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1:35 PM ET, May 8, 2012


 Top Items: 
Margalit Fox / New York Times:
Maurice Sendak, Children's Author Who Upended Tradition, Dies at 83  —  Maurice Sendak, widely considered the most important children's book artist of the 20th century, who wrenched the picture book out of the safe, sanitized world of the nursery and plunged it into the dark …
Frank Newport / Gallup:
Half of Americans Support Legal Gay Marriage  —  Democrats and independents in favor; Republicans opposed  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Fifty percent of Americans believe same-sex marriages should be recognized by law as valid, with the same rights as traditional marriages — down slightly from 53% last year …
Mackenzie Weinger / Politico:
N.C. Gov: Gay marriage ban ‘hurts our brand’
New poll: 50% support legal same sex marriages
Discussion: Advocate and Reuters
Mollie Reilly / The Huffington Post:
Mitt Romney: 'I'll Take A Lot Of Credit' For Auto Industry Recovery … REACT:  —  FOLLOW:  —  Elections 2012, Mitt Romney, Auto Bailout , Auto Bailout , Barack Obama 2012 , Elections 2012, Barack Obama , Video, Politics News, Mitt Romney 2012, Mitt Romney Auto Bailout, Photo Galleries, Politics News
Associated Press:
Romney taking credit for auto industry success  —  EUCLID, Ohio (AP) — Campaigning in the backyard of America's auto industry, Mitt Romney re-ignited the bailout debate by suggesting he deserves “a lot of credit” for the recent successes of the nation's largest car companies.
Robert Costa / National Review:
Beyond Boston  —  Among politicos, Mitt Romney's presidential campaign is frequently referenced as “Boston.”  Romney's headquarters is housed there, and for much of the campaign season, the phrase has been used to describe the former governor's tight-knit group of senior advisers …
Ellen McGregor / WEWS-TV:
Mitt Romney visits Euclid, says manufacturing can come back to Ohio and explains how
Nicholas Confessore / New York Times:
Liberals Steer Outside Money to Grass-Roots Organizing  —  After months on the sidelines, major liberal donors including the financier George Soros are preparing to inject up to $100 million into independent groups to aid Democrats' chances this fall.  But instead of going head to head …
Matt Friedman / New Jersey Online:
Gov. Christie's approval rate highest ever amongst N.J. residents  —  TRENTON — Fifty-six percent of New Jersey voters approve of Gov. Chris Christie, according to a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind poll this morning.  —  That's Christie's highest ever rating in a Fairleigh Dickinson poll.
Discussion: Politico and Weekly Standard
Chris Christie's Approval Rating Peaks in N.J.
Discussion: Gothamist and GOP 12
Mark Leibovich / New York Times:
For a Blunt Biden, an Uneasy Supporting Role  —  WASHINGTON — As President Obama reviewed the comedy routine he was to deliver at the recent White House Correspondents' Association dinner, one joke struck him as too hot.  It suggested he might dump Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. from the ticket.
Jake Sherman / Politico:
Cantor distances himself from super PACs  —  Super PAC?  What super PAC?  —  House Majority Leader Eric Cantor sought to distance himself Tuesday from the YG Action Fund, a super PAC run by two of his former top aides, another example of the discomfort elected lawmakers have with the big money groups.
Discussion: Erick's blog
Russell Berman / The Hill:   Cantor distances himself from Lugar despite GOP ‘Young Guns’ support
Rasmussen Reports:
Three-Way Race: Romney 44%, Obama 39%, Ron Paul 13%  —  Texas Congressman Ron Paul appears more interested in influencing the direction of the Republican Party than in running as an independent presidential candidate.  But perhaps Democrats should be careful what they wish for …
Maggie Haberman / Politico:
Santorum endorses Romney: ‘All hands on deck’  —  A reader forwards this email Rick Santorum is sending to his list of supporters in which he announces he's endorsing Mitt Romney.  —  Santorum makes clear that he felt Romney had answered questions about his commitment to principles …
Associated Press:
Presidential Perks: Paying for Carter's postage, Bush's bills, and Clinton's rent  —  Spinners and Winners  —  You could call it welfare for former Presidents.  —  It's a little-noticed part of the federal budget: Each year U.S. taxpayers pick up the tab for the expenses of our former Presidents.
Discussion: Politico and The Daily Caller
Annie Lowrey / New York Times:
Hollande's Economic Policy May Better Suit the U.S.  —  WASHINGTON — With the victory of the Socialist candidate, François Hollande, in the French presidential election, the White House has lost one of its closest allies on the Continent, but perhaps gained one with economic policy beliefs more closely aligned with its own.
