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  • Meet the Tea Party's 'Messiah' and the GOP's Headache

    Here at The Gaggle, we have been so caught up in reporting on Rand Paul that we've neglected to tell you about another anti-establishment Tea Party candidate who has the Republican nomination within his grasp....
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    Obama to Send 1,200 Troops to Mexico Border

    An Arizona lawmaker has released a statement saying that the Obama administration will soon deploy up to 1,200 National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border. The decision is part of a bigger plan for securing the border.
  • South Carolina: The Gift That Keeps on Giving

    David Kurtz at Talking Points Memo notes that a year ago, he wouldn't have considered South Carolina to be among the states with the craziest politics. That was before Mark Sanford's Appalachian adventure, Joe Wilson's outburst, and various other political wackiness. But after Monday's developments, Kurtz rightly decides the Palmetto State makes "a strong bid" for his top 5. Nikki Haley, the leading contender in the GOP race for governor, was blindsided by a blogger's accusation of inappropriate behavior.
  • Left and Right Unhappy with DADT Compromise

    Conservative and family-values organizations have launched into what may be a desperate and doomed campaign to turn back a breakthrough compromise on repealing "don't ask, don't tell," which has kept gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military for some 17 years. The Obama administration has publicly approved the compromise, and lawmakers could vote on the repeal as early as this week. But criticism is also coming from some leading advocates of repeal.
  • Key Congressman: Clapper Wrong Man for Intel Czar

    A key Capitol Hill Republican says retired Air Force Lt. Gen. James Clapper, the Defense Department's top intelligence official, would be the wrong person to replace outgoing National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair. Rep. Pete Hoekstra, the panel's ranking minority member, tells Declassified that in his experience, Clapper is "not forthcoming, open, or transparent" in his dealings with congressional oversight committees.
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    The Oil Spill's Effects on Deep-Sea Ecology

    The deep water of the ocean is the largest habitat on earth but it’s also the least understood, making the effects of this deep-sea spill without precedent. As a result, scientists say, the impacts of this spill are likely to go far beyond oiled birds and dead sea turtles.
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    What Is Sarah Palin Building, and What Does It Mean?

    Experienced New York Times Alaska hand William Yardley has an intriguing dispatch from Wasilla in this morning's newspaper. He writes about the Palin family's relationship to the small town where Sarah Palin got her start as mayor, and draws a mixed portrait: Palin is frequently on the road and isn't seen around town the way she used to be, but her husband Todd also tells the reporter that his family doesn't intend to move anywhere: "Where else would we go? Alaska is our home."...
  • Will Televising Financial-Regulation Debate Help?

    This morning, Politico reported that Democrats are now seeking to finish FinReg by resurrecting "the House-Senate conference committee"--and that House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank, "even wants C-SPAN there to capture their decision making and expose members who vote with Wall Street."
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    White House: We’re Stuck With BP For Now

    For all the bad press, insults and calls of incompetence that BP has had to stomach over the past few weeks, there’s a stark reality floating through Washington: in managing the Gulf clean-up, there’s no alternative. ...
  • White House Supports 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Deal

    President Obama has agreed to a compromise between lawmakers and the Defense Department that will help pave the way for the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell," the military's 17-year-old ban on gays and lesbians serving openly in the armed forces.  ...
  • A Green Light to Repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell

    Gay-rights advocates held two concurrent meetings Monday at the White House and on Capitol Hill to hash out a compromise on repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell, The Advocate is reporting. ...
  • EPA Wages Battle With BP Over Chemical Dispersants

    Last week, after BP had already dropped thousands of gallons of chemical dispersants onto the oil slick in the Gulf, the Environmental Protection Agency took a second look at the impact of the chemicals on marine life and in wetlands. It's response, in turn, was to politely require the company to transition to a less toxic alternative by the end of the weekend. ...
  • Hard Out Here for a Bennet(t)

    It's a tough year for senators named Bennet(t) from the Rocky Mountain West. First, Republican stalwart Bob Bennett of Utah was ousted by party activists at their state convention; now Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado lost at his party's nominating convention to former state House speaker Andrew Romanoff.
  • What Happens When Journalists Lose Their Jobs? You Get Guys Like Rand Paul.

