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10:25 PM ET, February 23, 2012


 Top Items: 
Aaron Blake / Washington Post:
Specter scoffs at Santorum's endorsement claim  —  Former Pennsylvania senator Arlen Specter said Thursday that Rick Santorum got his facts wrong when he said that he endorsed Specter only after securing a promise that Specter would support GOP Supreme Court nominees.
Zeke Miller / Politics:
Romney Goes In For The Kill On Santorum  —  “He said he was taking one for the team — I wonder which team he was taking it for.”  —  (Getty Images / Ethan Miller)  —  PHOENIX, Arizona—Mitt Romney stepped up his attacks on Rick Santorum after the former Pennsylvania senator's stumbles …
Discussion: Daily Kos
Democrats: Is Rick Santorum for real?
Discussion: CNN and Political Insider
Rick Santorum / CNN:
Romney: ‘I wonder which team Santorum was taking it for’
Molinari to join Google
Gene J. Puskar / ABCNEWS:
Arlen Specter: ‘Leave Me Out of It’
McKay Coppins / BuzzFeed:
Exclusive: Marco Rubio's Mormon Roots  —  As a child, he was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Ticket balancing is a great tradition, and this could affect Romney's Vice Presidential calculation.  —  Do Rubio's Mormon roots complicate the Republican's electable dream ticket?
Karoli / Crooks and Liars:
Marco Rubio is Sort of Mormon
Marc Caputo / Naked Politics:
Three things you didn't know about Marco Rubio
Jim R. Bounds / ABCNEWS:
Rielle Hunter Settles John Edwards Sex Tape Suit  —  The long-running court battle over a sexually explicit videotape featuring former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards and his mistress, Rielle Hunter, has been settled out of court today and all copies of the tape will be destroyed, ABC News has learned.
Discussion: The Raw Story and Sister Toldjah
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
John Edwards sex tape suit settled
Discussion: CNN
Joel Gehrke / Campaign 2012:
Obama: Use ‘algae’ as substitute for oil  —  President Obama admitted today that he does not have a “silver bullet” solution for skyrocketing gas prices, but he proposed alternative energy sources such as “a plant-like substance, algae” as a way of cutting dependence on oil by 17 percent.
Mark Landler / New York Times:
As Gas Prices Surge, Obama Defends His Energy Policy
Discussion: Wizbang
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
Female Witness Hits Back At Issa: 'I'm A Woman Who Uses Contraception, That Makes Me Qualified' To Testify  —  Democrats on the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee held a special hearing Thursday morning in response to the GOP's decision to prevent women from testifying in support …
Discussion: and The Raw Story
Sam Baker / The Hill:
Pelosi hits GOP at contraception hearing  —  House Democrats kept pressing their case on contraception Thursday, using a hearing on the issue to hammer the GOP and frame the debate around women's health.  —  Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) organized the hearing after an Oversight Committee panel …
Dave Stopera / BuzzFeed:
Jason Alexander Responds To Mitt Romney's George Costanza Misquote  —  Ryan Alexander Jenkins [Second Update] Is a Person of Interest to the Police!  Megan Wants A Millionaire contestant Ryan Alexander Jenkins is being sought for questioning about the murder of Jasmine Fiore.
Scott Lamb / BuzzFeed:
Romney Misquotes George Costanza  —  In his opening remarks at the Arizona debate, Mitt Romney stepped on his own applause and tried to throw in a Seinfeld reference for cover.  Unfortunately, he got the quote and the speaker wrong.  —  Source:  —  Romney, tonight at the Arizona debate (one he's used before:
Detroit Free Press:
Poll graphic: Who would you vote for in Republican primary?  |  Poll graphic: What do you think of Romney, Santorum TV ads?  |  Poll graphic: How satisfied are you with the choices?  —  After jumping out to an improbable lead in Michigan a week ago following a sweep in three western states …
Jim Geraghty / National Review:
New York Times Columnist Mocks Romney's ‘Magic Underwear’  —  I hope you're proud.  —  Mr. Blow may attempt to delete that Tweet, but it can, for now, be found here.  Of course, this is the Internet.  Nothing ever goes away completely.  —  One of your columnists responds to a comment he does not like …
Annie Linskey / Baltimore Sun:
Maryland Senate passes gay marriage bill  —  O'Malley will sign, but voters likely will have the last say  —  The Maryland Senate approved a bill to legalize same-sex marriage Thursday night, sending the Civil Marriage Protection Act to Gov. Martin O'Malley for his signature.
Discussion:, Daily Kos and Shakesville
Aaron C. Davis / Washington Post:
Same-sex marriage bill approved by Maryland Senate
Betsy Rothstein / FishbowlDC:
Females on Campaign Trail Go For Sexpot Look  —  Forget about SexyTwitPics.  Washington has its own crop of would-be sexy females on the loose.  And an unusual trend is developing among campaign and White House reporters of the XX persuasion.  They're using provocative …
Evan McMorris-Santoro /
TPM2012  —  GOP Rep: I'd Have To Personally Kill Some Senators To Get The Ryan Budget Passed (AUDIO)  —  Rep. John Sullivan (R-OK) sent TPM a public apology Thursday after we obtained audio of the five-term Republican telling constituents at a town hall this week that he'd have to personally shoot members …
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
Obama tells Univision he'll be in White House ‘another five years’  —  President Obama declared Monday that his presidency “is not over” and that he'll be occupying the White House for another five years.  —  In an interview with Univision, a seemingly confident Obama said he'll …
Cameron Joseph / Ballot Box:
Pro-Romney group's new ad says he saved a teen girl  —  Restore Our Future, the super-PAC support backing Mitt Romney, is out with a personal new ad featuring one of Romney's former business partners crediting him for saving his teenage daughter after she disappeared.
