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1:40 PM ET, February 11, 2013

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 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Pope Benedict XVI Says He Will Resign  —  ROME — Pope Benedict XVI, the former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger who took office in 2005 following the death of his predecessor, said on Monday that he will resign on Feb. 28, the first pope to do so in six centuries.
RELATED:
David Willey / BBC:
Pope Benedict XVI  — Born in Germany in 1927, joined Hitler Youth during WWII and was conscripted as an anti-aircraft gunner but deserted  — As Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger spent 24 years in charge of Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith - once known as the Holy Office of the Inquisition
Igor Volsky / ThinkProgress:
What Did Pope Benedict Do, Anyway?  —  Pope Benedict XVI, who took office in 2005, announced on Monday that he will resign on Feb. 28, the first pope to leave the papacy since Pope Gregory XII in 1415.  The 85-year-old pontiff is in poor health and has been advised by doctors “not to take any more transatlantic trips.”
Sky News:
Pope Benedict Resigns, Vatican Confirms  —  Pope Benedict XVI is to resign on February 28 due to his “deteriorating” health.  —  He will be the first head of the Roman Catholic Church to resign in almost 600 years, with his departure expected to leave the post vacant for around three weeks.
Max Fisher / WorldViews:
The bizarre stories of the four other popes to have resigned in the last 1,000 years
Discussion: Guardian, Hit & Run, Poynter and FIRST DRAFT
USA Today:
Pope Benedict XVI to resign
ncronline.org:
Can a pope resign?  —  Yes, a pope can resign — up to 10 popes …
Discussion: Firedoglake, The Dish and NPR
Paul Owen / Guardian:   Pope Benedict XVI announces resignation - live reaction
Fox News:
Pope Benedict to become first pontiff in 600 years to resign
Washington Post:
Pope Benedict XVI to resign, citing age and waning energy
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
Pope Benedict XVI to step down at end of February, citing health
Discussion: Politico and CNN
Phil Bronstein / Esquire:
The Man Who Killed Osama bin Laden... Is Screwed  —  For the first time, the Navy SEAL who killed Osama bin Laden tells his story — speaking not just about the raid and the three shots that changed history, but about the personal aftermath for himself and his family.
Glenn Thrush / Politico:
Obama's State of the Union: Aggressive  —  President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech will be less a presidential olive branch than a congressional cattle prod.  —  Emboldened by electoral victory and convinced the GOP is unwilling to cut deals, Obama plans to use his big prime …
RELATED:
Jonathan Allen / Politico:
Gabrielle Giffords stars in gun control ad
Discussion: The Hill, The Week and New York Times
Zack Ford / ThinkProgress:
McCain Says He'll Consider New Revenues To Offset Sequester Cuts
Discussion: The Maddow Blog and Balloon Juice
Meghashyam Mali / The Hill:
Sen. Inhofe threatens filibuster to block Hagel  —  Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) on Sunday threatened to filibuster former Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.)'s nomination for Defense secretary, if necessary to prevent his confirmation.  —  “I want a 60-vote margin and you don't have to filibuster to get that …
RELATED:
Tim Mak / Politico:
GOP threatens walkout on Chuck Hagel vote  —  Defense secretary nominee Chuck Hagel could get a vote in committee as early as Tuesday, but Republican aides reacted to that idea by suggesting that some members could walk out in protest.  —  Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin …
Ben Smith / BuzzFeed:
Obama Prepares To Screw His Base  —  Young people re-elected the president.  Now they get to pay disproportionately for ObamaCare.  —  President Obama talks with college students while waiting for an order of fries at OMG Burgers in Coral Gables, Florida last September.  —  Image by C.W. Griffin/Miami Herald/MCT
Wall Street Journal:
The Absentee Commander in Chief  —  The Defense secretary told the president that Americans in Benghazi were under attack.  Then: nothing.  —  We've both had the honor to work in the White House.  We've seen presidents, vice presidents, chiefs of staff and national security advisers during moments of international crisis.
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress:
Armed Pro-Gun Protesters Occupy Oregon State Capitol  —  A few hundred pro-gun demonstrators rallied outside the Oregon state Capitol on Friday to protest efforts to enact gun safety laws.  A handful of protesters also entered the Capitol building itself and brandished assault rifles and other guns in the Capitol rotunda:
Sahil Kapur / Talking Points Memo:
Conservative Advocates: Violence Against Women Act Unfair To Men  —  The conservative grassroots is pushing lawmakers to vote against the Senate's reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which has 62 cosponsors and is slated for a final vote early this week.
Annie-Rose Strasser / ThinkProgress:
Virginia Cuts State Employees' Hours To Avoid Providing Obamacare Coverage  —  As part of his state's new budget, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) and his administration are trying to force potentially tens of thousands of public sector employees in the state to work fewer hours so that the government …
Scott Keyes / ThinkProgress:
NRA Dismisses ‘Connecticut Effect,’ Suggests Grief Over Newtown Tragedy Will Be Short-Lived  —  WAUSAU, Wisconsin—The National Rifle Association will wait until the “Connecticut effect” has subsided to resume its push to weaken the nation's gun laws, according to a top NRA lobbyist speaking …
Discussion: The Raw Story and Daily Kos
 
 
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 More Items: 
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
New Rove Group Could Backfire on G.O.P.
Lara Seligman / The Hill:
Hill Poll: Voters: Obama no better than Bush on security vs civil liberties
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
Neil Irwin / Washington Post:
Is Congress really going to miss its free lunch on infrastructure?
Discussion: Mother Jones
James Hamilton / Econbrowser:
Dude, where's my cheap gas?
WPVI-TV:
3 dead in Wilmington courthouse shooting (PHOTOS)
Discussion: The Raw Story
 Earlier Items: 
David L. Kirp / New York Times:
The Secret to Fixing Bad Schools
Discussion: Washington Post and Eduwonk
Jonathan Strong / Roll Call:
Grayson Returns Emboldened
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
The Ignorance Caucus  —  Last week Eric Cantor, the House …
Discussion: Prairie Weather and Daily Kos