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1:00 PM ET, March 8, 2013


 Top Items: 
Jon Ward / The Huffington Post:
John McCain: Getting Back To Maverick, With An Eye On Retirement  —  WASHINGTON — Last August, a few minutes before GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan took the stage at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., I was hurrying down a flight of stairs to get to the floor to watch.
Kevin Cirilli / Politico:
Newt Gingrich: John McCain attacks on Rand Paul ‘sad’  —  Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is slamming Sen. John McCain for criticizing Sens. Ted Cruz and Rand Paul, saying it's “sad” for someone who was once known as a maverick in Congress.  —  “What I find sad about Sen. McCain's recent comments …
Lois Romano / Politico:
Rand Paul: ‘Seriously’ weighing 2016 bid  —  Before Thursday, Rand Paul — tea party firebrand — hadn't vaulted into the top tier of Republican power players.  —  But all that seemed to change this week.  The Kentucky Republican senator showed serious clout by holding a 13-hour filibuster …
Inside the Rand Paul Filibuster  —  Eleven days before he spent nearly 13 hours filibustering on the Senate floor, Sen. Rand Paul floated his idea to block the president's pick for CIA director to one of Sen. Mitch McConnell's top political strategists over a Saturday night dinner of lasagna …
How the GOP forced President Obama's hand  —  President Barack Obama used to want a grand deficit deal because he philosophically believed it was best for the country, and politically believed it was best for him.  —  Now he needs it because he has no choice.
John Boehner / CNN:
GOP on jobs report: What about the debt?
Discussion: Politico
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Obama sets end-of-July goal for bipartisan agreement on deficit
Discussion: Daily Kos and First Read
Jeremy W. Peters / New York Times:
Can a Friendly Washington Be a Productive One?
Matthew Continetti / Washington Free Beacon:
Obama on His Heels  —  In January, pretty much all of respectable …
Discussion: PJ Media
Bill Clinton / Washington Post:
It's time to overturn DOMA  —  In 1996, I signed the Defense of Marriage Act.  Although that was only 17 years ago, it was a very different time.  In no state in the union was same-sex marriage recognized, much less available as a legal right, but some were moving in that direction.
Annalyn Kurtz /
Unemployment rate falls to lowest level since 2008  —  Hiring picked up in February, helping to bring the unemployment rate down to its lowest level since December 2008.  —  The U.S. economy added 236,000 jobs in February, according to a Labor Department report released Friday.
Nelson D. Schwartz / New York Times:
Unemployment at 4-Year-Low as U.S. Hiring Gains Steam  —  Bolstered by a healthier private sector, the United States economy gained 236,000 jobs in February, well above what had been expected, while the unemployment rate fell to 7.7 percent, its lowest level since December 2008.
Tim McDonnell / Mother Jones:
The Scariest Climate Change Graph Just Got Scarier … Back in 1999, Penn State University climate scientist Michael Mann released the climate change movement's most potent symbol: The “hockey stick,” a line graph of global temperature over the last 1,500 years that shows an unmistakable …
Discussion: Taylor Marsh, jobsanger and Hullabaloo
Gautam Naik / Wall Street Journal:
In Study, Past Decade Ranks Among Hottest
Tony Perry / Los Angeles Times:
Conservative activist pays $100,000 to former ACORN worker
Discussion: Politico and Mediaite
John Hinderaker / Power Line:
New Study Finds Firearms Laws Do Nothing to Prevent Homicides  —  That's the headline you should be seeing, but won't.  Instead, you will see headlines like this one, on CNN: “Study links gun laws and lower gun mortality.”  Or this one, from the Chicago Tribune: “States with strict gun laws found to have fewer shooting deaths.”
Nicole Flatow / ThinkProgress:
States With Most Gun Laws Have Fewest Gun Deaths, Study Finds
Peggy Noonan / Wall Street Journal:
Noonan: The Anti-Confidence Man  —  Just when America needs a boost, we're stuck with Dr. Doom in the White House.  —  It's not a debt and deficit crisis, it's a jobs crisis.  The debt and the deficit are part of it, part of the general fear that we're on a long slide and can't turn it around.
Discussion: Wonkette and Gawker
Alex Seitz-Wald / Salon:
Juan Williams' plagiarism problem  —  EXCLUSIVE: Fox News pundit blames researcher for word-for-word similarities.  “Unacceptable,” says Hill editor  —  In a case of apparent plagiarism, Fox News pundit Juan Williams lifted — sometimes word for word — from a Center for American Progress report …
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:
Rand Paul Praises Horrendous Supreme Court Decision, Would Let Employers Ruthlessly Exploit Workers  —  Lochner v. New York is widely viewed as one of the worst Supreme Court decisions in American history.  It is taught in law schools, alongside decisions upholding segregation …
Discussion: Wonkette, Mediaite and Hit & Run
Des Moines Register:
Priebus: GOP needs new strategy  —  He says party must look beyond early caucuses, primaries.  —  If the GOP is going to win presidential elections, candidates can't compete just in Iowa and the seven other early states, the party's national chairman said during a visit here Thursday.
Discussion: Washington Monthly and Politico
Chuck Hagel / CNN:
Hagel arrives in Afghanistan on first trip as defense secretary  —  (CNN) - U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel arrived in Afghanistan on Friday night in his first visit as secretary of defense, NATO's International Security Assistance Force said.  —  Hagel, in a message to ISAF pesonnel …
Discussion: Politico
David Taintor / Talking Points Memo:
Syrian Rebels In Jordan Trained In U.S.-Led Effort  —  Exclusive: UK and French instructors involved in US-led effort to strengthen secular elements in Syria's opposition, say sources  —  Western training of Syrian rebels is under way in Jordan in an effort to strengthen secular elements …
Lee Smith / Weekly Standard:
Samira Ibrahim Speaks  —  Yesterday, THE WEEKLY STANDARD first reported that the State Department was about to bestow an International Woman of Courage Award on an anti-Semite and 9/11 fan.  Egypt women's rights activist Samira Ibrahim had left a record on her Twitter feed of statements quoting Hitler …
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 More Items: 
Bruno Waterfield / Telegraph:
MEPs to vote on EU ‘ban on all forms of pornography’
Patrick Brennan / National Review:
‘Study Proves Energy Boom Is Happening in Spite of Obama’
Amir Efrati / Wall Street Journal:
Google's Motorola Unit to Cut 10% of Workforce
Discussion: VentureBeat, AllThingsD and Mashable!
Justin Sink / Ballot Box:
Messina: Obama may meet with OFA donors amid controversy
 Earlier Items: 
Mike Moore /
Lexington man accused of embezzling $274,000 in campaign donations
Discussion: Politico
Joe Battenfeld / Boston Herald:
Markey who? GOP: Poll ‘speaks volumes’
Cliff Asness / AMERICAN.COM:
Yes, Labels  —  No Labels' goal of arguing less and getting …
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
Quote of the Day: Joe Scarborough vs. Joe Scarborough
North Korea says it ends peace pacts with South
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Lisa Madigan moves toward run in Illinois