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11:30 AM ET, December 22, 2011


 Top Items: 
Dorothy Rabinowitz / Wall Street Journal:
What Ron Paul Thinks of America  —  It seemed improbable that the best-known American propagandist for our enemies could be near the top of the pack in the Iowa contest, but there it is.  —  Ron Paul's supporters are sure of one thing: Their candidate has always been consistent …
Alex Alvarez / Mediaite:
Hey, CNN?  Can We Talk About What's Going On Between You And Ron Paul?  —  CNN, boo boos, can we talk?  I'm getting a little worried about you.  Here, sit down.  Have some of this Wolf Spritzer I picked up at your gift shop.  No, yeah, it's pretty good.  Tastes like berries.  Berries and gravitas.
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Conor Friedersdorf / The Atlantic Online:
Grappling With Ron Paul's Racist Newsletters  —  The biggest obstacle to his candidacy is making headlines again.  If he wants to win anything, he's going to need to confront it.  —  Did you know about the racist newsletters published in the late 1980s and early 1990s under Ron Paul's name?
James Crugnale / Mediaite:
Rep. Ron Paul Gets Irked By Newsletter Questions, Walks Out Of CNN Interview  —  Ron Paul walked out of an interview with CNN's Gloria Borger following a heated exchange over the controversy regarding racist newsletters sent in his name during the 1990s.  Borger asked the Congressman if he had ever read the newsletters.
Ed Morrissey / Hot Air:
Paul in 1995: Say, have you read my newsletters?  —  Mitt Romney can breathe a sigh of relief, because Andrew Kaczynksi has shifted his attention to Ron Paul this week.  Andrew dug up a 1995 interview with C-SPAN, a year before running for Congress after a decade out of office.
Jackie Kucinich / USA Today:
Paul's story changes on racial comments  —  WASHINGTON - Rep. Ron Paul has tried since 2001 to disavow racist and incendiary language published in Texas newsletters that bore his name, denying he wrote them and even walking out of an interview on CNN Wednesday.
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Who is a Ron Paul supporter?
Discussion: The Daily Caller
George F. Will / Washington Post:
Gingrich, the anti-conservative  —  When discussing his amazingness, Newt Gingrich sometimes exaggerates somewhat, as when, discussing Bosnia and Washington, D.C., street violence, he said, “People like me are what stand between us and Auschwitz” [Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Jan. 16, 1994].
Ginger Gibson / Reuters:
Newt Gingrich courting Iowa voters with judicial rants
Discussion: NewsHounds blog
The Politico:
Mitt Romney Rx: A bloody nose  —  Here is one way to look at Mitt Romney's challenge from Newt Gingrich: As one more humiliation delivered by Republican activists who have made clear over and over that they would really, really prefer to fall in love with someone, anyone, whose name is not Mitt Romney.
Aliyah Shahid / NY Daily News:
Matt Damon rips President Obama in Elle magazine: A prez with ‘some balls’ would have been better  —  The ‘We Bought a Zoo’ star also weighed in on the Occupy Wall Street protests, arguing Obama's lack of leadership has contributed to Americans' overall discontent
Discussion: Hit & Run
Daniel Jacobson / Gossip Cop:
Matt Damon Blasts Obama: “One-Term President With Balls” Would Be Better  —  Matt Damon rips President Obama in Elle magazine, blasting his leadership qualities and saying he'd prefer “a one-term president with some balls who actually got stuff done.”  —  The actor, a longtime supporter …
Kareem Raheem / Reuters:
Baghdad blasts kill 63 as Iraq tensions rise  —  (Reuters) - A series of bombings hit Baghdad on Thursday, killing at least 63 people in the first big assault attack on Iraq's capital since a sectarian crisis erupted within its government just days after the U.S. troop withdrawal.
New York Times:
Explosions Rock Baghdad Amid Iraqi Political Crisis
Discussion: and Wonkette
At least 63 killed in co-ordinated Baghdad attacks
Discussion: The Jawa Report and FP Passport
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
Obama shows he's confident he's beating GOP in payroll tax fight  —  President Obama, who has been on the losing end of several hard-fought battles with House Republicans, is showing that he thinks he's winning the latest tax fight.  —  While the White House—which has made it known …
Kate Linthicum / Los Angeles Times:
Some Occupy L.A. protesters may get a lesson in free speech  —  Prosecutors say they can avoid court trials by paying $355 to a private company for an educational program.  The irony is not lost on the anti-corporate activists, who see it as patronizing.  —  Los Angeles police officers arrest …
Discussion: Associated Press and cab drollery
How Democrats Fooled California's Redistricting Commission  —  This spring, a group of California Democrats gathered at a modern, airy office building just a few blocks from the U.S. Capitol.  The meeting was House members only — no aides allowed — and the mission was seemingly impossible.
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
U.S. Satisfaction in 2011 Ranks as Second Lowest Since 1979  —  On average, 17% were satisfied with national conditions, ahead of only 2008's 15%  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Throughout 2011, an average of 17% of Americans said they were satisfied with the way things are going in the United States.
Betsy Rothstein / FishbowlDC:
Sensenbrenner Aide Responds to Big Butt Allegation  —  Amanda Infield, a spokesman for Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) graciously got back to us concerning her boss telling a female constituent that first lady Michelle Obama has a “large posterior.”  The congressman was overheard talking …
Concord Monitor:
Huntsman is the best choice for GOP  —  Purchase photo reprints at PhotoExtra »  —  Editorial review board with Jon Huntsman, Jr. on Tuesday, December 20, 2011.Purchase photo reprints at PhotoExtra »  —  There comes a time for many politicians when they gaze at their reflection and see a president.
Discussion: CNN and GOP 12
Pat Garofalo / ThinkProgress:
Auto Industry Success Continues, Further Vindicating Obama Rescue  —  Though the economy has struggled throughout 2011, one sector that saw some significant improvement was the American auto industry.  In fact, about one million more cars are expected to be sold this year than last year …
U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis:
National Income and Product Accounts Gross Domestic Product, 3rd quarter 2011 (third estimate) Corporate Profits, 3rd quarter 2011 (revised estimate)  —  Real gross domestic product — the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States …
Discussion: Hot Air and Business Insider
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 More Items: 
A.Killough / CNN:
TRENDING: Gingrich to gay man: Vote for Obama
Discussion: The Atlantic Online
Annie Lowrey / New York Times:
Signs Point to Economy's Rise, but Experts See a False Dawn
Sean Sullivan / Hotline On Call:
The Reasons for Republican Optimism in Wisconsin
Julian Pecquet / The Hill:
Romney doubles down on argument that state health mandate is ‘conservative’
Discussion: Weasel Zippers and GOP 12
Brian Beutler /
TPMDC  —  Karl Rove Concedes House GOP Blew It On Payroll Tax (VIDEO)
Discussion: Washington Monthly and Hot Air
 Earlier Items: 
Jim Hoft / The Gateway Pundit:
Duh... Pelosi Calls For Tax Cut Extensions For 160,000,000 Working Americans …
Matthew Yglesias / Slate:
Perverse Reputational Incentives In Central Banking
Discussion: TheMoneyIllusion
Floyd Norris / New York Times:
A Central Bank Doing What It Should
Wall Street Journal:
Fewer Ports in a Global Storm
Discussion: FT Alphaville and Brad DeLong