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2:20 PM ET, May 7, 2015


 Top Items: 
Devlin Barrett / Wall Street Journal:
Appeals Court Rules NSA Phone Program Not Authorized by Patriot Act  —  ACLU lawsuit argued the data collection should be stopped because it violates Americans' privacy rights  —  A federal appeals court ruled Thursday the National Security Agency's controversial collection of millions …
Charlie Savage / New York Times:
N.S.A. Phone Data Collection Illegal, Appeals Court Rules  —  WASHINGTON — A federal appeals court in New York on Thursday ruled that the once-secret National Security Agency program that is systematically collecting Americans' phone records in bulk is illegal.
Julian Hattem / The Hill:
Top federal court rules against NSA's phone records program  —  A federal court has decided that the National Security Agency's (NSA) bulk, warrantless collection of millions of Americans' phone records is illegal.  —  The decision from the Second Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday represents …
Discussion: ABC News and Hit & Run
Ben Kamisar / The Hill:
McCain weighs in on NSA ruling: ‘People seem to have forgotten 9/11’
Discussion: Mediaite
Ariane de Vogue / CNN:
Court rules NSA program illegal
Discussion: Gawker, Mediaite and The PJ Tatler
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:   BREAKING: Federal Appeals Court Rules That The NSA's Massive Surveillance Program Is Illegal
USA Today:
Appeals court strikes down government's phone surveillance program
Quinnipiac News + Events:
Release Detail  —  What Trouble?  Clinton Has Early Lock On Iowa Caucus, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Sanders, Biden Are Only Dems Over 3%  —  Sample and Methodology detail  —  With 60 percent of the vote among Iowa likely Democratic Caucus participants, former Secretary …
Heidi Przybyla / Bloomberg Business:
Trade Debate Gives Bernie Sanders a Chance to Put Hillary Clinton on the Hot Seat
Discussion: Politico
Sources: Baltimore police investigation doesn't support some of prosecution's charges  —  Baltimore (CNN)The Baltimore police investigation into the death of Freddie Gray doesn't support some of the charges, including the most serious, filed by the Baltimore City State's Attorney …
Sarah Maslin Nir / New York Times:
The Price of Nice Nails  —  Manicurists are routinely underpaid and exploited, and endure ethnic bias and other abuse, The New York Times has found.  —  The women begin to arrive just before 8 a.m., every day and without fail, until there are thickets of young Asian and Hispanic women …
Discussion: Gothamist, The Week and Balloon Juice
Tom Ley / Deadspin:
The Cavaliers Should Have Thought A Little Harder About This Promo  —  During last night's playoff game against the Chicago Bulls, the Cleveland Cavaliers showed the video below on the in-arena jumbotron.  The premise of the skit, which is supposed to be a Dirty Dancing spoof …
Discussion: FOX31 Denver, Mediaite and
Jeff Kaufmann / Politico:
It's time to change the Iowa Straw Poll  —  Much has changed since 1979 and sometimes cherished traditions—like the Iowa GOP Straw Poll—must change too.  What is supposed to be a fun opportunity for Iowans and presidential candidates has turned into a high-stress and expensive endeavor.
James Franco / Washington Post:
McDonald's was there for me when no one else was  —  Before stardom, James Franco was just a fast-food employee eating fries straight from the hopper.  —  McDonald's sales have slumped.  Maybe the public wants healthier food.  Maybe there's too much competition.  Maybe people aren't into the chipotle barbecue snack wrap.
Nathaniel Cary / Greenville News:
Stephen Colbert funds $800,000 in grants for South Carolina public school teachers  —  Stephen Colbert spoke to S.C. Supt.  Molly Spearman at Alexander Elementary School to announce he, along with ScanSource and Share Fair Nation, would fund all 1,000 classroom projects South Carolina teachers asked for on
Brendan James / Talking Points Memo:
Piers Morgan Causes Mika Brzezinski To Roll Off ‘Morning Joe’ Set (VIDEO)  —  Former CNN personality Piers Morgan's opinions led to an Irish exit from co-host Mika Brzezinski on the set of MSNBC's “Morning Joe” on Thursday morning.  —  The moment came during a segment about paid paternity leave …
Discussion: Mediaite
Cathy O'Neil / mathbabe:
Nick Kristof is not Smarter than an 8th Grader  —  This is a post by Eugene Stern, originally posted on his blog  —  About a week ago, Nick Kristof published this op-ed in the New York Times.  Entitled Are You Smarter than an 8th Grader, the piece discusses …
Discussion: Washington Center …
John DiStaso / WMUR:
Bush leads, Rubio up, Christie down in new WMUR poll  —  Tightly packed field continues with 9 months to go  —  Nine months is an eternity in politics, particularly in late-deciding New Hampshire.  And so not surprisingly, the Republican presidential primary field remains crowded with no true frontrunner …
Christine Byers / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Dorian Johnson, figure in Michael Brown case, arrested in St. Louis  —  ST. LOUIS  • Dorian Johnson, the man who was with Michael Brown when Brown was fatally shot by a Ferguson police officer last summer, has been arrested on suspicion of drug charges and resisting arrest, a St. Louis police source said Wednesday.
