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12:05 PM ET, September 19, 2012


 Top Items: 
James Taranto / Peggy Noonan's Blog:
Time for an Intervention  —  What should Mitt Romney do now?  He should peer deep into the abyss.  He should look straight into the heart of darkness where lies a Republican defeat in a year the Republican presidential candidate almost couldn't lose.  He should imagine what it will mean for the country …
Michael Barbaro / The Caucus:
A Mood of Gloom Afflicts the Romney Campaign  —  SALT LAKE CITY - Mitt Romney's traveling press secretary walked to the back of the candidate's plane midflight on Tuesday and teasingly asked a pair of journalists in an exit row if they were “willing and able to assist in case of an emergency.”
Michael Falcone / ABCNEWS:
Romney Tapes Give Way To The Not-So-Calm After The Storm (The Note)  —  NOTABLES:  — ROMNEY TAPES GET THE SUPER PAC TREATMENT: That didn't take long.  The pro-Obama super PAC, Priorities USA Action, is quick out of the starting gate this morning with a new television ad featuring footage …
Mitt Romney / USA Today:
I'll deliver recovery, not dependency  —  Since our founding, America has promoted personal responsibility, the dignity of work and the value of education.  Those values made our nation the hope of the earth and our economy the envy of the world.  —  Efforts that promote hard work …
William A. Jacobson / Le·gal In·sur·rec· tion:
Critical audio gap in “complete” Romney tape released by Mother Jones (Update - Corn responds, 1-2 minutes missing)  —  David Corn of Mother Jones released the “complete” audio and video of the secretly recorded Mitt Romney speech at a private fundraiser.  —  Yet the complete audio and video is not complete.
Mitt Romney for President of the United States …:
MEMORANDUM  —  Location  —  To: Interested Parties  —  Re: Two Visions for America  —  48 days remain until Election Day.  As the choice voters face comes into greater focus, the different visions that Mitt Romney and Barack Obama have for America are becoming more sharply defined.
Benny Johnson /
France to close embassies in fear of cartoon backlash  —  France announced Wednesday it will close 20 embassies across the Muslim world on Friday after French weekly Charlie Hebdo published cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed naked, amid growing unrest over an anti-Islamic film that has left dozens dead.
Nicola Clark / New York Times:
French Magazine Runs Cartoons That Mock Muhammad
French Weekly Publishes Muhammad Cartoons
Discussion: CNN, BuzzFeed and The Daily Beast
Susan Page / USA Today:
Poll: In 2-point presidential race, Romney trips over 47%  —  The good news for Republican challenger Mitt Romney: After three rocky weeks, he remains within striking distance of President Obama in the battleground states that matter most.  The bad news: His latest misstep could upend that.
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Obama 48%, Romney 46% in Swing States
Christian Heinze / GOP 12:
AP: Obama 47% Romney 46%
Quinnipiac University:
Obama Hits 50% In Wisconsin, Virginia; Colorado Is Close, Quinnipiac University/New York Times/CBS News Swing State Poll Finds  —  Watch Video: Assistant Director Tim Malloy discusses poll results  —  Clip Information and Download:  —  FLV File - For Website (1920x1080 / 189.1MB)
Katie Pavlich /
CNBC Poll: 75% Agree With Romney's 47% Comments  —  UPDATE: The number of people who have taken the CNBC poll has doubled, bringing those who agree with Romney's comments to 76 percent.  —  As the faux outrage over Mitt Romney's “47%” comments continue to barrel through the airwaves of the old media …
Discussion: Hit & Run, UrbanGrounds and Nice Deb
The Onion:
Romney Apologizes To Nation's 150 Million ‘Starving, Filthy Beggars’
Discussion: The Raw Story and US Politics
AP-GfK Poll: Obama job approval numbers back up above 50 percent, but race with Romney still tight  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans are feeling markedly better about the country's future and about Barack Obama's job performance, but the president's re-election race against Republican Mitt Romney remains …
Discussion: Sweetness & Light
Associated Press:
AP-GfK poll reveals demographic divides driving close contest for the presidency
Jesse Helfrich / The Hill:
Romney's missteps could cost party the Senate, strategists say  —  Republicans believe Mitt Romney's mistakes could prevent them from winning back the Senate.  —  Romney's failure to close the gap with President Obama less than 50 days before the election, as well as a variety of high-profile gaffes …
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Romney woes jangle GOP nerves
Discussion: Politico, Daily Kos and
Robert Costa / National Review:
Romney Campaign Borrowed $20 Million  —  Before the Republican National Convention, Mitt Romney was the Republican nominee in all but name.  By law, however, he could only spend primary donations until he officially became nominee.  To increase cash flow during the interregnum, the Romney campaign borrowed $20 million.
