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2:55 PM ET, April 9, 2013


 Top Items: 
David Corn / Mother Jones:
Secret Tape: McConnell and Aides Weighed Using Judd's Mental Health and Religion as Political Ammo  —  A recording of a private meeting between the Senate GOP leader and campaign aides reveals how far they were willing to go to defeat the actor/activist.  —  On February 2, Mitch McConnell …
FBI asked to probe secret recordings of McConnell meeting  —  (CNN) - Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's re-election campaign is “working with the FBI” about how Mother Jones, a liberal magazine, obtained a recording of political aides meeting with McConnell and discussing opposition research …
Mother Jones:
Full Transcript and Audio of Mitch McConnell Campaign's Meeting on Ashley Judd  —  In a private meeting, the Senate GOP leader and campaign aides discussed using the actor/activist's mental health and religious views as political ammo.  —  On February 2, Sen. Mitch McConnell …
Ann Althouse / Althouse:
Secret recording of Mitch McConnell strategy session about how to go after Ashley Judd.  —  David Corn at Mother Jones has lots of audio clips and transcript, but he doesn't tell us who made the tape and gave it to him.  Surveillance on a political campaign?
Discussion: Instapundit
Politico:   Mitch McConnell seeks FBI investigation
Kevin Robillard / Politico:
Secret tape: Mitch McConnell aides discuss Ashley Judd
Discussion: Outside the Beltway and Roll Call
Roger Alford / The Republic:
Campaign manager: Mitch McConnell to report nearly $12 million raised for re-election bid
Paul Krugman:
Did Thatcher Turn Britain Around?  —  There will presumably be a lot of commentary about Margaret Thatcher over the next few days, although probably nothing like the “Reagasm” of 2004.  And there will in particular be many assertions that Thatcher turned around a moribund British economy.
David Brooks / New York Times:
The Vigorous Virtues  —  The 1990 Tory coup against Margaret Thatcher …
Tom Clark / Guardian:
Opinion on Margaret Thatcher remains divided after her death, poll finds
PoliceOne's Gun Control Survey: 11 key lessons from officers' perspectives … In March, PoliceOne conducted the most comprehensive survey ever of American law enforcement officers' opinions on the topic gripping the nation's attention in recent weeks: gun control.
Rachael Bade / Reuters:
New gun control strategy: Tax 'em
Jennifer Jacobs / Des Moines Register:
Santorum doesn't think Supreme Court will rule in favor of same-sex marriage  —  He doesn't think it will rule in favor of same-sex marriage.  —  A “chastened” U.S. Supreme Court won't make the mistake of granting same-sex marriage rights, former presidential candidate Rick Santorum predicted in an interview Monday.
Ruby Cramer / BuzzFeed:
Martin O'Malley Calling Himself A “Performance-Driven Progressive” Now  —  A new buzzword.  After passing bills for gun control, a gas tax, and a death penalty repeal, O'Malley says he's about results, not liberalism.  —  O'Malley, center, speaks at a news conference on March 15 in Annapolis …
Julie Bykowicz / Bloomberg:
O'Malley Wins on Guns, Taxes Seen as 2016 Resume-Packing
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Brian Alexander / NBC News:
Science proves women like men with bigger penises  —  “Penis size does affect attractiveness”  —  Below:  —  The human male possesses the Italian designer faucet of penises.  They're pretty big, the biggest of any primate's relative to body size.  And they're showy, too, right out there …
Discussion: The Week, New York Magazine and Gawker
David Adams / Reuters:
Exclusive: Beyonce, Jay-Z Cuba visit had U.S. Treasury Department OK - source  —  (Reuters) - A visit by American pop star Beyonce and rapper husband Jay-Z to Havana last week was a cultural trip that was fully licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department, a source familiar with the itinerary said on Monday.
17 Things That Should Make Republicans Feel Old  —  Grand OLD Party.  —  The Ten year anniversary of this is today.  —  April 9, 2003.  —  And the 10 year anniversary of this is next month.  —  May 1, 2003.  —  Image by Larry Downing / Reuters  —  Ann Coulter is 51 years old.
The Myth of the Falling Bridge  —  There's more than a touch of Chicken Little in common arguments for more infrastructure spending.  “The bridges are falling, the bridges are falling!”  —  Every four years, the American Society of Civil Engineers issues the U.S. an infrastructure “report card.”
