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6:15 PM ET, January 6, 2012


 Top Items: 
Rasmussen Reports:
South Carolina Primary: Romney 27%, Santorum 24%, Gingrich 18%  —  What a difference a caucus makes.  Rick Santorum who two months ago had one percent (1%) support among likely South Carolina Republican Primary voters now is running a close second there with 24% of the vote.
Dylan Byers / The Politico:
What Newt said about food stamps  —  Newt Gingrich's comments about African-Americans and food stamps, made at a town hall meeting in New Hampshire yesterday, have made the expected media rounds — from Slate to The Daily Beast to The Associated Press to MSNBC — but the interpretation has changed somewhat along the way.
Adam Sorensen / Swampland:
TIME/CNN/ORC Poll: Romney Storms Ahead in South Carolina  —  In another sign of the front-runner's growing strength.  Mitt Romney has taken the lead in South Carolina, according to a TIME/CNN/ORC poll released Friday.  —  The poll, which surveyed likely primary voters on Wednesday and Thursday …
Emily Schultheis / The Politico:
New Paul S.C. ad hits Santorum on ‘betrayal’  —  Ron Paul's campaign is out with this new ad in South Carolina, which hits Rick Santorum on his “record of betrayal.”  —  “One serial hypocrite exposed,” the ad says, showing clips of Newt Gingrich.  “Now another has emerged: Rick Santorum …
Gschwarzcnn / CNN:
CNN/Time Poll: Romney and Santorum soar in South Carolina  —  (CNN) - Mitt Romney's numbers in South Carolina are surging, and he now has a solid lead over his rivals for the Republican presidential nomination, according to a new survey of likely GOP primary voters in the Palmetto state.
Discussion: The Caucus and Business Insider
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
Gingrich: Romney should drop out if he doesn't win New Hampshire primary  —  Newt Gingrich said if Mitt Romney doesn't win the New Hampshire primary, he should drop out of the race.  —  “Look, this is one of his best states other than Utah and Massachusetts.
Discussion: Ballot Box, CNN, The Caucus and The Politico
Wall Street Journal:
Romney Wins but Takes a Beating
Discussion: Eunomia and GOP 12
Gingrich on Romney Debating the President: ‘Obama is Going to Laugh at Him’
Mj Lee / The Politico:
Newt: Obama will ‘laugh’ at Mitt
Discussion: CNN
Shushannah Walshe / ABCNEWS:
Pro-Santorum SuperPAC Buys Ad Time in South Carolina
Discussion: GOP 12 and The Page
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Another Romney layoff victim, this one a conservative, speaks out  —  Reuters published a blockbuster story today on GS Technologies, a steel mill in Kansas City that was acquired by Bain Capital, leading to the layoffs of some 750 workers.  In this case, the workers lost promised severance pay …
Discussion: GOP 12, Wonkette and Riehl World View
Special report: Romney's steel skeleton in the Bain closet  —  (Reuters) - It was funny at first.  —  The young men in business suits, gingerly picking their way among the millwrights, machinists and pipefitters at Kansas City's Worldwide Grinding Systems steel mill.
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Iowan Casts Doubt on Winner of Caucus  —  At just before 2 a.m. on Wednesday, Iowa Republican Party Chairman Matt Strawn addressed reporters who had spent the night following the historically close Republican caucus race between Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum.
Brad Cooper / Kansas City Star:
Legislator apologizes for ‘YoMama’ email about first lady  —  Kansas legislator acknowledges forwarding email note mocking first lady's name, hair style.  —  Kansas House Speaker Mike O'Neal on Thursday apologized for an email that made fun of first lady Michelle Obama's hair style and mockingly called her “Mrs. YoMama.”
Mackenzie Weinger / The Politico:
Mike O'Neal sorry for Michelle ‘YoMama’ email
Discussion: Indecision Forever
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
Obama takes victory lap  —  Two days after defying Republicans and appointing Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, President Obama took a little time to gloat.  —  Making a victory lap of sorts at the independent agency, Obama cracked a joke …
Discussion: The Politico and Weasel Zippers
New York Post:
This power grab's a sign of weakness
Discussion: Belmont Club and Betsy's Page
Rick Perlstein / Crooks and Liars:
Santorum's ‘Freedom’ is Pretty Much Slavery  —  Rick Santorum got high marks for his near-victory speech in Iowa.  In the Washington Post, E.J. Dionne called it “by far the best speech Tuesday night.”  Santorum's address impressed me, too, but for a different reason: his astonishing endorsement …
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Rick Santorum Says by the Time He Had Campaign Cash, All the N.H. TV Time Was Bought Up
Discussion: The Hill
Julia Preston / New York Times:
Path to Green Card for Illegal Immigrant Family Members of Americans  —  Obama administration officials announced on Friday that they will propose a fix to a notorious snag in immigration law that will spare hundreds of thousands of American citizens from prolonged separations from immigrant spouses and children.
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
Obama to make major green-card reform
David Frum / FrumForum:
All Good Things...  FrumForum launched itself almost exactly three years ago, on Inauguration Day 2009.  Over the subsequent interval, our hundreds of contributors have reached more than 5 million individual readers.  I like to think that together we have helped to move the national debate.
Discussion: driftglass
Carol Felsenthal / Chicago magazine:
Jodi Kantor Goes Inside the Obamas' Marriage in New Book  —  INSIDE THE EAST WING: A new book pulls back the curtains on the First Couple  —  This month, Jodi Kantor, 36, a Washington correspondent for The New York Times, delves into the lives of the president and First Lady with The Obamas (Little, Brown and Company, $29.99).
Ed O'Keefe / Washington Post:
White House proposes 0.5 percent pay increase for federal workers
Alex Seitz-Wald / ThinkProgress:
House Democrats Rush Floor Demanding Republicans Come Back To Work, GOP Cuts Off C-SPAN  —  House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and a group of Democratic lawmakers took to an empty House floor today to demonstrate that they were willing to work while Republicans lawmakers are at home.
Discussion: The Raw Story
ABCNEWS:   House Democrats Demand GOP ‘Come Back From Vacation’
Shaila Dewan / New York Times:
U.S. Adds 200,000 Jobs; Unemployment Rate at 8.5%  —  The United States added a robust 200,000 new jobs last month, the Labor Department said Friday, in a sign that the long-awaited economic recovery has finally built up a head of steam.  —  The nation's unemployment rate fell to 8.5 percent in December …
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
Santorum Booed Again For Saying Gays Aren't Entitled To Marriage Or Military Service  —  Rick Santorum received another round of “boos” for his opposition to allowing openly gay people to serve in the military and same-sex marriage, during a town hall in Keene, New Hampshire this morning.
James Oliphant / Los Angeles Times:
Rick Santorum jeered after comparing gay marriage to polygamy
Cindy Adams / New York Post:
Short NBC gig for Chelsea?  —  Chelsea Clinton's much-trumpeted deal with NBC seems to be nearly done.  Her contract is for only 90 days, and while she'll provide the network with two more stories, sources say it is not certain she'll immediately sign again.
David Brooks / New York Times:
A New Social Agenda  —  I'm to Rick Santorum's left on most social issues, like same-sex marriage and abortion.  I'm also put off by his Manichaean political rhetoric.  He seems to imagine America's problems can best be described as the result of a culture war between the God-fearing conservatives and the narcissistic liberals.
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 More Items: 
Edward Wyatt / New York Times:
S.E.C. to Change Policy on Companies' Admission of Guilt
Discussion: Firedoglake and DealBook
Beth Stebner / Daily Mail:
Pictured: Home invader teen widow shot dead who 'was coming for her dead 58-year-old husband's drugs'
Sam Baker / The Hill:
Obama administration defends healthcare law in Supreme Court brief
Discussion: The Politico and Hit & Run
Lee Drutman / Sunlight Foundation Blog:
As senator, Santorum was obsessed with abortion
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Gingrich Can Make Contracts Public: Freddie Mac
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Democracy Now:
Occupy New Hampshire Protester Takes Romney to Task for Declaring “Corporations Are People”
Discussion: Crooks and Liars
 Earlier Items: 
David Weigel / Slate:
Occupiers for Huntsman, Part II: “Of Course Corporations Are Not People”
Discussion: GOP 12 and Daily Kos
Annie Lowrey / New York Times:
Big Study Links Good Teachers to Lasting Gain
Discussion: Opinion L.A.
Jason Mattera / Human Events:
Rubio in letter to Obama: You are turning America into a ‘deadbeat nation’
RealClearPolitics Video Log:
Students Laugh When Obama Tells Them “You Inspire Me”