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2:20 PM ET, December 15, 2010

memeorandum

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Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
DeMint will force readings of START Treaty and omnibus bill  —  Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) will force readings of both a nuclear arms treaty and $1.1 trillion spending bill that could eat up hours of the remaining lame-duck Congress.  —  DeMint will invoke a senatorial privilege to ask …
RELATED:
Wall Street Journal:
Harry Reid's Holiday Jam  —  What the Senate wants to pass while you're not paying attention.  —  In the famous formulation often attributed to George Washington, the U.S. Senate is the saucer designed to cool the drink before it becomes law.  In Majority Leader Harry Reid's rush to beat …
David M. Herszenhorn / The Caucus:
Dreaming of a Post-Christmas Congress  —  The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, said on Tuesday that Democrats were not prepared to give up any of their priorities and would work as long as it takes - right up until the end of the 111th Congress on Jan. 4 - to deal with their punch list …
Myglesias / Yglesias:
The Christmas Session  —  Jon Kyl, rather preposterously …
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Senate GOP leaders take heat over earmarks
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Washington Post:
Senate spending bill contains thousands of earmarks
Manu Raju / The Politico:
DeMint threatens to force a reading of omnibus bill
Ben Dimiero / Media Matters for America:
FOXLEAKS: Fox boss ordered staff to cast doubt on climate science  —  In the midst of global climate change talks last December, a top Fox News official sent an email questioning the “veracity of climate change data” and ordering the network's journalists to “refrain from asserting that the planet has warmed …
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Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Congress' Job Approval Rating Worst in Gallup History  —  Thirteen percent approve of the way Congress is handling its job  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Americans' assessment of Congress has hit a new low, with 13% saying they approve of the way Congress is handling its job.
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Washington Post:
Post-ABC Poll: Public not yet sold on GOP  —  Republicans made major gains in the November elections, but they have yet to win the hearts and minds of the American people, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.  —  The midterm elections - where Republicans gained 63 seats …
Reuters:
Financial Crisis Panel In Turmoil As Republicans Defect; Plan To Blame Government For Crisis  —  WHAT'S YOUR REACTION? … The four Republicans appointed to the commission investigating the root causes of the financial crisis plan to bypass the bipartisan panel and release their own report Wednesday …
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Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
The inhumane conditions of Bradley Manning's detention  —  (updated below)  —  Bradley Manning, the 22-year-old U.S. Army Private accused of leaking classified documents to WikiLeaks, has never been convicted of that crime, nor of any other crime.  Despite that, he has been detained …
Lev Grossman / Time:
Mark Zuckerberg  —  On the afternoon of Nov. 16, 2010, Mark Zuckerberg was leading a meeting in the Aquarium, one of Facebook's conference rooms, so named because it's in the middle of a huge work space and has glass walls on three sides so everybody can see in.
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Melissa Bell / BlogPost:
School board shooting (Video)  —  A school board meeting went from discussing head lice to members pleading for their life Tuesday in Florida when an ex-convict, Clay Duke, interrupted the Bay District School Board meeting, brandishing a gun and mumbling about how the school board had fired his wife …
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The Politico:
Obama plans 2011 staff makeover  —  President Barack Obama has delayed the most significant staff shuffle of his presidency until after New Year's — but the changes may be more sweeping than anticipated and could include the hiring of high-profile Democrats defeated in the midterms.
RELATED:
David M. Herszenhorn / New York Times:
Senate Passes Compromise Tax Plan by Wide Margin  —  WASHINGTON — The Senate on Wednesday approved the $858 billion tax plan negotiated by the White House and Republican leaders — the first concrete product of a new era of divided government and acid compromise.
Discussion: protein wisdom
RELATED:
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Brown could be in trouble  —  Sherrod Brown hasn't proven to have much appeal to Republicans or independents during his first four years in the Senate and as a result he could be vulnerable for reelection in 2012 if the GOP runs a strong candidate against him.
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
David Cay Johnston / Nieman Reports:
It's Scary Out There in Reporting Land  —  ‘Beats are fundamental to journalism, but our foundation is crumbling.’  —  To understand how badly we're doing the most basic work of journalism in covering the law enforcement beat, try sitting in a barbershop.  When I was getting my last haircut …
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
Why Are Bankers So Rich?  —  Tyler Cowen has a big piece about income inequality in The American Interest that's well worth reading.  However, it's not really about the growth of inequality.  It's about Wall Street.  In particular, it's about this question: why do financial professionals make so damn much money?
National Review:
Anybody but Steele  —  Say what you will about him — Michael Steele plays by nobody else's rules.  He shocked the political world on Monday night by announcing he'd run for reelection as chairman of the Republican National Committee.  We admire his pluck, but not his judgment.
RELATED:
David M. Drucker / Roll Call:   Senators Hesitant, Steeling for RNC Battle
Brad Phillips / Mr. Media Training:
2012 Election Preview: The Final Rankings  —  Editor's Note: This morning, we issued a press release on the national wires that ranks the 18 most likely 2012 Republican contenders - and President Obama - on their communications skills.  Below, you'll find the full text of that release.
Tara Bahrampour / Washington Post:
Muslims criticize handling of Israelis' stay at D.C. hotel  —  Muslim employees of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Washington said they felt discriminated against after being barred over the weekend from floors where an Israeli delegation was staying, a Muslim advocacy group said.
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Weasel Zippers
Christian Heinze / Ballot Box:
In shift, Sarah Palin stresses electability as a reason to run for president  —  Over the past month, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) has quietly altered her case for the presidency in a savvy shift of rhetoric.  —  The lofty goal?  Turning the main reason a Republican might oppose her into the primary reason for voting for her.
Discussion: Classical Values
Elisabeth Bumiller / New York Times:
Intelligence Reports Offer Dim View of Afghan War  —  WASHINGTON — As President Obama prepares to release a review of American strategy in Afghanistan that will claim progress in the nine-year-old war there, two new classified intelligence reports offer a more negative assessment …
Federal Eye:
Most back repealing 'don't ask, don't tell,' poll says  —  Nearly eight in 10 Americans favor allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.  —  The results signal continued widespread public support for ending the military's 17-year ban …
Myglesias / Yglesias:
Deficit-Talk  —  Atrios: “I really can't comprehend that with 9.6% unemployment politicians keep talking about the deficit as if it's the big problem.”  —  Of course he's right.  The deficit is a problem only in the sense that the short-term deficit is currently too small.
Discussion: TalkLeft and Ezra Klein
 