Discussion: Hit & Run
Tom Kludt / Talking Points Memo:
Former Tenn. Lawmaker Allegedly Drove 90 MPH While Masturbating Out Window  —  Three different women last week testified that a former Tennessee lawmaker exposed himself to them while driving at a breakneck speed, WJHL reported.  —  The accounts, each given independently last Thursday in a Kingsport …
Matt Wilstein / Mediaite:
Uh-O: Jon Stewart Tears Into Obama's ‘Attractive’ AG Comment And Michelle's ‘Single Mom’ Gaffe  —  Jon Stewart kicked off The Daily Show Monday night by looking at some of the more troubling aspects of President Obama's difficult weekend.  From his unfortunate remarks about California Attorney …
Cindy Adams / New York Post:
Obama back in NYC for cash  —  He won a second term, but Barack Obama isn't done fund-raising.  The president will appear at a cozy reception for fewer than 65 guests with tickets priced at $32,400 per couple at the Manhattan home of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and his designer wife Georgina Chapman …
Spencer Ackerman / Wired:
Watch the Navy's New Ship-Mounted Laser Cannon Kill a Drone  —  The video above is what the Navy's top officers view as the future of their dominance on the surface of the world's waterways.  A laser cannon, its magazine limited only by the amount of energy pumped into it and costing pocket change to fire …
Elahe Izadi /
Rand Paul's Play to Win Over Black Voters at Howard University  —  How the libertarian-minded senator is received will indicate how well GOP is making inroads with minorities.  —  The GOP minority outreach efforts continue: This time, it's Sen. Rand Paul taking the message to a historically black university.
Discussion: American Spectator and FishbowlDC
Nouri al-Maliki / Washington Post:
The U.S. has a foreign-policy partner in Iraq  —  Today, on the 10th anniversary of the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, the debate about whether it was worth it to topple the regime and the direction of the U.S.-Iraqi relationship is influenced by a pessimistic view that the United States has lost Iraq.
Obama's Grand Bargain Could Destroy His Political Coalition  —  There are two keys to achieving real political dominance for the Obama coalition.  First, the Obama coalition must be mobilized beyond Presidential elections.  That means between elections in the struggle to achieve legislative victories …
Discussion: Lawyers, Guns & Money
New immigration attack: It's too pricey  —  Immigration reform opponents are opening a new front in their bid to derail an overhaul bill: the price tag.  —  Conservatives contend that costs would be prohibitive — it's not just about paying for beefed-up border and employer enforcement …
Discussion: Colorlines and Balloon Juice
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
Obama to dine in with dozen senators  —  President Obama's meeting with a dozen Senate Republicans on Wednesday will be at the White House.  —  It's the second meeting Obama has had with Senate Republicans — and one with different optics that his first meeting, which took place at the opulent Jefferson Hotel.
Discussion: Politico and Mediaite
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 More Items: 
Khalil AlHajal /
Transgender restroom use cited in lawmaker's statement against LGBT rights ordinance
Discussion: ThinkProgress
Felicity Barringer / New York Times:
Lancaster, Calif., Mayor Focuses on Solar Power
Matea Gold / Los Angeles Times:
Organizing for Action loses bid to control website domain
Elad Nehorai / Pop Chassid:
APR20 Photos That Change The Holocaust Narrative
Discussion: Elder of Ziyon and ThinkProgress
Killing Keystone Seen as Risking More Oil Spills by Rail
Nicholas Confessore / New York Times:
American Conservative Union Fighting Spending Cuts
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
Toddstarnes / Fox News:
School: Americans Don't Have Right to Bear Arms
Discussion: BizPac Review and Weasel Zippers
Matt Duss / ThinkProgress:
Washington Post Editors Get Mixed Up On Iran's Nuclear Program
Discussion: Washington Post
 Earlier Items: 
Bruce Bartlett / Economix:
America's Most Profitable Export Is Cash
Discussion: Wonkblog
Caroline May / The Daily Caller:
Obama declares Tuesday ‘National Equal Pay Day,’ despite paying female staffers less than male counterparts
Philip Rucker / Washington Post:
Michael Bloomberg group's gun-control scorecard will give lawmakers letter grades
Dylan Matthews / Wonkblog:
Why do people hate deficits?