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3:35 PM ET, September 12, 2012


 Top Items: 
Foreign Policy Hands Voice Disbelief At Romney Cairo Statement  —  “Bungle... utter disaster...not ready for prime time... not presidential... Lehman moment.”  And that's just the Republicans.  —  Image by Jim Young / Reuters  —  Mitt Romney's sharply-worded attack on President Obama …
New York Times:
Deadly Embassy Assault May Have Been Planned, U.S. Suspects  —  WASHINGTON —The Obama administration suspects that the fiery attack in Libya that killed the American ambassador and three other diplomats may have been planned rather than a spontaneous mob getting out of control, American officials said Wednesday.
FIRST ON CNN: Romney camp tries to manage fallout from Libya response  —  De Pere, Wisconsin (CNN) - Facing criticism for its aggressive and politically-charged response to Tuesday's violent attacks on the American embassies in Egypt and Libya, Mitt Romney's presidential campaign …
Byron Tau / Politico:
White House disavows Cairo apology  —  The White House is disavowing a statement from its own Cairo embassy that apologized for anti-Muslim activity in the United States.  —  “The statement by Embassy Cairo was not cleared by Washington and does not reflect the views of the United States government …
U.S. ambassador to Libya killed in Benghazi attack  —  (Reuters) - The U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other embassy staff were killed in a rocket attack on their car, a Libyan official said, as they were rushed from a consular building stormed by militants denouncing a U.S.-made film insulting the Prophet Mohammad.
William Kristol / Weekly Standard:
Romney Is Right  —  One can question the timing and tone of Mitt Romney's statement last night.  One can note he wasn't as fluent and clear as he might have been at his press conference this morning.  Still, the fact remains that the events of September 11, 2012, represent a big moment for the country.
First Read:
First Thoughts: Over the top  —  Romney issues over-the-top attack on embassy attacks... And his statement looks worse and worse as new information comes out, including the death of the U.S. ambassador to Libya... Romney camp stands by its attack saying embassy statement came after the u nrest began …
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
When You Learn They're Not Ready  —  Some moments show you when a candidate is ready or not to become President of the United States.  I suspect last night will become one of those moments for Mitt Romney.  The verdict will not be positive.  —  As I noted last night …
Daniel Foster / National Review:
Romney's Awkward Spot  —  The sanctity of ambassadors and other diplomats is in the proverbial article one, section one of international law, and your ability to do it is as good a proxy as there is for whether you are a real country or a barbarian rabble.  The murder of Ambassador Christopher Stevens …
Romney Defends Premature Libya Criticism  —  Families are in mourning, and the diplomatic corps is dealing with the tragedy of four Americans being killed in the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.  But with 55 days until the election, everything becomes grist for the political mill …
William A. Jacobson / Le·gal In·sur·rec· tion:
Dead Ambassador dragged through streets, MSM furious at Romney criticism of Obama  —  If there ever were a doubt, no matter how small, that the mainstream media is deeply in bed with the Obama campaign, the reaction to the killing of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya and several other Americans should put such doubt to rest.
Jim Hoft / The Gateway Pundit:
ISLAMISTS DRAG DEAD BODY OF US AMBASSADOR THROUGH THE STREETS OF BENGHAZI!  (Updated) ...Another Photo!  —  Islamists dragged the dead body of US Ambassador Christopher Stevens from the embassy after he was murdered last night.  —  The radical Islamists attacked the embassy with rocket propelled grenades and machine gun fire.
