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8:25 PM ET, December 15, 2011


 Top Items: 
Rasmussen Reports:
Iowa: Romney 23%, Gingrich 20%, Paul 18%  —  For the fifth straight survey, the GOP field has a new frontrunner in Iowa.  —  On this first release video, Scott Rasmussen reveals Mitt Romney as the new frontrunner in the Iowa Caucus.  —  Although this video is available to everyone, most of the content on Rasmussen Reports is not.
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Gingrich Momentum Slows, Polls Suggest  —  A lot of bad habits when analyzing general election polls can be good ones when it comes to primaries and caucuses.  In particular, making inferences about a trend based on just a couple of polls will often lead you astray in the general election.
Byron York / Campaign 2012:
Poll: Dramatic drop in Gingrich support in Iowa  —  DES MOINES — A new survey from pollster Scott Rasmussen shows support for Newt Gingrich in Iowa has fallen sharply in recent days.  The poll shows the former House speaker with the support of 20 percent of likely Republican caucus-goers …
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Recuse Yourself, Chris Wallace  —  Tonight will be the last and probably one the most important debates in the season so far.  It will be moderated by Fox News anchors, who are, at this point, the real Republican Establishment.  One of them will be Chris Wallace and here's what he just said about the man …
The Politico:
David Mark  —  Moderator :  —  Now that Rep. Ron Paul …
Conor Friedersdorf / The Atlantic Online:
On Iraq, the GOP Is Out of Touch with Its Own Voters
The Politico:
Newt Gingrich shows signs of slide in Iowa
Sam Stein / The Huffington Post:
Wyden-Ryan Medicare Proposal Has White House ‘Concerned’ … WASHINGTON — The Obama administration expressed concern Thursday over the bipartisan Medicare reform proposal that has been hammered out between Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), saying it believes the plan could weaken the program.
Wall Street Journal:
A Bipartisan Way Forward on Medicare  —  Allowing private plans to compete with traditional Medicare will help lower costs and spur innovation.  —  Few issues draw more heated partisan rhetoric than the future of Medicare.  Seniors are a reliable and powerful voting bloc …
Charles P. Pierce / Esquire:
In Congress, a Merry (and Stupid) Christmas Compromise
Pew Research Center for the People and the Press:
Frustration with Congress Could Hurt Republican Incumbents  —  GOP Base Critical of Party's Washington Leadership  —  OVERVIEW  —  Public discontent with Congress has reached record levels, and the implications for incumbents in next year's elections could be stark.
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
A nation of populists and class warriors
Fox News:
EXCLUSIVE: Former Bush Attorneys General Call Gingrich Position on Courts ‘Dangerous’  —  Two former attorneys general under President George W. Bush have found a few things to like in Newt Gingrich's position paper on reining in the authority of the federal courts, but other parts, they say, are downright disturbing.
Alex Isenstadt / The Politico:   Supreme Court to mess with Texas
Cameron Joseph / Ballot Box:   Illinois court upholds Democratic redistricting plan
The Politico:
Newt in the loot?  —  Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson has discussed directing $20 million to an outside group backing Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign, multiple sources told POLITICO — but Adelson denies he's made that promise.  —  After leaving Congress, Gingrich cultivated a network …
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
Newt Gingrich: Gay People Choose To Be Gay Like Priests Choose Celibacy  —  Newt Gingrich told the Des Moines Register's editorial board this morning that gay people have a “significant range of choice within a genetic pattern” and can choose to be straight just like someone can “choose to be celibate.”
Justin Sink / Ballot Box:
Gingrich signs anti-gay marriage pledge, says homosexuality a choice
Discussion: CNN
Devin Dwyer / Yahoo! News:
Obama faults Republican ‘lurch into extremes’ for DC gridlock  —  As political gridlock again threatens Washington with government shutdown, President Obama faulted Republicans' election year “lurch into extremes” for keeping compromise out of reach.  —  “You know, you never want to say …
Discussion: Weasel Zippers and USA Today
Byron Tau / The Politico:
POTUS on the GOP: 'Anything that Obama's for, we're against'
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Paul Bedard / US News:
Harvard Poll: Young Voters Say Obama Will Lose  —  More bad news for President Obama  —  More bad news for President Obama, this time from his alma mater, Harvard University.  In a new poll, more younger voters, many of whom voted for him in 2008, think he will lose next year.
