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11:50 AM ET, February 23, 2011


 Top Items: 
Sam Stein / Reuters:
Gov. Walker Informed That Bill Targeting Unions May Cost State $46 Million In Federal Funds … WASHINGTON — Budget referees and transportation officials in Wisconsin have informed Gov. Scott Walker (R) that if he were to pass his controversial anti-union legislation into law …
Tim Fernholz /
Bait and Switch?  —  Walker's budget plans don't fix what he says is the crisis.  —  Republican Gov. Scott Walker has kicked off a firestorm with his budget proposals, but his most controversial plans wouldn't address this fiscal year's shortfall.  —  Why now?
Steven Pearlstein / Washington Post:
Making sense of Wisconsin's union showdown  —  A dirty little secret about column writers is that we each have a handful of road-tested templates that we use all too frequently to make sense of something that has happened and demands our wise opinionation.  These past few days I've …
Scott Walker / PolitiFact:
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker says he campaigned on his budget repair plan, including curtailing collective bargaining  —  In the turbulent wake of his controversial plan to sharply curtail collective bargaining rights, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has faced criticism that he gave no warning …
Ezra Klein:
Wonkbook: Will Wisconsin spread?
The Note:
The Note: Wisconsin's Scott Walker: With Him And Against Him
Edward Morrissey / The Week Magazine:
The real threat to democracy in Wisconsin
Discussion: Daily Kos and theblogprof
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
BELTWAY CONFIDENTIAL  —  Mitch Daniels ‘salutes’ Dem lawmakers …
Murphy / The Beast:
Koch Whore  —  Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker answers his master's call  —  “David Koch”: We'll back you any way we can.  What we were thinking about the crowd was, uh, was planting some troublemakers.  —  Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker: You know, well, the only problem with that—because we thought about that...
Adam Weinstein / Mother Jones:
Did Scott Walker Get Crank-Call Pwned?  (AUDIO)  —  Is that really Scott Walker?  A New York-based alt-news editor says he got through to the embattled Wisconsin governor on the phone Tuesday by posing as right-wing financier David Koch...then had a far-ranging 20-minute conversation about the collective bargaining protests.
David Dayen / Firedoglake:
Wisconsin's Walker Signs Bill Requiring 2/3 Majority for Tax Increases
Discussion: Mercury Rising, Hullabaloo and Reuters
Emily Schultheis / The Politico:
Newt Gingrich confronted over affair  —  PHILADELPHIA — Newt Gingrich's speech at the University of Pennsylvania Tuesday night quickly took a turn for the dramatic when the first student to question him brought up his admitted extra-marital affair and accused him of being “hypocritical” for espousing moral values.
Chicago Tribune:
Chicago's next mayor: Emanuel  —  Ex-presidential adviser avoids runoff with 55%  —  Rahm Emanuel, a top adviser to two U.S. presidents who returned to Chicago just months ago, swept into the mayor's office Tuesday, inheriting a city reeling from recession and promising to reshape City Hall.
Monica Davey / New York Times:
Emanuel Triumphs in Chicago Mayoral Race  —  CHICAGO — Rahm Emanuel, a former congressman who worked for two presidents, was elected mayor of Chicago on Tuesday, a victory that marks a new path for a city that has, for 22 years, been led by a singular, powerful force, Richard M. Daley.
Ezra Klein:
Another judge rules the individual mandate constitutional  —  This time it was Judge Gladys Kessler in the D.C. Circuit Court.  Kessler, interestingly, rejected the idea that the individual mandate is a tax.  Her ruling for the mandate's constitutionality rested on the “necessary and proper clause …
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
Ryan J. Reilly / TPMDC:
Federal Judge In D.C. Upholds Health Care Reform, Says Some Arguments ‘Ignore Reality’  —  A federal judge on Tuesday upheld the health care reform law signed last year by President Barack Obama and found that Congress had the clear authority to regulate health insurance under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution.
Matt Negrin / The Politico:
W.H.: Obama won't speak on Libya  —  Jay Carney said that he didn't anticipate Obama speaking about Libya.  —  AP Photo  —  White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters on Air Force One that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will speak about Libya at 2:30 p.m. He referred questions on Libya to …
Obama under pressure to intervene in Libya
USA Today:
Limbaugh stirs up a food fight about the first lady
Linda Borg / Providence Journal:
Providence plans to pink slip all teachers  —  PROVIDENCE — The school district plans to send out dismissal notices to every one of its 1,926 teachers, an unprecedented move that has union leaders up in arms.  —  In a letter sent to all teachers Tuesday, Supt.
