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5:50 PM ET, October 12, 2013


 Top Items: 
Democrats reject Susan Collins proposal  —  Democratic leaders in the Senate are rejecting an offer by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) to end the budget impasse, arguing it asks for too much in return for too little, senators and aides tell POLITICO.  —  The development comes on the same …
House takes back seat after W.H. rejects plan  —  Speaker John Boehner told House Republicans Saturday morning that his efforts to strike a deal with President Barack Obama are at a standstill.  —  There is no agreement, Boehner said in a room in the Capitol Saturday, and there are no …
Jonathan Strong / National Review:
Paul Ryan Flashes Anger at Senate Republicans  —  House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan lashed out at Senate Republicans for interfering with the House GOP's talks with the White House to reopen the government and lift the debt ceiling, suggesting his colleagues on the other side of the Capitol were betraying Speaker John Boehner.
Rosalind S. Helderman / Washington Post:
Reid, McConnell launch bipartisan talks on ending shutdown  —  Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) have launched discussions over a proposal to raise the debt ceiling and end the government shutdown, after talks between House Republicans and President Obama reached an impasse.
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
New York Times:
Senate Leaders Try to End Debt Crisis; Talks Fail in House  —  WASHINGTON — Senate leaders on Saturday began last-ditch negotiations on reopening the government and raising the debt ceiling as talks between House Republicans and the White House collapsed, dashing hopes for a quick resolution …
HOUSE GOP BLINKS: WILL LIFT DEBT AND REOPEN GOVERNMENT  —  House Republicans have sent the White House a revised proposal to lift the debt ceiling for six weeks, as well as reopen government through December 15th, which was their original spending proposal before the partial shutdown.
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
New Senate GOP plan would raise debt-limit until January 2014  —  A trio of centrist Senate Republicans is pushing a plan to reopen the government for six months, extend the debt ceiling until Jan. 31, 2014 and make reforms to ObamaCare.  —  Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) …
The White House:   WEEKLY ADDRESS: Let's Get Back to the Work of the American People
Emma Dumain / Roll Call:
House GOP Talks With Obama Break Down as Both Look to Senate
New York Times:
N.S.A. Director Gives Firm and Broad Defense of Surveillance Efforts  —  FORT MEADE, Md. — The director of the National Security Agency, Gen. Keith B. Alexander, said in an interview that to prevent terrorist attacks he saw no effective alternative to the N.S.A.'s bulk collection of telephone …
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and emptywheel
Martin Longman / Washington Monthly:
My Thoughts Are With India  —  Facebook Twitter Digg Reddit StumbleUpon Delicious  —  Cyclone Phailin has made landfall on the Indian coast near Gopalpur with sustained winds of 125 mph.  They've prepared as best as they can, but this storm has the potential to be even more devastating than Hurricane Katrina.
Discussion: BBC and Brad DeLong
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Cruzification of the GOP  —  When a poll came out this week showing that the government shutdown was putting Republican Mike Coffman in danger of losing his Colorado congressional seat, the lawmaker responded with the serenity of martyrs through the ages.  —  “Whatever the consequences …
Paul Bond / Hollywood Reporter:
MSNBC President Wants ‘Investigation’ Into Fox News' ‘Impossible’ Ratings Gain  —  Megyn Kelly blew out Rachel Maddow in the key demo on Tuesday after losing to her the night before.  “I have never seen it in all my years of cable,” says Phil Griffin.  —  Phil Griffin, president of MSNBC …
Josh Barro / Business Insider:
Ted Cruz Is Living On Another Planet  —  This morning, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz (R) spoke to the Values Voters Summit, and his speech was really weird.  It's like he's living on another planet.  —  On Planet Cruz, there is a massive outpouring of public support for a government shutdown …
Caitlin MacNeal / Talking Points Memo:
Rep. Pete King: Obama Should Donate To Ted Cruz
Discussion: Connecting.the.Dots
Sam Youngman / Lexington Herald-Leader:
Amid shutdown thaw, McConnell says it's time for ‘come together’ moment  —  WASHINGTON — As the standoff over the federal government shutdown appears to be thawing, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Friday that it is time for a “come together” moment.
Hanna Rosin / CNN:   Men dither while women lead in the world
Shawn Turner / ODNI Newsroom Feed:
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Approves Government's Application to Renew Telephony Metadata Program  —  As indicated by a declassified court order and amended memorandum opinion published by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Sept. 17, 2013, the court authorization requiring …
Brendan Sasso / The Hill:
Court: NSA can continue sweeping phone data collection (Video)
Discussion: Politico
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 More Items: 
Jackie Calmes / New York Times:
Stuck on Usual Quarrel: Raising New Revenue
Discussion: Prairie Weather
Washington Post:
Afghan officials accuse U.S. of snatching Pakistani Taliban leader from their custody
New York Times:
2 States Plan 2-Tier System for Balloting
Discussion: Balloon Juice
 Earlier Items: 
(Credit: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque)
Discussion: PoliticusUSA
Brandon Bailey / Mercury News:
Mark Zuckerberg buys four houses near his Palo Alto home
Discussion: NBCNews, Guardian, Gawker and Mashable
Paul Dacre / Guardian:
Why is the left obsessed by the Daily Mail?
Discussion: BBC and Spectator
Lee Enterprises / Helena Independent Record:
Bullock: Montana won't pay to open national parks
Discussion: E2-Wire, GovBeat and Politico