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2:20 PM ET, February 13, 2014


 Top Items: 
Carl Hulse / New York Times:
‘Vote No, Hope Yes’ Defines Dysfunction in Congress  —  WASHINGTON — After the shutdown, the filibusters and years of stalled bills, it was the actual passage of legislation this week that revealed the true depth of congressional dysfunction.  —  The House vote to raise the debt limit …
Alan I. Abramowitz / Sabato's Crystal Ball:
2014 House Forecast Update: No Wave in Sight  —  The results of a simple but extremely accurate midterm election forecasting model indicate that the 2014 U.S. House elections are likely to result in minimal change in the party balance of power.  The forecasting model uses three predictors …
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Ed Kilgore / Washington Monthly:
Hypocrite's Corner
Alec Macgillis / The New Republic:
Chris Christie's Entire Career Reeks  —  It's not just the bridge  —  Has there ever been a political reversal of fortune as rapid and as absolute as the one just experienced by Chris Christie?  At warp speed, the governor of New Jersey has gone from the most popular politician in the country …
How Comcast Buying Time Warner Cable Could Impact You — And The Entire Entertainment Industry  —  Comcast Cable President and CEO Neil Smit.  —  CREDIT: AP Images/Evan Agostini  —  Today, Comcast, already the country's largest provider of cable television, announced that it would spend $45 billion …
David Gelles / DealBook:
Comcast Deal Seeks to Unite 2 Cable Giants
Damon Linker / The Week:
Is opposing gay marriage the same as being a racist?  —  Conservative opposition to same sex marriage is deeply rooted in religious belief  —  W  —  riting at The New Republic, Isaac Chotiner doesn't much appreciate my argument about the growing cockiness of secular liberals.
Sahil Kapur / Talking Points Memo:
How The Supreme Court Pushed Judges To Strike Down Gay Marriage Bans
Discussion: Off the Kuff and Associated Press
The Hill:
Before O-Care debacle, Sebelius made many trips to White House  —  Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was in frequent contact with President Obama and senior White House aides before the disastrous launch of the federal ObamaCare exchange last year.
Discussion: CNN, Politico and Mediaite
Karl Rove / Wall Street Journal:   Karl Rove: Behind the White House's Health-Law Dodges
Tom Kludt / Talking Points Memo:
Maddow Defends Bridge Coverage Following ‘Morning Joe’ Criticism (VIDEO)  —  Rachel Maddow kicked off her show Wednesday evening with what seemed like a repudiation to what was said on her own network several hours earlier.  —  “It has been a big day today in the biggest political story …
Rachael Bade / Politico:
Scott Walker: I believe Chris Christie
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Right Turn
Erika Eichelberger / Mother Jones:
Wednesday Was Full of Good News for Obamacare.  Here Are the Charts That Prove It.  —  More Americans enrolled in Obamacare plans in January than expected, according to data released Wednesday by the Obama administration.  The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) had expected to sign up 1,059,900 people last month.
Quinnipiac News + Events:
Release Detail  —  February 13, 2014 - Cuomo Thumps Trump, Astorino In New York Gov Race, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Clinton Runs Better Against Christie In 2016 Race  —  New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has a 63 - 28 percent job approval rating, higher than the current scores for any governor …
Patrick O'Connor / Wall Street Journal:
Gay Republican Candidate's Ad Poses Test for Party  —  Carl DeMaio is one of three openly gay Republicans running for Congress this year, and he would be at least the third to serve in the House if he wins.  But Mr. DeMaio on Thursday will take a step that none of them has …
Dylan Scott / Talking Points Memo:
For First Time, Gay GOP House Candidate Features Partner In Ad
Discussion: Outside the Beltway and Hit & Run
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Rand Paul and Ken Cuccinelli accused of stealing NSA lawsuit  —  Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) has been caught using purloined passages in several of his speeches.  Now the aspiring presidential candidate stands accused of filing a lawsuit stolen from its author.  —  Since December …
Garrett Epps / The Atlantic Online:
How the Case of an Amish Farmer Could Doom Hobby Lobby in Court  —  It doesn't matter whether an employer is secular or religious, non-profit or for-profit.  The Supreme Court's precedents show that the government's interest in nationwide programs trumps all.  —  Edwin Lee was a Pennsylvania Amish farmer and carpenter.
Discussion: SCOTUSblog
Adam Gopnik / New Yorker:
When did faith start to fade?  —  In Tom Stoppard's 1970 play “Jumpers,” the philosopher hero broods unhappily on the inexorable rise of the atheist: “The tide is running his way, and it is a tide which has turned only once in human history. . . . There is presumably a calendar date—a moment …
Discussion: Ross Douthat
NBC News:
Exclusive: Snowden Swiped Password From NSA Coworker - NBC News  —  A civilian NSA employee recently resigned after being stripped of his security clearance for allowing former agency contractor Edward Snowden to use his pers...
Why The Senate STILL Isn't Able To Get Anything Done Even After The ‘Nuclear Option’  —  It wasn't supposed to be this way.  —  In 2013, the Senate adopted two of the most significant changes to its rules in nearly 40 years.  The first significantly reduced the amount of time senators …
Discussion: Senate Democrats
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Vulnerable Dems want IRS to step up  —  Senate Democrats facing tough elections this year want the Internal Revenue Service to play a more aggressive role in regulating outside groups expected to spend millions of dollars on their races.  —  In the wake of the IRS targeting scandal …
Art Swift / Gallup:
Americans' Views of Russia, Putin Are Worst in Years  —  Clear majority view the Russian president and his nation unfavorably  —  WASHINGTON, D.C. — As host nation Russia dominates the world stage at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Americans clearly do not think highly of the country or its president, Vladimir Putin.
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 More Items: 
Paul Steinhauser / CNN:
Another senior House Republican announces retirement
Discussion: Politico
Byron Tau / Politico:
Anti-debt group finds itself in red
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Daily Kos
Shane Goldmacher /
Wanted: A Sugar Daddy to Fund My 2016 Presidential Campaign
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Wall Street Journal:
Americans in poorer counties face few health-plan choices, high premiums on online exchanges
Discussion: National Review
 Earlier Items: 
Isaac Chotiner / The New Republic:
George Will, Tea Party Tory
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Obama taps Kennedy widow for postal board
Brent Budowsky / The Hill:
Bill de Blasio lifts the left
Peter Travers / Rolling Stone:
The Vampire Squid Strikes Again: The Mega Banks' Most Devious Scam Yet
New York Times:
Sid Caesar, Comedian of Comedians From TV's Early Days, Dies at 91
Discussion: Joe. My. God., BBC and The Talking Dog
Nick Viviani / WIBW-TV:
Kansas House Approves Gay Marriage Bill | Dems Under Fire