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8:10 PM ET, October 18, 2013


 Top Items: 
Anatomy of a shutdown  —  House Speaker John Boehner just wanted to sneak out of the White House for a smoke.  —  But President Barack Obama pulled him aside for a grilling.  Obama wanted to know why they were in the second day of a government shutdown that the speaker had repeatedly and publicly pledged to avoid.
Donors' frustration with GOP mounts  —  Republican donors were horrified in November after pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into losing campaigns for president and Congress with nothing to show for it.  A year later they're appalled by how little has changed, angered by the behavior …
Aaron Blake / Post Politics:
Reid: Cruz acted with an eye on the White House
Jim Demint / Wall Street Journal:
We Won't Back Down on ObamaCare  —  Fighting a law that is unfair …
Eric Stern / Salon:
Inside the Fox News lie machine: I fact-checked Sean Hannity on Obamacare  —  UPDATE I re-reported a Fox News segment on Obamacare — it was appallingly easy to see how it misleads the audience  —  I happened to turn on the Hannity show on Fox News last Friday evening.
Alexandra Jaffe / Ballot Box:
McConnell challenger nabs big endorsement
Discussion: Politico, The Dish and The Right Scoop
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Uninsured Americans Still Unfamiliar With Health Exchanges  —  Seven in 10 not familiar with exchanges, unchanged since September  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Although federal and state health insurance exchanges opened on Oct. 1, 71% of Americans who lack health insurance — the primary target group …
Geoffrey Cowley /
Obamacare: The ultimate survivor
Discussion: NewsBusters and The Hill
Eric Lach / Talking Points Memo:
Kansas Supreme Court Suspends Ex-Attorney General Over Abortion Investigation  —  The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday indefinitely suspended former Attorney General Phillip Kline (R), who investigated abortion doctor George Tiller, from the practice of law in the state.
Discussion: Kansas City Star and Balloon Juice
NJ Supreme Court rules same-sex couples can marry beginning Monday  —  Same-sex marriages will begin Monday in New Jersey after the state Supreme Court ruled Friday that the state must begin granting same-sex marriage licenses, a rebuff to Gov. Chris Christie.
Ryan Cooper / The Plum Line:
Here's a ‘grand bargain’ for ya: Tax cuts for $1 trillion in infrastructure spending  —  With the government shutdown over, the serious political discussion moves to the budget talks, already in progress.  But it's already obvious the talks are likely to go nowhere, because Republicans won't give any ground on new revenues.
Michael M. Grynbaum / New York Times:
At Al Smith Dinner, Colbert Doesn't Spare Politicians  —  When the comedian Stephen Colbert took to the dais on Thursday for his keynote speech at the Al Smith white-tie charity dinner, the annual gathering of New York's Roman Catholic elite, he immediately flashed a sly glance at Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan, sitting a few seats away.
Jonathan Tasini / Playboy:
PLAYBOY INTERVIEW: BERNIE SANDERS  —  At a time when politicians—particularly members of Congress—are almost universally reviled and blind partisanship seems to dictate the fate of every piece of legislation, one U.S. senator stands out as a unique voice.  —  Bernie Sanders has been a senator from Vermont since 2006.
Carl Campanile / New York Post:
Docs worried sick over ObamaCare  —  New York doctors are feeling queasy about ObamaCare — and many won't participate in the new national insurance program because they fear they'll go broke, The Post has learned.  —  “ObamaCare is going to send me more patients to see and then cut …
Jill Lawrence /
The Truthiness of Rand Paul  —  The junior senator from Kentucky could transform the GOP—if the facts don't get in his way.  —  LOUISVILLE, Ky.—Rand Paul was talking with University of Louisville medical students when one of them tossed him a softball.  “The majority of med students here today have a comprehensive exam tomorrow.
Discussion: Yahoo! News and Daily Kos
Todd Starnes / Fox News:
Family fights to include ‘Jesus’ on grave marker at city-owned cemetery  —  The family of a Colorado preacher's wife is still fuming after the director of the city-owned cemetery refused to engrave her final resting place with the name ‘Jesus’ because it might offend people.
Hadas Gold / Politico:
Nate Silver previews site, hits POLITICO  —  Nate Silver, the statistician who recently joined ESPN from The New York Times, previewed his new website on Friday and dished out some criticisms of the current journalism environment, much of it directed at POLITICO.