Katrina Trinko / National Review:
The Insane MSM Questions Romney Faced at Presser
Discussion: Weasel Zippers and Mediaite
Howard Kurtz / The Daily Beast:
Romney's Assault Draws Fire
Jennifer Rubin / Washington Post:
Conservatives rally on embassy attacks
Washington Post:
U.S. ambassador to Libya, 3 other Americans killed in Benghazi
Steve Kornacki / Salon:
Mitt's shameful Libya statement
Scott Wong / Politico:
Hill GOP leaves Romney out on limb on Libya
Discussion: ABCNEWS and CNN
Noonan: Romney not helping himself
Discussion: The Raw Story and The Maddow Blog
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:   His True Colors  —  As noted, we have two simultaneous crises washing …
Nic Robertson / CNN:   Pro-al Qaeda group seen behind deadly Benghazi attack
Ed O'Keefe / Washington Post:
GOP leaders less critical than Mitt Romney in response to Libya attack
Julian Pecquet / The Hill:
Obama condemns attack as Romney criticizes US response
Discussion: CNN, ABCNEWS, Reuters, Pat Dollard and The Hill
Mark Finkelstein / blogs:
Mike Barnicle Suggests Prosecuting Pastor Terry Jones In American Ambassador's Death
Maggie Haberman / Politico:
Romney condemns ‘disgraceful’ Obama response on Mideast violence (Updated)
Colleen McCain Nelson / Wall Street Journal:
Romney Slams Obama Over Embassy Attacks
Discussion: World Now and Polling Matters
Spencer Ackerman / Wired:   Marines Head to Libya After Mob Kills Ambassador
Jeffrey Goldberg / The Atlantic Online:
Muhammad Film Consultant: ‘Sam Bacile’ is Not Israeli, and Not a Real Name  —  Revelations about the alleged producer of the now-infamous trailer for “The Innocence of Muslims.”  —  Actors portray the Prophet Mohammed and other historial figures in the controversial film, Innocence of Muslims.
UPenn professor Anthea Butler calls for imprisonment of filmmaker Sam Bacile; Update: Butler locks her Twitter account … Anthea Butler is an Associate Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.  The title of her most recent book, The Gospel According to Sarah …
Discussion: Pat Dollard
The Lede:
Obscure Film Mocking Muslim Prophet Sparks Anti-U.S. Protests in Egypt and Libya
David D. Kirkpatrick / New York Times:
Origins of Provocative Video Are Shrouded
Discussion: Guardian and Balloon Juice
Kevin Robillard / Politico:
Sarah Palin to Mitt Romney: Make attacks ‘personal’  —  Sarah Palin says Mitt Romney's presidential campaign should be “severely aggressive” in attacking President Barack Obama as “incompetent” and a “socialist.”  —  Fox News's Bill O'Reilly asked the former Alaska governor on Tuesday …
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Rebecca Schoenkopf / Wonkette:   Sarah Palin Wishes Barack Obama Had A Bigger Penis
U.S. Census Bureau News:
Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2011  —  The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that in 2011, median household income declined, the poverty rate was not statistically different from the previous year and the percentage of people without health insurance coverage decreased.
Sam Baker / The Hill:
Number of uninsured falls by 1.4 million
Discussion: Politico
Charles Mahtesian / Politico:
Gary Johnson on ballot in 47 states  —  The Libertarian Party reports that Gary Johnson will be on the ballot in at least 47 states, plus the District of Columbia.  —  The party is involved in litigation to get him on the ballot in the three remaining states, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Michigan …
Discussion: Outside the Beltway and Hit & Run
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 More Items: 
Conor Friedersdorf / The Atlantic Online:
How Selective Outrage Helps the Right Avoid Debating Entitlements
Discussion: The Daily Beast
Kevin Cirilli / Politico:
Goodell discusses NFL, gay marriage
Discussion: Washington Post
The Pay of Chicago School Teachers and Selected Others
Discussion: Economix
Garrett Epps / The Atlantic Online:
Is Antonin Scalia Still Relevant?
 Earlier Items: 
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
Reason To Fear  —  See below for my quick take on the dynamics …
Discussion: Balloon Juice
Nicole Flatow / ThinkProgress:
Decision Upholding Pennsylvania Voter ID Law Relied On 1869 Case Warning Of ‘Rogues,’ ‘Strumpets,’ and ‘Wandering Arabs’
Associated Press: