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3:00 PM ET, July 18, 2010


 Top Items: 
Shailagh Murray / Washington Post:
Republican lawmakers gird for rowdy tea party  —  So who wants to join Rand Paul's “tea-party” caucus?  —  “I don't know about that,” Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) replied with a nervous laugh.  “I'm not sure I should be participating in this story.”  —  Republican lawmakers see plenty …
Tea Party Federation kicks out Williams over blog post  —  (CNN) — The National Tea Party Federation, an organization that represents the Tea Party political movement around the country, has expelled conservative commentator Mark Williams and his Tea Party Express because of an inflammatory blog post …
Bridget Johnson / The Hill:
McConnell ‘not interested’ in weighing in on debate over racism in Tea Party  —  Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) stayed out of the debate over whether there are racist elements in the Tea Party movement, saying he had better things to worry about — namely, GOP efforts in the midterm elections.
Discussion: CNN and Riehl World View
Robert Pear / New York Times:
Changing Stance, Administration Now Defends Insurance Mandate as a Tax  —  WASHINGTON — When Congress required most Americans to obtain health insurance or pay a penalty, Democrats denied that they were creating a new tax.  But in court, the Obama administration and its allies now defend …
William A. Jacobson / Le·gal In·sur·rec· tion:
Moral of the Obamacare Story: Taxes In, Doctors Out  —  There were two important developments recently in the continued unraveling of the Obamacare public relations BS.  —  First, the Obama administration cemented its legal position that the health care mandate is a tax …
Kay Lazar / Boston Globe:   Firms cancel health coverage
Reed Abelson / New York Times:
Insurers Push Plans Limiting Patient Choice of Doctors
Kendra Marr / The Politico:
GOP senators: Obama failing in oil clean-up  —  Just days after BP temporarily plugged the massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, Senate Republicans on Sunday lashed out at the Obama administration for failing to clean up America's soiled shoreline.  —  Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell …
Kevin Bogardus / The Hill:
Vitter: Obama avoiding oil spill
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Tom Gross Mideast Media Analysis:
A nice new shopping mall opened today in Gaza: Will the media report on it?  —  [Please link to and credit this website if writing on this.]  —  Will the Western media show these images?  —  All notes below by Tom Gross  —  Please scroll down below for photos of the new shopping mall that opened today in Gaza.
David Limbaugh / Washington Examiner:
Obama's the “most” racial president  —  While President Obama has touted himself as a post-racial president, he has built a record demonstrating precisely the opposite.  Is it Obama's bitterness, or is the incessant playing of the race card by him and many of his supporters merely calculated political exploitation — or both?
Anita Kumar / Washington Post:
McDonnell wants to show Virginia the way out of liquor business  —  RICHMOND — For months, aides to Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell have been meeting behind closed doors with alcohol retailers and wholesalers, public safety officials and faith-based groups to come up with a way to fulfill …
Pamela Geller / Atlas Shrugs:
Muslims Riot, Mayhem in France, Fire On Police UPDATE: After Islamic Cleric's Fiery Speech  —  Mayhem in Grenoble (Photo: AFP) (hat tip woolie)  —  The imprimatur of an Islamic cleric: … UPDATE: The police were fired on by automatic gunfire, a fact that strangely was only reported on by al jazeera.
Kendra Marr / The Politico:
Biden: GOP forced smaller stimulus  —  Vice President Joe Biden said that the Recovery Act was undersized because the White House shrunk the economic stimulus package to win Republican votes in Congress to pass it.  —  “I think it would have been bigger,” he told ABC's Jake Tapper in an interview airing Sunday.
Margaret Thatcher's family are ‘appalled’ at Meryl Streep film  —  Film about Margaret Thatcher's life, which is expected to star Meryl Streep, shows the former prime minister as a dementia-sufferer looking back at her life with sadness.  —  Tim Walker.  —  Although the prospect …
Laura Donnelly / Telegraph:
Cash crisis in NHS leaves patients lying on operating tables  —  A cash crisis in the NHS has left patients lying on the operating table before doctors realised vital equipment had not been ordered, according to a leaked report.  —  Women in labour have been forced to wait while epidural equipment …
Associated Press:
Biden's 2008 campaign fined $219K for violations  —  WASHINGTON — Election watchdogs have fined Joe Biden's 2008 presidential campaign more than $219,000 for sloppy bookkeeping and accepting excessive contributions, including a discounted flight on a private jet.
Robert Pear / New York Times:
Biden Owes $219,000 for Campaign Violations
Discussion: Truthdig and The Page
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
Joe Biden fined $219K for 2008 presidential campaign violations
Adam Serwer / American Prospect:
The Day The Controversy Over The New Black Panther Case Fell Apart.  —  So, a number of things have happened in the past few hours that should really discredit the entire conservative conspiracy theory behind the New Black Panther Party case.  —  Earlier today, I reported that J. Christian Adams …
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 More Items: 
Victor Davis Hanson / The Corner on National …:
Pampered populists — By: Victor Davis Hanson
Keith B. Richburg / Washington Post:
For many pregnant Chinese, a U.S. passport for baby remains a powerful lure
Lauren Etter / Wall Street Journal:
Roads to Ruin: Towns Rip Up the Pavement
Ben Geman / The Hill:
Hayworth: Obama wants ‘no enforcement of the law’ on immigration
New Economic Perspectives:
The Myths About Government Debt and Deficit as Told By Carmen Reinhart …
Discussion: Corrente
 Earlier Items: 
Jessica Taloney / WKRG-TV:
News 5 Investigates: Testing The Water
Steve Krakauer / Mediaite:
Keith Olbermann To Take “Couple Weeks Vacation Off” - Lawrence O'Donnell Fills In
Discussion: and
Tamar Lewin / New York Times:
Pleas Evolve for Conscientious Objector Status
Alan Greenblatt / NPR:
GOP Favored In All-Important State Races
Discussion: MyDD
Bbtv /
Caught on Camera: Union Goon Hits, Shoves and Harasses GOP Supporter at Rally
Mortimer B. Zuckerman / US News:
Obama's Anti-Business Policies Are Our Economic Katrina