Today’s edition of quick hits:
* President Obama appeared in New Orleans earlier today, addressing a variety of issues, but focusing largely on the economy, job creation, and infrastructure projects. “We should be building, not tearing things down,” he said, adding, “Rather than refighting the same old battles again and again and again, we should be fighting to make sure everybody who works hard in America, and hard right here in New Orleans, that they have a chance to get ahead. That’s what we should be focused on.”
* Maybe there are still a few congressional Republicans who like infrastructure investments, too? Suzy Khimm takes a closer look.
* Classic late-Friday news dump: “The third-ranking House Republican told immigration advocates that lawmakers won’t vote this year on the issue, confirming what many had long assumed.”
* A breakthrough with Iran is still possible and may come over the weekend: “With expectations of an interim nuclear deal with Iran rising, Secretary of State John Kerry cut short a Middle East trip and flew here on Friday to lead a concerted diplomatic push on what he and allies described as important issues that still needed to be resolved.”
* Philippines: “One of the strongest storms on record slammed into the central Philippines on Friday, killing at least four people, forcing hundreds of thousands from their homes and knocking out power and communications in several provinces. But the nation appeared to avoid a major disaster because the rapidly moving typhoon blew away before wreaking more damage, officials said.”
* Oh my: “Salon has discovered more examples of plagiarism in the work of Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.). In his speech at the Value Voters Summit on October 11, Paul appropriated written material from the Gatestone Institute, a think-tank chaired by John Bolton.”
* A remarkable fiasco: “Simon & Schuster has pulled The Embassy House after author “Morgan Jones” (real name Dylan Davies) was exposed as giving contradictory statements about his whereabouts on the night of the 2012 Benghazi attacks.”
* A fascinating story: “A former Texas prosecutor who won a conviction that sent an innocent man to prison for nearly 25 years has agreed to serve 10 days in jail and complete 500 hours of community service. Ken Anderson also agreed Friday to be disbarred as part of a sweeping deal that was expected to end all criminal and civil cases against the embattled ex-district attorney, who presided over a tough-on-crime Texas county for 30 years. He was also fined $500.”
* Greg Sargent asks whether it matters that the Republican Party is failing to keep pace with the changing culture. The answer matters.
* And Paul Krugman tackles the tragedy of focusing on debt and deficit reduction at the worst possible time: “America will probably spend decades paying for the mistaken priorities of the past few years. It’s really a terrible story: a tale of self-inflicted harm, made all the worse because it was done in the name of responsibility. And the damage continues as we speak.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
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