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2:30 PM ET, April 13, 2012


 Top Items: 
Jonathan Martinand Maggie Haberman / Politico:
The Draperizing of Mitt Romney  —  The Draperizing of Mitt Romney is under way.  —  He may not drink or cheat, and he lacks the fictional ad-maker's charisma, but Democrats, despite the potential perils of such a strategy, remain determined to paint Romney as a throwback to the “Mad Men” …
Jay Cost / Weekly Standard:
Morning Jay: Obama's Troubled Reelection Strategy  —  Karl Rove had a spot-on column in the Wall Street Journal yesterday.  He wrote, in part: … Exactly.  If I had to offer a brief summary of Obama's campaign strategy this year, it would be this:  —  Clearly, this is not an ideal strategy, for any candidate.
David Weigel / Slate:
The “War on Women” Is Over  —  The life cycle of a political talking point, from birth to adolescence to death.  —  A moment of silence, please, for a talking point that was taken too soon.  The “war on women” began its life in a February 2011 House speech about abortion.
Matt Stoller / naked capitalism:
Does the 2012 Presidential Election Matter?  —  Matt Stoller is a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute.  You can follow him on twitter at  —  If you picked up a newspaper in DC this week, it would have been hard to avoid noticing that a bizarre …
Alicia M. Cohn / The Hill:
Obama aides say Rosen shows president will take on friends  —  Senior Obama aides say President Obama's criticism of Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen's comments show he's willing to stand up to his friends, unlike Mitt Romney.  —  The argument from the aides is an effort to find a bright spot …
Matt K. Lewis / The Daily Caller:
The flap over Hillary Rosen's comments disparaging stay-at-home-moms …
Brian Montopoli / CBS News:
Hilary Rosen flap a “win in every regard” for GOP, says Nicolle Wallace
Discussion: ThinkProgress, Politico and Slate
Nicholas Confessore / New York Times:
In Cash Push, 2 Campaigns Likely to Reject Public Funds
New Jersey Online:
Newark Mayor Cory Booker taken to hospital after rescuing woman from house fire  —  NEWARK — Newark Mayor Cory Booker was taken to a hospital tonight for treatment of smoke inhalation he suffered trying to rescue his next-door neighbors from their burning house.
CBS News:
Newark Mayor Cory Booker: Race into home fire was a “come to Jesus moment”  —  PLAY CBS NEWS VIDEO  —  (CBS News) Newark Mayor Cory Booker called it his “come to Jesus moment” when he ran into a burning building to save a neighbor's life.  —  Booker arrived home last night to discover …
Jay Carney / White Blog:
President Obama and Vice President Biden's 2011 Tax Returns  —  Today, the President released his 2011 federal income and gift tax returns.  He and the First Lady filed their income tax returns jointly and reported adjusted gross income of $789,674.  About half of the first family's income …
Keith Koffler / White House Dossier:
Did Obama Pay a Lower Rate Than His Secretary?  —  President Obama paid a total federal tax rate in 2011 on adjusted income of $789,674 that may be lower than that of his secretary, even though she earned substantially less.  —  Obama has spent the past week touting the Buffett Rule …
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
TRENDING: Tax fight gets personal as Obama and Biden returns released
Richard Rubin / Bloomberg:
Top Earners Can Find Ways Around Buffett Rule
Discussion: ThinkProgress
New York Times:
Obamas and Bidens to Release Tax Returns
Discussion:, Economist and Daily Kos
Choe Sang-Hun / New York Times:
Rocket Failure Is Setback for North Korea's New Leader  —  SEOUL, South Korea — For the new North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, his government's failure to put a satellite into orbit on Friday was a $1 billion humiliation.  —  Mr. Kim wanted to mark his ascension to top political power …
Embarrassed by rocket crash, North Korea may try nuclear test
Washington Post:
N. Korean rocket breaks up on launch
Discussion: Gothamist and The Enterprise Blog
Melody Guyton Butts / Durham Herald-Sun:
Ailes lectures young journalists  —  CHAPEL HILL - Fox News chief Roger Ailes offered more than a few words of advice Thursday in a room filled mostly with young journalists, starting with a recommendation that elicited at least a few eye rolls: “I think you ought to change your major.”
