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11:15 AM ET, October 31, 2013


 Top Items: 
Avik Roy / Forbes:
Obama Officials In 2010: 93 Million Americans Will Be Unable To Keep Their Health Plans Under Obamacare  —  On Wednesday, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius testified before Congress about the continuing issues with the rollout of Obamacare's health insurance exchanges.
Investor's Business Daily:
The Biggest Lie?  ‘Keep Your Plan’  —  Deception: In the face of millions of cancellation notices, Democrats want to downplay the president's “keep your health plan” pledge as standard political hyperbole.  It was, in fact, a calculated lie that got ObamaCare enacted.
David Firestone / Taking Note:
The Uproar Over Insurance ‘Cancellation’ Letters  —  Kathleen Sebelius, the Health and Human Services secretary, took a lot of grief Wednesday from Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee who were outraged that some people's individual insurance policies had been “cancelled” because of health care reform.
Discussion: The Raw Story and Right Wing News
Aaron Blake / Post Politics:
Obama blames ‘bad apple insurers’ for canceled insurance plans  —  President Obama tried a new tack Wednesday as he fought back against criticism of his Obamacare claims.  —  Fact-checkers and journalists have ruled that Obama wasn't being truthful when he claimed that people who liked their insurance could keep it.
Katie McHugh / The Daily Caller:
Report: White House exerting ‘massive pressure’ on insurance companies to keep quiet
Discussion: Hot Air, Post Politics, NBCNews and The Dish
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
In health care mess, Obama reaps what he sowed
Discussion: Conservatives4Palin
David Corn / Mother Jones:
WATCH: Ted Cruz's Dad Calls US a “Christian Nation,” Says Obama Should Go “Back to Kenya”  —  Want to understand where the tea party champion's hardcore views come from?  Meet his father, Rafael.  —  In April, Rafael Cruz, the father of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), spoke to the tea party of Hood County …
Rebecca Shabad / The Hill:
Reid: Cruz nomination would destroy GOP  —  Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) says if Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) won the Republican nomination for president, it would destroy the GOP.  —  In an interview on MSNBC's “The Rachel Maddow Show” Wednesday night, Reid discussed fallout from the 16 …
Discussion: CNN, Politico and Sabato's Crystal Ball
David Denby / Comment:
TED CRUZ: THE MASK OF SINCERITY  —  When Ted Cruz lies, he appears to be praying.  His lips narrow, almost disappearing into his face, and his eyebrows shift abruptly, rising like a drawbridge on his forehead into matching acute angles.  He attains an appearance of supplication …
Mark Murray / NBCNews:
NBC/WSJ poll: Obama approval sinks to new low  —  President Barack Obama's approval rating has declined to an all-time low as public frustration with Washington and pessimism about the nation's direction continue to grow, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.
Michael O'Brien / NBC Politics:
Obama leadership style raises question of ‘who is in control?’
Joe Biden / CNN:
Biden apologizes, says Obama tried to log on to health site
Discussion: Politico and Weasel Zippers
Ian Swanson / The Hill:
President asked Hillary to stay  —  President Obama asked Hillary Clinton to stay on for an extra year as secretary of State after he won reelection.  —  Obama was worried at the time about losing both Clinton and Leon Panetta, his outgoing Defense secretary, according to an excerpt released Thursday …
Katie Glueck / Politico:
Book: Obama asked Hillary Clinton to stay
Peter Nicholas / Washington Wire:
Hillary Clinton's Ratings Slip in New WSJ/NBC Poll
Discussion: Politico
Rich Lowry / Politico:
The Obamacare whiners  —  Henry Waxman made a plea at the end of Wednesday's House hearing grilling of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.  The California Democrat and liberal lion asked Republicans to reach across the aisle to work with Democrats to improve Obamacare.
