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11:45 AM ET, January 2, 2011

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 Top Items: 
Michael Powell / New York Times:
Public Workers Facing Outrage as Budget Crises Grow  —  FLEMINGTON, N.J. — Ever since Marie Corfield's confrontation with Gov. Chris Christie this fall over the state's education cuts became a YouTube classic, she has received a stream of vituperative e-mails and Facebook postings.
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
GOING THROUGH THE MOTIONS ON REPEAL.... At least we know what one of the first bills to receive a vote will be in the new House. … Maybe so.  But there's almost certainly a realization on everyone's part that House Republicans are doing this for show.  If passed, their repeal measure …
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Barry Massey / Associated Press:
Martinez becomes NM gov as new year starts  —  SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Republican Susana Martinez has claimed her place in history as New Mexico's first female governor, taking office with the start of the new year.  —  Martinez, 51, formally became governor during a private ceremony at midnight in the Capitol Rotunda.
Discussion: BizzyBlog and NewsBusters.org
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Michael Haederle / Los Angeles Times:
A rising GOP star in Santa Fe  —  New Mexico's first Latina governor, Susana Martinez, faces an array of stiff budget challenges when she takes office.  —  New Mexico Gov.-elect Susana Martinez, right, with Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, is a rising star in national Republican circles …
Nicholas D. Kristof / New York Times:
Equality, a True Soul Food  —  John Steinbeck observed that “a sad soul can kill you quicker, far quicker, than a germ.”  —  That insight, now confirmed by epidemiological studies, is worth bearing in mind at a time of such polarizing inequality that the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans possess …
Kate Zernike / New York Times:
Tea Party Activists Angry at G.O.P. Leaders  —  As Tea Party politicians prepare to take their seats when the 112th Congress convenes this week, they are already taking issue with Republicans for failing to hold the line against the flurry of legislation enacted in the waning weeks …
SusanAnne Hiller / Hot Air:
Video: Kirsten Powers says Bush 2008 veto of bill with end-of-life provision “not true”  —  Good stuff.  When you tell a liberal the truth they recoil in disbelief.  Seriously.  —  Just watch Kirsten Powers and her disbelief in this interview when the bomb is dropped about 6:00 in.
BREITBART.COM:
Chavez, Clinton chat at Brazil inauguration  —  Despite a simmering diplomatic row, President Hugo Chavez and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton were seen having a brief, friendly chat Saturday at the inauguration of Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff.  —  “They talked and smiled, at least for five minutes.
Daily Mail:
Woman, 41, drowns trying to drive across flooded road as natural disaster in Australia reaches ‘biblical proportions’  —  A woman drowned after trying to cross a flooded causeway in Australia, becoming the first victim of relentless flooding that one official has described as reaching ‘biblical proportions,’ police said today.
Discussion: Crooked Timber
Barak Ravid / Haaretz:
U.S. officials: Barak ‘deceived’ us about his role in peace process  —  Sources tell Haaretz that Clinton and Obama feel Defense Minister exaggerated about his ability to ‘nudge Netanyahu toward an agreement with the Palestinians’.  —  The U.S. administration is furious with Defense Minister Ehud Barak …
Discussion: Israel Matzav
N. Gregory Mankiw / New York Times:
How to Break Bread With the Republicans  —  DEAR President Obama:  —  Sorry to bother you.  I know you are busy.  But I have the sense that you could use a few words of advice.  —  In a matter of days, Republicans will control the House of Representatives and have a larger voting bloc in the Senate.
James Risen / New York Times:
Several Warnings, Then a Soldier's Lonely Death  —  WASHINGTON — A gentle snow fell on the funeral of Staff Sgt. David Senft at Arlington National Cemetery on Dec. 16, when his bitterly divided California family came together to say goodbye.  His 5-year-old son received a flag from a grateful nation.
Monica Davey / New York Times:
Ex-Senator Is Now the Only Major Black Hopeful in a Chicago Race  —  CHICAGO — Danny K. Davis, a longtime United States representative, has dropped out of the race to become Chicago's mayor, creating the situation that black leaders here had for months been clamoring for …
RELATED:
Clout St:
Danny Davis drops out, endorses Carol Moseley Braun in mayor's race
Andrew Mills / Star-Ledger Videos:
NJ Gov. Chris Christie explains why he and Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno were out of state during the blizzard  —  During a news conference in Monmouth County, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie explains why he and Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno were both out of the state at the same time while NJ was rocked by a blizzard.
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 More Items: 
Washington Post:
Fairfax County's first gay bar builds a following in Herndon
Paul Krugman:
The Long Road Ahead
Discussion: Yglesias and AMERICAblog News
Mike Lillis / The Hill:
California Republican touts legislation banning public pension bailouts
Discussion: Firedoglake and Doug Ross
 Earlier Items: 
Bob Herbert / New York Times:
For Two Sisters, the End of an Ordeal
The Politico:
Stray airliner prompts U.S. Capitol evacuation
Discussion: The Note and Gawker