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3:55 PM ET, December 24, 2011


 Top Items: 
Katharine Q. Seelye / New York Times:
Gingrich's Ballot Miss Could Shake Voters' Confidence  —  Newt Gingrich declared confidently the other day that he would get his name on the ballot for the Republican presidential primary in Virginia.  In fact, he said he already had the requisite 10,000 signatures and an additional 2,000 …
Anita Kumar / Washington Post:
Gingrich, Perry disqualified from Va. primary ballot  —  Former House speaker Newt Gingrich and Texas Gov. Rick Perry failed to submit enough valid signatures to qualify for the Virginia primary ballot, state GOP officials said Friday evening and early Saturday.
Associated Press:
Gingrich fails to qualify for Va. primary ballot  —  WASHINGTON - Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has failed to qualify for Virginia's March 6 Republican primary, a development that complicates his bid to win the GOP presidential nomination.  —  “After verification …
Sarah Maslin Nir / The Caucus:
Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry Fail to Qualify for Virginia Primary Ballot
Kevinliptak / CNN:
Perry ballot petition rejected in Virginia
Discussion: The Politico
Maggie Haberman / The Politico:
Perry knocked off Va. primary ballot
Discussion: Washington Post, Mediaite and RedState
Steve Contorno / Campaign 2012:
Gingrich, Perry won't make ballot in Virginia
Discussion: Bob Owens and Hot Air
Faiz Shakir / ThinkProgress:
Gingrich Defends South Carolina's Decision To Fly Confederate Flag At Capital  —  At an event in South Carolina yesterday, Newt Gingrich was asked by a town hall participant to offer his views regarding the state's decision to fly the Confederate flag at the statehouse in Columbia.
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
Obama's worst error  —  President Obama missed the boat on tax reform.  He put politics above entitlement reform.  He worsened already-tense relations with Israel.  But the worst error, in large part because it was both avoidable and is not irreversible, was to pull all troops out of Iraq.
Joe Nocera / New York Times:
The Big Lie  —  So this is how the Big Lie works.  —  You begin with a hypothesis that has a certain surface plausibility.  You find an ally whose background suggests that he's an “expert”; out of thin air, he devises “data.”  You write articles in sympathetic publications …
Climate Guest Blogger / ThinkProgress:
How to Discuss Climate Change With Your Uncle During the Holidays  —  by Russell McLendon, in a Mother Nature Network cross-post  —  Most people know better than to bring up politics, religion or climatology in polite company.  It's a recipe for arguments, or at least for awkwardness.
Erik Wasson / The Hill:
Obama says he's not bound by Guantanamo, gun-control provisions  —  President Obama said Friday he will not be bound by at least 20 policy riders in the 2012 omnibus funding the government, including provisions pertaining to Guantanamo Bay and gun control.  —  After he signed the omnibus …
Alexander Bolton / Ballot Box:
Democrats believe payroll tax victory bolsters chances of taking House  —  Democrats believe their chances of recapturing the House have improved significantly after what was widely seen as a GOP meltdown in the payroll tax debate.  —  Democrats believe the messy fight has helped narrow …
Discussion: The Right Sphere
Rosalind S. Helderman / Washington Post:
Payroll tax fight leaves Hill Republicans divided and angry
Molly K. Hooper / The Hill:
Republican lawmakers frustrated with Boehner-Cantor soap opera
Scott Whitlock / blogs:
Barbara Walters' Slobbering Interview With Obama: What Super Power Do You Want?  —  Barbara Walters, who famously asked Katherine Hepburn what type of tree she was, may have outdone herself in a slobbering interview with Michelle and Barack Obama.  In previews of Friday's “20/20” segment …
Kevinliptak / CNN:
Christmas greetings replace partisanship in weekly addresses
Discussion: The Politico
Simon van Zuylen-Wood / The New Republic:
Gingrich Gets An “A” From Niall Ferguson  —  I get that self-avowed “neo-imperialist” historian Niall Ferguson relishes his gig as academia's most celebrated colonial nostalgic/conservative reactionary.  But this is too much: … This nugget of praise, apparently written in all seriousness …
Fars News Agency:
FNA Invites World Cartoonists to Int'l Wall Street Downfall Cartoon Festival  —  TEHRAN (FNA)- Fars News Agency plans to hold an international cartoon festival on the Occupy Wall Street movement in a bid to help people in the United States take their message out to the world.
Derrick Rose / WAFF-TV:
Black Eye Friday: Shoppers throw punches over new Air Jordans … PINEVILLE, NC (WBTV) - Dozens of police officers had to break up fights and restore order at a local mall while shoppers were waiting for an overnight sale of a popular basketball shoe.  —  The disturbance started inside Carolina Place Mall just after 5am.
Maeve Reston / Los Angeles Times:
Spotlight on Romney's marriage casts shadow on Gingrich's past  —  Romney says he's showing voters his own character, not trying to contrast himself with anyone — but his main threat for the Republican presidential nomination is now on marriage No. 3 and has a history of infidelity.
Discussion: Althouse
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