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8:50 PM ET, December 13, 2010

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Kevin Sack / New York Times:
Judge Voids Key Element of Obama Health Care Law  —  A federal district judge in Virginia ruled on Monday that the keystone provision in the Obama health care law is unconstitutional, becoming the first court in the country to invalidate any part of the sprawling act and ensuring that appellate courts …
RELATED:
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
Amazing  —  A year ago, no one took seriously the idea that a federal health care mandate was unconstitutional.  And the idea that buying health care coverage does not amount to “economic activity” seems preposterous on its face.  But the decision that just came down from the federal judgment in Virginia …
Ezra Klein:
Is the Hudson ruling good news for health reform?  —  District Court Judge Henry E. Hudson, a George W. Bush appointee, has, as expected, ruled the individual mandate unconstitutional.  So why are health reformers so unexpectedly pleased?  —  There are two reasons, but first, let's put this into context.
Rosalind S. Helderman / Washington Post:
Virginia health-care ruling strikes down key provision of Obama's plan  —  RICHMOND - A federal judge in Virginia ruled Monday that a key provision of the nation's sweeping health-care overhaul is unconstitutional, the most significant legal setback so far for President Obama's signature domestic initiative.
Larry O'Dell / Associated Press:
Federal judge in Va. strikes down health care law  —  RICHMOND, Va. - A federal judge in Virginia has declared the Obama administration's health care reform law unconstitutional.  —  U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson is the first judge to rule against the law, which has been upheld by two others in Virginia and Michigan.
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
CHEERING A VICTORY OVER THEIR OWN IDEA.... Many on the right are, not surprisingly, delighted with today's federal district court ruling on the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate.  That's to be expected — they're hoping to gut the law.  The two previous legal defeats notwithstanding …
John Cook / Gawker:
Judge Who Ruled Health Care Reform Unconstitutional Owns Piece of GOP Consulting Firm  —  Henry E. Hudson, the federal judge in Virginia who just ruled health care reform unconstitutional, owns between $15,000 and $50,000 in a GOP political consulting firm that worked against health care reform.
USA Today:
Obama's economic guru predicts low demand for years  —  Exiting White House economic advisor Lawrence Summers says a lack of consumer demand will bedevil the nation's economy for years to come.  —  In his final policy speech before returning to Harvard University in January …
The Numbers:
New Low in Support for Health Care Reform  —  Coinciding with a federal judge's ruling invalidating a key element of the health care reform law, an ABC News/Washington Post poll finds support for the landmark legislation at a new low - but division on what to do about it.
Orin Kerr / The Volokh Conspiracy:
The Significant Error in Judge Hudson's Opinion
Discussion: TalkLeft, Balkinization and Daily Kos
Jon Cohen / Washington Post:
Poll finds broad bipartisan support for tax package  —  About seven in 10 Americans back the tax deal negotiated last week by President Obama and congressional Republicans, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.  —  The high bipartisan support for the package masks …
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Carl Hulse / New York Times:
Out of Power Soon, and Out of Sorts Now
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Senate votes for tax cut deal. What's route through House?
David M. Herszenhorn / The Caucus:
Senate Advances Tax Cut Package
Jake Tapper / Political Punch:
Richard Holbrooke Has Died  —  ABC News has learned that Richard Holbrooke, the US Special Representative to Afghanistan and Pakistan, has died.  —  On Friday, Holbrooke was rushed to the hospital with a torn aorta.  He went through more than 20 hours of surgery.
RELATED:
Joe Sterling / CNN:
Richard Holbrooke, noted diplomat, is dead at 69
ABCNEWS:   Richard Holbrooke
msnbc.com:
U.S. diplomat Holbrooke dies after tearing aorta
Discussion: Alan Colmes' Liberaland and Gawker
Tim Pawlenty / Wall Street Journal:
Government Unions vs. Taxpayers  —  The moral case for unions—protecting working families from exploitation—does not apply to public employment.  —  When Americans think of organized labor, they might think of images like I saw growing up in a blue-collar meatpacking town: hard hats, work boots, tough conditions and gritty jobs.
