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5:40 PM ET, January 22, 2012

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Sean Trende / Real Clear Politics:
Three Takeaways From South Carolina  —  1) There is no good news buried in here for Mitt Romney.  None.  As of this writing, Mitt Romney is leading in three counties in South Carolina: Charleston, Beaufort (Hilton Head) and Richland (Columbia).  He lost fast-growing, coastal Horry County, home of Myrtle Beach, by 15 points.
RELATED:
Washington Examiner:
Why Gingrich won — Why Romney lost  —  COLUMBIA, SC — They won't say it publicly — they don't want to appear churlish or disrespectful on a night they took a serious beating — but it's no exaggeration to say that even after losing the South Carolina primary to Newt Gingrich …
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
Christie: Gingrich ‘embarrassed’ GOP  —  Gov. Chris Christie called Newt Gingrich an embarrassment to the Republican Party.  —  “I think Newt Gignrich has embarrassed the party, over time,” Christie (R), who endorsed Mitt Romney, said Sunday on NBC's Meet the Press.  “Governor Romney never has.”
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
Quick Thoughts on Tonight's Results  —  Tonight's results — a blowout win for Newt Gingrich — upend all the equations governing the GOP presidential primary.  So which variables can we still be relatively sure of?  —  Let me take a stab at one.  Newt Gingrich isn't going to be the GOP nominee.
Jeremy Herb / The Hill:
Romney to release tax returns on Tuesday, calls delay ‘a mistake’  —  Gov. Mitt Romney said Sunday he will release his tax returns on Tuesday as he tries to pivot from an issue that dragged him down in his South Carolina primary loss to Newt Gingrich.  —  Romney said he'll post his 2010 tax return …
Alexander Burns / The Politico:
Next stop: A brawl at the 2012 Florida primary
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Cameron Joseph / Ballot Box:
New Romney surrogate says Gingrich could cost GOP Congress
Justin Sink / Ballot Box:
Santorum: ‘No pressure’ to exit GOP race
Discussion: ABCNEWS and Outside the Beltway
Erick Erickson / Erick's blog:
Newt Gingrich Wins. What It Means.
Michael D. Shear / The Caucus:
Lessons From the South Carolina Exit Polls
Arizona Daily Star:
Giffords to step down from Congress  —  U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords will step down from Congress this week to focus on her recovery, her staff announced Sunday.  —  “I have more work to do on my recovery, so to do what is best for Arizona, I will step down this week,” Giffords said in a video message.
RELATED:
Gabrielle Giffords:
U.S. REP. GABRIELLE GIFFORDS WILL STEP DOWN FROM CONGRESS THIS WEEK  —  In a video message to her constituents, congresswoman says she will ‘do what is best for Arizona’ as she recovers from shooting a year ago  —  TUCSON - U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords will step down from Congress this week …
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Amy Bingham / ABCNEWS:
Rep. Gabrielle Giffords to Step Down from Congress  —  Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords will step down from the House this week and not seek re-election when her current term expires this year, she announced today.  —  Giffords has made a stunning recovery after being shot in the head …
Dan Nowicki / Arizona Republic:
Giffords stepping down from Congress  —  Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, the three-term Arizona Democrat who was shot in the head during a 2011 assassination attempt, announced Sunday that she will resign from Congress this week in order to focus on her continuing recovery.
Daniel Strauss / Ballot Box:
Rep. Giffords to step down from Congress to focus on recovery
Discussion: The Politico
CNN:
Gabrielle Giffords will resign to focus on her recovery
Discussion: American Spectator
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
An open letter to Republican leaders  —  Dear Govs. Haley Barbour, Mitch Daniels, John Kasich, Bobby Jindal; Sens. Jon Kyl, Marco Rubio and Jim DeMint; and Reps. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), and Mike Pence (R-Ind.):  —  You've each declined to run for the presidency or even endorse one of the final candidates.
USA Today:
Joe Paterno's long career  —  Penn State coaching legend Joe Paterno dies at age 85  —  Perhaps the most ironic element when looking at the way Joe Paterno lost his job as Penn State's football coach after 46 seasons lies in the fact that Paterno, as a young man, had his eyes set on law school.
RELATED:
Richard Goldstein / New York Times:
Joe Paterno, Longtime Penn State Coach, Dies at 85
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
Romney partially caves on tax returns  —  Watching Mitt Romney discuss his willingness to disclose his tax returns, it's been hard not to marvel at the rapid evolution.  It was only about a month ago when he was asked whether he'd release his tax returns, and Romney replied, “I doubt it.”
RELATED:
Michael D. Shear / The Caucus:
Romney to Release Tax Returns on Tuesday
Maureen Dowd / New York Times:
Showtime at the Apollo  —  FOR eight seconds, we saw the president we had craved for three years: cool, joyous, funny, connected.  —  “I, I'm so in love with you,” Barack Obama crooned to a thrilled crowd at a fund-raiser at the Apollo in Harlem on Thursday night, doing a seductive imitation as Al Green himself looked on.
David D. Kirkpatrick / New York Times:
Muslim Brotherhood Wins 47% of Egypt Assembly Seats  —  CAIRO — Egyptian authorities confirmed Saturday that a political coalition dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood, the 84-year-old group that virtually invented political Islam, had won about 47 percent of the seats in the first Parliament elected since the ouster of Hosni Mubarak.
RELATED:
Jasmine Coleman / Guardian:
Egypt election results show firm win for Islamists
Discussion: Truthdig and US Politics
 
 
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 More Items: 
Thomas L. Friedman / New York Times:
American Voters: Still Up for Grabs
Nancy Keenan / The Huffington Post:
2012: The Year We Put an End to the War on Women
Discussion: The Raw Story
Jeremy Herb / The Hill:
Boehner: ‘Pathetic’ if Obama State of the Union proposes ‘same old policies’
Ben Geman / The Hill:
CRS report: Congress can require Keystone oil pipeline approval
Discussion: Wake up America
 Earlier Items: 
Mark Steyn / National Review:
The Sinking of the West  —  It'll look more like the Costa Concordia than the Titanic.
Howard Fineman / The Huffington Post:
Republican Convention Has ‘50-50’ Chance Of Being Open: Former GOP Chair
Discussion: State of the Union
Mark Silva / Bloomberg:
Jeb Bush Refrains From Endorsing Anyone
Discussion: Reuters