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7:55 AM ET, January 4, 2013


 Top Items: 
Pete Kasperowicz / The Hill:
Boehner reelected as Speaker; nine Republicans defect in vote  —  Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) was reelected Speaker of the House on Thursday after a week of rumors of a possible GOP revolt.  —  Boehner won a bare majority in a vote that saw nine Republicans vote for other GOP members …
Boehner's battle for speaker  —  John Boehner won reelection to a second term as House speaker on Thursday, but it wasn't easy.  —  In an unusually suspenseful roll-call vote of the new House of Representatives, Boehner garnered 220 votes, but 12 Republican lawmakers either opposed him, voted present or abstained.
Jonathan Weisman / New York Times:
Boehner Narrowly Holds On to Speaker's Post
Discussion: The Caucus and The Reaction
Walter Shapiro / Associated Press:
The courage of Boehner and McConnell: No, they're not Lincolns. But they did something good.
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Ashley Killough / CNN:
Biden: Republicans had ‘epiphany’ on immigration  —  Washington (CNN) - Vice President Joe Biden said Republicans have had a major realization in their approach to immigration reform in recent weeks.  —  “Have you ever seen a time when Republicans have had a more rapid epiphany about immigration than they have this last election?”
Discussion: Politico
Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine:
New Crazy GOP Plan: No Negotiations With Obama!  —  One common takeaway from the tax deal is that the Republican party rejected the “ideology” of its extreme right wing.  But there's little evidence of any real ideological split within the Republican Party — certainly not between figures …
Adam Peck / ThinkProgress:
With Millions Still Waiting For Sandy Relief, Republicans Reintroduce Obamacare Repeal  —  The 112th Congress gaveled to a close on Thursday afternoon without passing a relief package for victims of Hurricane Sandy or reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act, but Rep. Michele Bachmann …
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
America's Real Criminal Element: Lead  —  New research finds Pb is the hidden villain behind violent crime, lower IQs, and even the ADHD epidemic.  And fixing the problem is a lot cheaper than doing nothing.  —  WHEN RUDY GIULIANI RAN FOR MAYOR of New York City in 1993 …
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
Crime Is at its Lowest Level in 50 Years.  A Simple Molecule May Be the Reason Why.  —  I've written several posts recently about the idea that America's great crime epidemic, which started in the 60s and peaked in the early 90s, was caused in large part by lead emissions from automobiles.
Charlie Savage / New York Times:
Obama Signs Defense Bill, With Conditions  —  WASHINGTON — President Obama set aside his veto threat and on late Wednesday signed a defense bill that imposes restrictions on transferring detainees out of military prisons in Afghanistan and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
Matt Sledge / The Huffington Post:   NDAA Signed Into Law By Obama Despite Guantanamo Veto Threat, Indefinite Detention Provisions
Josh Gerstein / Politico:
Obama signs defense bill, notes regrets
Lisa de Moraes / Washington Post:
Exclusive: Nancy Pelosi to guest star on ‘30 Rock’ series finale  —  House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi will make her scripted TV series debut on the series finale of NBC's “30 Rock.”  —  House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Jacquelyn Martin - AP) I know what you're thinking …
Mike Lillis / The Hill:
Pelosi consolidates support among House Democrats in Speaker vote
Discussion: Politico and Hot Air
Rebecca Smith / Wall Street Journal:
U.S. Electricity Use on Wane  —  Americans are using more gadgets, televisions and air conditioners than ever before.  But, oddly, their electricity use is barely growing, posing a daunting challenge for the nation's utilities.  —  The Energy Information Administration is projecting …
John Hawkins / Right Wing News:
The 20 Most Annoying Liberals of 2012 (10th Annual)  —  Honorable Mentions: Bill Ayers, Bob Beckel, Joy Behar, Eric Boehlert, Margaret Cho, Candy Crowley, Code Pink, Lena Dunham, Dianne Feinstein, Ruth Bader-Ginsburg, Kathy Griffin, Eric Holder, Jesse Jackson, Ezra Klein, Rachel Maddow …
Arlette Saenz / ABCNEWS:
Classic Biden on Display at Senate Mock Swearing-In  —  Vice President Joe Biden turned on the charm and amped up the wit at the Senate mock swearing-in today, schmoozing with senators' moms, doling out dating advice to one senator's granddaughter and offering some workout help to one new senator's family member.