Discussion: Weekly Standard and Weasel Zippers
Eugene Robinson / Washington Post:
Austerity as a bridge to nowhere
Josh Lederman / Ballot Box:
RNC official: Romney still deciding position on immigration reform  —  The Republican National Committee attempted to walk back a potentially bruising botched response Tuesday after an official said Mitt Romney is still making up his mind on immigration.  —  “As a candidate, to my understanding …
Discussion: CNN,, Guardian and The Maddow Blog
Stephen C. Webster / The Raw Story:
Fox News contributor laments ‘mistake’ of letting women vote  —  Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson, a Fox News contributor, tea party activist and personal friend of Sean Hannity's said in a sermon recently published to YouTube that America's greatest mistake was allowing women the right to vote …
In surprise move, Netanyahu, Mofaz agree to form unity government, cancel early elections  —  PM, opposition leader reach dramatic late-night agreement to form national unity government, in which Kadima head Mofaz expected to be appointed deputy prime minister.  —  Get Haaretz on iPhone
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Top Obama donors witholding money over executive order punt  —  Some leading gay and progressive donors are so angry over President Obama's refusal to sign an executive order barring same sex discrimination by federal contractors that they are refusing to give any more money to the pro-Obama super PAC …
Liz McMillen / Brainstorm:
A Note to Readers  —  When we published Naomi Schaefer Riley's blog posting on Brainstorm last week ("The Most Persuasive Case for Eliminating Black Studies?  Just Read the Dissertations"), several thousand of you spoke out in outrage and disappointment that The Chronicle had published …
Sean Trende / Real Clear Politics:
Romney's Path Is Not Necessarily Narrow  —  Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post wrote last week that Mitt Romney's path to the presidency is awfully narrow, and that he has a ceiling of around 290 electoral votes.  Thus, “[w]hile Romney's team would absolutely take a 290-electoral-vote victory …
Discussion: GOP 12 and Weekly Standard
Natasha Singer / New York Times:
Bank of America Starts Mortgage Reduction Effort  —  Bank of America has started sending letters to thousands of homeowners in the United States, offering to forgive a portion of the principal balance on their mortgages by an average of $150,000 each.  —  The reduction for qualifying homeowners …
Discussion: Firedoglake and Althouse
Jennifer Gould Keil / New York Post:
Sheik turned away by Fifth Avenue co-op board — because of too many kids: sources  —  He's got the dough and the pedigree — just too many damn kids for the co-op board at one of Manhattan's toniest buildings.  —  Sheik Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani — prime minister …
Discussion: Althouse
David Rogers / Politico:
GOP: Shield DOD, cut poverty funds  —  Setting the stage for an emotional floor fight Thursday, House Republicans pushed ahead Monday evening with plans to protect increased defense spending without raising taxes, largely by cutting more from domestic programs, including aid to the poor.
Christian Heinze / GOP 12:
VIDEO: Sacha Baron Cohen's dictator likes Mitt Romney  —  Sacha Baron Cohen, who plays a dictator in his upcoming movie, dressed in character yesterday and told reporters at a press conference that he liked “Mitchell Romney.” … If Santorum were running, though, Cohen …
Clinton addresses ‘au naturale’ moment  —  (CNN) - Hillary Clinton laughed off the perpetual conversation over her appearance that landed in the spotlight once again Monday when a picture of her sporting glasses sans make-up made the rounds on the internet.  —  “I feel so relieved …
Biden: U.S. Was “The Problem” On Iran  —  Says within two years “my bet is Ahmedinijad is gone.”  —  Source:  —  Vice President Joe Biden offered a sharp defense of President Barack Obama's friendship to Israel and leadership in preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons in remarks to a Jewish group in Atlanta today.
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 More Items: 
Doug B. / Sentencing Law and Policy:
Fascinating discussion of Second Amendment in Tenth Circuit's affirmance of alien-in-possession conviction
Wall Street Journal:
Stephens: To the Class of 2012  —  Attention graduates …
Amy Chozick / New York Times:
Scandal Distracts Klein From His Education Goals at News Corp.
Discussion: Capital New York
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Tea Party sees gains in Senate
Discussion: New York Times and
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Obama up 7 in Ohio  —  Barack Obama continues to have the upper hand …
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
Hate-Filled Pastor Says Anti-Gay Amendment Would Protect Marriage ‘In The Garden Of Eden’
Discussion: Good As You
Adrian Blomfield / Telegraph:
Israel to revive razing of homes as form of punishment
 Earlier Items: 
How ‘Mad Men’ Landed The Beatles: All You Need Is Love (and $250,000)
Discussion: Rolling Stone and Media Decoder
Rolling Stone:
Is This the Most Boring Election Ever?
Discussion: Washington Monthly and Hit & Run
David Brooks / New York Times:
The Structural Revolution
Discussion: Ezra Klein and The Mahablog
Bernie Becker / The Hill:
Official: EU to move forward on transaction tax
Discussion: ABCNEWS
Wall Street Journal:
The KSM Trial Spectacle
David Cole / New York Review of Books:
No Accountability for Torture
Discussion: Firedoglake and Taylor Marsh