Discussion: CNN
Peter H. Stone / The Huffington Post:
Top fundraiser for Romney super PAC gets a $1.9 million payday
Discussion: Los Angeles Times
Mj Lee / Politico:
Allen West fills Hummer, blames Obama  —  Rep. Allen West says he is not happy that he had to spend $70 this week to fill up the gas tank of his Hummer, and he's directing his anger at President Barack Obama.  —  “People have asked me before is there any area where I could praise President Obama?
Discussion: BuzzFeed and The Maddow Blog
Laura Bassett / The Huffington Post:
Susan G. Komen Hires Consulting Firm To Assess Damage To Reputation … Komen Planned Parenthood , Politics News  —  After Susan G. Komen for the Cure's controversial decision several weeks ago to cut funding to Planned Parenthood, and the subsequent reversal of that decision …
Discussion: Firedoglake
Amanda Peterson Beadle / ThinkProgress:
Right-Wing Media Group Pledges To Strip Birth Control Out Of Health Plan After Providing It For Years  —  Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) has offered an amendment that would allow employers to deny coverage of health services to their employees on the basis of their personal moral objections.
Discussion: Hullabaloo and The Jane Dough
Dave Swindle / The PJ Tatler:
What Do You Become When You Worship Government?  —  Ben Shapiro presents a spot-on analysis of the progressive political cult in a video titled “Why the Obama Left Worships Government,”  —  Click here to view the embedded video.  —  Ben: … The act of worshipping any god or idol always yields …
Discussion: Moonbattery
Steven Kurutz / New York Times:
The Freedom, and Perils, of Living Alone  —  IF there is any doubt that we're living in the age of the individual, a look at the housing data confirms it.  For millenniums, people have huddled together, in caves, in mud huts, in split-levels and Cape Cods.  But these days, 1 …
Discussion: Althouse, Gawker and The Awl
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
TX GOP Senate Candidate Craig James Claims That Being Gay Is A Choice That Will Be Punished By God  —  Texas Republican senate candidates Craig James, a former NFL player, and Ted Cruz went after former Dallas mayor Tom Leppert (R) for marching in a gay pride parade during a debate yesterday …
Leslie Kaufman / New York Times:
Mutated Trout Raise New Concerns Near Mine Sites  —  It was the two-headed baby trout that got everyone's attention.  —  Photographs of variously mutated brown trout were relegated to an appendix of a scientific study commissioned by the J. R. Simplot Company, whose mining operations have polluted nearby creeks in southern Idaho.
Discussion: Lawyers, Guns & Money and BuzzFeed
American Atheists / Opposing Views:
Muslim Admits to Attacking Atheist; Muslim Judge Dismisses Case  —  The Pennsylvania State Director of American Atheists, Inc., Mr. Ernest Perce V., was assaulted by a Muslim while participating in a Halloween parade.  Along with a Zombie Pope, Ernest was costumed as Zombie Muhammad.
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 More Items: 
Darleene / CBS Los Angeles:
Ninth-Largest Yacht In The World Spotted Near Venice
Discussion: BuzzFeed and L.A. NOW
Noel Sheppard / blogs:
Chris Christie Smacks Down WaPo's Capehart: 'I'm Not Going to be Cross-Examined By You'
Discussion: Power Line and Washington Post
Bill Gates / New York Times:
Shame Is Not the Solution  —  LAST week, the New York State Court …
Discussion: Hit & Run, Dana Goldstein and Eduwonk
Richmond Times-Dispatch:
State Senate scuttles ‘personhood’ bill
Nando Di Fino / Mediaite:
Eric Bolling Sings “The Gasoline Blues” On This Morning's Fox & Friends
Discussion: Booman Tribune
Lisa Schencker / Salt Lake Tribune:
Utah House passes bill to allow schools to skip sex ed
Discussion: Daily Kos and Shakesville
Jake Tapper / ABCNEWS:
Leaker of Stimulus Memo Uncovered?
Discussion: Brad DeLong
 Earlier Items: 
Ted Nesi / Blogs:
Cicilline, Chafee approval ratings now worse than Nixon in 1974
James Kwak / The Atlantic Online:
Mitt Romney's Tax Plan Is a Mathematical Disaster
Ben Smith / Politico:
A secret history of the 2008 campaign
Discussion: Don Surber and Sky Dancing
Rob Koebel / Local:
Rep. Joel Kleefisch allegedly caught voting for absent member
Discussion: Crooks and Liars
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Huntsman calls for third party, says GOP '12 field lacks big ideas
James Taranto / Wall Street Journal:
Unplanned Parenthood  —  Illegitimacy and the liberal elite.