RELATED:
Michael Scherer / Swampland:
Larry Summers' Warning About The Growth Of Government (Transcript)
Discussion: Economist's View
Doug McKelway / Fox News:
Steele Seeks Second Term As RNC Chair  —  Controversial Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, who last month presided over the GOP's biggest electoral gains since 1938, announced Monday night that he is running for re-election.  —  Ending weeks of rumors that he would not seek …
RELATED:
CNN:
BREAKING: RNC Chairman Michael Steele will seek re-election
Discussion: The Note
Barry Ritholtz / The Big Picture:
Brain Oddities: Spelling is Irrelevant to Comprehension  —  In trying to make sense of the world around us, our brains have evolved to do some very odd things.  The more we learn about our cognitive processes, the more it seems we have inherited a very weird wetware set, filled with bizarre and misleading foibles.
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
RELATED:
Mchapman / CNSNews:
Michelle Obama on Deciding What Kids Eat: 'We Can't Just Leave it Up to The Parents'
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Designer: No Labels lifted penguins of bipartisanship  —  Gothamist reports that No Labels wonderful, kooky logo was taken from a New York graphic designer who knew nothing of the group.  —  The designer, Thomas Porostocky, tells the site:  —  I'm still a little stunned at the blatant plagiarism. …
Discussion: National Review, Moe Lane and Hot Air
RELATED:
John Del Signore / Gothamist:
Did No Labels Rip Off Design From More Party Animals?
Discussion: City Room and Ben Smith's Blog
Becky Bohrer / Associated Press:
Miller appeals ruling on write-in vote count  —  Republican Joe Miller is taking his challenge to Alaska's U.S. Senate race to the state Supreme Court.  —  Miller filed his appeal Monday, three days after a lower court ruled against his lawsuit challenging how the state counted write-in ballots for his rival, Sen. Lisa Murkowski.
Discussion: The Note, Ballot Box and USA Today
The Atlantic Online:
The Unknown Blogger Who Changed WikiLeaks Coverage  —  When historians look back at WikiLeaks and how the world's pundits tried to make sense of what was happening, they'll see a familiar list of sources: Foreign Policy's Evgeny Morozov, The Guardian's John Noughton, The New York Times' David Carr …
David Dayen / Firedoglake:
More Talk of Severe Budget Cuts to Follow Tax Deal  —  The very long cloture vote is happening right now in the Senate on the motion to proceed to the tax cut bill.  Because some Senators have had issues getting to Washington, particularly from the snowed-in Midwest, the vote will be held open a while.
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Block Those Metaphors  —  Like it or not — and I don't — the Obama-McConnell tax-cut deal, with its mixture of very bad stuff and sort-of-kind-of good stuff, is likely to pass Congress.  Then what?  —  The deal will, without question, give the economy a short-term boost.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Kyle / Right Wing Watch:
Scalia To Teach Bachmann's Inaugural Class On The Constitution
Discussion: Hullabaloo and Pam's House Blend
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Senate expected to advance $858B tax, benefits package
Discussion: Michelle Malkin and SENATUS
ABCNEWS:
Obama Hails Senate Vote on Tax Deal
Greg Hengler / Townhall.com:
View Ladies Mock “Weeper Of The House” Boehner
Discussion: NewsBusters.org blogs and Hot Air
Lynn Sweet:
Senate has votes to ratify START treaty: To floor this week
Discussion: National Review
Myglesias / Yglesias:
Highway Terror  —  Reader AS looked up the Bureau of Transportation …
Discussion: Swampland
The Note:
‘No Labels’ and the Search for a Political Center
Discussion: Ballot Box, Yglesias, Gawker and The Agonist
Michael Whitney / Firedoglake:
filibernie: The Word Cloud of Sanders' Senate Speech
 Earlier Items: 
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Minnesota Republican Numbers
Discussion: Power Line and GOP 12
Megan McArdle / The Atlantic Online:
Judge Rules Health Reform Mandate Unconstitutional
Jamelle Bouie / American Prospect:
A Bad Deal for Judicial Nominees.
Jennifer Epstein / The Politico:
Sharron Angle launches ‘Patriot Caucus’
Kate Zernike / New York Times:
Rep. Ron Paul, G.O.P. Loner, Comes In From Cold