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Ahead on the 2/13 Maddow show

02/13/12 06:42PM

Tonight's guests include:Peter Orszag, former director of the Office of Management and Budget, under President Obama, currently vice chairman of global banking at CitigroupE.J. Dionne, columnist at the Washington Post, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and msnbc contributorRep. read more

Gulf of Mexico, rebranding challenge winners

Gulf of Mexico, rebranding challenge winners

02/13/12 06:24PM

Thanks to all who participated in our Rename the Gulf of Mexico challenge. Just to recap, Democratic  Mississippi representative Steve Holland was so steamed over the way Republicans' wasted time on symbolic posturing that he proposed renaming the Gulf of Mexico the Gulf of America. As a joke. Also---as a joke—we said, go ahead, re-name the Gulf of Mexico. read more

Monday's Mini-Report

02/13/12 05:30PM

Today's edition of quick hits:* Greece erupted yesterday, with protestors burning dozens of buildings in Athens, but the Greek Parliament nevertheless approved another round of austerity measures in order to receive a European bailout.Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy* Violence rages on in Syria, where government forces have "resumed their bombardment of the embattled city of Homs for a 10th day after the authorities in Damascus rejected efforts by the Arab League to seek a United Nations peacekeeping mission for Syria and to deepen the ostracism of Pres read more

The silencing of Benton Harbor, Michigan

02/13/12 04:41PM

On Friday, we reported on the sale of Benton Harbor, Michigan's city-owned, low-power FM radio station. The state-appointed emergency manager has closed WBHC and listed the equipment and the license on eBay for $5,000. Under Michigan law, an emergency manager can do just about anything he or she wants, including firing elected officials and moving to abolish the town. read more

Seven down, 43 to go.

Marriage equality reaches Washington

02/13/12 04:08PM

As of this afternoon, the arc of history is bending towards justice in the state of Washington.Gov. Chris Gregoire signed a measure legalizing gay marriage in a ceremony in Olympia on Monday. It made Washington the seventh state to legalize same-sex marriage.A tearful Gregoire announced: "We're here to make history here in the great state of Washington. This is a very proud day ... read more

GOP backpedals on payroll fight

02/13/12 03:02PM

Democrats learned a valuable lesson in December, during the payroll-tax fight that was going their way: when Republicans are losing, their negotiating posture can and will change.Indeed, during that initial round of the dispute, GOP negotiators quickly lost all leverage because Democrats simply didn't believe Republicans were prepared to shoot the proverbial hostage. As of this afternoon, the same dynamic appears to have played out once more.We talked earlier about the looming deadline for the payroll tax break, and the poor odds of success unless the GOP became more flexible. read more

Challenge: Fill out Gingrich's timeline

Challenge: Fill out Gingrich's timeline

02/13/12 02:06PM

This Newt Gingrich status update appeared in my Facebook news feed this afternoon. Today I am proud to become the first major Presidential candidate to utilize Facebook's "Timeline" to showcase important events in my life and a history of promoting the conservative cause.Now there's a campaign milestone: first to hit the "Timeline" upgrade button!Here's Gingrich's new timeline. Hmmm. It seems to be missing some events. Help Newt remember, will you? read more

White House unveils budget plan

White House unveils budget plan

02/13/12 01:32PM

At a certain level, it's understandable to think the new White House budget plan is unimportant, or at a minimum, political theater. Given the far-right Republican majority in the House, there's simply no way this budget will be approved by Congress, making the new White House document more of an opening bid than a realistic plan.But don't dismiss it too quickly. read more

Virginia Dems say they can't stop GOP tide

Virginia Dems say they can't stop GOP tide

02/13/12 12:42PM

With Republicans controlling the governorship and both chambers of the state legislature, Virginia Democrats are saying they don't have the votes to stop a wave of far-right legislation.Virginia Republicans have so far pushed through a bill requiring a medically unnecessary, invasive sonogram before a woman exercises her constitutional right to end a pregnancy happening in her own body. read more

Monday's campaign round-up

02/13/12 12:00PM

Today's installment of campaign-related news items that won't necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:* Rick Santorum argued yesterday, "We think this is a two-person race right now." There's certainly evidence to back that up.* Mitt Romney appears to have narrowly won the Maine caucuses, edging past Ron Paul by three percentage points, but some county caucuses were postponed due to a snow storm. read more

What if Santorum wins Michigan?

What if Santorum wins Michigan?

02/13/12 11:22AM

We talked earlier about Rick Santorum positioning himself as the top GOP rival to Mitt Romney at the national level. That also increasingly appears to be the case in key states.Public Policy Polling just released these results from the state of Michigan.Rick Santorum's taken a large lead in Michigan's upcoming Republican primary. He's at 39% to 24% for Mitt Romney, 12% for Ron Paul, and 11% for Newt Gingrich.Santorum's rise is attributable to two major factors: his own personal popularity (a stellar 67/23 favorability) and GOP voters increasingly souring on Gingrich. read more

What drives the debt

What drives the debt

02/13/12 10:46AM

With the White House budget poised to be released, we're likely to see a reprise of a familiar Washington fight: the president and his team will focus on short-term economic gains, delaying deficit-reduction efforts, while Republican policymakers will demand the opposite.As this new round of the debate gets underway in earnest, reader F.B. read more

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