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6:00 PM ET, May 3, 2012


 Top Items: 
After A Twitter Win, Romney Meets The Online Right  —  A united front against Obama and the liberal media.  But: Huffington Post broke news of the meeting.  —  At the Republican National Committee yesterday, conservative online writers and bloggers who arrived to meet with Romney were also shown …
Michael Calderone / The Huffington Post:
Mitt Romney Meets With Conservative Media Off The Record … REACT:  —  FOLLOW:  —  Elections 2012, Mitt Romney, Elections 2012, Video, Ann Romney, Daily Caller, National Review, Washington Examiner, Conservative Media, Media News, Mitt Romney 2012, Powerline, Reince Priebus, Right Wing News …
Washington Examiner:
Klein: Obama is winning the general election
Discussion: The Jawa Report and Hot Air
Tim Stanley /
Why it matters that Obama dated a composite and ate a dog  —  There was a brief media firestorm yesterday when Vanity Fair broke the news that Obama's famous “New York girlfriend” was a fiction.  She appears in his 1995 memoir, Dreams From My Father, described in some detail by her appearance, voice and mannerisms.
The dangerous new Obama book  —  Months before Barack Obama knew Mitt Romney would be his political opponent in 2012, the president knew the identity of his foremost literary challenger: Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David Maraniss, who had been reaching out to Obama's old friends, classmates and lovers for the past several years.
Combating Terrorism Center at West Point:
Letters from Abbottabad: Bin Ladin Sidelined?  —  Authors: Don Rassler, Gabriel Koehler-Derrick, Liam Collins, Muhammad al-Obaidi, Nelly Lahoud  —  This report is a study of 17 de-classified documents captured during the Abbottabad raid and released to the Combating Terrorism Center (CTC).
Melinda Liu / The Daily Beast:
Activist Chen Guangcheng: Let Me Leave China on Hillary Clinton's Plane  —  In an exclusive interview with The Daily Beast's Melinda Liu, blind dissident Chen Guangcheng says he's been abandoned by American officials at a Chinese hospital and begs to leave the country on Hillary Clinton's plane.
Julian Pecquet / The Hill:
Republicans rip Obama's handling of Chinese activist Chen
Discussion: CNN and p m carpenter's commentary
Justin Sink / The Hill:
In Virginia, Bachmann endorses Romney
Discussion: Politico
Jim Hoft / The Gateway Pundit:
Horror!... Neo-Nazi #Occupy Phoenix Protester Goes On Shooting Rampage - 5 Dead  —  Back in October we reported that Neo-Nazi Jason Todd Ready was patrolling the #Occupy Phoenix camp with AR-15′s.  —  Neo-Nazi Jason Todd (J.T.) Ready pictured on left patrolling the Occupy Phoenix protest …
Jim Treacher / The Daily Caller:   The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports: … Just because the Cleveland 5 …
Brian Stelter / New York Times:
CNN Ratings Decline Stirs Worries  —  “Maybe CNN is just like an emergency room.”  —  That is what a longtime CNN employee theorized last year, during one of the channel's predictable defeats in the Nielsen ratings.  —  When elections and explosions happen, people tune in to CNN …
Keach Hagey / Wall Street Journal:
CNN Feels Heat on Ratings
New York Times:
Behind Richard Grenell's Departure, a Right-Wing Storm
Chris Ariens / TVNewser:
Another Misleading Edit Costs Another NBC News Employee Her Job  —  Lilia Luciano, a Miami-based NBC News correspondent, is no longer working for the network, TVNewser has learned.  —  Luciano last reported for NBC News March 31.  Until that point, she had been reporting mainly on the Trayvon Martin story.
Morgan Korn / Yahoo! Finance:
T. Boone Pickens: Biggest Deterrent To U.S. Energy Plan Is Koch Industries  —  Investor T. Boone Pickens has made a fortune over the years running an energy-oriented hedge fund, and in recent years he's been placing big bets on the natural gas and wind industries.
