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12:40 PM ET, March 13, 2012


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Obama Approval Rating Shows Serious Slip in New Poll  —  Despite improving job growth and an extended Republican primary fight dividing his would-be opponents, President Obama is heading into the general election season on treacherous political ground, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.
Stephanie Condon / CBS News:
Poll: Obama's approval rating sinks to new low  —  CBS News Poll analysis by the CBS News Polling Unit: Sarah Dutton, Jennifer De Pinto, Fred Backus and Anthony Salvanto.  —  (CBS News) President Obama's approval rating has hit the lowest level ever in CBS News polling, according to the latest CBS News/New York Times survey.
Steven Mufson / Washington Post:
Voters blame president for gas prices, experts say not so fast  —  How much does the president have to do with the price of gasoline?  —  A lot, say American voters.  According to oil experts and economists, not so much — at least in the short term.  —  Today's oil prices are the product …
Mickey Kaus / The Daily Caller:
Psst!  Obama lost the birth control mandate debate  —  Caught cocooning in public: Here's what the NYT's story on its latest poll told readers:  —  The poll found that women were split as to whether health insurance plans should cover the costs of birth control and whether employers …
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Oh my: Obama's approval rating hits new low in CBS poll
Stephen Dinan / Washington Times:
U.S. on pace for $1 trillion deficit
Jonathan Martin / Politico:
Alabama and Mississippi primaries: Mitt Romney could seal deal in Dixie  —  RICHLAND, Miss — In a topsy-turvy GOP primary, where the unexpected has been the norm, such a final plot twist may be altogether fitting: the Mormon Yankee who thinks cheese grits are a revelation effectively seals the nomination in Alabama and Mississippi.
Washington Post:
Poll: Voters want super PACs to be illegal
Quin Hillyer / American Spectator:   Drenched in Campaign Silliness
Sarah Palin / Facebook:
Let's Talk About the Real Issues, Mr. President  —  The far Left continues to believe American voters are not smart enough to grasp the diversionary tactics it employs to distract us from the issues our President just doesn't want to talk about - issues that affect us all every day and must be addressed.
Ben Shapiro / BREITBART.COM:
OBAMA TARGETS BREITBART, PALIN, HANNITY WITH HEAVILY-EDITED AD  —  The Obama re-election campaign has released an internet ad targeting Sarah Palin, Sean Hannity, and  Coming up short in the fundraising department and under fire for President Obama's longtime association …
Judd Legum / ThinkProgress:
BREAKING: Rush Limbaugh Syndicator Suspends National Ads For Two Weeks  — reports that Premiere Networks, which syndicates the Rush Limbaugh show, told its affiliate radio stations that they are suspending national advertising for two weeks.  Rush Limbaugh is normally provided …
Andrew Malcolm / Investor's Business Daily:
Online, liberals far less tolerant than normal people  —  Not exactly shocking news for those exposed to them for years, but the respected Pew Research Center has determined that political liberals are far less tolerant of opposing views than regular Americans.
Pew Internet:
Social networking sites and politics  — Home - > - Reports - > - Social networking sites and politics - > - Main findings - > - Social networking sites and politics  —  Main findings  —  Social networking sites have become places where political conversation, debate, and proselytizing occur, especially during campaign seasons.
Discussion: Mashable!
Rebekah Brooks among six arrested  —  Former Sun editor held by Operation Weeting detectives on suspicion of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice  —  Rebekah Brooks is among six people arrested by Scotland Yard detectives on suspicion of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice …
New York Times:
Britain to Join Obama in Discouraging a Strike on Iran
Sarah Lyall / New York Times:
Rebekah Brooks and Husband Are Arrested in Hacking Inquiry
Discussion: Company Town and Gawker
New York Times:
U.S. Officials Debate Speeding Afghan Pullout  —  WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is discussing whether to reduce American forces in Afghanistan by at least an additional 20,000 troops by 2013, reflecting a growing belief within the White House that the mission there has now reached the point of diminishing returns.
Afghan government team attacked, Taliban fume over massacre
Eryn Brown / Los Angeles Times:
All red meat is bad for you, new study says  —  A long-term study finds that eating any amount and any type increases the risk of premature death.  —  Eating any amount and any type of red meat increases the risk of premature death, a new study says.  (William Thomas Cain / Getty Images / March 12, 2012)
Richard Cohen / Washington Post:
Sarah Palin's foolishness ruined U.S. politics  —  At some point while watching HBO's absolutely smashing (and terrifying) movie “Game Change,” it occurred to me that Sarah Palin has ruined America.  The movie has been scalloped out of the book by the same name and focuses on Palin, rather than on the entire 2008 presidential campaign.
