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10:45 AM ET, July 19, 2012


 Top Items: 
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Poll: Romney tied with Obama in Virginia  —  A new survey shows Mitt Romney tied with President Barack Obama in the battleground state of Virginia, exciting news for a Republican challenger who has consistently trailed in recent polling of the state.  —  The survey, released Thursday …
New York Times:
Economic Fears Hurting Obama, Poll Indicates  —  Declining confidence in the nation's economic prospects appears to be the most powerful force influencing voters as the presidential election gears up, undercutting key areas of support for President Obama and helping give his Republican challenger …
Wall Street Journal:
Group Comes to Romney's Defense  —  Crossroads Ad for First Time Names the Candidate; GOP Backer Cites ‘Momentum’ of Obama Attacks  —  In the exchange of attack ads that is defining the presidential race, Mitt Romney has been hindered by a feature of campaign-finance law.
Brian Montopoli / CBS News:
Obama, Romney in dead heat in presidential race  —  CBS News Poll analysis by the CBS News Polling Unit: Sarah Dutton, Jennifer De Pinto, Fred Backus and Anthony Salvanto.  —  (CBS News) President Obama and Mitt Romney are effectively tied in the race for the presidency, according to a new CBS News/New York Times survey.
Fareed Zakaria / Washington Post:
What voters are really choosing in November
Discussion: The Glittering Eye and
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Obama lead in New Mexico declining
Alexander Burns / Politico:
Romney camp: ‘Not true’ he paid $0 in taxes
Frank Rich / New York Magazine:
Frank Rich on the National Circus: Mitt Can't Wait Out His Tax Storm  —  Mitt Romney's taxes, tax avoidance, and tax returns have become one of the central issues of this campaign.  A growing chorus of Republicans, among them Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and the editors of National Review, have called on Mitt to release more returns.
Bernie Becker / The Hill:
Democrats hit Mitt with a tax bill
Olympics Documents, Intro Described Romney As Bain CEO
Why won't Romney release more tax returns?
Discussion: Slate and Guardian
Tarini Partiand Scott Wong / Politico:
Dems look to keep heat on Romney over tax returns
Discussion: CNN, Riehl World View and ABCNEWS
Edward Rollins / Fox News:
Bachmann's former campaign chief — shame on you, Michele  —  I have been a practitioner of tough politics for many decades.  There is little that amazes me and even less that shocks me.  I have to say that Congresswoman Michele Bachmann's outrageous and false charges against a top aide …
Discussion: Politico and ThinkProgress
Nancy Cordes / CBS News:
Michelle Bachmann refuses to back down on claims about Huma Abedin  —  (CBS News) WASHINGTON - Former GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann and four other conservative members of Congress are charging that people with ties to Muslim extremists have infiltrated the federal government.
Discussion: Mondoweiss
Lisa Mascaro / Los Angeles Times:
McCain defends Clinton aide accused of Muslim Brotherhood ties
Discussion: The Agonist
Jonathan Karl / ABCNEWS:
DNC Regrets Offending Ann Romney, No More Horse Videos  —  It seemed like a good idea at the time, but now the Democratic National Committee is offering an apology of sorts to Ann Romney.  —  At issue is a DNC video featuring footage of Ann Romney's dancing show horse.
New York Times:
Suicide Bomber Is Blamed in Attack on Israeli Tourist Bus in Bulgaria  —  BURGAS, Bulgaria — The attack on a tour bus carrying Israeli vacationers outside the airport here was carried out by a suicide bomber using fake American identification, officials said on Thursday.
Associated Press:
Bulgaria says suicide attacker in baseball cap, sneakers, shorts attacked Israeli tourist bus
Discussion: Weasel Zippers, World and Jihad Watch
Suicide bomber blew up Bulgaria airport bus
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit and Jihad Watch
Kelly Ayotte's $120K legal headache  —  A bizarre but little-known lawsuit has caused headaches for freshman Sen. Kelly Ayotte and cost her at least $120,000 in legal fees just as her political stock rises and she's being mentioned as a potential running mate for Mitt Romney.
Discussion: Right Wing News
Trymaine Lee / The Huffington Post:
Zimmerman Apology: Trayvon Martin Shooter Tells Parents He's Sorry During ‘Hannity’ Interview … FOLLOW:  —  Video, Sean Hannity, Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman Apology, George Zimmerman Fox News, Zimmerman Apology, Zimmerman Fox News, Zimmerman Hannity, Zimmerman Trayvon Martin, Black Voices News
Discussion: Firedoglake
Alexander Burns / Politico:
Morgan Freeman gives $1 million to Obama super PAC  —  Actor Morgan Freeman is the newest seven-figure donor to the Obama super PAC Priorities USA Action, POLITICO has confirmed.  —  In a statement, Freeman lauded both the president's record and Priorities USA for its role in the 2012 campaign.
