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9:05 AM ET, August 12, 2013


 Top Items: 
Charlie Savage / New York Times:
Justice Dept. Seeks to Curtail Stiff Drug Sentences  —  WASHINGTON — In a major shift in criminal justice policy, the Obama administration will move on Monday to ease overcrowding in federal prisons by ordering prosecutors to omit listing quantities of illegal substances in indictments …
Discussion: theGrio, Hit & Run and The Week
Jonathan Weil / Bloomberg:
Eric Holder Owes the American People an Apology  —  The Justice Department made a long-overdue disclosure late Friday: Last year when U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder boasted about the successes that a high-profile task force racked up pursuing mortgage fraud, the numbers he trumpeted were grossly overstated.
Discussion: Hot Air and Eschaton
Meghashyam Mali / The Hill:
Holder to scale back tough sentences for low-level drug crimes  —  Attorney General Eric Holder is set to announce Monday that the Justice Department will no longer press mandatory minimum sentences against many low-level drug crime offenders, according to reports.
Discussion: Politico
Maria Sudekum / Associated Press:
Missouri Fair clown draws criticism for Obama mask  —  You are here  —  Home » Barack Obama » Missouri Fair clown draws criticism for Obama mask  —  KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A clown wearing a President Barack Obama mask appeared at a Missouri State Fair rodeo this weekend …
Discussion: Capitol Report and Post Politics
Dana Loesch / RedState:
Clown Dresses As Obama At MO State Fair, Democrats Cry “Racism®” *UPDATED
Discussion: The Hill, CNN and The Gateway Pundit
Justin Wingerter / CBS St. Louis:
Rodeo Clown Dresses As President Obama at Mo. State Fair
Discussion: Show Me Progress and The Raw Story
Yael T. Abouhalkah / Kansas City Star:
Shameful Missouri State Fair stunt smears Obama
Jennifer Jacobs / Des Moines Register:
Vice President Joe Biden will be in Iowa for Harkin steak fry  —  Vice President Joe Biden has accepted U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin's invitation to attend his steak fry this year, White House officials told The Des Moines Register this evening.  —  “It has been a long-standing commitment …
Discussion: Politico
Jonathan Martin / The Caucus:
Biden, Hinting at 2016, to Speak at Iowa Event
Discussion: Post Politics and
Patrick O'Connor / Wall Street Journal:   In Iowa, It Looks a Lot Like 2016
Meghashyam Mali / The Hill:
Biden to speak at Iowa Dem fundraiser
Discussion: CNN
Nick Allen / Telegraph:
First dog Bo is airlifted to Obama holiday home  —  When President Barack Obama goes on holiday to the seaside things can get complicated.  —  Bo, the US First Family's waterdog, gets off the Marine helicopter at Martha's Vineyard  —  Rooms have to be found for dozens of Secret Service agents …
Tennessee Judge orders baby's name be changed from ‘Messiah’  —  Jaleesa Martin and the father of Messiah could not agree on a last name, which is how they ended up at a child support hearing in Cocke County Chancery Court on Thursday.  —  That is when the first name came into question.
Meghashyam Mali / The Hill:
Weiner unveils first TV ad, vowing to fight ‘powerful voices’  —  Former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) on Sunday unveiled his first television ad in his bid to be New York City mayor, vowing to fight the “powerful voices” he says are trying to force him from the race.
Discussion: Politicker, CNN and Politico
Next fiscal fight: Why Wall Street should worry  —  NEW YORK — Talk to anyone on Wall Street and they will tell you they really don't care about the brewing fiscal storm in Washington.  Possible government shutdown?  Whatever.  Debt ceiling crisis?  Meh.
Discussion: Business Insider
Stephen Moore / Wall Street Journal:
The Budget Sequester Is a Success  —  The Obama spending blitz is over and the deficit is heading below 4% of GDP.  —  The biggest underreported story out of Washington this year is that the federal budget is shrinking and much more than anyone in either party expected.
Discussion: VodkaPundit
Scott Neuman / U.S.:
Family Rescued In Pacific After Sailing ‘Where God Led Us’ … A leap of faith that sent an Arizona family bound for the South Pacific in a sailboat has returned them in an airplane after a harrowing ordeal at sea that saw them adrift and nearly out of food in one of the remotest stretches of ocean on the planet.
Discussion: The Mahablog and Balloon Juice
Associated Press:
Family leaves US on sailboat over religious concerns to start new life, becomes lost at sea
Discussion: The Raw Story and The Dish
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Milton Friedman, Unperson  —  Recently Senator Rand Paul, potential presidential candidate and self-proclaimed expert on monetary issues, sat down for an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek.  It didn't go too well.  For example, Mr. Paul talked about America running “a trillion-dollar deficit every year” …
New York Post:
Newark Mayor Cory Booker pocketed ‘confidential’ annual payouts from law firm while in office  —  Cory Booker pocketed “confidential” annual payouts from his former law firm while serving as Newark mayor.  —  Booker, the front-runner in New Jersey's Senate race, received five checks …
Wall Street Journal:
Statement Issued by Ann Heywood  —  Mother of Murdered British Businessman Breaks Her Silence  —  This is the full text of a statement issued Sunday by Ann Heywood, the mother of a British businessman whose murder triggered China's worst political crisis in more than two decades.
Discussion: National Updates, Guardian and BBC
David Cameron / Telegraph:
We cannot afford to miss out on shale gas  —  Safe fracking will cut energy bills and create wealth without ruining precious countryside, writes David Cameron  —  Britain has led the way in technological endeavour: fracking is part of this tradition  —  Fracking has become a national debate …
Tal Kopan / Politico:
Trump spars with ABC reporter over Obama's birth certificate  —  Donald Trump, in the early presidential caucus state of Iowa this weekend for an event featuring many potential 2016 Republican presidential hopefuls, defended his questioning of President Barack Obama's place of birth in an interview aired Sunday on ABC's “This Week.”
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 More Items: 
Robin Sidel / Wall Street Journal:
Regulator Examines Bitcoin Practices
Discussion: The Verge and Business Insider
Christopher Thompson / Financial Times:
Eurozone banks need to shed €3.2tn in assets to meet Basel III
Lee Fang /
Science Committee Congressman: Global Warming a ‘Fraud’ to ‘Create Global Government’
Discussion: The Raw Story and Hullabaloo
Philip Rucker / Washington Post:
Hillary Clinton's theme, pre-2016: Women who break barriers
Discussion: The Fix and Post Politics
Bill McBride / Calculated Risk:
U.S. Population Distribution by Age, 1900 through 2060
Discussion: AEIdeas and Business Insider
Stephen Carter / Bloomberg:
Unpopular Republicans See Gains in '14 Elections
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Sky News:
Zanzibar Acid Attack: Suspect Preacher On Run
Discussion: Telegraph, Guardian and Jihad Watch
 Earlier Items: 
Peter Singer / New York Times:
Good Charity, Bad Charity  —  YOU are thinking of donating to a worthy cause.
Discussion: National Review
Suzanne Goldenberg / Guardian:
A Texan tragedy: ample oil, no water
Brian Stelter / New York Times:
NBC Buying Web Service to Stream Phone Video
KC Downey / WMUR:
Man shoots and kills son, himself at Manchester YWCA
Nicholas D. Kristof / New York Times:
Help Thy Neighbor and Go Straight to Prison