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3:25 PM ET, January 2, 2013


 Top Items: 
The fiscal cliff deal that almost wasn't  —  House Speaker John Boehner couldn't hold back when he spotted Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in the White House lobby last Friday.  —  It was only a few days before the nation would go over the fiscal cliff, no bipartisan agreement was in sight …
John Boehner / CNN:
TRENDING: Boehner's White House F-bomb  —  (CNN) - For all the stalemate in the fiscal cliff negotiations, there were some heated moments, too.  —  A Democratic source familiar with one particular exchange told CNN that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell …
Matthew Boyle / BREITBART.COM:
SOURCES: ENOUGH REPUBLICANS WILLING TO UNSEAT SPEAKER BOEHNER  —  American Majority Action spokesman Ron Meyer told Breitbart News late Tuesday that enough House Republicans have banded together in an effort to unseat House Speaker John Boehner from his position—they just need a leader to take up the mantle.
Jeff G. / protein wisdom:
Jim Geraghty, et al: Obama won!  —  So, you know, deal with it.  Besides, other “pragmatic” Republicans agree.  It really was the best we could do: … (A quick interjection here: it was Boehner's willingness to caucus with Dems, rather than his own base, that allowed this monstrosity to pass.
James Pethokoukis / AEIdeas:
Why the Obama tax hikes have only just begun  —  When an economy is booming and jobs are plentiful, a “do no harm” approach to public policy will suffice.  If GDP were expanding at a 4% annual rate and the unemployment rate were 5% and the national debt were low, then the fiscal cliff deal might be tolerable rather than terrible.
Alicia M. Cohn / The Hill:
Sen. Toomey: GOP should risk shutdown to force spending cuts in debt-limit fight  —  Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) on Wednesday called for Republicans to be ready to shut down the government to gain spending cuts in exchange for raising the nation's debt-limit.  —  “We Republicans need to be willing …
Washington Post:
House members meet to review Senate-passed cliff deal
Wall Street Journal:
Obama's Tax Bill Comes Due
David Weigel / Slate:
The House Republicans' Primal Scream
Kevin Robillard / Politico:
Peter King: Halt donations to House GOP  —  New York Republican Rep. Peter King went to war with his Republican colleagues on Wednesday after leaders spiked a Hurricane Sandy relief bill, calling on New Yorkers to stop all donations to GOP House members.  —  “These Republicans have no problem finding …
David Rogers / Reuters:
House pulls plug on Sandy aid bill  —  House Republicans abruptly pulled the plug Tuesday night on their promise to take up this week an emergency supplemental disaster aid bill for Northeast states damaged by Hurricane Sandy.  —  The decision is a stunning reversal since just hours …
NBC Politics:
Bipartisan outrage after House skips vote on $60 billion Sandy aid bill  —  House Republicans have abandoned plans to vote on an aid package for victims of Superstorm Sandy in the current term of Congress after the Senate approved more $60 billion to help affected residents recover.
Pete Kasperowicz / The Hill:
Boehner under growing pressure to allow vote on Sandy relief bill  —  Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) came under intense pressure Wednesday from Republicans in New York and New Jersey to allow a vote on legislation providing relief to the states hit by Hurricane Sandy in October.
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:   Chris Christie Rips House GOP For Blocking Sandy Relief: ‘Shame On You’
Dorsey Shaw / BuzzFeed:   Outraged Congressman Suggests He'll Abandon Republican Party Over Sandy Relief
Erik Wasson / The Hill:
Boehner committed to move Hurricane Sandy relief bill in January
Discussion: Firedoglake
Marc Santora / New York Times:
New York Area Officials Blast House for Ignoring Storm Aid Bill
Pete Kasperowicz / The Hill:
House members to Boehner: ‘Shame on you’ for not holding Sandy vote
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
New Year, New Dish, New Media  —  When I first stumbled into blogging over 12 years ago, it was for two reasons: curiosity and freedom.  I was curious about the potential for writing in this new medium; and for the first time, I felt total freedom as a writer.  On my little blog, I was beholden to no one but my readers.
