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4:00 PM ET, August 4, 2011


 Top Items: 
Quinnipiac University:
DEBT DEAL DOESN'T RESCUE OBAMA FROM FLORIDA CRASH, QUINNIPIAC UNIVERSITY POLL FINDS; ROMNEY CLOSES GAP IN 2012 PRESIDENTIAL RACE  —  The national debt ceiling deal does not rescue President Barack Obama's crashing job approval rating in Florida as he gets a negative 44 …
Emily Ramshaw / The Texas Tribune:
Perry's Surgery Included Experimental Stem Cell Therapy  —  Keywords:  —  Enlargephoto by: Todd Wiseman / Bob Daemmrich / Bryan Jones  —  When Gov. Rick Perry emerged from back surgery on July 1, he tweeted that his “little procedure” — a spinal fusion and nerve decompression designed …
Karen Tumulty / Washington Post:
Texas Gov. Rick Perry wages an assault on state's university establishment
Hotline On Call:
Democratic Insiders View Romney as Obama's Main Threat
David Mildenberg / Bloomberg:
Perry Courting Presidential Run Calls Iowans While Wooing Donors
Discussion: GOP 12 and
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Inside the Huntsman ‘drama’  —  A blistering internal feud in the Jon Huntsman presidential campaign is erupting into public view, with dueling camps trading charges and an exodus of campaign officials.  —  And now, a longtime family friend tells POLITICO that Huntsman's wife and father fret …
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Inside the Huntsman ‘drama’  —  'Goodness will overcome the temporary difficulties and early turf-protecting," wrote the candidate.
Paul Krugman:
Rates of Wrath  —  Not good news in stock markets — but you really have to look at the bond markets to get the full awfulness of the situation.  —  The US 10-year bond rate is now down to 2.5%.  So much for those bond vigilantes.  What this rate is saying is that markets are pricing …
Graham Bowley / New York Times:
Stocks Dive on Fears of Global Slowdown  —  Stocks around the world fell sharply Thursday on intensifying investor fears about a slowdown in global economic growth and worries about Europe's ongoing debt crisis, which is centered now on Italy and Spain.  —  Stock market indexes …
Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Stocks Slide 3%
Discussion: The Consumerist, Daily Kos and Gawker
Paul Krugman:
Wrong And Right  —  Bruce Bartlett and others send me to this eloquent David Frum piece, which concludes: … The knee-jerk response of commenters is “But the Obama stimulus failed, deficits, yada yada.  Also, Krugman has a beard.”  Or something like that.
Discussion: Prairie Weather
David Frum / FrumForum:
If Conservatives Were Right About the Economy
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Romney signs marriage pledge  —  Former Gov. Mitt Romney has joined Rep. Michele Bachmann and former Sen. Rick Santorum in signing a pledge to oppose same-sex marriage on a number of specific fronts.  —  The three candidates signed the pledge advanced by the National Organization for Marriage …
Steve Chapman / Reason:
Phony Federalism  —  The Republican Party is a fickle friend to the 10th Amendment.
Discussion: Hit & Run
Happy birthday?  —  How much don't we know about Barack Obama as he nears the end of his third year of White House occupation?  —  Well, he claims today is his 50th birthday.  —  Yet, incredibly, it is still only an unsubstantiated claim - and, perhaps, more suspect than ever.
Discussion: Salon, The Wire and Right Wing Watch
The Onion:   Obama Turns 50 Despite Republican Opposition
Christina Wilkie / The Huffington Post:
Obama Turns 50: $3.6 Million And 5 Birthday Parties
Discussion: Weasel Zippers and AmSpecBlog
The Politico:
Obama's big drags  —  The politics of the debt fight were a drag for President Barack Obama, yanking his popularity to new lows.  Here's an even bigger drag: Obama emerges from the months-long fracas weaker - and facing much deeper and more durable political obstacles - than his own advisers ever imagined.