Lydia Saad / Gallup:
Scaling Back State Programs Is Least of Three Fiscal Evils  —  Less objectionable than reducing state worker pay or benefits, increasing taxes  —  PRINCETON, NJ — As Wisconsin and numerous other states struggle to reduce untenable budget deficits, a new USA Today/Gallup poll finds …
Indianapolis Star:
Democrats trigger Statehouse showdown over anti-union legislation
Scott Shane / New York Times:
WikiLeaks Cables Detail Qaddafi Family's Exploits  —  WASHINGTON — After New Year's Day 2009, Western media reported that Seif al-Islam el-Qaddafi, a son of the Libyan leader Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, had paid Mariah Carey $1 million to sing just four songs at a bash on the Caribbean island of St. Barts.
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Democrat urges unions to ‘get a little bloody when necessary’
Frank Newport / Gallup:
D.C., Hawaii Still Most Approving of Obama; All States Decline  —  Approval is higher than average in 12 states plus D.C., lower than average in 18 states  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Residents of Hawaii gave native son President Barack Obama the highest average 2010 job approval rating (66%) …
Associated Press:
Report: Ex-minister says Gadhafi ordered Lockerbie  —  STOCKHOLM — Swedish tabloid Expressen says Libya's ex-justice minister claims Moammar Gadhafi personally ordered the Lockerbie bombing that killed 270 people in 1988.  —  Expressen on Wednesday quoted Mustafa Abdel-Jalil as telling …
Discussion: Hot Air, Cubachi and Weasel Zippers
Unlikely Hospitalist / Pundit Press:
The Scrubbing has Begun...  Today the state of Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing, announced that it would begin “looking into accusations that a number of local doctors provided the notes for protesters who missed work during the week...the department will review complaints …
Discussion: The Happy Hospitalist
Associated Press:
Wis. Licensing Dept. Looking Into Doctors' Notes
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
Adam Weinstein / Mother Jones:
Indiana Official: “Use Live Ammunition” Against Wisconsin Protesters  —  A conservative deputy AG let his emotions get out of hand.  It wasn't the first time.  —  Post Comment  —  On Saturday night, when Mother Jones staffers tweeted a report that riot police might soon sweep demonstrators …
Caroline B. Glick / Jerusalem Post:
Our World: Obama's devastatingly mixed signals  —  By adopting a policy it openly hated and then condemning its own behavior, the US essentially told Israel, America is not a credible partner.  —  Talkbacks (82)  —  For better or worse, each passing day the Middle East is becoming more unstable.
Perry Bacon Jr / Washington Post:
On Obama jobs tour, unemployed have little voice  —  CLEVELAND - President Obama has traveled across the country since the November midterm elections to tout his economic vision and rebuild relationships with the business community, meeting with executives, community college presidents …
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 More Items: 
Jerry Markon / Washington Post:
Lawsuit alleges FBI violated Muslims' freedom of religion
Discussion: Jihad Watch and Weasel Zippers
Politics Daily:
Will Christine O'Donnell Step Up on ‘Dancing With the Stars’? Stay Tuned, She Says
Discussion: NY Daily News and AOL News
Rep. Gabrielle Giffords / Associated Press:
Wisconsin Dems' filibuster halts anti-union bill
Tim Carpenter / Topeka Capital-Journal:
Pro-Kline report concealed for months
Discussion: Michelle Malkin and Jill Stanek
Kasie Hunt / The Politico:
Mitt Romney's Massachusetts health care law could flatline his 2012 ambitions
Discussion: The Fix, American Power and The Hill
Peru cuts ties with Libya and condemns violence
Associated Press:
Sen. Brown defends call not to seek abuse charges
Discussion: The Fix
 Earlier Items: 
Molly Ball / The Politico:
Harry Reid's prostitution lecture bombs
Discussion: Wonkette and Gawker
John Collins Rudolf / New York Times:
A Climate Skeptic With a Bully Pulpit in Virginia Finds an Ear in Congress
David Leonhardt / New York Times:
Why Cuts Don't Bring Prosperity
Michael Sheridan / NY Daily News:
Hersha Howard busted for beating up roommate Jasmin Wanke over Thin Mints Girl Scout cookies
Discussion: The Jawa Report
Jim Hoft / The Gateway Pundit:
GAY BLACK TEA PARTYER Attacked By Racist SEIU Activists at Denver Tea Party (Videos)
Discussion: Associated Press