CBS News:
GOP Rep: “We got whooped” on “fiscal cliff” … PLAY CBS NEWS VIDEO  —  (CBS News) Rep. Steve LaTourette (R-Ohio) said today on “CBS This Morning” that the GOP “got whooped” in the “fiscal cliff” compromise that passed the House last night, but explained that he voted for the deal regardless because …
Discussion: Post Politics and The Raw Story
Matt Cover / CNSNews:
Senators Got 154-Page Fiscal Cliff Bill 3 Minutes Before Voting on It
David Ingram / Reuters:
Gun purchasers set new record in December: FBI  —  (Reuters) - The number of FBI background checks required for Americans buying guns set a record in December, as the Connecticut school massacre stirred interest in self-defense and prompted renewed talk of limits on firearms, according to FBI data.
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Jason Ryan / ABCNEWS:
Record Gun Sales in December, 2012
Discussion: Jammie Wearing Fools
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
Democratic Congressman Laughs At Fox News' Fiscal Cliff Misinformation  —  Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA) schooled the hosts of Fox & Friends on the details of the deal to avert the so-called “fiscal cliff” during an appearance to explain his opposition to the Senate-passed compromise on Wednesday morning.
Keith Koffler / White House Dossier:
Obama Returns to Hawaii at an Added Cost of Over $3 Million  —  In a move that is rich in irony, President Obama agreed Tuesday night to sign an emergency deficit reduction bill that does almost nothing to rein in spending and then jetted out to Hawaii to resume his vacation at an extra cost of more than $3 million to taxpayers.
Daniel Halper / Weekly Standard:
Back to Vacation: Obama Takes Midnight Flight to Hawaii
Conor Friedersdorf / The Atlantic Online:
The Strangest Conservative Priority: Prepping a ‘2nd Amendment Solution’  —  The Bill of Rights offers much smarter, more effective ways to safeguard liberty than preparing for armed insurrection.  —  Reuters  —  In the National Review, Kevin Williamson argues that nearly everyone calling …
Aviva Shen / ThinkProgress:
GOP State Senator: Kwanzaa Is A Leftist Plot ‘To Destroy’ America  —  While outrage about the so-called war on Christmas has died down for another year, Wisconsin state Senator Glenn Grothman (R) has launched a new war on Kwanzaa, claiming it is a fake holiday invented by racist radicals who want to “divide America.”
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Jonathan Terbush / The Raw Story:
Wisconsin state Senator: Kwanza is a fake holiday that black people don't even like
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 More Items: 
Scott Keyes / ThinkProgress:
Leading Conservative Religious Organization Warns That Christians Will Soon Be Treated Like Blacks In Jim Crow Era
Discussion: The Raw Story
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:
Thanks To Gerrymandering, Democrats Would Need To Win The Popular Vote By Over 7 Percent To Take Back The House
Jeff Bercovici / Forbes:
Tumblr: David Karp's $800 Million Art Project
Discussion: TechCrunch, Mashable! and The Verge
Andrew Higgins / New York Times:
Used to Hardship, Latvia Accepts Austerity, and Its Pain Eases
David Kurtz / Talking Points Memo:
The Eight Senators Who Voted Against The Fiscal Cliff Deal
Mary Agnes Carey /
‘Doc Fix’ In ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Plan Cuts Medicare Hospital Payments
Discussion: Weekly Standard, Hit & Run and Wonkblog
Craig Whitlock / Washington Post:
Renditions continue under Obama, despite due-process concerns
 Earlier Items: 
Glen Johnson / Boston Globe:
Scott Brown questions Edward Markey's state residency in jab at possible opponent
Anthony Bond / Daily Mail:
Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez in a coma ‘only kept alive by life support’ after cancer surgery
Yuval Levin / National Review:
The Left and the Cliff  —  For Republicans, the question presented …
Discussion: Power Line and Right Turn
Erik Ortiz / NY Daily News:
Attorney for Newtown survivor seeking to sue Connecticut for $100 million backs off
Discussion: Althouse
Charles P. Pierce / Esquire: