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12:55 PM ET, January 4, 2013


 Top Items: 
Kevin Robillard / Reuters:
Barney Frank: I want to be senator  —  Barney Frank, one day out of Congress, said on Friday that he has asked Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick to send him back as an interim senator when Sen. John Kerry becomes secretary of state.  —  “A month ago, or a few weeks ago, I said I wasn't interested,” Frank said on MSNBC's “Morning Joe.”
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Former Rep. Barney Frank wants interim appointment to replace Kerry in Senate  —  Outgoing Rep. Barney Frank has asked to be appointed as an interim senator to replace Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.).  —  Frank, who just retired from Congress, said Friday he had asked Massachusettes Gov. Deval Patrick …
Discussion: Michelle Malkin, CNN and Twitchy
Tom Kludt / Talking Points Memo:
Barney Frank Would Welcome Interim Appointment To Fill Kerry's Senate Seat (VIDEO)
Discussion: Balloon Juice and The Raw Story
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Gingrich warns Boehner could have ‘disaster on his hands’  —  Newt Gingrich warned Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) that he risks losing control of his conference without a more coherant strategy.  —  “He can't keep thinking the way he's thought the last few months without having a disaster on his hands …
Discussion: Politico and Washington Monthly
Russell Berman / The Hill:
Boehner to GOP: Public is behind us on spending, debt limit fight
Discussion: The Hill and Booman Tribune
Wall Street Journal:
Boehner's Second Chance
Discussion: The Plum Line
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
Liked but Not Feared, Boehner Keeps a Job Some Might Ask Why He Wants
David Rogers / Politico:
House to take up Sandy aid bill on Friday
Discussion: First Read and
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
No, a $1 Trillion Platinum Coin is Not Legal  —  For some reason, the possibility of evading the debt ceiling by minting a $1 trillion platinum coin is getting some blogospheric love again.  This is based on a 2000 revision to the U.S. statute on money and finance that reads:
Discussion: Unfogged and Balloon Juice
Josh Barro / Bloomberg:
Why We Must Go Off the Platinum Coin Cliff  —  I'm glad to see Representative Jerrold Nadler lending his support to the idea that President Barack Obama should avert a debt-limit crisis by issuing large-denomination platinum coins, as permitted by 31 USC  § 5112.
Associated Press:
US economy adds 155K jobs, rate stays at 7.8 pct.  —  US economy adds 155,000 jobs in December, unemployment rate stays at 7.8 percent  —  Associated PressBy Christopher s.  Rugaber, AP Economics Writer |  Associated Press - 2013-01-04T14:27:06Z  —  WASHINGTON (AP) …
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Neil Irwin / Washington Post:
Job creation steady in December, unemployment at 7.8%
Shobhana Chandra / Bloomberg:
Payrolls in U.S. Climb 155,000 as Jobless Rate Holds at 7.8%
Discussion: The Week
Hayley Peterson / Daily Mail:
Workers making $30,000 will take a bigger hit on their pay than those earning $500,000 under new fiscal deal  —  Middle-class workers will take a bigger hit to their income proportionately than those earning between $200,000 and $500,000 under the new fiscal cliff deal, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center.
Ruby Cramer / BuzzFeed:
New Jersey's Cory Booker Problem  —  The Newark Mayor's decision to run for Senate has offended Lautenberg, and frustrated the state's Democratic party.  “I'm not angry, I'm disappointed.”  —  Newark, N.J. Mayor Cory Booker  —  Image by Max Morse / Getty Images
Greg Giroux / Bloomberg:
Final Tally Shows Obama First Since '56 to Win 51% Twice  —  Eight weeks after the Nov. 6 presidential election, a revised vote count in New York shows that Barack Obama is the first president in more than five decades to win at least 51 percent of the vote twice.