Discussion: Rumproast and Wonkette
Christian Hartsock / BREITBART.COM:
EXCLUSIVE: O'KEEFE VIDEO EXPOSES VOTER FRAUD-FRIENDLY POLICIES IN VERMONT  —  James O'Keefe's Project Veritas has released a new video exposing just how easy it is to commit voter fraud in Vermont.  —  The video, a sequel to O'Keefe's “Primary of the Living Dead” in New Hampshire …
Discussion: The Jawa Report
Matthew Cooper /
Poll Shows Public Supports Obama on Gas Prices  —  More Americans trust President Obama than congressional Republicans to make the right decisions to bring down the price of gasoline, according to a new poll, although neither side commands a majority.  —  What's more, as prices continue …
David Dayen / Firedoglake:
Foreclosure Fraud Settlement Docs (II): Giving Homes to Charity as a Penalty  —  Banks get credits for doing non-modification things they usually do (photo by wayneandwax)  —  Here's the second installment in the review of the foreclosure fraud settlement documents.
Discussion: naked capitalism
Josh Gerstein / Politico:
What if George W. Bush had done that?  —  President Barack Obama has forged a surprising consensus on opposite ends of the political spectrum: They wonder how on earth he gets away with it.  —  A series of recent moves — from aggressively filling his reelection war chest to green-lighting shoot …
Saul Loeb / National Post:
Dick Cheney cancels Toronto trip, says Canada is too dangerous  —  TORONTO — Former U.S. vice-president Dick Cheney has cancelled an April appearance in Toronto citing concerns Canada is too dangerous.  —  “He felt that in Canada the risk of violent protest was simply too high,” …
Frank Bruni / New York Times:
One-Way Wantonness  —  Hussy.  Harlot.  Hooker.  —  Floozy.  Strumpet.  Slut.  —  When attacking a woman by questioning her sexual mores, there's a smorgasbord of slurs, and you can take your rancid pick.  Help me out here: where are the comparable nouns for men?  What's a male slut?
Jenna Portnoy / New Jersey Online:
Gov. Christie: I have no regret about ‘idiot’ remark toward Navy SEAL  —  BORDENTOWN TOWNSHIP — Not only does Gov. Chris Christie not regret calling a Navy SEAL and one-time Democratic candidate for office an “idiot” at a town hall last week in Roebling, today he took the criticism further, labeling him a jerk, too.
Discussion: Gothamist
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Polling in Deep South Has Posed Challenges  —  The polls suggest a tight race in Alabama and Mississippi, which will hold their primaries on Tuesday.  Our polling-based forecasts show Newt Gingrich with a very small lead in Alabama and Mitt Romney with an equally small one in Mississippi.
Catherine Herridge / Fox News:
Muslim journalist defends surveillance by NYPD, says some Muslims ‘use religion as cover’  —  The New York Police Department has faced criticism for its surveillance of the Muslim community, but one prominent Muslim journalist defended the department in an interview with Fox News.
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 More Items: 
Daniel Gilbert / Wall Street Journal:
Texas Law Requiring Voter IDs Is Blocked
Discussion: protein wisdom
Charlie Spiering / Campaign 2012:
Biden hails middle class at wealthy fundraiser
Carolyn Butler / Washington Post:
Allergy season comes early this year because of the unusually mild winter
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Wall Street Journal:
Fed Fights Subpoena on Bernanke
VIDEO: Rep. Cliff Stearns Wants To Sell Off Our National Parks
Derek Thompson / The Atlantic Online:
Recovery 2020! We're Barely on Pace to Close the Jobs Gap This Decade
Ben Geman / The Hill:
Gas prices trigger Obama scramble
 Earlier Items: 
Sandra Fluke / CNN:
Slurs won't silence women
Discussion: Mediaite and The PJ Tatler
Alicia M. Cohn / The Hill:
Obama warns opponents against ‘using religion as a bludgeon in politics’
Discussion: Jammie Wearing Fools
Jonathan Weisman / New York Times:
G.O.P. Split Over a Bid to Revise Budget Deal
Rachel Leven / The Hill:
HHS weighs accepting men who have sex with men as blood donors
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Washington Post:
An alliance the world can count on
James Pethokoukis / The Enterprise Blog:
Surprise!  Obama has a secret plan to deal with a catastrophic U.S. debt crisis.  Here's what might be in it
Discussion: Hit & Run
Tim Carmody / Wired:
The Damning Backstory Behind ‘Homeless Hotspots’ at SXSW
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Specter says Obama ditched him after he helped pass health law