Bill Mears / CNN:
Scalia: Criticism of Supreme Court's health care ruling ‘offends me’  —  (CNN) — U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia downplayed reports of personal and ideological rifts stemming from the recent landmark health care reform ruling, telling CNN in an exclusive interview “it offends me” …
Discussion: Business Insider
Arthur Delaney / The Huffington Post:
Unemployment Insurance Not On Congressional Radar … REACT:  —  FOLLOW:  —  Unemployment, Unemployment, Unemployment Extension, Unemployment, Barack Obama , Barack Obama , Unemployment, Unemployment, Politics News  —  WASHINGTON — President Obama took a question on the campaign trail Monday …
Discussion: Crooks and Liars
Boston Herald:
Obama courts supporters in Central Texas, hauls in donations  —  AUSTIN, Texas — Barack Obama won't win Texas in November, and the state's GOP leaders spoke of him in hostile terms, but that didn't deter the president from courting supporters in Central Texas Tuesday, and collecting a few million dollars for his re-election.
Obama Fundraises With “Ruthless” Outsourcer
Discussion: Hot Air and Riehl World View
Alex Isenstadt / Politico:
Waxman has a race on his hands  —  Henry Waxman hasn't faced a tough campaign since Lyndon B. Johnson was president and the Beatles topped the Billboard charts.  —  This year, the powerful Los Angeles congressman believes, could be different.  —  Running in a drastically redrawn district …
Dana Blanton / Fox News:
Fox News poll: Voters pick Condi Rice as Romney running mate  —  Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is the top choice as Mitt Romney's vice presidential running mate among both American voters overall as well as among Republicans.  —  Thirty percent of voters would like to see Rice …
Jason Zengerle / GQ:   Wanna Be Veep? Okay, but This Is Going to Hurt
Boston Herald:
Mr. Smooth: Deval Patrick eyes road fixes for Michelle Obama  —  Deval Patrick's office personally asked town officials to dispatch road crews this week to fill potholes near his Berkshires mansion to pave the way for a smooth ride for first lady Michelle Obama when she hits the Bay State …
Mike Rosenberg / Mercury News:
Governor Brown signs California high-speed rail bill, calls critics ‘NIMBYs,’ ‘fearful men’  —  SAN FRANCISCO — With his most public cheerleading yet for California's bullet train, Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday signed the $8 billion bill to kick off high-speed rail construction and showed …
Discussion: The PJ Tatler and Hit & Run
Ta-Nehisi Coates / The Atlantic Online:
The Paranoid Style of Comic-Book Villainy  —  The apostle of white populism melts down: … But recovers just in time to tinker around with the tin-foil: … There's so much here happening here at once: delusion, get off my lawn, and narcissism, all wrapped in one.
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 More Items: 
Washington Post:
Mayor Gray should resign, most D.C. residents say
Discussion: WJLA-TV and Washington Free Beacon
Charles Murray / AEIdeas:
Un-American  —  President Obama's horrendous political gaffe …
Jeremy W. Peters / New York Times:
Jokes About Fox News Creep Into Obama's Comments as the Campaign Heats Up
Discussion: ABCNEWS, New York Magazine and TVNewser
Maggie Haberman / Politico:
DSCC raised $18.1M in 2nd quarter
Discussion: Influence Alley
Helene Cooper / New York Times:
Expecting Assad's Fall, Washington Plans for a New Syria
John Kass / Chicago Tribune:
Who else, Mr. President?  —  When President Barack Obama hauled off …
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
 Earlier Items: 
Brendan Sasso / The Hill:
Schumer urges Justice Department to drop Apple e-books suit
Discussion: Wall Street Journal
Greg Miller / Washington Post:
Families of Americans killed by drones file suit
Discussion: Jihad Watch, Weasel Zippers and Wired
Hans Nichols / Bloomberg:
Obama Campaign Detectives Hunt For Foreclosed Florida Voters
Discussion: Firedoglake and Political Capital
Dylan Byers / Politico:
Mack says Smith not a real journalist
Discussion: Tampa Bay Times and Naked Politics
Hubble Smith / Las Vegas Review-Journal:
Amonix closes North Las Vegas solar plant after 14 months, heavy federal subsidies