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6:15 PM ET, March 4, 2014


 Top Items: 
Julia Ioffe / The New Republic:
Putin's Press Conference Proved Merkel Right: He's Lost His Mind  —  In Sunday's New York Times, Peter Baker reported that German Chancellor Angela Merkel had tried talking some sense into Vladimir Putin.  The Russian leader has an affinity for the Germans and Merkel especially …
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Obama, the feckless tyrant  —  President Obama is such a weak strongman.  What's more, he is a feeble dictator and a timid tyrant.  —  That, at any rate, is Republicans' critique of him.  With Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Obama's critics pivoted seamlessly from complaining about his overreach …
Russian stocks, ruble rebound as Putin breaks silence on Ukraine  —  (Reuters) - Russian assets rebounded on Tuesday as President Vladimir Putin said he would only use force in neighbouring Ukraine as a last resort.  —  The mood on the markets was calmer after panic selling on Monday …
Fox News:
Putin's claim of no Russian troops in Crimea stuns Kerry
Elise Viebeck / The Hill:
New ObamaCare delay to help midterm Dems  —  The Obama administration is set to announce another major delay in implementing the Affordable Care Act, easing election pressure on Democrats.  —  As early as this week, according to two sources, the White House will announce a new directive allowing insurers …
Reid J. Epstein / Politico:
Obama 2015 budget: $3.9 trillion
Discussion: New York Times and Fox News
The Fiscal Times:
Economists Say Paul Ryan Misrepresented Their Research  —  The Fiscal Times  —  An exhaustive critique of the federal social safety net released by Rep. Paul Ryan on Monday is meant to be the intellectual foundation for an overhaul of the federal anti-poverty programs.
Pew Research Center for the People and the Press:
Hillary Clinton's Strengths: Record at State, Toughness, Honesty  —  But Benghazi Seen as Top Negative  —  If she runs for president in 2016, Hillary Clinton would bring a number of potential strengths to the race, from her tenure as secretary of state to her perceived toughness and honesty.
Discussion: CNN, and Post Politics
David Freedlander / The Daily Beast:
As Ukraine Rages, GOP Fires on Hillary for Failed “Reset”
Discussion: BuzzFeed, The Dish, Yahoo! News and The Week
Jeff Weiner / Orlando Sentinel:
Wife says Alan Grayson shoved her during domestic incident  —  Judge issues temporary injunction after wife's allegations against U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, D-Orlando.  —  A judge has granted a temporary protective injunction against U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, after his wife filed paperwork accusing …
Emily Atkin / ThinkProgress:
Chipotle Warns It Might Stop Serving Guacamole If Climate Change Gets Worse  —  This Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, photo, shows the door on a Chipotle Mexican Grill in Robinson Township, Pa  —  It's your choice, America.  Fix the climate, or the guac gets it.  —  Chipotle Inc. is warning investors …
Natalie Villacorta / Politico:
Sarah Palin: Barack Obama known for ‘mom jeans’  —  Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin says that Russian President Vladimir Putin is a man known for wrestling bears while President Barack Obama is known for wearing mom jeans.  —  “People are looking at Putin as one who wrestles bears and drills for oil …
Andrew Kirell / Mediaite:
Lindsey Graham Blames Russian Invasion on Obama Reaction to Benghazi  —  Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) took to Twitter this afternoon to connect the Russian invasion into Ukraine's Crimean peninsula to the Obama administration's response to the 2012 terrorist attack on a U.S. consulate in Libya that left four Americans dead.
Zack Beauchamp / ThinkProgress:
Lindsey Graham Blames Benghazi For Ukraine Crisis
Igor Bobic / Talking Points Memo:
Michele Bachmann Is Disappointed That American Jews ‘Sold Out’ By Supporting Obama  —  Michele Bachmann is deeply disappointed with the American Jewish community for supporting President Barack Obama, whose policies she believes will reduce Israel to “rubble.”
Ezekiel J. Emanuel / The New Republic:
Insurance Companies as We Know Them Are About to Die  —  And here's what's going to replace them  —  Americans hate health insurance companies.  They are easy targets for everyone to beat up on.  When premiums go up, we blame insurance companies; we do not blame the underlying hospitals …
Bill Bush / The Columbus Dispatch:
Boy points finger like gun, gets suspended  —  A Columbus principal suspended a student for three days last week after the child pointed a “lookalike firearm” at another student in class and pretended to shoot.  —  The boy's age?  10. The “level 2 lookalike firearm” cited in his suspension letter?
Igor Bobic / Talking Points Memo:
Man Accidentally Shoots 12-Year-Old Driving By His House, Immediately Shoots Self  —  An Orlando, Fl. man accidentally discharged a gun on Friday, first striking a 12-year-old girl in a moving car then himself immediately after, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
Discussion: Orlando Sentinel and ThinkProgress
Isaac Chotiner / The New Republic:
Mitt Romney Was Right About Russia  —  In the course of the last presidential campaign, Mitt Romney made a comment about America's number one “geopolitical foe,” which Romney claimed was Russia.  He was mocked by the president and many liberal commentators.
Noah Rothman / Mediaite:
Rothman: MSNBC's Most Embarrassing Mockery of Romney's Russia Warnings
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
The GOP's Obamacare repeal dilemma, in one quote  —  The other day I noted that Thom Tillis, the expected GOP candidate for Senate in North Carolina, has been struggling to explain his stance on Obamacare — he knows repeal is a non-starter because the goals of Obamacare remain popular, but isn't willing to embrace any alternatives.
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Hullabaloo
New York Times:
Corrections: March 4, 2014  —  An article on Wednesday about the unfinished Crimean palace of Viktor F. Yanukovych, the ousted president of Ukraine, referred imprecisely to his possible fate.  While the new government in Kiev wants to put him on trial for mass murder, and many are calling for his execution …
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 More Items: 
Dan Merica / CNN:
D.C. council votes to ease marijuana laws
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and The Verge
Joseph Goldstein / New York Times:
A Former Police Diver Claims Other Officers Racially Taunted Him
Discussion: Colorlines and ABC News
Eliana Johnson / National Review:
Ronan Farrow: The Young Man Only Old People Like
Discussion: The Daily Caller and TVNewser
Sahil Kapur / Talking Points Memo:
White House Suggests Social Security Cuts Remain ‘On The Table’
Benedict Carey / New York Times:
LSD, Reconsidered for Therapy
Discussion: The Raw Story
Mark Leibovich / New York Times:
Fake Outrage in the Kentucky Senate Race
Charlie Cook /
Congressional Democrats Face Uphill Battle in Midterms
Discussion: Prairie Weather
 Earlier Items: 
James Mann / The New Republic:
The Obama administration's rhetoric on Russia is accomplishing nothing
Discussion: VodkaPundit
Jenny Jarvie / The New Republic:
Trigger Happy  —  The “trigger warning” has spread from blogs to college classes.
Discussion: Shakesville and The Agonist
Anna Silman / Vulture:
Let's Talk About Those Creepy Rural Mardi Gras Pictures on True Detective
Discussion: Balloon Juice
Todd Starnes / Fox News:
Team Obama wins fight to have Christian home-school family deported
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Facebook In Talks To Acquire Drone Maker Titan Aerospace