 
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 More Items: 
Qassim Abdul-Zahra / Associated Press:
Iraq: Plot to bomb US, European countries revealed
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
The Huffington Post:
Geithner Blocking Legal Help For Foreclosure Victims
Discussion: TalkLeft
National Review:
Cuccinelli, Victorious  —  On what was surely one of the busier days …
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog
New York Times:
Dozens Die in Suicide Bombing in Iran
Discussion: Wonk Room
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
The political problem with the deficit
Discussion: The Politico and The Hill
Donna Leinwand / USA Today:
Kids write Santa this year for basic needs instead of toys
Discussion: Left Coast Rebel and FrumForum
Radley Balko / The Agitator:
An Honest Question for Lefties
 Earlier Items: 
Hal Dardick / Chicago Tribune:
Emanuel takes early lead in race for Chicago mayor
Keith Bradsher / New York Times:
U.S. Called Vulnerable to Rare Earth Shortages
Discussion: Pundits Blog and Climate Progress
Kevin Sessums / The Daily Beast:
Kevin Spacey on Casino Jack
Discussion: Towleroad News #gay and Advocate
MNN:
Is oil and gas production causing earthquakes in Arkansas?
Theodore H. Frank / Washington Examiner:
Manhattan Moment: Courts shouldn't ignore due process to create class actions
Discussion: Betsy's Page