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4:45 PM ET, August 21, 2012


 Top Items: 
Evan McMorris-Santoro / Talking Points Memo:
Rep. Steve King: I've Never Heard Of A Girl Getting Pregnant From Statutory Rape Or Incest  —  Rep. Steve King, one of the most staunchly conservative members of the House, was one of the few Republicans who did not strongly condemn Rep. Todd Akin Monday for his remarks regarding pregnancy and rape.
Heather Leigh / KMEG-TV:
Rep. Steve King on the Campaign Trail  —  (LE MARS/SIOUX CENTER, IA) Representative Steve King, who's running for re-election in Iowa's 4th Congressional District, made a few campaign stops today.  —  We caught up with him in Le Mars and Sioux Center, where he spoke about gun control …
First on CNN: GOP prepares tough anti-abortion platform  —  Tampa, Florida (CNN) - The Republican Party is once again set to enshrine into its official platform support for “a human life amendment” to the Constitution that would outlaw abortion without making explicit exemptions for rape or incest …
Katie Glueck / Politico:
Kirk Cameron defends Todd Akin  —  TV star-turned-conservative activist Kirk Cameron came to the defense of embattled GOP Senate hopeful Todd Akin Tuesday, saying that the Missouri congressman's controversial comments about “legitimate rape” came in the context of his opposition to abortion.
Republican Party Makes No Abortion Exception For Rape, Incest
Discussion: Washington Post and Taylor Marsh
Dennis Prager /
The Pro-Life Movement Must Disavow Akin Comment
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Akin 44 McCaskill 43  —  Missouri voters strongly disagree with the comments Todd Akin made about abortion over the weekend, but it hasn't moved the numbers a whole lot in the Senate race.  Akin leads Claire McCaskill by a single point, 44-43.  That's basically identical to our last poll …
Alexander Burns / Politico:
Exclusive: Akin ad asks for ‘forgiveness’ (Updated)  —  Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin has recorded a television ad asking for “forgiveness” from the voters of his state and acknowledging that he used “the wrong words in the wrong way” when he suggested last weekend that rape rarely leads to pregnancy.
Paul Mirengoff / Power Line:
Tainted poll by Dem outfit offers Akin incentive not to quit  —  A PPP poll, taken after Todd Akin's infamous comment about rape, puts him in a virtual tie with Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill in the Missouri Senate race.  According to that poll, Akin leads McCaskill by 44-43.
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
Oh I Think He May Be Staying  —  Snap PPP Poll shows the Missouri Senate race essentially unchanged: Akin over McCaskill 44-43.  Little changed from previous poll.  —  Late Update: Surprised?  I can't say I am.  And you shouldn't be either.  Don't underestimate partisan division and affiliation …
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
NRSC sends out list of conservative pundits calling for Akin to step down  —  The National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee on Tuesday released a list of conservative columnists and pundits around the country calling for Rep. Todd Akin (R-Mo.) to step down.
Mark Halperin / The Page:
Missouri GOP Godfathers Act As One to Force Akin Out
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
The Morning Plum: No, Romney and Ryan don't really want a ‘great debate’
James Rainey / Los Angeles Times:
Huckabee to Akin: ‘Horrible’ rapes created some extraordinary people
Alexandra Jaffe / Ballot Box:
Akin vows to stay in race as GOP amps up pressure on him
Discussion: and Booman Tribune
Ron Paul / CNN:
Ron Paul delegates set to strike deal with RNC  —  Tampa, Florida (CNN) - A stand off between Ron Paul supporters and the Republican National Committee over convention delegates appears to be easing, and both sides are close to announcing a deal that could help avoid a potentially embarrassing moment …
Justin Sink / The Hill:
RNC ad: Obama ‘ignores the truth’ over ‘felon’ comment
Discussion: The Rightnewz
RNC Chair: Bring On Biden  —  Priebus brings the “brass knuckles.”  Secret Service agents overheard discussing Biden's trip on a flight to Tampa.  —  Image by Steven Mantilla / AP  —  TAMPA, Florida — Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said the GOP will respond tenfold …
Discussion: Hot Air
Rachel Weiner / Election 2012:   Joe Biden will be in Tampa during RNC
Justin Sink / The Hill:   Vice President Biden to be in Tampa during Republican National Convention
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Romney slightly ahead in Wisconsin  —  PPP's first Wisconsin poll since Mitt Romney announced Paul Ryan as his running mate finds him taking a small lead over Barack Obama in the state, 48-47.  That represents a 7 point shift from PPP's last look at the state in early July, which found Obama ahead 50-44.
New Michigan Poll has Romney ahead of Obama  —  WJBK Fox 2 -  —  Foster McCollum White Baydoun (FMW)B, a national public opinion polling and voter analytics consulting firm based in Michigan and representing the combined resources of Foster McCollum White & Associates (Troy, Michigan) …
Discussion: Power Line, GOP 12 and The Daily Caller
GOP Votes Down Civil Unions In Platform  —  A social conservative hard line in Tampa.  —  TAMPA, Florida — The GOP platform committee overwhelmingly voted down an effort to include recognitions of civil unions in the party's manifesto.  —  The measure, offered by Rhode Island delegate Barbara Fenton …
Discussion: Connecting.the.Dots
Andrew Grossman / Washington Wire:   GOP Panel Rejects Plank on Mortgage-Interest Deductions
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
Ryan: I've more foreign policy experience than Obama had in 2008  —  Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), the Romney campaign's vice-presidential candidate, argued that he has more foreign-policy experience than President Obama did when he ran for president.  —  “Well, most of the traveling I've done throughout …
Fred Barnes / Wall Street Journal:
How Ryan Recasts the Race
Ta-Nehisi Coates / The Atlantic Online:
In Praise of Fact-Checkers  —  In the wake of Niall Ferguson's dishonesty, Dylan Byers decided to contact Newsweek to see what controls the magazine had in place to prevent authors from lying to them.  As it turns out, none: … More accurately, Newsweek has unwittingly outsourced its fact-checking to the web.
Ben Chu / The Independent:
Spending departments braced for further budget cuts after figures reveal Government borrowed £3 billion more than expected last month  —  Public sector finances suffered from a 20 per cent fall in corporation tax receipts from business while public spending rose by 5 per cent, fuelled by higher benefit payments.
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Karoli / Crooks and Liars:
Mitt Romney: Honor Students Do It All Themselves  —  In his town hall appearance in New Hampshire this morning, Mitt Romney celebrated the individual, who clearly needs no support system to succeed in RepublicanLand.  —  Speaking to a crowd of FreedomWorks devotees and other New Hampshire residents, he said this:
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 More Items: 
Pew Research Center for the People and the Press:
Medicare Voucher Plan Remains Unpopular
Discussion: CNN and The Hinterland Gazette
Chad Griffin / Washington Post:
Calling out hate when we see it  —  Chad Griffin is president of Human Rights Campaign.
USA Today:
Obama campaign's spending outpaces its fundraising
Discussion: Washington Examiner
Still Getting the Housing Bubble Wrong
Discussion: Mother Jones
Ben Geman / The Hill:
Court strikes down major pollution rule
Discussion: Hot Air and RedState
 Earlier Items: 
Patrick Gavin / Politico:
Hugh Hefner: Gay rights under ‘assault’
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Elliott Abrams / Weekly Standard:
Time to Authorize Use of Force Against Iran
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Tom Shoop / Government Executive:
Best Beer-Related FOIA Ever
Discussion: Politico and USA Today
Ed Kilgore / Washington Monthly:
Here's Your Beltway Pundit Constituency