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6:45 PM ET, June 30, 2011


 Top Items: 
Tim Mak / The Politico:
Mark Halperin suspended over Obama remark on Morning Joe (video)  —  MSNBC senior political analyst Mark Halperin was suspended on Thursday by the cable network after he called President Obama “a dick” on a popular morning show and then quickly apologized.  —  “I thought he was a dick yesterday …
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
MSNBC's suspension of Mark Halperin is way over the top  —  MSNBC just announced that they have “indefintely” suspended Mark Halperin for claiming that Obama was “kind of a dick” at his presser yesterday.  Here's MSNBC's statement:  —  I'm sorry, but this is crazy.
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
Mark Halperin and the Quote of the Day  —  It's hard not to love that “liberal” media.  —  On MSNBC's “Morning Joe,” the three-hour program co-hosted by a conservative Republican former congressman, Time magazine's Mark Halperin was asked for his assessment of President Obama's White House press conference.
Ann Althouse / Althouse:
Mark Halperin called Obama “a dick” and now he says “I can't explain why I did it.”
Discussion: The New Republic
Hans Nichols / Bloomberg:
Geithner Said to Consider Leaving Treasury After Debt Debate  —  Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner has signaled to White House officials that he's considering leaving the administration after President Barack Obama reaches an agreement with Congress to raise the national debt limit …
Peter Schroeder / The Hill:
Treasury official: Geithner has made no decision on possible departure  —  Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has made no decision on whether he will leave the administration after the government reaches a debt limit deal, according to a department official.
Discussion: Pajamas Media
Ezra Klein / Washington Post:
Wonkbook: The two parties have just begun to fight
Cristina Marcos / Ballot Box:
FEC rules in favor of Stephen Colbert  —  The Federal Election Commission ruled Thursday that comedian Stephen Colbert could form his eponymous political action committee with a media exemption.  —  “I am sorry to say, we won,” Colbert declared to supporters outside the FEC building after the commissioners issued their advisory.
The Hill:
White House rejects McConnell invitation for Obama to meet Senate GOP  —  The White House has rejected Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell's (R-Ky.) invitation for President Obama to meet Thursday with Senate Republicans about their position on the debt ceiling talks.
Ian Swanson / The Hill:
Battle lines harden between Obama, Senate GOP as time runs short
Discussion: The Politico
Alister Bull / Reuters:
White House snubs McConnell invitation to Obama
Mark Landler / New York Times:
In Deficit Plan, Taxes Must Rise, President Warns
Washington Examiner:
Obama doesn't understand the family budget
Discussion: Instapundit
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
How health care rulings are covered  —  Regular readers may recall an item from February, in which I compared coverage of health care court rulings from several major media outlets.  Given yesterday's developments, it's time to revisit the subject.  —  To briefly review …
Randy Barnett / The Volokh Conspiracy:
Eight Things to Know About Yesterday's Sixth Circuit Decision  —  Volokh readers will remember when two widely-respected conservative Court of Appeals judges, Judge Easterbrook and Judge Posner were on a unanimous Seventh Circuit panel denying both the Due Process and Privileges or Immunities challenge to Chicago's hand-gun ban.
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:
The Radicalism Of Judge James Graham's Anti-Health Care Opinion
Discussion: Hit & Run, NPR and Grasping Reality …
Ezra Klein / Washington Post:
Against the constitutional option, cont'd  —  Jonathan Chait and David Dayen both think that the breakdown of debt-ceiling negotiations strengthens the case for the Obama administration to attempt the “constitutional option,” in which they simply declare the debt limit unconstitutional and hope the Supreme Court agrees.
Jon Walker / Firedoglake:
Social Security Benefits Cuts Are in the Mix in Debt Ceiling Negotiations
Discussion: The Politico and CNN
John Cook / Gawker:
Roger Ailes' Secret Nixon-Era Blueprint for Fox News  —  Republican media strategist Roger Ailes launched Fox News Channel in 1996, ostensibly as a “fair and balanced” counterpoint to what he regarded as the liberal establishment media.  But according to a remarkable document buried deep within …
Paul Bedard / US News:
Harvard: July 4th Parades Are Right-Wing  —  Democratic political candidates can skip this weekend's July 4th parades.  A new Harvard University study finds that July 4th parades energize only Republicans, turn kids into Republicans, and help to boost the GOP turnout of adults on Election Day.
