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1:20 PM ET, February 4, 2011

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
New York Times:
White House and Egypt Discuss Plan for Mubarak's Exit  —  WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is discussing with Egyptian officials a proposal for President Hosni Mubarak to resign immediately and turn over power to a transitional government headed by Vice President Omar Suleiman …
RELATED:
Joan Vennochi / Boston Globe:
Kerry's sharp eye on the secretary spot  —  AS EGYPT battles over its future, Senator John Kerry is negotiating his own.  —  The Bay State's senior senator is running an unofficial campaign to become the next secretary of state.  For once, he looks artful, as well as ambitious.
Nicholas D. Kristof / New York Times:
We Are All Egyptians  —  Inside Tahrir Square on Thursday, I met a carpenter named Mahmood whose left arm was in a sling, whose leg was in a cast and whose head was being bandaged in a small field hospital set up by the democracy movement.  This was the seventh time in 24 hours …
Shira Toeplitz / The Politico:
Rand Paul sole GOP holdout on laser pointer bill  —  In his first few weeks in office, newly elected Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) could quickly be stealing his colleagues' reputation as “Dr. No.”  —  Paul, an ophthalmologist, was the sole vote Thursday against an amendment supported by 96 …
Discussion: Washington Monthly
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Jonathan Karl / ABCNEWS:
Rand Paul: GOP Not ‘Brave Enough’ to Hit Deficit  —  ‘True Believer’ Paul Wants All Foreign Aid Eliminated — Including Aid to Israel  —  In an exclusive interview with ABC News, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., took aim at the newly released House GOP budget, saying it falls far short of what needs to be done to deal with the federal deficit.
Jennifer Epstein / The Politico:
Rand Paul: End ‘welfare’ to Israel
Discussion: FrumForum
Steve Gutow / The Politico:   Abandoning allies and consciences
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Obama's Approval Ratings More Polarized in Year 2 Than Year 1  —  Ranks as fourth-most-polarized year for a president since 1953  —  PRINCETON, NJ — President Barack Obama's job approval ratings were even more polarized during his second year in office than during his first …
RELATED:
Jennifer Epstein / The Politico:
Poll reveals striking divide on Obama
Discussion: Scared Monkeys and Weasel Zippers
Christopher S. Rugaber / Associated Press:
Unemployment falls to 9.0 pct., only 36K new jobs  —  Economy adds 36K jobs in January, unemployment rate falls to 9 pct., lowest since April 2009  —  Companies:  —  Related Quotes  —  SymbolPriceChange  —  BAC  —  14.43  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — The unemployment rate dropped sharply …
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Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
GOP: Drop in unemployment rate not enough
Ben Dimiero / Media Matters for America:
Attention Fox Nation: There Is More Than One Version Of The Bible  —  Conservatives have spent the last several years trying to cast doubt on President Obama's Christianity, often by suggesting he is a secret Muslim or claiming that he is a non-believer pretending to be Christian for political benefit.
Discussion: Washington Monthly
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Sam Stein / The Huffington Post:
Justice Scalia, Not Kennedy, Eyed As Key Vote In Support Of Health Care … WASHINGTON — Observers of the legal drama surrounding President Obama's health care reform legislation have reached two broad conclusions: that it will ultimately be ruled on by the Supreme Court, and that Justice Anthony Kennedy will be the deciding vote.
RELATED:
Sam Stein / The Huffington Post:
Obama Administration Scores Legal Victory On Health Care
Discussion: ThinkProgress, Raw Story and Daily Kos
Chris Bowers / Open Left:
Open Left is closing  —  I have some sad news.  After nearly four years in operation, today will be the final day Open Left publishes new content.  —  The site will not disappear, and all published content will remain online, but after today we will cease producing new content.
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog and Donklephant
Bruce Siceloff / Raleigh News & Observer:
Citizen activist grates on state over traffic signals  —  RALEIGH — David N. Cox says he was merely exercising his right to petition the government, but a state Department of Transportation official has raised allegations that Cox committed a misdemeanor: practicing engineering without a license.
The Politico:
Finger-pointing begins on Egypt  —  The debate over who “lost” Egypt seems to have begun.  —  Critics are openly questioning the quality of information and analysis given to President Barack Obama by U.S. intelligence agencies in the days leading up to the dramatic uprising against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
Jonathan Allen / The Politico:
Gabrielle Giffords's husband Mark Kelly will command final shuttle flight  —  Mark Kelly, husband of wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, will fly the space shuttle Endeavour's final mission in April, according to a source familiar with the decision.  —  Kelly and NASA are expected to make an announcement at a press conference Friday.
