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11:25 AM ET, August 5, 2013


 Top Items: 
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Republicans Against Reality  —  Last week House Republicans voted for the 40th time to repeal Obamacare.  Like the previous 39 votes, this action will have no effect whatsoever.  But it was a stand-in for what Republicans really want to do: repeal reality, and the laws of arithmetic in particular.
Stan Collender / Stan Collender's Capital Gains …:
Budget Bedlam This Fall  —  August actually is a pretty good time to be in Washington.  —  Yes, the weather usually is awful.  But with Congress gone, getting to work isn't as stressful because there's less demand on roads and public transit.  You can get up later and still get to work on time.
Associated Press:   House GOP plans anti-Washington push in August
Exclusive: U.S. directs agents to cover up program used to investigate Americans  —  (Reuters) - A secretive U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration unit is funneling information from intelligence intercepts, wiretaps, informants and a massive database of telephone records to authorities across …
Associated Press:
Dead people gave nearly $600K to campaigns since 2009  —  WASHINGTON — The dead can't vote, but they can give money to politicians.  —  Thirty-two people listed on federal campaign records as “deceased” have contributed more than $586,000 to congressional and presidential candidates …
Kyle Cheney / Politico:
Obamacare message war goes local  —  CENTREVILLE, Va. — A race to define Obamacare to the masses began today between the stacks at the Centreville Library.  Over pizza in Decatur, Texas.  And with a glass of wine in Naples, Fla.  —  Dozens of communities around the country hosted pro-Obamacare events …
Wall Street Journal:
Congress's ObamaCare Exemption  —  The President intervenes to give Members and staff a break.  —  To adapt H.L. Mencken, nobody ever went broke underestimating the cynicism and self-dealing of the American political class.  Witness their ad-libbed decision, at the 11th hour and on the basis …
Joseph Gerth / Courier-Journal:
Mitch McConnell targets Obama; Alison Lundergan Grimes aims at McConnell at Fancy Farm  —  FANCY FARM, KY. — U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell found himself under withering attack on Saturday from both his right and left as he tried to make his case for reelection before a boisterous crowd …
Discussion: Yahoo! News
Alexandra Jaffe / Ballot Box:
McConnell slams GOP challenger as ‘Bailout Bevin’ in new ad
Discussion: CNN
Perry Stein / Talking Points Memo:   Tea Party Challenger To McConnell: ‘Be A Man, Run On Your Record’
Howard Fineman / The Huffington Post:
At Fancy Farm, Kentucky Tea Party Guy Has a Good Debut
Discussion: Balloon Juice
Mark Mazzetti / New York Times:
U.S. Extends Closing of Some Diplomatic Posts  —  WASHINGTON — Nineteen American diplomatic outposts across the Middle East and North Africa will remain closed this week, the State Department said Sunday, despite what officials said was no new information about terrorist plots that they believe are in the works.
Associated Press:
Embassies stay closed out of ‘caution’
By Ali Watkins / McClatchy Washington Bureau:
Embassy closings, travel warning renew debate over NSA data collection
Discussion: Firedoglake
Jonathan Martin / New York Times:
G.O.P. Governors Warn Party Members in Congress Not to Shut Government  —  MILWAUKEE — Worried about the potential impact on the fragile economies in their states, Republican governors this weekend warned their counterparts in Congress not to shut down the federal government as part of an effort …
Ralph Z. Hallow / Washington Times:
Newt Gingrich sees major Mideast mistakes, rethinks his neocon views on intervention  —  Welcomes libertarian debate on U.S. military involvement  —  Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a leading neoconservative hawk and staunch supporter of Israel, says the U.S. military interventions …
Discussion: ThinkProgress and CBS DC
Andrea Chang / Los Angeles Times:
Newsweek sold again, this time to digital news company IBT Media  —  Newsweek, once a prominent print news magazine, has been sold to IBT Media for an undisclosed amount.  (Karen Bleiler / AFP/Getty Images)  —  Newsweek, the former weekly news magazine that now publishes online only, is being sold to digital news company IBT Media.
Discussion: Ed Driscoll
Kate Taylor / New York Times:
Health Care Law Raises Pressure on Public Unions  —  Cities and towns across the country are pushing municipal unions to accept cheaper health benefits in anticipation of a component of the Affordable Care Act that will tax expensive plans starting in 2018.  —  The so-called Cadillac tax …
Discussion: Right Wing News
Matea Gold / Washington Post:
August recess now high season for interests lobbying lawmakers
Discussion: Washington Monthly and ABC News
Robert Draper / New York Times:
Steve Schmidt Says Republican Campaigns Haven't Changed.  But They Will.  —  You've been hired by the A.C.L.U. to win over Republicans on same-sex marriage.  What's the argument that you make to those who are resistant?  —  A few years ago, there was universal agreement in the party that marriage is between one man and one woman.
Discussion: The Fix
Benjamin Wallace-Wells / New York Magazine:
What Is Chris Christie Doing Right?  —  He's hugely popular in a state way to his left.  He's unafraid to take on a national party considerably to his right.  And he's most adored when he's acting reprehensibly.  —  In New Jersey, charisma is a blunt instrument.
Discussion: Daily Kos
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Six months later, State of the Union policy goals gathering dust  —  Nearly six months after President Obama used his State of the Union address to outline a broad, progressive agenda for his second term, many of the policy priorities that earned applause from his base appear to be gathering dust.
Chris Wallace / Fox News:
Former NSA, CIA Director Gen. Hayden, Rep. Amash talk surveillance of Americans; Rep. Cantor on effort to get economy growing again  —  Special Guests: Rep. Justin Amash, Gen. Michael Hayden, Rep. Eric Cantor  —  The following is a rush transcript of the August 4, 2013, edition of “Fox News Sunday With Chris Wallace.”
Discussion: Crooks and Liars
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 More Items: 
Sarah Lacy / PandoDaily:
Olivia Nuzzi won't defend herself against the latest lies, so allow me
Discussion: Mediaite and New York Times
Bob Filner / Most Recent:
City, scandal continue with mayor in rehab
Discussion: The Fix and KGTV-TV
Alexandra Jaffe / Ballot Box:
Holt hits Booker as ‘no progressive’ in first ad
Discussion: Politico and E2-Wire
Paul Krugman:
Is There Any Point To Economic Analysis?
Katrin Bennhold / New York Times:
Bid to Honor Austen Is Not Universally Acknowledged
 Earlier Items: 
Paige Lavender / The Huffington Post:
John Kerry Receives Letter From Lawmakers Demanding Protection Of LGBT Rights At 2014 Olympics
Discussion: Joe. My. God.
Jonathan Easley / The Hill:
Santorum ‘open’ to 2016 run
Martin Wolf / Financial Times:
A much-maligned engine of innovation
Cameron Joseph / Ballot Box:
Marco Rubio's new mission: Win back the Republican Party's base
Evan McMurry / Mediaite:
Michael Savage Questions Terror Alert: ‘First Muslim President’ Trying To ‘Justify Spying On Americans’
Discussion: The Raw Story
Elisabeth Rosenthal / New York Times:
In Need of a New Hip, but Priced Out of the U.S.
Discussion: Hullabaloo and JustOneMinute
Associated Press:
4-year-old Bobby Tufts re-elected mayor of small Minnesota town
Discussion: Weasel Zippers and Death and Taxes