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Business Insider
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Video: The freaky quadruple deaky “tanning mom” clip  —  It's come to this.  —  Via Mediaite, I've been looking around all day for a palate cleanser.  And now, at last, I've found it.  Trust me: Whatever you have on your news palate right now, this'll clean it right out.  Doesn't matter how important it is.
Shaun Waterman / Washington Times:
Russia threatens to strike NATO missile defense sites  —  Russia's most senior military officer said Thursday that Moscow would preemptively strike and destroy U.S.-led NATO missile defense sites in Eastern Europe if talks with Washington about the developing system continue to stall.
Bachmann: 'He Can't Beat Obama ... Not Going to Happen'  —  Michele Bachmann has finally decided to endorse Mitt Romney - 119 days after she dropped out of the race.  —  The endorsement will come at a joint Romney-Bachmann appearance on Thursday.  No doubt Bachmann will talk about the importance …
Karl Smith / Modeled Behavior:
Rajan on Lessons from Recession  —  Tyler Cowen can't heap enough praise on this paper from Raghuram Rajan.  —  I am loathe to use such language, but at this late date I think it helps to be direct.  The paper reads to me like nonsense on a stick.  Ostensibly its about the ineffectiveness …
Alex Seitz-Wald / ThinkProgress:
Mitt Romney Commissioned Pro-America Pins, Made Them In China  —  At a fundraiser in Virginia last night, Mitt Romney touted his experinece running the Salt Lake City Olympic Games in 2002 — a familiar refrain — but also introduced a new rhetorical line about something more specific: lapel pins.
Dave Boyer / Washington Times:
RNC campaign parodies Obama '08 sticker  —  The Republican National Committee is getting ahead of President Obama's official campaign kickoff in Ohio and Virginia on Saturday with a media blitz labeling his re-election drive the “Hype & Blame” tour.  —  The RNC will sell “Hype & Blame 2012” …
Jonathan Easley / Ballot Box:
GOP voters want Santorum, Rubio for VP  —  Republican voters would like to see Rick Santorum or Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) standing at Mitt Romney's side this fall, a new poll found.  —  A Reuters-Ipsos poll released Thursday found Santorum and Rubio are the top choices among Republican voters to be Romney's running mate.
Discussion: CNN
Study: Campaign ads much more negative than four years ago  —  (CNN) - If you think the current race for the White House seems more negative than the 2008 presidential campaign, a new study indicates you're right.  —  According to a political advertising analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project …
Discussion: Politico
George F. Will / Washington Post:
Jon Will's gift  —  When Jonathan Frederick Will was born 40 years ago — on May 4, 1972, his father's 31st birthday — the life expectancy for people with Down syndrome was about 20 years.  That is understandable.  —  The day after Jon was born, a doctor told Jon's parents that the first question …
Daniel Strauss / The Hill:
Sen. Kirk leaving rehab facility three months after suffering stroke  —  Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) is leaving the rehabilitation facility where he had most recently been recovering from a stroke he suffered in January.  —  He will continue his recovery at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago while living at home.
Discussion: Politico and CNN
Laurie Goodstein / New York Times:
Methodists Vote Against Ending Investments Tied to Israel  —  The United Methodist Church, the nation's largest mainline Protestant denomination, voted against two proposals on Wednesday to divest from companies that provide equipment used by Israel to enforce its control in the occupied territories.
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 More Items: 
Stephen Dinan / Washington Times:
Romney blasts Obama for opposing D.C. voucher program
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Early Look at 2013 VA-Gov Race
Discussion: Politico and Politicker
The Commonwealth Fund Blog:
Explaining High Health Care Spending in the United States: An International Comparison of Supply …
Discussion: Firedoglake and Ezra Klein
Linda Greenhouse / Opinionator:
The Lower Floor  —  I found last week's Supreme Court argument …
 Earlier Items: 
Geneva Sands / The Hill:
Bill Clinton: Hillary ‘never said a word to me’ about bin Laden raid
Discussion: Politico
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
GOP strategy seeks to portray President Obama as nation's divider-in-chief