twitter comments in the vein of, “Hey, did you see this great speech by Chris Christie?”  —  And they're not actually great speeches, at least not the way we've …
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 More Items: 
David E. Bernstein / Cato Unbound:
Context Matters: A Better Libertarian Approach to Antidiscrimination Law
Couragecampaign / Prop 8 Trial Tracker:
Liveblogging Closing Arguments: Part IV
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Jon Stewart on Obama's executive power record
Mark Landler / New York Times:
U.S. Imposes New Penalties on Iran
Discussion: New York Magazine
CQ Politics:
GOP Criticizes Withdrawal Plan as Undermining Afghanistan Efforts
Jim Hoft / Gateway Pundit:
CHANGE!  53 Days Later Obama Administration Decides to Accept …
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Brady leads Quinn, but margin reduced
Discussion: Daily Kos and MyDD
Stephen Holden / New York Times:
June 28, 1969: Turning Point in Gay Rights History
Discussion: The Daily Dish
 Earlier Items: 
Fred Barnes / Weekly Standard:
Can Dino Rossi Put Senate Republicans Over the Top?
Van Helsing / Moonbattery:
Winston Churchill's Cigar Goes Down the Memory Hole
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
The golf card  —  Two vacations and a bunch of parties as well.
Discussion: The Daily Beast
Marc Ambinder / The Atlantic Online:
Dickensian Moment of the Day  —  BP's Chairman, Carl-Henric Svanberg …
Discussion: Associated Press and Firedoglake