Katherine Fung / The Huffington Post:
Roger Ailes: Soledad O'Brien Was ‘Named After A Prison’
Discussion: Mediaite, Poynter and Hullabaloo
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Rosen cancels her appearance on NBC's ‘Meet the Press’  —  Hilary Rosen, the Democratic consultant who created a political firestorm with her comments about Ann Romney, on Friday cancelled a planned appearance on “Meet the Press.” … The talkshow teased an appearance by Rosen …
Discussion: Politico and Mediaite
James E. McWilliams / New York Times:
The Myth of Sustainable Meat  —  THE industrial production of animal products is nasty business.  From mad cow, E. coli and salmonella to soil erosion, manure runoff and pink slime, factory farming is the epitome of a broken food system.  —  There have been various responses to these horrors …
Associated Press:
Vermont governor Peter Shumlin chased by 4 bears in backyard  —  MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin says he was chased and nearly caught by four bears that were raiding his birdfeeders.  —  Shumlin says he was in bed in his rented Montpelier home late Wednesday night when he heard …
Obama Campaign Claims Romney Would “Outlaw Abortion”  —  It's a stretch, based on a single remark in 2007, and accompanied by the false claim that Romney wants to shut down Planned Parenthood.  A silver bullet against the Republican — or Obama over-reaching to alarm female voters?
Discussion: Daily Kos
Dana Blanton / Fox News:
Fox News Poll: 56% Say Obama Tried to Intimidate Court on Health Care  —  A majority of American voters think President Obama's recent comments about the Supreme Court were an attempt to intimidate the justices as they decide the constitutionality of one his biggest accomplishments — the 2010 Affordable Care Act.
Geneva Sands / The Hill:
Florida Dems release ‘Sh** Allen West Says’ video after ‘communist’ remarks  —  The Florida Democratic Party released a video Friday titled “Sh** Allen West Says,” in the style of the viral YouTube meme, slamming the Florida congressman for his controversial comments.
Elizabeth Harrington / CNSNews:
Al Sharpton Equates Trayvon Martin Case With Jesus' Crucifixion  —  ( - “Inequities” in the criminal justice system go back to the time of Jesus, and protests stemming from the Trayvon Martin case - some of them led by the Rev. Al Sharpton — were intended to right some of those wrongs, Sharpton said.
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 More Items: 
Dave Schuler / The Glittering Eye:
Does it really matter who is elected to the presidency in November?
Discussion: Ezra Klein and Outside the Beltway
Meredith Shiner / Roll Call:
In Pivot to Messaging, Ron Johnson Looks to Purge Staff
Discussion: RedState and Washington Post
Steve Kolowich / Inside Higher Ed:
Large study shows little difference between human and robot essay graders
Discussion: The Glittering Eye
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Edwards trial witness list includes daughter, mistress
Discussion: The Daily Caller
CBS Miami:
Exclusive: Rubio Weighs In On Contraceptive Controversy
Discussion: ABCNEWS, GOP 12, and
Robert Gehrke / Salt Lake Tribune:
Rep. Matheson has a tough fight ahead in bid for re-election
Discussion: Ballot Box and Hotline On Call
 Earlier Items: 
Jeralyn / TalkLeft:
Stand Your Ground and Self Defense
Discussion: JustOneMinute and Althouse
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Cannibalize the Future  —  One general rule of modern politics …
Discussion: The Mahablog
Mark Tapscott / Campaign 2012:
What's Color of Change hiding about itself?
Discussion: blogs and ALEC
Andrew Restuccia / The Hill:
House GOP hopes to revive Keystone fight with tie to highway bill extension