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5:10 PM ET, June 14, 2013


 Top Items: 
Daniel W. Drezner:
Why Obama is arming Syria's rebels: it's the realism, stupid.  —  Red line!!  RED LINE!!!  RED LINE!!!!: … Naturally, this will feed the “return of the liberal hawks” meme that's spreading in some quarters.  Other commentators will gnash their teeth or decry that this is the first ill …
Julian Pecquet / The Hill:
Obama to press Putin on Syria when they meet Monday
Discussion: Politico and Guardian
James Hohmann / Politico:
Santorum: Why Romney didn't win  —  Rick Santorum ripped Mitt Romney's campaign Thursday for mishandling President Barack Obama's “you didn't build that” gaffe last summer.  —  The former Pennsylvania senator recalled all the business owners who spoke at the Republican National Convention.
Erik Wemple:
CBS News confirms multiple breaches of Sharyl Attkisson's computer  —  CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson revealed in May that her computer had been compromised.  When asked about the situation, CBS News responded with a statement that it was conducting an investigation.
Justin Sink / The Hill:
White House: Obama's $100M Africa trip ‘great bang for our buck’  —  President Obama's $100 million trip to African offers “great bang for our buck,” the White House said Friday.  —  Deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes defended the cost of Obama's upcoming trip to South Africa …
Discussion: and Weasel Zippers
Rebekah L. Sanders / Arizona Republic:
Franks firestorm spurs fundraising
Discussion: Politico and Post Politics
Justin Sink / The Hill:
White House: Obama will defend Internet spying to Europeans
Discussion: CNN
Kevin Drum / Mother Jones:
Some Questions For and About Edward Snowden  —  Via Andrew Sullivan, I see that a number of people are pushing back against Glenn Greenwald's insistence that the PRISM program allows “direct access” to servers from Google, Microsoft and other tech companies.  I'm glad to hear that, because it raises some questions that deserve answers.
Kirsten Powers / The Daily Beast:
The Sickening Snowden Backlash  —  It's appalling to hear the Washington bureaucrats and their media allies trash Edward Snowden as a traitor, when it's our leaders and the NSA who have betrayed us, writes Kirsten Powers.  —  Hell hath no fury like the Washington establishment scorned.
David Brooks / New York Times:
Religion and Inequality  —  About a century ago, Walter Judd was a 17-year-old boy hoping to go to college at the University of Nebraska.  His father pulled him aside and told him that, though the family had happily paid for Judd's two sisters to go to college, Judd himself would get no money for tuition or room and board.
Tap It: NSA Slow Jam (featuring Remy)  —  Government surveillance never sounded so smooth...  Government surveillance never sounded so smooth.  —  Song written and performed by Remy.  Produced by Meredith Bragg.  About 2:45 minutes.  —  Scroll below for downloadable versions and subscribe …
Discussion: and The Daily Caller
Michael Riley / Bloomberg:
U.S. Agencies Said to Swap Data With Thousands of Firms  —  Thousands of technology, finance and manufacturing companies are working closely with U.S. national security agencies, providing sensitive information and in return receiving benefits that include access to classified intelligence, four people familiar with the process said.
Tal Kopan / Politico:
Bill Clinton: Gun groups try to ‘terrify’  —  Former President Bill Clinton said Friday that gun groups are trying to “terrify” people into believing the federal government wants to take away their firearms.  —  “What's going on is that these organized interest groups don't want anything done …
Discussion: Daily Kos
Pat Buchanan /
The Bell Tolls for the ‘New Majority’  —  Next year should be a banner year for the GOP, and may yet be.  —  Obamacare, a “train wreck” about to happen, says Democratic Sen. Max Baucus, goes into full effect Jan. 1, with the popular IRS as enforcer.  —  The Obama media feel betrayed …
Aaron Blake / Post Politics:
Jeb Bush: U.S. economy needs immigrants because they're ‘more fertile’  —  Former Florida governor Jeb Bush (R) argued Wednesday that the United States should pass immigration reform because the U.S. economy needs the labor of young immigrants, and immigrants are “more fertile.”
