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2:40 PM ET, January 5, 2014


 Top Items: 
The Hill:
Boehner open to extending unemployment benefits  —  Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) remains open to an extension of emergency unemployment benefits even in the face of growing conservative opposition to such a move.  —  The Ohio Republican maintains the position he expressed last month that Republicans would …
Tarini Parti / Politico:
Sperling makes case for benefits extension
Discussion: CNN and The Week
Amie Parnes / The Hill:   Obama looks to re-launch second term bogged down in 2013
Katie Glueck / Politico:
Romney accepts MSNBC apology  —  Mitt Romney said Sunday that he's forgiven MSNBC after a host and other panelists on the network made comments about his adopted black grandchild.  —  Speaking on “Fox News Sunday,” the former Republican presidential candidate said he accepted the apology …
Discussion: CNN
Bernie Becker / The Hill:
Romney to make rare Sunday appearance  —  Mitt Romney, the most recent GOP nominee for president, is scheduled to make a rare Sunday show appearance this week in the wake of a cable news controversy surrounding a photo of one of his grandsons.  —  Romney, the former Massachusetts governor …
Discussion: Politico
New York Times:
Power Vacuum in Middle East Lifts Militants  —  BEIRUT, Lebanon — The images of recent days have an eerie familiarity, as if the horrors of the past decade were being played back: masked gunmen recapturing the Iraqi cities of Falluja and Ramadi, where so many American soldiers died fighting them.
Discussion: Right Wing News
Gulf News:
Assailants torch decades-old library in north Lebanon
Discussion: Jihad Watch and Weasel Zippers
Caitlin MacNeal / Talking Points Memo:
Romney Wishes He Could ‘Turn Back The Clock’  —  Former GOP presidential candidate and Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney on Sunday said he wished he could go back in time while discussing Obamacare.  —  “I don't know.  I wish I could go back and turn back the clock and take another try,” …
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
Sen. Paul has his own Obamacare debacle  —  Washington (CNN) - It seems everyday Americans aren't the only ones suffering through a disastrous rollout of Obamacare; politicians are, too.  —  Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, said Sunday on ABC's “This Week” that he's had trouble signing …
Discussion: Politico
Jason Samenow / Capital Weather Gang:
An astonishing, dangerous cold snap is about to descend on the U.S.  —  For days, it's appeared on computer model maps in the form of deep blue and purple shades.  Now it's about to get real and up close and personal.  Some of the coldest air in years, if not decades, is poised to pour into the U.S. …
ABC15 Arizona:
Steven Seagal mulls run for Arizona Governor  —  Steven Seagal is making headlines once again.  —  The flamboyant actor and martial arts expert tells ABC15 he's considering a run for the Arizona governor's office.  —  Seagal says he's had discussions with Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio …
Daily Mail:
Anything Arnie can do... Action hero Steven Seagal ponders running for Governor of Arizona
Discussion: Liberaland
Peter Schroeder / The Hill:
Bernanke takes parting shot at Congress, calls fiscal policy ‘counterproductive’  —  Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke offered a parting critique of Washington's fiscal policy, arguing it weighed down the economic recovery and has been “counterproductive.”
Discussion: Booman Tribune
Burgess Everett / Politico:
Dems seize on income inequality for 2014  —  Democrats aren't wasting any time tackling an issue they are convinced will help them this election year: income inequality.  —  One of the Senate's first votes upon returning to Washington from its holiday break Monday will be on a bill reviving …
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Eric Owens / The Daily Caller:
Modern Language Association's fascist douchebags outlaw The Daily Caller from convention  —  The Daily Caller has been banned from the convention of the Modern Language Association (MLA), an annual showcase for academic douchebags.  —  Although this reporter had been looking forward to the four …
Discussion: The Volokh Conspiracy
Ravi Somaiya / New York Times:
Banished for Questioning the Gospel of Guns  —  BARRY, Ill. — The byline of Dick Metcalf, one of the country's pre-eminent gun journalists, has gone missing.  It has been removed from Guns & Ammo magazine, where his widely-read column once ran on the back page.  He no longer stars on a popular television show about firearms.
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
De Blasio's Long Odds  —  THIS much can be said for Bill de Blasio's inauguration, which featured a concentration of left-wing agitprop unseen since the last time Pete Seeger occupied a stage alone: If the waning years of Barack Obama's presidency are going to be defined by a liberal crusade …
Discussion: Daily Kos
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 More Items: 
Katie Glueck / Politico:
Rand Paul backs Snowden, bashes Clapper
Discussion: New York Times, CNN and Post Politics
The Atlantic Online:
Grappling With Holodomor  —  Thoughts On Timothy Snyder's The Bloodlands
Discussion: Althouse
Lawrence Wright / New Yorker:
Annie Lowrey / New York Times:
50 Years Later, War on Poverty Is a Mixed Bag
Discussion: JustOneMinute
New York Post:
Cops make arrest in hateful ‘knockout’ spree
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Charles M. Blow / New York Times:
Indoctrinating Religious Warriors
Discussion: PJ Lifestyle
Wall Street Journal:
Little Sisters of the Government
 Earlier Items: 
Washington Post: defects leave many Americans eligible for Medicaid, CHIP without coverage
Discussion: Hot Air and Balloon Juice
Heather Mac Donald / Wall Street Journal:
The Humanities Have Forgotten Their Humanity
Ashley Parker / New York Times:
For Obama, a Real and Rare Vacation in Hawaii
Mordechai Kedar / Jerusalem Post:
Sisi: 1, Obama:0
Discussion: Israel Matzav and Weasel Zippers
Thomas Heath / Washington Post:
Bezos floored by kidney stones on vacation
Discussion: ABC News, Politico and The Raw Story
Carol Kuruvilla / NY Daily News:
Utah man is on hunger strike to end gay marriages in his state
Discussion: Advocate and Liberaland
Joshua Werbicki /
Palm Bay man charged for sex acts with family dog, police say