Discussion: Post Politics
Michael Lester / Talking Points Memo:
Joe Biden's Friskiest Moments From The Senate Swearing-In (VIDEO)
Discussion: Gawker
Michal Shmulovich / The Times of Israel:
Hamas, PA reportedly refuse to take in Palestinian refugees from Syria  —  Gaza leader says the precedent might be used by Jerusalem to counter Palestinians' demand for the ‘right of return’ to land within Israel  —  Hamas and the Palestinian Authority rejected the United Nations' request …
Jelani Cobb / Culture Desk:
Tarantino Unchained  —  In early 2010, not long after the release of Quentin Tarantino's Second World War revenge epic, “Inglourious Basterds,” I began teaching a course on American history at Moscow State University.  When a Russian friend asked me what I thought of the film I told him I loved …
Discussion: The Raw Story
Fred Barnes / Wall Street Journal:
The President Who Wants It All  —  The essence of bipartisan deals is win-win: Both sides are satisfied.  Obama's approach is he alone wins.  —  President George W. Bush made bipartisan deals with Democrats on education, energy and, shortly before leaving office, the bank bailout known as TARP.
Steven J. Duffield / Washington Examiner:   Op-Ed: Harry Reid's filibuster plan and the Supreme Court
Randall S. Kroszner / New York Times:
The New Tell-All Fed  —  WITHIN moments of their release on Thursday afternoon, the minutes from the Federal Reserve's December policy meeting caused a bond-market sell-off.  Yields on Treasury bonds jumped as traders quickly dumped 10- and 30-year government bonds.
Discussion: Wall Street Journal and Quartz
Awr Hawkins / BREITBART.COM:
FBI: MORE PEOPLE KILLED WITH HAMMERS, CLUBS EACH YEAR THAN RIFLES  —  According to the FBI annual crime statistics, the number of murders committed annually with hammers and clubs far outnumbers the number of murders committed with a rifle.  —  This is an interesting fact …
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.
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Danny Hakim / City Room:
From Albany, With Mirth and Frankincense  —  In Albany, a lobbying firm offered a holiday card with a message subject to interpretation.  See inside of card below.  —  ALBANY — The lobbyists are now comparing Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to Jesus.  —  The cover of a Christmas card …
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 More Items: 
Bob Connors /
Gabby Giffords to Visit Newtown Friday
Discussion: Yahoo! News, Politico, The Hill and CNN
Noah Rothman / Mediaite:
Former NYC Mayoral Candidate Equates Gun Owners With Child Molesters, Wants Gun Owner Registry
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
David Freedlander / The Daily Beast:
Anger Over Fiscal-Cliff Deal Fires Up Tea Party
Jeff Bercovici / Forbes:
The Atlantic Will Experiment With Online Pay Models In 2013
Hayes Brown / ThinkProgress:
Connecticut Newspaper Places Gun Show Ad Next To Sandy Hook Story
The Associated / Associated Press:
Oregon officials propose per-mile tax for gas sippers
Discussion: The Daily Caller
 Earlier Items: 
Detroit Free Press:
Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm leaving Current TV
Discussion: The PJ Tatler
Andrew Cohen / The Atlantic Online:
Finally, Justice at Supermax? If Anyone Can Make the Right Call, It's This Judge
Peter Kaplan / Federal Trade Commission:
Google Agrees to Change Its Business Practices to Resolve FTC Competition Concerns In the Markets …
Kevin Cirilli / Politico:
Hillary Clinton script has Hollywood buzzing
Discussion: Hot Air
Ten People We Are Grateful Are No Longer Members Of Congress
Discussion: The Impolitic