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6:55 PM ET, June 17, 2010

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
The Politico:
Barton retracts apology to BP  —  Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) is apologizing for his apology.  —  After infuriating Democrats and Republicans alike with his public apology to BP and suggesting that a $20 billion escrow fund was a “shakedown” by the White House, Barton is now “retracting” …
RELATED:
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
GOP lawmaker demands Barton step down from top committee spot  —  A Republican lawmaker from a district affected by the oil spill called on Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) to step down as the ranking member of his committee.  —  Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), whose Pensacola district is among …
Melanie Mason / Dallas Morning News:
U.S. Rep. Joe Barton apologizes to BP CEO for ‘$20 billion shakedown’  —  mmason@dallasnews.com  —  WASHINGTON - Rep. Joe Barton, R-Arlington, apologized to BP CEO Tony Hayward on Thursday morning for the “political pressure” his company is facing.  —  Barton condemned the White House's handling …
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Top Corporate Donor to Barton Is Partner of BP on Deepwater Horizon  —  Ordinarily, it's not that shocking to see a Republican from Texas defend the petroleum industry.  But Rep. Joe Barton's comments to BP CEO Tony Hayward today, in which he described it as a “tragedy” that a …
Eric Kleefeld / TPMDC:
Say What?  GOPers Slam White House Over BP Gulf Spill Fund  —  BP is ponying up $20 billion for Gulf Spill oil damages.  And quite a few Republicans don't like it one bit.  —  The Obama administration and BP seem to have come to a solution on paying for damages from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill …
David Weigel / Right Now:
Joe Barton's apology and a potential GOP trap  —  Giving the opening statement for Republicans at today's BP hearing, Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.), the ranking member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, vigorously defended the company in the wake of Wednesday's compromise on an escrow fund …
Jake Sherman / The Politico:
‘Shakedown’ remark causes uproar
RSC:
Chicago-Style Political Shakedown
Michael Muskal / D.C. Now:
GOP's Joe Barton retracts apology to BP
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
To Barton's Defense  —  Cornyn says he “shares [Barton's] concerns.”
CNN:
CNN Poll: Rise in disapproval of Obama handling of oil spill
Discussion: The Swamp and The Note
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
Great National Tragedy is ... The Escrow Account?
Keith Olbermann / Daily Kos:
Check, Please  —  I was checking in tonight to see what was new, came across a diary trashing first me and my colleague Rachel, and scrolled through it shaking my head, sadly, until I got to one comment that leaped off the page. … “Can't verify”... “haven't checked” …
RELATED:
Steve Krakauer / Mediaite:
Keith Olbermann Checks Out Of Daily Kos After Criticism From Left  —  After taking heat from some of his liberal fans on Twitter over his strong criticism of Pres. Barack Obama's Oval Office speech Tuesday, Keith Olbermann stopped into another of his new media stomping grounds to find more of the same.
Andy Barr / The Politico:
Olbermann leaves Daily Kos  —  Keith Olbermann announced Wednesday night that he will cease blogging for the liberal Daily Kos over a comment directed at the MSNBC host's coverage.  —  Olbermann and some of his MSNBC colleagues surprised their left-leaning fans on Tuesday with eviscerating critiques …
Hilary Stout / New York Times:
A Best Friend?  You Must Be Kidding  —  FROM the time they met in kindergarten until they were 15, Robin Shreeves and her friend Penny were inseparable.  They rode bikes, played kickball in the street, swam all summer long and listened to Andy Gibb, the Bay City Rollers and Shaun Cassidy on the stereo.
Alan I. Abramowitz / Sabato's Crystal Ball:
Can Republicans Take Back the House?  —  Editor's Note: These days the best D.C. parlor game is guessing November's House results.  We've recently made our own contribution, with a district-by-district analysis that projects—as of early June—a Republican net gain of 32 seats.
Discussion: The Daily Dish
RELATED:
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:   The run of Democratic House retirements that wasn't — and what it means
CNN:
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 …
Bniolet / Raleigh News & Observer:
Wrenn says NRCC knows: Who are you?  —  The National Republican Congressional Campaign Committee knows the identity of the two young men who approached Rep. Bob Etheridge, in a highly publicized incident in which the Democratic congressman roughly grabbed one of the men.
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog and Right Now
RELATED:
WTVD-TV:
Poll shows Etheridge trailing after video
Jonathan Chait / The New Republic:
Liberal Despair And the Cult Of The Presidency  —  I've been writing for several months about the curious sense of disappointment afflicting liberals  —the belief that they've been let down by a president who is, in fact, racking up historical achievements.
