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Groundhog in Toronto

The groundhog and the introvert

02/01/12 02:04PM

Tomorrow, humble, placid groundhogs will be rousted from their quiet underground lairs and forced into the bright lights of a noisy, hyper-social world.Introverts? If this story makes you want to hug a groundhog and say, "I feel you, brother! Your burrow is my cubicle," you should check out Susan Cain's new book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking. In it, Cain strikes a blow for such antique concepts as privacy, introspection and working alone. read more

Putting the 'Buffett Rule' to the test

Putting the 'Buffett Rule' to the test

02/01/12 01:33PM

Seven members of the Senate Democratic caucus, led by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), formally introduced the "Paying a Fair Share Act" this morning. It sets up an important election-year fight over the "Buffett Rule."Sahil Kapur has the latest from Capitol Hill:Whitehouse's office said it's still waiting for an official score but expects the legislation to produce tens of billions of dollars in deficit reduction. read more

The lessons out of Oregon

The lessons out of Oregon

02/01/12 12:34PM

For campaign watchers, Florida's Republican presidential primary was the big draw yesterday, but there was another noteworthy race on the other side of the country: a U.S. House special election in Oregon's 1st congressional district.Just two weeks ago, the National Republican Congressional Committee took an interest in the race, airing attack ads against Democratic candidate Suzanne Bonamici. read more

Wednesday's campaign round-up

02/01/12 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:* Floridians saw thousands of television ads as part of the state's Republican presidential primary. How many of the spots were positive Mitt Romney ads? Less than 0.1%. Wow.* Newt Gingrich, who led briefly in Florida a week ago before facing a barrage of attack ads, did not call Romney to congratulate him last night.* Romney will get Secret Service protection this week. read more

Theocracy on the move in Indiana

Theocracy on the move in Indiana

02/01/12 10:52AM

Indiana's Republican-controlled Senate yesterday passed a bill that would allow for the teaching of creationism in schools. The bill's sponsor, Republican State Senator Dennis Kruse, tells the Indianapolis Star that he knows the Supreme Court ruled that unconstitutional back in 1987, but so what? "This is a different Supreme Court," he tells the paper. read more

Romney rejects concern for the 'very poor'

Romney rejects concern for the 'very poor'

02/01/12 10:08AM

Just two weeks ago, Mitt Romney told voters in South Carolina, "I'm concerned about the poor in this country." This morning, Romney reversed course and said the exact opposite."I'm not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there. If it needs repair, I'll fix it. I'm not concerned about the very rich, they're doing just fine. I'm concerned about the very heart of America, the 90%, 95% of Americans right now who are struggling and I'll continue to take that message across the nation. "You can focus on the rich, that's not my focus. read more

Komen abandons Planned Parenthood

02/01/12 09:16AM

When the nation's most prominent breast-cancer organization abandons Planned Parenthood, it's a stunning development for women's health.In a decision that is inflaming passions on both sides of the abortion debate, the world's largest breast cancer organization, Susan G. read more

The GOP's ongoing turnout problem

The GOP's ongoing turnout problem

02/01/12 08:31AM

There can be little doubt that Mitt Romney dominated in Florida's Republican presidential primary, but there were a few tidbits in the exit polls that stood out, including this one:This has to be discouraging for the former governor and his campaign. read more

The post-Florida state of play

The post-Florida state of play

02/01/12 08:00AM

As expected, Mitt Romney cruised to an easy primary win over Newt Gingrich in Florida, getting his campaign back on track after a tough loss in South Carolina. The former governor had to spend over $15 million to buy the victory, but Romney leaves the Sunshine State with everything he wants: momentum, frontrunner status, and renewed talk of "inevitability."What happens now? February won't feature the high-profile contests of January, but there are still some races to keep an eye on.Feb. read more

Morning Maddow: February 1

02/01/12 07:32AM

Romney PAC discloses fundraising total and 7-figure donors (including a Koch brother).Oregon special election goes to the Democrat.Uh, Newt? Maybe you want to get on this?Romney heads to Minnesota today. Here's why. He's also getting Secret Service protection.The Washington State Senate votes on same-sex marriage today.Indiana is about to go right-to-work.Susan G. Komen foundation cuts its ties to Planned Parenthood.We're about to get a look at a body of water that hasn't seen light in 20 million years. read more

Tuesday's Mini-Report

Tuesday's Mini-Report

01/31/12 05:32PM

Today's edition of quick hits:* How are the Eurozone talks progressing? Slowly. Keep an eye on whether the European Central Bank will forgo future profits on its Greek bonds.* Russia is blocking diplomatic efforts to condemn the Syrian government. read more

Romney on health reform, then and now, II

01/31/12 04:40PM

James Carter adds more evidence that Mitt Romney advocated health reform with an individual mandate as a national solution, before he opposed it. James posts this video from a speech Romney gave in April 2006 to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce:"I hope we continue to elect representatives on both sides of the aisle that want to see this work and want to see the market as the approach to getting everybody insured. read more

Taking the STOCK Act one step further

Taking the STOCK Act one step further

01/31/12 03:48PM

In his State of the Union address, President Obama urged lawmakers to reduce the "deficit of trust" between Washington and the rest of the country, in part through a series of institutional reforms. At the top of the list: banning insider trading by members of Congress and limiting elected officials "from owning stocks in industries they impact."Those are two related ideas, but they're not quite identical. The "STOCK Act" is already pending in the Senate, and it's a companion measure to a House bill intended to restrict insider trading on Capitol Hill. But Sen. read more

When defensiveness leads to dishonesty

When defensiveness leads to dishonesty

01/31/12 02:28PM

No candidate ever wants to give the impression that he or she bought a campaign victory, even if it's true. Just on principle, it looks unseemly.With that in mind, it's understandable that Mitt Romney would feel a little defensive -- he's put his flush coffers to good use in each of the nominating contests thus far, taking full advantage of his massive financial edge. read more

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