Discussion: National Review
Jim Acosta / CNN:
White House on Sebelius hearing: GOP ‘did us a favor up there’
Discussion: Politico, The Hill and American Power
Rush Limbaugh:
Republicans Demonstrate No Strategy or Desire to Win at Sebelius Hearing
Timothy H. Lee / The Hill:
Proposed bills fail to fix Fannie and Freddie  —  Remember the Detroit auto bailout, when the federal government improperly rewarded favored constituencies like labor unions in violation of secured creditors' contractual rights?  —  The Obama Administration's conduct flatly violated …
Mike Lillis / TheHill:
Pelosi: No revenue, no deal  —  New revenue must be part of any bipartisan agreement to eliminate the sequester, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Wednesday.  —  Although President Obama has reportedly signaled an openness to tackle the across-the-board cuts without hiking taxes …
Norm Ornstein /
The Right to Vote  —  It is becoming increasingly obvious that the Supreme Court decision in Shelby County v. Holder, which eviscerated the Voting Rights Act, is leading to a new era of voter suppression that parallels the pre-1960s era—this time affecting not just African-Americans …
Daniel Halper / Weekly Standard:
Obamacare Navigator Hasn't Signed Up Anyone Because It's Too Expensive  —  Al Jazeera finds an Obamacare navigator in Colorado who hasn't signed up anybody for the new program because it's too expensive:  —  “So far, no one,” says the Obamacare navigator.  “Thus far everybody has taken …
Discussion: Hot Air
Rowan Scarborough / Washington Times:
U.S. commandos fought in Benghazi  —  Two out of eight in Tripoli sent to rescue, honored for valor  —  Masked from public view, two of the U.S. military's elite special operations commandos have been awarded medals for bravery for a mission that further undercuts the Obama administration's original story about the Benghazi tragedy.
Erik Wasson / The Hill:
Deficit was $680 billion in 2013  —  The federal budget deficit for fiscal 2013 was $680 billion, the Treasury Department reported Wednesday.  —  This is the first time that the deficit has fallen below $1 trillion during President Obama's time in the White House.
MASSIVE OIL DISCOVERY IN AUSTRALIA IS DEATHBLOW FOR SAUDIS  —  It is 6 times larger than the Bakken, 17 times the size of the Marcellus formation, and 80 times larger than the Eagle Ford shale.  —  All told the recent discovery outside a sleepy Australian town contains more black gold than in all of Iran, Iraq, Canada, or Venezuela.
Discussion: Israpundit and Israel Matzav
Daniel Henninger / Wall Street Journal:
Henninger: Progressive Government Fails  —  Obama's ideology is the politics of the personal cram down.
Steve Rosenbush / The CIO Report:
Facebook Tests Software to Track Your Cursor on Screen  —  Facebook Inc. is testing technology that would greatly expand the scope of data that it collects about its users, the head of the company's analytics group said Tuesday.  —  The social network may start collecting data …
Dan Filler / The Faculty Lounge:
Law School Applicant Pool Likely To Shrink Further  —  LSAC has now released data about the number of people who sat for the October LSAT.  The total number of takers was down 10.9% from October 2012.  The number of first time takers was down roughly 13% from last October.
Discussion: TaxProf Blog
Stuart Stevens / The Daily Beast:
Nixon, Obama, and How We Lost Trust in the U.S. Government  —  After Nixon's obfuscation on Vietnam, the press viewed those in power with a skepticism verging on cynicism.  That changed with Obama—though his Obamacare untruths are worse.  —  The Vietnam War dominated the presidential campaign of 1968.
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 More Items: 
Keith L. Alexander / Washington Post:
Billboard advocating jury nullification concerns local prosecutors
Discussion: Hit & Run
Alan Cowell / New York Times:
Syria Is Said to Destroy All Chemical Arms Production Sites
Discussion: NBCNews
Nick Squires / Telegraph:
US ‘spied on future Pope Francis during Vatican conclave’
Eliana Johnson / National Review:
Investigation IDs IRS Leaker
Discussion: The Other McCain
James Taranto / Wall Street Journal:
Another ObamaCare Victim
Discussion: Power Line, Ed Driscoll and The Week
7 Awesome Things That Took Less Time Than
Joel Gehrke / Washington Examiner:
Ted Cruz criticizes DOJ for arguing international treaty can trump the Constitution
Discussion: BizPac Review and Weasel Zippers
 Earlier Items: 
Bill Moyers:
A Letter From Bill Moyers
Blair L. M. Kelley / theGrio:
A brief history of blackface just in time for Halloween
Wall Street Journal:
Scorn Spreads to Both Sides
Jennifer Bendery / The Huffington Post:
Patrick Leahy: ‘Insurmountable’ Push For Filibuster Rules Change If GOP Blocks Obama Nominee
Discussion: The Hill, Washington Post and Daily Kos
Marshall Sella / GQ Magazine Online:
Anthony Weiner vs. The New York Times
Ted Gayer / Brookings Institute:
Cash for Clunkers: An Evaluation of the Car Allowance Rebate System
Discussion: Politico and The Daily Caller