Charles Krauthammer / Washington Post:
Return of the real Obama  —  The rout was complete, the retreat disorderly.  President Obama got his tax hikes — naked of spending cuts — passed by the ostensibly Republican House of Representatives.  After which, you might expect him to pivot to his self-proclaimed “principle” of fiscal …
Discussion: Booman Tribune
The Worst Moments Of The 112th Congress  —  But there are a few things that Congress did — or didn't do — that will stand out as its worst moments:  —  Almost shut down the government and hit the debt ceiling.  —  Back in August of 2011, Congressional Republicans took the United States …
Sam Baker / The Hill:
House rules aim to block controversial healthcare board's Medicare cuts  —  House Republicans signaled Thursday they will not follow rules in President Obama's healthcare law that were designed to speed Medicare cuts through Congress.  —  The House is set to vote Thursday afternoon on rules for the 113th Congress.
Discussion: Hit & Run
Ashley Parker / New York Times:
First Day of 113th Congress Brings More Women to Capitol  —  WASHINGTON — As the 113th Congress opens, the Senate and the House are starting to look a little bit more like the people they represent.  —  The new Congress includes a record number of women (101 across both chambers …
Discussion: Washington Monthly and Truthdig
David Weigel / Slate:
Eighty-Six Minutes of Joe Biden Being Incredible  —  I only spent a little time today watching Vice President Biden conduct ceremonial (read: photo-op) swearings-in for the 34 senators taking office today.  My mistake: As the viral video wizards quickly proved, it was a movie-length event …
Discussion: The Week and The Fix
Brian Stelter / Media Decoder:
Gore Went to Bat for Al Jazeera, and Himself  —  Al Gore at the Current TV studios in San Francisco in 2005.  He said Al Jazeera's coverage was “thorough, fair and informative.”  —  Al Gore's Current TV was never popular with viewers, but it was a hit where it counted: with cable and satellite providers.
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Battles of the Budget  —  The centrist fantasy of a Grand Bargain on the budget never had a chance.  Even if some kind of bargain had supposedly been reached, key players would soon have reneged on the deal — probably the next time a Republican occupied the White House.
Alyssa Rosenberg / ThinkProgress:
How To Change Pop Culture's Reliance On Violence  —  When the Motion Picture Association of America on December 20 came out in support of President Obama's efforts on gun control in the wake of the Newtown, the organization simultaneously aligned itself with the productive side …
Discussion: The Atlantic Online
Bob Woodward / Washington Post:
Too much leadership at the cliff  —  Bob Woodward ( is an associate editor of The Post.  His latest book is “The Price of Politics.”  Evelyn Duffy contributed to this commentary.  —  The agreement on the “fiscal cliff” left the nation's major economic problems …
Discussion: Hit & Run and Politico
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / The Caucus:
Chief Justice Roberts to Preside at Obama Swearing-In  —  WASHINGTON - President Obama's inaugural planning committee will announce this morning that - surprise!  - Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. will deliver the oath of office to Mr. Obama when he is sworn in for a second term later this month.
Discussion: CNN, The Hill and Connecting.the.Dots
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 More Items: 
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
Republicans bet on stronger hand in spending fight
Discussion: Hot Air
Laura Vozzella / Washington Post:
Bolling testing waters for independent run
Discussion: Post Politics
Associated Press:
Crapo scheduled for DUI court appearance
Discussion: CNN and This Just In
Elise Viebeck / The Hill:
HHS approves healthcare exchanges in 8 states
Mawassi Lahcen /
Libya: Key Benghazi Suspect Remains At Large
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Randall S. Kroszner / New York Times:
The New Tell-All Fed  —  WITHIN moments of their release …
Discussion: Wall Street Journal and Quartz
 Earlier Items: 
Danny Hakim / City Room:
From Albany, With Mirth and Frankincense
Rebecca Smith / Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Electricity Use on Wane
Lisa de Moraes / Washington Post:
Exclusive: Nancy Pelosi to guest star on ‘30 Rock’ series finale
John Hawkins / Right Wing News:
The 20 Most Annoying Liberals of 2012 (10th Annual)
Awr Hawkins / BREITBART.COM: