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11:40 AM ET, January 21, 2012

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Newt expands South Carolina lead  —  Newt Gingrich heads into South Carolina election day as the clear front runner in the state: he's now polling at 37% to 28% for Mitt Romney, 16% for Rick Santorum, and 14% for Ron Paul.  —  Gingrich's lead has actually increased in the wake of his ex-wife's controversial interview with ABC.
RELATED:
Chuck Norris / WND:
MY ENDORSEMENT FOR PRESIDENT  —  Exclusive: Chuck Norris reveals his choice for Republican nomination  —  Our republic as America's founders created it is under assault from extremists outside our country and anti-constitutionalists inside our country.  Combined with the flailing American economy …
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Gingrich Is Well-Positioned as South Carolina Votes  —  Newt Gingrich, who had trailed Mitt Romney by a double-digit margin in South Carolina in several polls conducted just after the New Hampshire primary, may instead be headed to a big victory there, recent polling suggests.
Conn Carroll / Campaign 2012:
America hates Newt Gingrich  —  Unlike Mitt Romney, who occasionally beats President Obama in general election poll match ups, Newt Gingrich trails far behind President Obama in every survey.  But just how bad are Gingrich's unfavorable among the general public compared to Obama and Romney?
Ross Douthat:
The Momentum of Ideas  —  During last night's Republican debate, the candidates were asked to name something from the campaign that they would have done differently.  Here was Newt Gingrich's answer: … I have, for my sins, watched Gingrich make his pitch across what feels …
Niall Stanage / Ballot Box:
Doubts creep in as an awkward Romney tries not to lose GOP nod  —  What's wrong with Mitt Romney?  —  In the early stages of this cycle's Republican nominating process, the former Massachusetts governor seemed confident and sure-footed.  Now he seems awkward and defensive.
Maggie Haberman / The Politico:
Santorum now the Iowa winner, officially  —  This statement just landed from the Republican Party of Iowa, just about 20 minutes shy of midnight: … This is a switch from the party's stand yesterday morning, that the results were inconclusive and a winner couldn't be called because of a number …
Trip Gabriel / New York Times:
A Test for Gingrich as Political Strategist
Discussion: The Caucus and TalkLeft
Clemson University:
Clemson Palmetto Poll finds Gingrich leading, 20% of S.C. voters still uncommitted
Shushannah Walshe / ABCNEWS:
Santorum: Newt Has ‘Issues of Character’
Discussion: Hot Air
Matt Stout / Boston Herald:
Sen. Scott Brown urges Romney, Gingrich — come clean
Kristin Ford / Faith in Public Life:
Catholic Leaders Challenge Gingrich and Santorum on Divisive Rhetoric Around Race and Poverty
Tara Siegel Bernard / New York Times:
Blacks Face Bias in Bankruptcy, Study Suggests  —  Blacks are about twice as likely as whites to wind up in the more onerous and costly form of consumer bankruptcy as they try to dig out from their debts, a new study has found.  —  The disparity persisted even when the researchers adjusted for income …
Discussion: SSRN and Prairie Weather
Wall Street Journal:
Justices Bar Texas Court's Election Map  —  WASHINGTON—The Supreme Court on Friday ordered new interim maps drawn for Texas' April 3 primary, handing Republicans a partial if possibly short-lived victory in a battle over as many as four House seats.  —  The unsigned decision sends the case …
RELATED:
Orin Kerr / The Volokh Conspiracy:
How Should the Supreme Court Rule on the Individual Mandate?
Discussion: Hit & Run and The Other McCain
Mortimer B. Zuckerman / US News:
Barack Obama's Middle East Miscalculation  —  In Egypt, we are witnessing the democratic election of a dictatorship  —  A little-noticed event gives a grim insight into what is really happening in the Middle East.  The euphoria of the “Arab Spring,” the instant Twitter-style transition …
Emily Goodin / Ballot Box:
Florida debate uncertain without Romney commitment  —  Mitt Romney's campaign has not said they are committed to Monday night's Republican debate in Tampa, Fla., leading to speculation the former governor will not be participating.  —  NBC News has not canceled the event but a statement …
Discussion: CNN, www2.tbo.com and Pat Dollard
RELATED:
Charles P. Pierce / Esquire:
Our Mr. Brooks Climbs The Romney Family Tree  —  The applause came from deep in the plush leather armchairs gathered by the fireplace in the clubroom of the Premature Fogies Club.  It was warm and sustaining, as was the morning brandy.  People touched the patches on his master's blazer as he walked by.
Ron Edmonds / Investor's Business Daily:
Exactly 3 years in, Obama's job approval hits lowest level yet  —  Exactly three years after Aretha Franklin's hat launched the Obama administration, the Democrat's annual job approval rating has sunk to his lowest level.  —  That's not normally a good sign after 1,095 days in office.  But who's counting?
Discussion: Don Surber and Campaign 2012
Brendan Sasso / The Hill:
Consumer group accuses Hollywood of ‘threatening politicians’  —  Consumer group Public Knowledge on Friday accused the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and its head, former Sen. Chris Dodd, of trying to intimidate lawmakers into supporting a pair of controversial anti-piracy bills.
Guardian:
Undercover police had children with activists  —  Disclosure likely to intensify controversy over long-running police operation to infiltrate and sabotage protest groups  —  Two undercover police officers secretly fathered children with political campaigners they had been sent to spy …
Discussion: Boing Boing and Harry's Place
 
 
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 More Items: 
Henry Samuel / Telegraph:
France plans Napoleonland
ABCNEWS:
Obama Makes ‘Change Is’ Focus of Re-Election Pitch
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Mark Steyn / Orange County Register:
No more ‘women and children first’  —  When Western civilization hits …
Discussion: AMERICAN DIGEST and Ed Driscoll
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
President Obama holds call to gather ‘input’ on State of the Union
Discussion: Weasel Zippers and Prairie Weather
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Left to Obama: Time for constitutional amendment against Citizens United
Molly K. Hooper / The Hill:
House Republicans on retreat focus on picking their fights in election year
Discussion: The Politico
 Earlier Items: 
New York Times:
Etta James, Powerful Voice Behind ‘At Last,’ Dies at 73
Discussion: Washington Post, Guardian and News One
William Tucker / American Spectator:
Environmentalism and the Leisure Class
Discussion: The Hill and Power Line
A.Killough / CNN:
Colbert: Vote for Cain, he's on the ballot
Ben Fischer / bizjournals:
Supreme Court's Antonin Scalia sounds off at law gathering
Tjfang / CBS San Francisco:
Bankrupt Solyndra Caught Destroying Brand New Parts