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2:00 PM ET, August 23, 2010


 Top Items: 
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Now That's Rich  —  We need to pinch pennies these days.  Don't you know we have a budget deficit?  For months that has been the word from Republicans and conservative Democrats, who have rejected every suggestion that we do more to avoid deep cuts in public services and help the ailing economy.
Annie Gowen / Washington Post:
Far from Ground Zero, other plans for mosques run into vehement opposition  —  MURFREESBORO, TENN. — For more than 30 years, the Muslim community in this Nashville suburb has worshipped quietly in a variety of makeshift spaces — a one-bedroom apartment, an office behind a Lube Express …
Jonathan Weisman / Wall Street Journal:
Protests, Rhetoric Feed Jihadists' Fire  —  Islamic radicals are seizing on protests against a planned Islamic community center near Manhattan's Ground Zero and anti-Muslim rhetoric elsewhere as a propaganda opportunity and are stepping up anti-U.S. chatter and threats on their websites.
Borzou Daragahi / Los Angeles Times:
New York mosque controversy worries Muslims overseas
NY Daily News:
Anti-'Ground Zero mosque' protesters descend on downtown Park51 site
Chris Cillizza / Washington Post:
Poll numbers in 1994, a bad year for Democrats, don't bode well for them in 2010  —  Is it deja vu all over again for Democrats?  —  Some neutral observers and senior strategists within the party have begun to believe that the national political environment is not only similar to what they saw in 1994 …
Lou Cannon / Politics Daily:
2010 Elections: Big Potential for Republican Governor, Redistricting Wins
Russell Berman / The Hill:
House Democrats to push party small-business agenda this week
Quinnipiac University:
Meek, McCollum Lead One Day Before Florida Primaries, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; But Many Likely Primary Voters Remain Undecided  —  U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek holds a 39 - 29 percent lead over Jeff Greene in the Florida race for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate …
Orange Squeezer / Nick Egoroff Orlando …:
Was Mike Huckabee Ready To Sell His Endorsement to Rick Scott for $250,000?  —  I have spoken with a reliable source telling me that a little over a week ago, Mike Huckabee approached the Rick Scott campaign and made overtures that his endorsement could be had for $250,000 dollars.
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog, Ballot Box and Weigel
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Close Republican race in Florida
The Politico:
Dems urge Obama to take a stand  —  White House press secretary Robert Gibbs's recent complaint about the ingratitude of the “professional left” is a small symptom of a larger problem for President Barack Obama: He has left wide swaths of the Democratic Party uncertain of his core beliefs.
Mark Halperin / Time:
How Obama's Social Security Tactics Hurt Bipartisanship
Wall Street Journal:
$4.4 Trillion  —  That's how much the spending baseline has increased in 31 months.
Discussion: Commentary
Kristi Keck / CNN:
10 things Obama must do in 10 weeks  —  (CNN) — President Obama is facing criticism that his message has gone off track at a crucial time for his party and administration.  With the midterm elections just 10 weeks away, the president's approval ratings are at their lowest.
David Streitfeld / New York Times:
Real Estate's Gold Rush Seems Gone for Good  —  Housing will eventually recover from its great swoon.  But many real estate experts now believe that home ownership will never again yield rewards like those enjoyed in the second half of the 20th century, when houses not only provided shelter but also a plump nest egg.
Jonathan Strong / The Daily Caller:
True stories of bloggers who secretly feed on partisan cash  —  Katie Couric once described bloggers as journalists who gnaw at new information “like piranhas in a pool.”  But increasingly, many bloggers are also secretly feeding on cash from political campaigns, in a form of partisan payola …
Jane Mayer / New Yorker:
The billionaire brothers who are waging a war against Obama.  —  David H. Koch in 1996.  He and his brother Charles are lifelong libertarians and have quietly given more than a hundred million dollars to right-wing causes.  —  KEYWORDS … On May 17th, a black-tie audience …
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
In break with Reid, Durbin backs mosque  —  The second-ranking Senate Democrat broke ranks with his party's leader this weekend by announcing his support for the Lower Manhattan Islamic center and mosque.  —  Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (Ill.) said Sunday that those who are opposed …
Discussion: National Review and Weasel Zippers
J. Taylor Rushing / The Hill:
Harry Reid cashes in on star power
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Alyssa Battistoni / Salon:
The creeping threat of backdoor privatization  —  It has come to this: Parents are now being asked to send their children to school with their own toilet paper.  And not just toilet paper, but all sorts of basic items that schools themselves used to provide for kids.
Daniel Bates / Daily Mail:
Taliban-hired snipers believed to have killed British soldiers killed by air strikes  —  Four foreign snipers hired by the Taliban, thought to be responsible for the deaths of ten British soldiers, have been hunted down and killed.  —  The mercenaries were found by British special forces …
Discussion: The Jawa Report
Rasmussen Reports:
Many More Now Following Mosque Controversy - And Don't Like It  —  A lot more voters are paying attention to the plans to build a mosque near the Ground Zero site of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York City, and they don't like the idea.  —  A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds …
Ben Evans / Associated Press:
SPIN METER: Republicans hot, cold on Constitution  —  WASHINGTON — Republican Rep. Paul Broun of Georgia won his seat in Congress campaigning as a strict defender of the Constitution.  He carries a copy in his pocket and is particularly fond of invoking the Second Amendment right to bear arms.
Dexter Filkins / New York Times:
Pakistanis Tell of Motive in Taliban Leader's Arrest  —  ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — When American and Pakistani agents captured Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban's operational commander, in the chaotic port city of Karachi last January, both countries hailed the arrest as a breakthrough …
Uninsured Slow To Sign Up For Coverage  —  HACKENSACK, N.J. - Just two people in New Jersey will begin receiving coverage Monday under new plans created by federal health care reforms.  —  NJ Protect plans are available to those who have been without insurance for at least six months …
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Why Statism Is the Wrong Frame  —  Matt Yglesias writes: … Awhile back, when I reviewed Liberty and Tyranny by Mark Levin, I argued that its fatal flaw was its author's insistence on the straw man that today's liberals are fundamentally driven by Statism, whereas actually what motivates …
Discussion: Balloon Juice and Will Wilkinson
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 More Items: 
Russell Adams / Wall Street Journal:
Harman Ready to Become ‘Institution Builder’ at Newsweek
Washington Monthly:
College Dropout Factories
Discussion: Economix
Sean J. Miller / Ballot Box:
McCain poised to crush Hayworth on Tuesday
Derrick DePledge / Staradvertiser:
Abercrombie has edge  —  Mufi Hannemann continues to trail …
Discussion: The Fix
Jeff Merkley / Oregonian:
Mosque: Don't blame friends for acts of enemies
Discussion: The Plum Line and Salon
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
 Earlier Items: 
Tracy Alloway / FT Alphaville:
Moving targets, US housing edition
Discussion: interfluidity
Jake Tapper / Political Punch:
Details About President Obama's Iraq Address Next Week
Tim Geithner /
Transcripts on  —  MR. DAVID GREGORY: This Sunday …
Ruth Simon / Wall Street Journal:
Credit-Card Rates Climb
New York Times:
Iran's President Unveils New Long-Range Drone Aircraft
Paul Krugman:
The Taylor Rule And The “Bond Bubble” (Wonkish)
Julian Pecquet / The Hill:
Insurance agents fight for survival in world after health reform