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5:00 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.
Colby Hall / Mediaite:
MSNBC Suspends Mark Halperin For Calling President Obama A ‘Dick’ On Morning Joe  —  In the event that anyone think that Morning Joe is becoming formulaic and predictable, I present the following clip.  While discussing President Obama's press briefing yesterday (in which he showed a feisty …
Ann Althouse / Althouse:   Mark Halperin called Obama “a dick” and now he says “I can't explain why I did it.”
Alex Pareene / Salon:
Mark Halperin comes up with great excuse to fire Mark Halperin
Discussion: TVNewser and FishbowlDC
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 …
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.
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
Stephen Colbert's running PAC shtick creates sticky mess  —  Advocates of reducing the power of money in politics thought they had found a champion in the unlikely person of Comedy Central's Stephen Colbert, whose ongoing shtick about forming a political action committee brought more attention …
Jon Walker / Firedoglake:
Social Security Benefits Cuts Are in the Mix in Debt Ceiling Negotiations  —  Stealth Social Security benefits cuts are potentially part of the debt ceiling deal currently being negotiated by President Obama and the Congressional Republican leadership, per Politico:
Discussion: The Politico and CNN
Ezra Klein / Washington Post:
Against the constitutional option, cont'd
Washington Examiner:
Obama doesn't understand the family budget
Discussion: Instapundit
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.
Alister Bull / Reuters:
White House snubs McConnell invitation to Obama
Mark Landler / New York Times:
In Deficit Plan, Taxes Must Rise, President Warns
Kirk Semple / New York Times:
U.S. Drops Deportation Proceedings Against Immigrant in Same-Sex Marriage  —  In a decision that could have far-reaching effects on immigration cases involving same-sex couples, federal officials have canceled the deportation of a Venezuelan man in New Jersey who is married to an American man, the couple's lawyer said Wednesday.
Jeff Jacoby / Boston Globe:
Marriage cannot be redefined
Discussion: Outside the Beltway and normblog
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 …
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:
The Radicalism Of Judge James Graham's Anti-Health Care Opinion
Discussion: Hit & Run, NPR and Grasping Reality …
The White House:
Press Conference by the President East Room  —  THE PRESIDENT: Good morning, everybody.  Have a seat, please.  I just want to say a few words about the economy before I take your questions.  —  There are a lot of folks out there who are still struggling with the effects of the recession.
Jennifer Epstein / The Politico:
New law could free 12K drug users  —  On the heels of a law signed last year by President Barack Obama limiting sentences for crack cocaine offenses, thousands of prisoners for crimes related to the drug will be eligible for early release, the U.S. Sentencing Commission ruled Thursday.
Discussion: FrumForum
Jessica Gresko / Associated Press:   Crack offenders eligible for early release
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 …
Patrick Galey / Telegraph:
Lebanon braces itself for Hizbollah backlash as senior operatives accused of Hariri assassination  —  Lebanon was last night braced for a violent reaction from Hizbollah after senior operatives from the militant group were accused of masterminding the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri six years ago.
Discussion: The Huffington Post
Nada Bakri / New York Times:
Tribunal Names 4 in '05 Killing of Lebanese Leader
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.
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.
Discussion: CNN, Taylor Marsh and Pajamas Media
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 …
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
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.
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.
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
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 More Items: 
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
Josiah Ryan / The Hill:
Senate confirms Petraeus as next CIA director with 94-0 vote
Discussion: The Politico
My Take: Dutch ban is bigotry
Discussion: Hit & Run and FrumForum
Emily Flitter / Reuters:
U.S. caught China buying more debt than disclosed
Discussion: FT Alphaville, MarketBeat and FrumForum
 Earlier Items: 
Mark Halperin / The Daily Beast:
The Lawless Presidency  —  Obama's lawyers are foundering …
Discussion: Salon
Village Voice:
Real Men Get Their Facts Straight