Yahoo! News:
US borrowing tops 100% of GDP: Treasury  —  US debt shot up $238 billion to reach 100 percent of gross domestic project after the government's debt ceiling was lifted, Treasury figures showed Wednesday.  —  Treasury borrowing jumped Tuesday, the data showed, immediately after President Barack Obama signed …
Stephanie Clifford / New York Times:
Even Marked Up, Luxury Goods Fly Off Shelves  —  Nordstrom has a waiting list for a Chanel sequined tweed coat with a $9,010 price.  Neiman Marcus has sold out in almost every size of Christian Louboutin “Bianca” platform pumps, at $775 a pair.  Mercedes-Benz said it sold more cars last month …
Megan Boehnke / Knoxville News-Sentinel:
Satirical mints poking fun at Obama pulled from UT bookstore  —  Web Search powered by YAHOO! SEARCH  —  PHOTO BY SAUL YOUNG, COPYRIGHT © 2011 // BUY THIS PHOTO  —  Boxes of breath mints, like this one pictured at Vice Chancellor for Communication Margie Nichols' office on Wednesday …
Jackie Calmes / New York Times:
Pressured by White House, Treasury Secretary Is Expected to Stay at Post  —  WASHINGTON — Timothy F. Geithner, the Treasury secretary and dean of President Obama's economic team, is expected to stay through the president's term after intense White House pressure, according to officials familiar with the discussions.
Peter Schroeder / The Hill:
Dow plunges after debt deal, raising anxiety over economy  —  The Dow Jones Industrial Average had lost more than 300 points at midday Thursday, erasing gains for the year.  —  The index has lost more points in the last two weeks than it did after the House initially failed to approve …
U.S. incomes fell sharply in 2009  —  (Reuters) - U.S. incomes plummeted again in 2009, with total income down 15.2 percent in real terms since 2007, new tax data showed on Wednesday.  —  The data showed an alarming drop in the number of taxpayers reporting any earnings from a job …
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
Presidential Power  —  I apologize in advance for indulging in a wonky process post yet again today ("more boy talk," as Twitter follower Stella calls it), but I want to repeat a point that I haven't made for a while.  It got kicked off by this tweet from Dave Roberts:  —  My answer: No, he just has the easiest job.
New York Post:
O'Care truth sinks in  —  The first ideological tentacles of ObamaCare began snaking their way into the pocketbooks of private insurers and the consciences of religious Americans when, on Monday, the Department of Health and Human Services issued new guidelines requiring insurers …
Nedra Pickler / Associated Press:
Judge allows American to sue Rumsfeld over torture … WASHINGTON (AP) — A judge is allowing an Army veteran who says he was imprisoned unjustly and tortured by the U.S. military in Iraq to sue former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld personally for damages.
Paul Bedard / US News:
Report: Obama Administration Added $9.5 Billion in Red Tape in July  —  Conservatives take aim at job-killing regulations  —  Many House and Senate conservatives are reviving their battle against federal regulations, claiming that the president hasn't stopped issuing job-killing rules during the debt ceiling fight.
Rasmussen Reports:
69% Say It's Likely Scientists Have Falsified Global Warming Research  —  The debate over global warming has intensified in recent weeks after a new NASA study was interpreted by skeptics to reveal that global warming is not man-made.  While a majority of Americans nationwide continue …
Jason Hanna / CNN:
Do presidents age faster in office?  —  (CNN) — President Barack Obama has had the weight of the free world on his shoulders for the 2½ years, and he might be starting to look like it.  —  At 50, which he turns Thursday, his hair is a little grayer, and his face and neck are a little more creased …
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog
Michael Isikoff /
Firm gives $1 million to pro-Romney group, then dissolves  —  Records offer no clues who was behind mystery company that donated to ‘super PAC’  —  Below:  —  updated 2011-08-04T10:01:38  —  A mystery company that pumped $1 million into a political committee backing Mitt Romney …
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 More Items: 
Rob Bluey / The Heritage Foundation:
Morning Bell: Blame the Washington Bureaucracy for High Gas Prices
Stocks Tumble as Two-Year Treasury Yield Drops to Low
Beltway Buzz:
Perry Takes Jab at Romney
Discussion: The Note and
Judd Legum / ThinkProgress:
Pelosi: Republicans Aren't Interested In Deficit Reduction, They Are Interested In Destroying Government
Jon Carson / The White House:
Myths and Facts About the Debt-Ceiling Compromise
Matthew Yglesias / ThinkProgress:
Pelosi Vows Dems Won't Get Rolled Again
Discussion: Grasping Reality …
Frances Martel / Mediaite:
Gov. Christie Defends Appointing Muslim Judge: ‘This Sharia Law Business Is Crap’
 Earlier Items: 
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
Dem lawmaker: Republicans would have rejected Obama offering cancer cure
Discussion: NY Daily News
Scott Wong / The Politico:
Six GOP senators want deficit committee to meet in public
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Rob Portman / Wall Street Journal:
Make the Dollar-for-Dollar Rule Permanent
Sharon Jayson / USA Today:
Citing new research, psychology group supports gay marriage