Today’s edition of quick hits:
* The Sochi Games open in five weeks, against the backdrop of terrorism: “With just over a month to go before the Winter Olympics get underway in Russia, a top U.S. Olympic official addressed the pair of deadly attacks during a 24-hour period this week in the Russian city of Volgograd.”
* On a related note: “Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday said he would fight terrorists until their ‘total annihilation’ to avenge a pair of bombings in Volgograd that left more than 30 people dead.”
* For an appeal they claim to be an “emergency,” Utah took its time on this: “The Utah Attorney General’s Office has asked the Supreme Court to step in and stop same-sex couples from marrying while it appeals a trial court decision striking down its amendment banning such marriages. The filing, an application to stay judgment pending appeal, was filed with Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who can decide the motion on her own or refer it to the entire court to decide.”
* While jobless suffer, Wall Street soars: “Stocks closed out the year on Tuesday at record highs, with the S&P 500 posting its largest annual jump in 16 years and the Dow its biggest gain in 17, after positive reports on consumer confidence and housing boosted sentiment on the final trading day of the year.”
* This’ll be an interesting vote: “Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) told The Associated Press in an interview that the Senate will vote Monday on a three-month extension of federal unemployment benefits.”
* SeaTac’s minimum-wage workers “might not get their raise after all.”
* Plunderbund uncovers a gem: “Ohio GOP Posts Fake Interview With Senate President; Quickly Deletes Viewer Comments Exposing Truths” (thanks to my colleague Laura Conaway for the heads-up).
* Good piece from Benjy Sarlin on immigration: “It may come next week or maybe six months from now, but House Republicans will decisively determine whether to kill immigration reform or make a real attempt at passing it. No one would be surprised if Speaker John Boehner chose the former option. But the longer Boehner takes to decide, the more ground he cedes to states dominated by single party politics and eager to craft immigration laws in the face of a crippled Congress.”
* I guess treatment went well? “Rep. Trey Radel (R-Fla.) said on Sunday that he would return to work in Congress after being rehabilitated for substance abuse and that his abuse of alcohol never interfered with his congressional work.”
* Chait continues to focus on Mike Allen: “After initially refusing to address Erik Wemple’s exhaustive documentation of Mike Allen’s pattern of parroting the editorial line of his advertisers, Politico editor John Harris appeared on Howard Kurtz’s Fox News show to rebut the charges. Well, ‘rebut’ may be too strong a term. He acknowledged the charges and then strung together a series of words in response to them. But the words do not make a great deal of sense.”
* Stay classy, Stockman: “Rep. Steve Stockman (R-Texas) tweeted a photo Monday of what he called ‘the best gun lubricant around.’ Stockman, who’s running against incumbent Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) next year, tweeted a photo showing a can labeled ‘liberal tears’ spraying a gun.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.