Maggie Gallagher / Wall Street Journal:
New York's GOP Lets Down the Base  —  Voters don't like politicians who flip flop—especially under pressure from Democrats.  —  New York was a big win for gay-marriage advocates, no question.  It was a big win precisely because it was not inevitable: The New York Republican Party decided to abandon its base to make this happen.
Discussion: NOM Blog
Jennifer Gould Keil / New York Post:
Huma Abedin taking time off from Weiner, job  —  Anthony Weiner's wife is taking time off from her senior job with the State Department — as well as time off from the randy former representative, The Post has learned.  —  While Weiner, 46, heads to an “intensive” rehab program to recover …
Mark Oppenheimer / New York Times:
Married, With Infidelities  —  Last month, when the New York congressman Anthony Weiner finally admitted that he had lied, that his Twitter account had not been hacked, that he in fact had sent a picture of his thinly clad undercarriage to a stranger in Seattle, I asked my wife of six years …
Discussion: Althouse
Jake Tapper / ABCNEWS:
Bill Clinton Network Exclusive: Proposes Debt Impasse Deal, but Fears GOP Too Hamstrung by Ideology  —  Former President Bill Clinton sees a possible way past the bipartisan impasse over raising the debt limit: agree to cut spending AND raise taxes, but do neither until later, after the economy improves.
Ann Althouse / Althouse:
Under the new Wisconsin budget repair, one school district goes from a $400,000 deficit to a $1.5 million surplus.  —  The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports: … Let's stop and think of all the protesters who carried signs asserting that their opposition to Scott Walker was for the children.
Kaukauna Area School District projects $1.5 million surplus after contract changes to health care, retirement savings
Discussion: Joanne Jacobs
Jan Norman / Orange County Register:
Amazon ends deal with 25,000 California websites  —  Gov. Jerry Brown has signed into law California's tax on Internet sales through affiliate advertising which will immediately cut small-business website revenue 20% to 30%, experts say.  —  The bill, AB 28X, takes effect immediately.
Thomas Burr / Salt Lake Tribune:
In Utah, Huntsman's son hits Romney rally  —  • Will Huntsman, son of presidential candidate Jon Huntsman, attended a rally on Friday for rival White House hopeful Mitt Romney and posed for a photo with the former Massachusetts governor.  —  In a photo obtained by The Salt Lake Tribune …
Discussion: CNN, New York Magazine and Ballot Box
New York Times:
Ballad of the Long Shot  —  Before you announced your campaign, you said that the liberal establishment is scared that “a real black man might run against Barack Obama.”  Are you suggesting Obama isn't really black?  —  A real black man is not timid about making the right decisions, that's what I meant.
Joel Greenberg / Washington Post:
Second Gaza Strip flotilla boat is reported damaged; organizers accuse Israel  —  JERUSALEM — Organizers of a flotilla seeking to break Israel's naval blockade of the Gaza Strip said Thursday that another of their boats had been damaged in port, and they accused Israel of sabotage.
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 More Items: 
The Note:
Romney Rails Obama During Presser for Leaving Washington While Economy Suffers
Discussion: The Politico
Mary Lynn Smith / Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Two Palins with books, long lines
Discussion: Indecision Forever
Jennifer Epstein / The Politico:
New law could free 12K drug users
Tamar Lewin / New York Times:
What's the Most Expensive College? The Least? Education Dept. Puts It All Online
Discussion: Gothamist and New York Magazine
Jim Treacher / The Daily Caller:
Malia is actually 12.  Oops.  As we've seen over the last few years …
Discussion: Power Line
My Take: Dutch ban is bigotry
Discussion: Hit & Run and FrumForum
 Earlier Items: 
Emily Flitter / Reuters:
U.S. caught China buying more debt than disclosed
Discussion: FT Alphaville, MarketBeat and FrumForum
Mark Halperin / The Daily Beast:
The Lawless Presidency  —  Obama's lawyers are foundering …
Discussion: Salon
Village Voice:
Real Men Get Their Facts Straight