RELATED:
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
The Cult of the House  —  Jon Chait has a nice post …
The Right Scoop:
Hillary Clinton: Yes, Obama is filing a lawsuit against the Arizona law  —  Hillary Clinton was interviewed by NTN24 out of Quito, Ecuador on June 8, and was asked about how the Obama administration was handling the Arizona law.  She answered frankly, that the justice department …
The Huffington Post:
Obama Lunches With Progressive Pundits: Maddow, Robinson, Collins  —  What's Your Reaction: … President Obama met for lunch on Thursday with a group of predominantly progressive columnists to discuss a range of topics, chief among them the oil spill in the Gulf.
Jay Cost / HorseRaceBlog:
The Pulpit of a Bully  —  Mike Allen broke this astounding bit of news yesterday: … The 51st Congress (1889-91) was tagged as the Billion Dollar Congress, a profligate Republican-run legislature that raided the Treasury in an effort to pay off all its supporters.
Wall Street Journal:
End Is Seen to Free Checking  —  Bank of America Corp. and other banks are preparing new fees on basic banking services as they try to replace revenue lost to regulatory rules, in a push that is expected to spell an end to free checking accounts for many Americans.
Scott Gordon / nbcdfw.com:
Southwest Finds Shipment of Heads on a Plane  —  Southwest Airlines employee finds human heads on their way to Fort Worth  —  A Southwest Airlines employee called police after finding human heads in a package set to be transported to a Fort Worth medical research company, the airline said.
ABCNEWS:
Mohegan Sun Casino Owners Received $54 Million In Stimulus Money  —  Indian Tribe That Runs Connecticut Casino Earning $1 Billion-Plus Per Year Got Government Check  —  With the support of Sen. Chris Dodd, D.-Conn., the federal government has awarded $54 million to Connecticut's politically …
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
The Obama Effect  —  Democrats are going to have to think really carefully about how they deploy Barack Obama for campaigning this fall.  Polls we've conducted nationally and in several different states over the last few weeks have found that a candidate being endorsed by Obama is much more likely …
Discussion: Don Surber
David Hammer / New Orleans Times-Picayune:
BP acknowledges it never followed blowout preventer law, blames MMS  —  In response to a U.S. senator's questions  —  in a letter, BP said it never follows a federal law requiring it to certify that a blowout preventer device would be able to block a well in case of an emergency.
Discussion: ECHIDNE OF THE SNAKES
Andy Barr / The Politico:
Palin: Pot is a ‘minimal problem’  —  Former Alaska GOP Gov. Sarah Palin said Wednesday night that law enforcement should not focus its energy on the “minimal problem” of marijuana.  —  Palin made the comment during an appearance on the Fox Business Network with Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas).
Mpiccorossi / Pew Global Attitudes Project:
Obama More Popular Abroad Than At Home, Global Image of U.S. Continues to Benefit  —  Overview  —  As the global economy begins to rebound from the great recession, people around the world remain deeply concerned with the way things are going in their countries.
Rasmussen Reports:
Election 2010: Arkansas Senate  —  Arkansas Senate: Boozman (R) 61%, Lincoln (D) 32%  —  Republican John Boozman now holds a near two-to-one lead over Democratic incumbent Blanche Lincoln in Arkansas' U.S. Senate race, according to the latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in the state.
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.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Courtney Schlisserman / Bloomberg:
Jobless Claims in U.S. Unexpectedly Rose Last Week
Lydia Saad / Gallup:
Americans Back More Stimulus Spending to Create Jobs
Discussion: Firedoglake and Ezra Klein
Tyler Cowen / Marginal Revolution:
The Austerity Files
Nicole Allan / The Atlantic Online:
Rep. Parker Griffith: Oil Spill not the ‘Worst Thing That Ever Happened to America’
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
Wall Street Journal:
Dog at Center of Fight Over Will
Mark Steyn / The Corner on National Review Online:
Correction Sought — By: Mark Steyn
 Earlier Items: 
ZIP / Weasel Zippers:
Pic of the Day: Afghan Woman Having Her Picture Taken For Voter Registration Card...
Discussion: The Jawa Report
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
The Looming Structural Employment Disaster
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Dale Peterson returns, fires rifle
The Politico:
Exclusive: Hatch introducing new repeal bill in Senate …
Discussion: Wonk Room and Think Progress
Annie Lowrey / The Washington Independent:
‘Too Young Not to Work but Too Old to Work’
Discussion: Ezra Klein and Matthew Yglesias
Washington Times:
Walpin-gate swings wide open