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7:50 PM ET, December 20, 2011

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
PolitiFact:
Lie of the Year 2011: ‘Republicans voted to end Medicare’  —  Republicans muscled a budget through the House of Representatives in April that they said would take an important step toward reducing the federal deficit.  Introduced by U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, the plan kept Medicare intact …
RELATED:
Paul Krugman:
Politifact, R.I.P.  —  This is really awful.  Politifact, which is supposed to police false claims in politics, has announced its Lie of the Year — and it's a statement that happens to be true, the claim that Republicans have voted to end Medicare.  —  Steve Benen in the link above explains it, but let me just repeat the basics.
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
PolitiFact ought to be ashamed of itself  —  The fact-checking website PolitiFact has announced its “Lie of the Year” for 2011.  It made a poor, credibility-killing choice. … This is simply indefensible.  Claims that are factually true shouldn't be eligible for a Lie of the Year designation.
Matthew Yglesias / Slate:
Politifact's Bizarre “Lie of the Year” … - Lithwick: Newt Gingrich's Insanely Stupid Attack on the Judicial Branch  — What I Learned From Coaching a Women's Basketball Team in Qatar  — True Fact: Greeks and Italians Work Way Harder Than Germans Do  — Can We Please Start Calling Kesha a Rapper?
Jonathan Martinand Alexander Burns / The Politico:
Will Ron Paul kill the caucuses?  —  SIOUX CITY, IOWA -The alarms are sounding in Iowa.  —  Conservatives and Republican elites in the state are divided over who to support for the GOP nomination, but they almost uniformly express concern over the prospect that Ron Paul and his army …
RELATED:
The Caucus:
Vander Plaats Endorses Santorum  —  Bob Vander Plaats, speaking in Iowa in March, endorsed Rick Santorum on Tuesday.  —  12:51 p.m. |  Updated CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Two weeks before the Republican nominating contest opens at the Iowa caucuses, former Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania …
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Romney leads Obama  —  For the first time in PPP's monthly national polling since July 2010 Mitt Romney's taken a lead, albeit a small one, over Barack Obama.  He's up 47-45.  —  Romney has two main things going for him.  He leads the President 45-36 with independents.
Discussion: The Politico and Ballot Box
Scott Clement / Washington Post:
Poll: Paul as third party candidate could doom GOP in 2012  —  Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul (R-Texas) is gaining steam in his race for the GOP nomination, up to his highest level yet — 15 percent — in the new Washington Post-ABC News national poll.
Newt Gingrich / Washington Post:
2. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Obama is handling [ITEM]?  Do you approve/disapprove strongly or somewhat?
Elizabeth Hartfield / ABCNEWS:
Gingrich Campaign Steps Up Efforts to Qualify For Virginia Primary
A.Killough / CNN:
CNN Poll: Obama gains strength in 2012 matchups
Discussion: 2012 Decoded and ABCNEWS
David Dayen / Firedoglake:
House Republicans Find Smarmiest Way Possible to Reject Payroll Tax Deal  —  Speaker Boehner weeps over payroll tax cut (Image: DonkeyHotey)  —  The procedural wizards in the House Republican caucus stayed up late last night to concoct this scheme, a way to dispose of the Senate's payroll tax deal by voting affirmatively.