Mary Katharine Ham / Hot Air:
Heh: Carly Fiorina answers Seth Meyers question about domain snafu by buying  —  Carly Fiorina, who just jumped into the race for the presidency Monday, has spent the week coolly sitting for interviews and cleverly parrying jabs from reporters and critics.
Scott Daugherty / Virginian-Pilot:
Woman claims Verizon Wireless gave her a heart attack  —  Angela Hawkins called Verizon Wireless last year to straighten out a problem with her bill.  —  The grandmother of four hoped to talk to a helpful customer service representative.  —  Instead, according to a lawsuit …
Discussion: Associated Press
Justin Wolfers / New York Times:
How Britain's Election Has Stumped the Betting Markets  —  British voters are heading to the polls Thursday, and it looks as if it's going to be a nail-biter.  Political prediction markets suggest that it's basically a 50-50 bet as to whether the Conservative prime minister, David Cameron …
Marianne LeVine / Politico:
Chris Christie faces another blow  —  His “biggest” achievement, state pension reform, is likely to be dismantled by New Jersey courts.  —  Chris Christie's signature achievement as New Jersey governor may be going up in smoke.  —  The potential presidential candidate has said his …
Discussion: New Jersey News …
Shane Harris / The Daily Beast:
CIA's Ex-No. 2 Says ISIS ‘Learned From Snowden’  —  The former deputy director of the CIA says in a new book that the NSA contractor's disclosures allowed the forerunners of the terrorist group to evade electronic surveillance.  —  Edward Snowden's leaks about U.S. intelligence operations “played a role in the rise of ISIS.”
Discussion: Poynter. and Hullabaloo
Stephanie Ballesteros / WAVY-TV:
Bank robbery suspect Instagrams crime video, robbery note  —  VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — A man accused of robbing the TowneBank on Constitution Drive Monday afternoon posted videos of the robbery on social media, as well as a picture of the note he handed a teller.
Discussion: and
Conor Friedersdorf / The Atlantic:
Mystery Planes in the Skies Above Baltimore  —  In Baltimore, Maryland, where law enforcement officials ought to be doing their utmost to win back the trust of brutalized residents who perceive a conspiracy against them, a shadowy police tactic is stoking more dark suspicions.
Discussion: The Moderate Voice and Gawker
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 More Items: 
Andrew Cooper /
Discussion: Screen Rant and
Michael Lipka / Pew Research Center:
5 facts about prayer
Sydney Morning Herald:
Online jihadist hails power of social media after Texas attack
Discussion: The Gateway Pundit
Alexa Ura / The Texas Tribune:
Senate OKs Bill Banning Insurers From Covering Abortion
Discussion: Raw Story and Salon
Meghan DeMaria / The Week:
Mike Huckabee: If trade agreement passes, workers would ‘take it in the backside’
Discussion: The Reaction and Politico
Eliza Newlin Carney / Roll Call:
Clinton Foundation's Missteps Point to Broader Problem
Discussion: Shot in the Dark
 Earlier Items: 
Bernie Becker / The Hill:
Tax cheats kept jobs at IRS, audit finds
Washington Post:
How to revive the American Dream
Discussion: Shakesville
Jordain Carney / The Hill:
Cruz: Iran legislation is a ‘bad bill’
James Hohmann / Politico:
Marco Rubio tries to thread immigration needle
Discussion: Hot Air and Washington Post
M.DeLaTorre / KFOR-TV:
All exotic animals from Tiger Safari in Tuttle have been found
Discussion: The Week, FOX31 Denver and
Radley Balko / Washington Post:
This isn't 1968. Baltimore isn't Watts. And Hillary Clinton isn't Michael Dukakis.