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Mike Ludwig / Truthout Stories:
Food Stamp Outage Highlights Problems With Privatization of Public Services  —  The government shutdown was not to blame for the crashing of the food stamp program for poor families in 17 states over the weekend, just the latest in a long line of snafus by private contractors hired by government.
Mike Tipping:
On tape, Gov. LePage justifies cutting taxes for millionaires with wildly inaccurate claim  —  LePage holds a chart during a 2010 debate.  - Robert F. Bukaty |  BDN  —  A hallmark of Governor Paul LePage's administration has been his advocacy for income and estate tax breaks …
Discussion: Crooks and Liars
Alan Cowell / New York Times:
Saudi Arabia Rejects Security Council Seat  —  LONDON — Assailing what it called double standards at the United Nations, Saudi Arabia took the surprising step Friday of declining an invitation to take a rotating seat on the Security Council just one day after it was chosen to join the body for a two-year term.
Jonathan Cohn / The New Republic:
The Truth About the Obamacare Rollout  —  The feds botched the website.  But the states are doing much better.  —  The federal government is open and paying its bills, which means you can start looking at the other big story from the past few weeks: The startup of Obamacare's marketplaces.
Paul Krugman:
The China-Debt Syndrome  —  Matthew Yglesias notes an uptick in Very Serious People warning that China might lose confidence in America and start dumping our bonds.  He focuses on China's motives, which is useful.  But the crucial point, which he touches on only briefly at the end …
Discussion: Slate and EconLog
Charlie Cook /
Conservatives, Get a Grip on Reality!  —  Those who thought shutting down the government was a winning strategy should have their heads examined.  —  Here's a question for conservatives and Republicans: Going into the 2012 Election Day, or even in the last few days before Election Day, did you think Mitt Romney was going to win?
Charles Krauthammer / Washington Post:
Redskins and reason  —  In re the (Washington) Redskins.  Should the name be changed?  —  I don't like being lectured by sportscasters about ethnic sensitivity.  Or advised by the president of the United States about changing team names.  Or blackmailed by tribal leaders playing the race card.
Massimo Calabresi / TIME:
Ted Cruz Failed To Disclose Ties To Caribbean Holding Company  —  An old college friendship led to financial entanglement with a Jamaican private equity firm and a British Virgin Islands holding company.  Neither was disclosed during his 2012 campaign.  —  Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz …
Discussion: Gawker and Talking Points Memo
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 More Items: 
Alex Roarty /
Ted Cruz Is Just Getting Started
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Jonathan Easley / The Hill:
White House to resume tours
Discussion: Politico and CNN
Chris Matthews / The Boston Globe:
Yes, politics was once friendly
Discussion: Mediaite, Weasel Zippers and Hot Air
Jeremy Herb / The Hill:
Obama nominates former Pentagon lawyer to replace Napolitano
Discussion: Politico, CNN and ABC News
Floyd Norris / New York Times:
Extracting a Toll From a Patent ‘Troll’
Discussion: PointOfLaw Forum
Michael Martinez / CNN:
Four things we learned from government shutdown
Discussion: The Reaction
Pew Research Center for the People and the Press:
Trust in Government Nears Record Low, But Most Federal Agencies Are Viewed Favorably
Scott Bauer / Minneapolis Star Tribune:
APNewsBreak: Walker calls for positive GOP message
Discussion: Politico
 Earlier Items: 
Curtis Gans / Washington Monthly:
Why Only Republicans Can Save Us From the Tea Party
Peggy Noonan / Wall Street Journal:
Noonan: The Wisdom of ‘Mr. Republican’
Tom Kludt / Talking Points Memo:
FreedomWorks CEO: ‘A Real Possibility’ That The GOP Splits In Two
Discussion: Daily Kos and The Raw Story
Andrew Cohen / The Atlantic Online:
Daniel Snyder's Best Possible Answer to Critics of the Redskins' Name
Discussion: ThinkProgress
The Atlantic Online:
How the GOP Slowly Went Insane
Discussion: CANNONFIRE
Wall Street Journal:
Health Website Woes Widen as Insurers Get Wrong Data