RELATED:
Kevin Bohn / CNN:
Source: Giffords' husband on shuttle
Wall Street Journal:
ObamaCare's Repeal Has Begun  —  This week's Senate vote to scrap an IRS reporting requirement is the start of a piece by piece approach.  —  Mark this date: On Feb. 2, 2011, a Democratic Senate killed the first piece of the health-care law it passed less than a year ago.
Discussion: Betsy's Page and The New Republic
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Christie won't rule out running — in 2016  —  New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) said Thursday evening that he hadn't ruled out running for president — in 2016.  —  Christie, the Garden State governor who's popular with Republicans but denied interest in running for president in 2012 …
RELATED:
Jonathan Cohn / The New Republic:
The Bad Faith of Mandate Critics, Part 2  —  Read part 1 of this argument here.  —  The conservative legal brief against the Affordable Care Act rests heavily on a simple proposition.  Government can't make us obtain private insurance because, as the argument goes, that would be forcing us to buy a private product.
Johann Hari / The Nation:
How to Build a Progressive Tea Party  —  This article appeared in the February 21, 2011 edition of The Nation.  —  Recommended by 2  —  Imagine a parallel universe where the Great Crash of 2008 was followed by a Tea Party of a very different kind.  Enraged citizens gather in every city …
Discussion: Ezra Klein
John Sexton / Hot Air:
Report: Political Correctness Prevented FBI, DoD from Stopping Maj. Hasan  —  Today the Senate Homeland Security Committee released an independent report on the Ft. Hood shootings.  The 91 page report is titled A Ticking Time Bomb: Counterterrorism Lessons from the US Government's Failure to Prevent the Fort Hood Attack.
J. Andrew Curliss / Raleigh News & Observer:
Perdue hires defense lawyers  —  Gov. Bev Perdue has hired two of the state's most prominent criminal defense lawyers as scrutiny of her 2008 campaign activity continues.  —  Raleigh lawyers Joseph B. Cheshire V and Wade Smith are both assisting Perdue, whose office declined to comment.
ProPublica:
Dems: Obama Broke Pledge to Force Banks to Help Homeowners  —  Before he took office, President Obama repeatedly promised voters and Democrats in Congress that he'd fight for changes to bankruptcy laws to help homeowners—a tough approach that would force banks to modify mortgages.
Discussion: TalkLeft
Elie Mystal / Above the Law:
Dan Snyder, Owner of a Team Named After an Ethnic Slur, Sues Over Perceived Anti-Semitism  —  This is rich.  The owner of the Washington Redskins, Dan Snyder, has sued the Washington City Paper for a column he claims defamed him and used anti-Semitic imagery.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
Newt Gingrich haul far outpaces other 2012 hopefuls
Discussion: CNN
Aaron David Miller / Washington Post:
Why Israel fears a free Egypt
ABCNEWS:
Senators Issue Lobbyist ‘Call to Arms’
Joshua Green / The Atlantic Online:
Sarah Palin's Personal Shopper Heads to RNC
George Melloan / Wall Street Journal:
The States Can't Afford ObamaCare
Discussion: Betsy's Page and neo-neocon
Charles Krauthammer / Washington Post:
Toward a soft landing in Egypt
Wall Street Journal:
Hamas, the Brotherhood and Egypt
The Politico:
Justice Thomas's wife Virginia Thomas now a lobbyist
 Earlier Items: 
Tim Cavanaugh / Hit & Run:
Coming Soon: A 300-Percent Increase in Foreclosures
Jennifer Epstein / The Politico:
Report rips U.S. envoy who resigned
Discussion: The Atlantic Online
New York Times:
A Jewish Group Makes Waves, Locally and Abroad
Discussion: Mondoweiss
George Bennett / Palm Beach Post:
Ex-U.S. Rep. Foley returns to GOP scene, four years after grounding in scandal
The Huffington Post:
Learning To Walk: Fear, Shame And Your Underwater Mortgage
Discussion: The Big Picture and Hullabaloo
Adam Entous / Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Pressure on Mubarak Opens a Rift With Arab Allies
Associated Press:
Congressman Hinojosa files for bankruptcy