    The Atlantic's Joshua Green offers the best explanation I've seen thus far as to how Rand Paul managed to win the Kentucky Republican senatorial primary, and then promptly started flailing on the national stage. Of course, I'm biased, because Green's explanation is one that asserts the importance of print journalism. He writes:...
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    Quote of the Day: Robin Givhan

    "But Kagan took the anti-style offensive several steps further.... She sat hunched over. She sat with her legs ajar." —Washington Post fashion columnist Robin Givhan on Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. The Pulitzer Prize-winner previously created a media firestorm after discussing Hillary Clinton's cleavage in 2007.  
  • Finding New Intel Czar Will Be Tricky for Obama

    By most accounts, National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair was blindsided last week when President Obama agreed to accept his resignation. According to one former senior U.S. official who recently talked to Blair about his tenure in the "Intelligence Czar" post, Blair spoke about his plan to stay in the job until the end of Obama's first presidential term. But Blair also acknowledged that in order to succeed as the nation’s spy supremo, he had to demonstrate that his office had some control, or at least influence, over the CIA and its director, Leon Panetta, who bested Blair in a couple of hard-fought turf fights.
  • Airline Flight Crews Expelled From Gun-in-Cockpit Program

    Approximately 50 airline pilots and other cockpit crew members have been thrown out of a post-9/11 federal program that allowed them to carry loaded guns in flight, according to information provided to Declassified by a Homeland Security spokesperson. The spokesperson did not disclose the specific reasons that the pilots were ejected from the armed-pilot corps, officially called the Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) program, beyond saying they had committed "violations" of the program's "standard operating procedures."...
  • Democrats May Hold House, Not Senate

    Democrats had a very good night on Tuesday, dampening, at least for now, Republican boasts about taking back control of the House. Democrat Mark Critz, a longtime congressional aide, held the Pennsylvania House seat of his former boss, the late and legendary logrolling politician John Murtha, calling into question GOP claims that Republicans would sweep blue-collar swing districts in key states across the country and return the party to power.
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    Why Rand Paul Is Right and Wrong

    You'd expect a man who'd just won his party's primary in Kentucky's race for the U.S. Senate to be beaming. So, why did Rand Paul look like he had been slipped some sour milk when he appeared on the Rachel Maddow show?
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    Texas Cooks the Textbooks

    NEWSWEEK’s guide to the 10 silliest changes that will likely be in the new Texas textbook curriculum.
  • Arizona Mocks Washington With Muppets

    It’s been a long week of criticism in Washington. Criticism, that is, of Arizona’s controversial immigration law. President Obama has taken several high-profile swings at the measure, calling it "misguided" and then “misdirected" this week at a presser with Mexican President Felipe Calderón. That was after Attorney General Eric Holder claimed the statute was not “a good idea” and Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano called it “a bad law-enforcement law.” ...
  • Rand Paul Fires Back: He's Being 'Trashed Up and Down' by 'Democratic Talking Points'

    Rand Paul is making the rounds of talk shows trying to dial back the media storm over his Civil Rights Act PR fiasco, and even dad Ron Paul has weighed in to defend him, arguing that liberals are jealous of his son’s political future. On Thursday Rand Paul told CNN he would have voted for the 1964 Civil Rights Act, despite earlier saying he had misgivings about extending a ban on discrimination to private businesses. This morning he told George Stephanopoulos that the criticism over his comments were just "Democratic talking points" and “red herrings” by opponents trying to “trash” his campaign. “"When does my honeymoon period start? I had a big victory,” he complained to Stephanopoulos. He's even added another talking point to the media frenzy, criticizing President Obama's handling of the BP oil spill. "What I don't like from the president's administration is this sort of, 'I'll put my boot heel on the throat of BP,' " Paul told Stephanopoulos....
  • MMS: Sorry About That 'Drill, Baby, Drill' Cake

    Humor in the workplace can be fun. But this morning, when The New York Times reported that a reception in Alaska at the regional office of the Minerals Management Service—the agency responsible for regulating offshore drilling—included a cake with the words "Drill, Baby, Drill," not many people were laughing. Feeling the heat, John Goll, the director of MMS's Alaska office, sent around this apology, obtained by NEWSWEEK, to all agency staff: ...