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Morning EDition: June 20, 2011

The dog days of summer set in, and TV-news executives throughout the land bemoan the lack of news.

The dog days of summer set in, and TV-news executives throughout the land bemoan the lack of news. Because, y'know, the ongoing kleptocratization of America doesn't count as a story...

Check back later for today's Outlook and Underbuzzed. Meanwhile, here's today's Morning EDition:


  • Pres. Obama meets with US mayors about the economy.
  • Pres. Obama speaks at DNC fundraisers tonight.


  • Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MI) rallies for jobs, against self-destructive austerity.
  • Senate GOP Leader McConnell says Obama ought to justify cuts without tax hikes by blaming "crazy Republicans."
  • McConnell floats the idea of a short-term debt-ceiling hike.
  • The reality behind today's bipartisan budget cuts.
  • Political terror may spur a Democratic jobs plan.
  • Foreign investment in the US rose by 49% last year.
  • America's infrastructure is in trouble.
  • Report: One out of seven cities won't recover its jobs until the 2020s.
  • Chart: Did Obama's policies dampen business investment?


  • Report finds executive pay at the root of rising income disparity.
  • The Post wants you to tell about income disparity at your company.
  • Right on cue, the WSJ reports yet another big spike in executive income.
  • Another Republican backs raising tax revenue (Spoiler alert: He's talking about loopholes, which means he probably wants to raise the amount of taxes paid by the middle class, not by the rich).
  • Big corporations have made loads overseas; want tax breaks before bringing the profits back to US.
  • Would a tax break on overseas profits create jobs? Consider what happened last time.
  • Emerging debt deal could further generational warfare, sparing the old, savaging the poor.
  • Massive utility plays blame-the-rules; NYT editorial rips the lid off.
  • Why is America so productive? We're giving up our lives to do our jobs.
  • Union charges Target with illegal tactics in unionization vote.
  • Banks are repaying TARP taking out government loans.
  • Charts: How your increased productivity is making other people rich.



  • Sec. Gates confirms that the US is in talks with the Taliban.
  • Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-NC) warns GOP candidates not to back down from Afghanistan.
  • But Jon Huntsman wants to go further and put military spending on the table.
  • Poll: Americans think we're in too many wars. As opposed to enough wars.


  • Pres. Obama overruled top lawyers in claiming Libya operations are legal.
  • Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) says further Libya operations must be done with congressional approval.
  • House may vote on cutting funding for Libya operations. (What would be called "defunding the troops" if done by Democrats).


  • Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) blames illegal immigrants for wildfires; evidence for this claim is still pending.
  • What McCain's spokesman says he's talking about.
  • Forest Service doesn't know what McCain's talking about.


  • Alabama Republican lawmaker calls black people "aborigines."
  • Republican Leadership Conference laughs at racist Obama jokes, ends comedian's set when he targets GOP.
  • VIDEO: Watch which jokes get Republicans mad and which ones they laugh at.



  • Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas flouting guidelines that apply to judges in lower courts.
  • Flashback: Other justices have been forced to resign for similarly Thomasian behavior.


  • With House vote this week, battle heats up over drilling in Alaska.
  • Even Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) is cracking down on fracking.



  • Two Republicans indicted for the real voter-fraud problem: Suppressing the legitimate vote.
  • EJ Dionne: Your right to vote is under assault.
  • Poll: More than one fifth of voters won't vote for a Mormon.

OBAMA 2012

  • Dan Pfeiffer does not get a good review for his Netroots performance.
  • Obama wins Netroots straw poll.
  • Obama skips Latino conference for third year in a row, after promising to attend as president.
  • Analysis: Obama could lose states with above-average unemployment...and still win.
  • Russian president endorses Obama over Republicans pursuing "political goals."
  • VIDEO: NH GOP chair says military deaths will be "in vain"...if Obama wins re-election.

GOP 2012


  • Bachmann used taxpayer funds to throw rally complaining about government spending. OF COURSE.


  • Hey, his family business stopped dealing with Iran as long ago as LAST YEAR, so what's the big deal?
  • Maybe working for Obama won't be a net negative after all.


  • Paul wins the straw poll at the Republican Leadership Conference.



(What I'm reading: Greg Sargent's Plum Line, Think Progress, Matt Yglesias, The Wonk Room, Talking Points MemoTPMDC, Taegan Goddard's Political Wire, the Washington Monthly, the National Journal, Ezra Klein, Politico's Playbook and Huddle, Dave Weigel, Wonkette, Firedoglake, the NYT Caucus, Daily Kos, Crooks and Liars. What Jango has me listening to: Down on the River by the Sugar Plant by Mike Doughty.)

Follow Senior Producer Jonathan Larsen (@jtlarsen) on Twitter