Daniel Strauss / Ballot Box:
Romney campaign memo: Obama's vision is ‘a government-centered society’
Discussion: CNN and Wake up America
Joan Walsh / Salon:
Does Paul Ryan regret his choice?  —  Calling Mitt's 47 percent comments “obviously inarticulate,” the would-be VP sounds resentful  —  Paul Ryan didn't sound like Mr. Loyalty when commenting on Mitt Romney's cruel comments about the 47 percent of Americans who pay no taxes Tuesday to a Reno television station.
Discussion: The Maddow Blog
Katie Glueck / Politico:
Pat Buchanan: President Obama a ‘drug dealer of welfare’  —  President Barack Obama is a “drug dealer of welfare,” conservative commentator Pat Buchanan charged in an interview with Fox News's Greta Van Susteren Tuesday night.  —  “Barack Obama is a drug dealer of welfare,” he said, speaking on “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren.”
John McCormack / Weekly Standard:
Mitt Romney's ‘Severe Conservatism’  —  “I was a severely conservative Republican governor,” Mitt Romney told the crowd at the Conservative Political Action Conference in February 2012.  —  Severely conservative?  —  Conservatives snickered.  “I may be a little giddy here,” Rush Limbaugh said.
Philip Klein / Washington Examiner:
CRS report: number of able-bodied adults on food stamps doubled after Obama suspended work requirement … Obama administration officials have insisted that their decision to grant states waivers to redefine work requirements for welfare recipients would not “gut” the landmark 1996 welfare reform law.
Ann Romney: Mitt Doesn't Disdain The Poor  —  The saddest rapid response... The Romney campaign just uploaded a video with the title “Ann Romney to FOX31: Mitt Doesn't Disdain the Poor.”  UPDATE: Apparently the campaign has removed the video from their official account.  —  Zeke Miller  —  an hour ago
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Sept. 18: Obama's Bounce Erodes in Two Tracking Polls  —  President Obama has been on the decline in the FiveThirtyEight forecast.  On Tuesday, his chance of winning the Electoral College dropped to 72.9 percent, from 74.8 percent on Monday.  Mr. Obama is now well off his peak in the forecast …
Discussion: ABCNEWS
Geoff Earle / New York Post:
Beyoncé & Jay-Z host NY Bam ba$h  —  WASHINGTON — Nix the flags and the podium.  Cue the opulent 18-foot tower of gold-bottled French champagne.  —  When President Obama addresses an elite roster of hipsters and multimillionaires, including hosts Beyoncé and Jay-Z …
Elisabeth Rosenthal / New York Times:
Arctic Resources, Exposed by Warming, Set Off Competition  —  NUUK, Greenland — With Arctic ice melting at record pace, the world's superpowers are increasingly jockeying for political influence and economic position in outposts like this one, previously regarded as barren wastelands.
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 More Items: 
My News 4:
News 4's Joe Hart interviews Republican Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan
David Kravets / Wired:
Feds Charge Activist with 13 Felonies for Rogue Downloading of Academic Articles
Thomas L. Friedman / New York Times:
Look in Your Mirror  —  On Monday, David D. Kirkpatrick …
Rick Ungar / Forbes:
Chicago Teachers Suspend Strike — But Who Won?
Pakistani Accused of Blasphemy Over Prophet Film
The Daily Caller:
Romney must own ‘47 percent’ argument 100 percent of the time
Mark McKinnon / The Daily Beast:
Mark McKinnon on Why Time Is Running Out for Mitt Romney
Discussion: Boston Globe
Josh Peterson / The Daily Caller:
Occupy Wall Street chief organizer unravels, ponders calling it quits
 Earlier Items: 
Christopher Keating / Hartford Courant:
UConn/Hartford Courant Poll Shows McMahon, Murphy In Dead Heat
Will Englund / Washington Post:
Vladi­mir Putin says of Mitt Romney: At least he's direct
Discussion: Riehl World News
Investor's Business Daily:
Romney's Right—Palestinians Have Rejected Peace
James Kirkup / Telegraph:
Inheritance tax could be scrapped in exchange for resurrection of mansion tax
Discussion: Guardian and Spectator
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
Obama to Romney: ‘You have to work for everyone’ as president
Discussion: Pat Dollard
Fred Thys / WBUR:
WBUR Senate Poll: Warren Leads Brown By 5
Talking Points Memo:
Mary Matalin: Thanks To Romney, We Can Single Out ‘Parasites’
Discussion: UrbanGrounds, Power Line and Nice Deb