Discussion: Open Congress, Hullabaloo and The Hill
RELATED:
Jonathan Easley / The Hill:   McCain: Payroll-tax fight ‘harming the Republican Party’
Pete Kasperowicz / The Hill:
House rebuffs Senate payroll tax cut extension, calls for conference
Discussion: Hot Air and Outside the Beltway
Erik Wasson / The Hill:
Rep. Pelosi on Speaker Boehner: ‘He is not Lucy and we are not Charlie Brown’
Discussion: CNN
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
Mr. Speaker, your weakness is showing
Alicia M. Cohn / The Hill:
Schumer predicts GOP will fold in payroll fight
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
GOP Sen. Brown slams House for ‘playing politics’ with tax vote
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Ta-Nehisi Coates / The Atlantic Online:
Ron Paul's Shaggy Defense  —  The Times notes that Ron Paul's racism newsletters are, again, becoming an issue.  The standard defense has generally been Paul didn't write the newsletters.  I think an honest reckoning with that defense would have someone question the faculties of an adult …
RELATED:
New York Times:
Bias in Ron Paul's Newsletters Draws New Attention
Gschwarzcnn / CNN:
CNN Poll: President's approval nearing 50%  —  Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama's approval rating, a crucial indicator of his reelection chances, is on the rise, according to a new national survey.  —  A CNN/ORC International Poll out Tuesday also indicates that the partisan battle …
RELATED:
Max Abelson / Bloomberg:
Bankers Seek to Debunk ‘Imbecile’ Attack on Top 1%  —  Jamie Dimon, the highest-paid chief executive officer among the heads of the six biggest U.S. banks, turned a question at an investors' conference in New York this month into an occasion to defend wealth.
Mj Lee / The Politico:
Blogs bash Obama's historic claim  —  NewsBusters calls Obama's statements made during his ‘60 Minutes’ interview ‘laughable.’  —  Newt Gingrich isn't the only one on the campaign trail who sees himself as a towering historical figure.  President Barack Obama has just joined the club.
Reid J. Epstein / The Politico:
Source: Bob Vander Plaats asked Michele Bachmann to quit  —  DES MOINES - Iowa evangelical leader Bob Vander Plaats called Michele Bachmann and urged her to drop out of the race and endorse Rick Santorum, a source with knowledge of the conversation told POLITICO Tuesday.
Alex Seitz-Wald / ThinkProgress:
Instead Of Extending Tax Cut For 160 Million Americans, House Commissioned Bust Of Winston Churchill  —  While House Republicans couldn't get their act together to approve an extension of the payroll tax holiday and unemployment benefits last night, they were able to do something far more frivolousness …
Patrick Goodenough / CNSNews:
U.N. Adopts ‘Religious Intolerance’ Resolution Championed by Obama Administration  —  (CNSNews.com) - The U.N. General Assembly on Monday adopted a resolution condemning the stereotyping, negative profiling and stigmatization of people based on their religion, and urging countries to take effective steps …
New York Post:
Ugly inside & out  —  His face horribly charred from his alleged gasoline attack on a beloved Brooklyn mom, Jerome Isaac was jailed without bail yesterday, as the woman's devastated family pressed the DA to lock him up for life.  —  “I know this is the defendant's first offense …
Discussion: Gothamist and CBS New York
 
 
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 More Items: 
Bloomberg:
BofA Shares Fall Below $5; First Time Since 2009
Kitsepile Nyathi / Daily Nation:Breaking News …:
MP arrested for saying Mugabe is homosexual
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Tony Romm / The Politico:
AT&T's lobbying turned back in T-Mobile bid
Discussion: The Atlantic Online
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
Caribbean Newspapers Publish Ad Promoting Ex-Gay Therapy
Discussion: Truth Wins Out
Stephanie Jones / Journal Times:
Ryan for VP? Law allows running for both VP and Congress at the same time
Discussion: Campaign 2012 and Hotline On Call
Mj Lee / The Politico:
Bill Clinton: Newt Gingrich tall tale on the budget
Discussion: CNN
Alex Pappas / The Daily Caller:
Man publishes book of 200 blank pages: ‘Everything Obama Knows About The Economy’
Discussion: Hot Air
 Earlier Items: 
Scott Pelley / CBS News:
Panetta: Iran will not be allowed nukes
Amanda Terkel / The Huffington Post:
Denver Broncos Respond To Petition For Team To Produce ‘It Gets Better’ Video
Discussion: Towleroad News #gay
Ramya / YouTube Trends:
The Top Political Videos of 2011
New York Times:
In Kim's Death, an Extensive Intelligence Failure