Harvard University Institute of Politics:
Discussion: Hot Air, Ballot Box and GayPatriot
Alex Pappademas / GQ:
We ♥ Huntsman  —  ...Or at least his daughters.  Mary Anne, Liddy, and Abby may not be able to save Jon Huntsman's presidential campaign, but their Funny or Die-style videos, planking photos, and @Jon2012girls Twitter (what's a Mormon girl have to do to land a date with Tagg Romney …
Christina Ng / Nation:
Exclusive: ‘White Only’ Pool Sign Owner Explains  —  A female landlord, Jamie Hein, had a sign that read, “Public Swimming Pool, White Only” hanging on a gate at her house and her private pool.  (Photo credit: Ohio Civil Rights Commission)  —  An Ohio landlord accused of discriminating …
New York Times:
Pentagon Declares End to an Iraq War of Mixed Results  —  BAGHDAD — Almost nine years after the first American tanks began massing on the Iraqi border, the Pentagon declared an official end to its mission here, closing a troubled conflict that helped reshape American politics and left …
Pete Souza /
Obama Family Portrait Revealed  —  From left: Michelle, Malia, Barack and Sasha Obama  —  President Obama may be gearing up his campaign for reelection soon, but at home with his wife and daughters, he couldn't be happier.  —  The White House is releasing this new family portrait of the Obamas …
Mj Lee / The Politico:
Herman Cain's Cabinet dream: DOD  —  Herman Cain says that if he could be a Cabinet secretary, he wants to be head of the Department of Defense.  —  In an interview with Barbara Walters, who chose Cain as one of the “10 Most Fascinating People” of the year, the former presidential hopeful was asked what Cabinet position he would like.
Is This Hell?  No, It's Iowa  —  [ed note: Found!  In a dumpster behind Hamburg Inn, the first draft of University of Iowa professor Stephen G. Bloom's anthropology dissertation for Atlantic magazine explaining the bizarre cultural mores of the primative Aborigines who pay his salary.]
Discussion: The Atlantic Online
Chris McGreal / Guardian:
Americans face Guantánamo detention after Obama climbdown  —  Defence funding bill allows American citizens to be arrested as terrorists on home soil and held indefinitely without trial  —  Barack Obama has abandoned a commitment to veto a new security law that allows the military …
Brian Stelter / The Caucus:
Romney Ku Klux Klan Report Backfires on Media  —  Don't just repeat it.  Report it.  —  That's the lesson this week for MSNBC and for The Washington Post, both of which apologized for repeating a liberal blog's claim that Mitt Romney had uttered a phrase on the campaign stump that was used in the past by the Ku Klux Klan.
Tehran Times:
Foreign spy drones in Iran's possession to be put on display  —  TEHRAN - Iran plans to put foreign spy drones it has in its possession on display in the near future, according to an informed source close to the Tehran Times.  —  National reporters and foreign ambassadors based in Tehran will be allowed to visit the exhibition.
Discussion: The Lede, Guardian and Israel Matzav
Jobless claims drop to 3.5 year low  —  (Reuters) - New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits dropped to a 3-1/2 year low last week, a government report showed on Thursday, suggesting the labor market  —  recovery was gaining speed.  —  Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 19,000 …
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 More Items: 
Ronald Brownstein / 2012 Decoded:
Where Obama Has Slipped  —  There's an ominous trend …
A.Killough / CNN:
Source of negative Gingrich fliers in question
Josh Lederman / The Hill:
Tea Party leader arrested with gun at NY airport
Discussion: CNN
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
New-style scandal fixer helps Rick Perry, Herman Cain
Josiah Ryan / The Hill:
Congress sends defense authorization bill to the White House
Discussion: The Politico and CNN
 Earlier Items: 
How to Indefinitely Detain Jamie Dimon
Discussion: Daily Kos
Jonathan Easley / The Hill:
Congress members clash over call to investigate NYPD
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Elizabethwarren / Blue Mass Group:
Protecting and Promoting Equality
Ambrose Evans-Pritchard / Telegraph:
China's epic hangover begins