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Lin's 'biggest anomaly'?

Lin's 'biggest anomaly'?

02/17/12 09:32AM

I have a hunch New York Times columnist David Brooks, upon further reflection, might regret writing this lede to his latest piece.Jeremy Lin is anomalous in all sorts of ways. He's a Harvard grad in the N.B.A., an Asian-American man in professional sports. But we shouldn't neglect the biggest anomaly. He's a religious person in professional sports.I won't claim to be an expert on such matters -- though I know a certain executive producer of "The Rachel Maddow Show" who can speak to this in more detail -- but Brooks' observation strikes me as deeply odd. read more

Romney digs deeper against auto-industry rescue

02/17/12 08:45AM

Mitt Romney has earned a well-deserved reputation for taking both sides of several dozen issues. As a rule, however, the Republican presidential hopeful tries to take these positions one at a time.Romney's position on President Obama's rescue of the American automotive industry is a little more complicated. On the one hand, Romney wants to take credit for the policy, since he suggested managed bankruptcy. read more

'A Terri Schiavo moment'

'A Terri Schiavo moment'

02/17/12 08:01AM

Seven years ago, there was an unexpected political hullabaloo surrounding Terri Schiavo, a Florida woman who'd been in a vegetative state for 15 years. When there was a disagreement among family members about her fate, it touched off a national controversy and unprecedented intervention from Washington.Indeed, Congress took steps to prolong Schiavo's life -- passing legislation related to literally just this one person -- and President Bush even cut short a vacation to address the issue. read more

Morning Maddow: February 17

02/17/12 07:36AM

Santorum says his billionaire's joke about aspirin between the knees was 'in bad taste.' Meanwhile, Foster Friess thinks that the younguns who were offended just didn't get why it was funny.If you were curious about the NH Rep who said there's a link between the pill and prostate cancer, here's where she got that.New poll puts Sen. read more

Ahead on the 2/16 Maddow show

02/16/12 06:47PM

Tonight's guests include:Elizabeth Warren, (D) Massachusetts Senate candidate, chair of TARP Congressional Oversight panel, helped create Consumer Financial Protection BureauChris Gardner, Washington County, Maine  GOP Committee ChairmanWhile we wait for tonigh'ts video preview, take a listen to tonight's soundtrack. (Just be sure to let the ad play out entirely before starting the song!)Executive producer Bill Wolff shares a preview of tonight's show: read more

Bass Ball

02/16/12 06:32PM

Even though Republicans will be flocking into Tampa for the big convention August 27 through 30, it is still very much in doubt whether they will have a clear presidential contender by then.What's not in doubt is that the Tampa Bay Rays baseball team -- they dropped the Devil a while back — will have a funky new mascot, DJ Kitty.No telling whether Mitt Romney would make DJ Kitty ride in a cage on top of his car, but when he gets to Tampa, he should definitely arrange a photo op with the beat master, ASAP. read more

Thursday's Mini-Report

02/16/12 05:30PM

Today's edition of quick hits:* By an overwhelming margin, the United Nations General Assembly condemned Syria this afternoon. The resolution, however, was nonbinding.* According to Afghan President Hamid Karzai, "initial three-way talks between the United States, Afghanistan and the Taliban have begun."* Marriage equality has now been approved by both chambers of the New Jersey legislature. Gov. read more

Rachel Maddow on the thesis of 'Drift'

02/16/12 04:45PM

While going through some links in preparation for next month's release of Drift, I came upon this clip of Rachel's interview with Slate's Jacob Weisberg in which she talks about the book's themes and how the U.S. can reintegrate the military with the population at large. read more

Scott Brown stumbles on policy basics

Scott Brown stumbles on policy basics

02/16/12 04:22PM

Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) surprised a lot of people earlier this week when he endorsed an unpopular, far-right proposal on contraception. Inexplicably, the ostensible moderate threw his support behind a plan to allow all private-sector employers to deny any health services that businesses might find morally objectionable, including access to birth control.Brown talked to NECN, a regional network that covers Massachusetts, about his position, but failed to read up on the proposal he'd already endorsed. read more

Here's an image you won't see on March 1.

Romney to skip upcoming debate

02/16/12 03:14PM

The Romney campaign has been hinting for over a month that it might start declining invitations to candidate debates. It doesn't come as too big a surprise, then, that the former governor has decided to skip CNN's March 1 debate in Atlanta."With eight other states voting on March 6th, we will be campaigning in other parts of the country and unable to schedule the CNN Georgia debate," Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said. "We have participated in 20 debates, including 8 from CNN."The March 1 debate is second-to-last debate before Super Tuesday on March 6. read more

Quote of the Day

02/16/12 02:12PM

Foster Friess is perhaps best known as the very wealthy benefactor behind Rick Santorum's super PAC. As of this morning, he'll probably be known for something else.During an interview with msnbc's Andrea Mitchell, Friess tried to make the case that the presidential campaign should focus on substantive issues, but in the process, he made some jaw-dropping comments about contraception. Here's the clip, by way of Zeke Miller:For those who can't watch clips online, here's the full quote:"I get such a chuckle when these things come out. read more

Pelosi to GOP on contraception: 'Duh!'

02/16/12 01:34PM

House Republicans organized a hearing this morning on the Obama administration's policy on access to contraception, and the first panel was made up exclusively of men -- each of whom opposes the White House position. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was not amused."Five men are testifying on women's health," Pelosi said, adding, "Where are the women? Imagine having a panel on women's health and they don't have any women on the panel."Duh? What is it that men don't understand about women's health and how central the issue of family planning is to that? read more

Struggling to prepare for prime time

Struggling to prepare for prime time

02/16/12 12:40PM

Given all of the discouraging trends of late for Mitt Romney, why do so many continue to assume he'll win the Republican presidential nomination? Jon Chait flagged some interesting tidbits about the former governor's principal rival.Here are some things to keep in mind when assessing Rick Santorum's chances of beating Mitt Romney. He has no pollster, no campaign headquarters, and no paid advance staff. He's currently getting outspent on television in Michigan by a ratio of 29-1.You know the part of the campaign ad where the candidate identifies himself and says he approves this message? read more