Today’s edition of quick hits:
* My favorite line from President Obama’s speech in Hollywood this afternoon: “Marlon Brando had it easy – when it comes to Congress, there’s no such thing as an offer they can’t refuse.”
* Afghanistan: “The White House threatened to withdraw all U.S. troops from Afghanistan next year, after President Hamid Karzai refused to sign a new bilateral security agreement. The two countries remain deadlocked over future military involvement after an unsuccessful working dinner between Ambassador Susan Rice and Karzai at his palace in Kabul on Monday night. In a statement, the White House said Karzai had outlined new conditions for a deal ‘and indicated he is not prepared to sign the BSA promptly.’”
* Keep an eye on this one: “Two long-range American bombers have conducted what Pentagon officials described Tuesday as a routine training mission through airspace recently claimed by China as its ‘air defense identification zone.’”
* Syria: “A planned international peace conference aimed at ending the civil war in Syria faced its first hurdles on Tuesday, as the head of the main opposition coalition said the group had not yet decided whether it would attend and the leader of the group’s military arm said his forces would keep fighting regardless.”
* Virginia: “State Sen. Mark Obenshain (R) will request a recount in the Virginia attorney general race on Wednesday. Obenshain’s campaign released an advisory Tuesday afternoon that the state senator would formally request a recount the next day.”
* A soft launch: “The Obama administration is planning a soft launch for the Spanish-language version of HealthCare.gov in early December, after a two-month delay, a senior administration official told TPM Tuesday.”
* Can’t wait for the corrections: “A claim by the World Health Organization that ‘about half’ of new H.I.V. cases in Greece are ‘self-inflicted’ as a way to get state benefit payments spread like wildfire on social media Monday, leading to headlines everywhere from the Daily Mail to the Drudge Report. The conservative American commentator Rush Limbaugh weighed in, saying the story shows ‘what the welfare state does to people.’ But on Tuesday morning, the W.H.O. and the group that produced the report conceded that the H.I.V. claim was not true.”
* Dear Mark Halperin, there are no “death panels.” Please stop suggesting otherwise. Sincerely, Steve.
* Krugman: “At this rate, the whole horrors-of-Obamacare meme will be gone in weeks, not months. But the GOP echo chamber won’t be able to let it go.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.