Cameron Joseph / The Hill:
Jeb Bush touts ‘fertile,’ pro-family immigrants
Discussion: Politico and CNN
Keith Bradsher / New York Times:
Snowden's Leaks on China Could Affect Its Role in His Fate  —  HONG KONG — The decision by a former National Security Agency contractor to divulge classified data about the U.S. government's surveillance of computers in mainland China and Hong Kong has complicated his legal position …
Concluding Statement of the 2013 Article IV Mission to The United States of America  —  1. The U.S. recovery has remained tepid over the past year, but underlying fundamentals have been gradually improving.  The modest growth rate of 2.2 percent in 2012 reflected legacy effects from the financial crisis …
Josh Feldman / Mediaite:
Bachmann, Gohmert, & Steve King Appeal Directly To Beck And His Audience: 'We're Losing Badly...'  —  With immigration reform still going through Congress, a number of conservative Republicans are not happy with how their party has jumped on the bandwagon to fight for a bill that concedes the argument to the Democrats.
Eric W. Dolan / The Raw Story:
Reps. King, Bachmann and Gohmert beg Glenn Beck's viewers for support: We're losing badly
Discussion: Mediaite
Emily Schultheis / Politico:
Paul Ryan explains GOP's 2012 loss  —  Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Friday that he and Mitt Romney lost in November in part because they were arguing against the “empty promises” of the not-yet-implemented Obamacare law.  —  “This was the challenge that Mitt Romney and I had in this last election …
Discussion: Daily Kos
Jonah Goldberg / National Review:
Freedom: The Unfolding Revolution  —  'Why are there no libertarian countries?  In a much-discussed essay for Salon, Michael Lind asks: “If libertarians are correct in claiming that they understand how best to organize a modern society, how is it that not a single country in the world …
Discussion: Ed Driscoll
Dylan Matthews / Wonkblog:
Do low taxes on the rich leave the middle-class with lower wages?  —  Raising taxes on the rich often gets proposed as a way of combating the rise of financial inequality.  But how important is tax policy, really?  —  Andrew Fieldhouse, a federal budget policy analyst at the Economic Policy Institute …
Josh Margolin / ABCNEWS:
Christie, Bill Clinton Warm to Latest Bipartisan Presidential ‘Bromance’  —  What is it with Chris Christie and Democratic presidents?  —  First, the Republican governor from New Jersey surprised his party by embracing — both figuratively and literally — President Obama.
Will Weissert / Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Texas gov. signs ‘Merry Christmas’ law; says religious freedom is not freedom from religion  —  AUSTIN, Texas — Surrounded by sleigh bell-ringing Santa Claus impersonators, Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday signed a law protecting Christmas and other holiday celebrations in Texas public schools …
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 More Items: 
Michael D. Shear / New York Times:
Obama's Pen May Shape Scope of Marriage Ruling
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Voters still mad about lack of gun legislation
Discussion: Business Insider
Cameron Joseph / Ballot Box:
Sanford praises ‘God of second chances’ for giving him new platform in Congress
Discussion: Politico
The Newtown Bee:
Opinion: Resolved To Do Better
Hadas Gold / Politico:
Chelsea Clinton: Girls need STEM role models
Discussion: CNN and Weasel Zippers
 Earlier Items: 
Ben Geman / E2-Wire:
Baucus: ‘Creeping’ interest in carbon tax
Discussion: The Daily Caller and Politico
Benjamin Weiser / New York Times:
Birthday Song's Copyright Leads to a Lawsuit for the Ages
Discussion: Techdirt, The Verge and The Week
Beth Reinhard /
Strange Bedfellows: Why Marco Rubio and Rand Paul Need Each Other
Discussion: The Daily Caller and The Fix
Charlie Cook /
Why Obama's Approval Rating Isn't Higher
Discussion: Yahoo! News
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Sympathy for the Luddites  —  In 1786, the cloth workers of Leeds …
Discussion: Hullabaloo and Prairie Weather