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President touts Iraq plan on campaign swing, and federal judge allows Virginia health care suit to proceed. Plus: Democrats seek to minimize fallout from Rangel and Waters trials.

Congress: Panel Finds Grounds For Waters Trial

• "An ethics report released Monday found that Rep. Maxine Waters," D-Calif., "probably broke conflict-of-interest rules in urging federal aid for a bank where her husband had served on the board and owned hundreds of thousands of dollars in stock," the Washington Post reports.

• "Behind the scenes and in front of the cameras, Democrats are in full spin mode as they try to minimize the political damage from the spectacle of two potential House ethics trials before the midterm elections," Roll Call (subscription) reports.


• "Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told The Hill on Monday that Congress 'ought to take a look at' changing the 14th Amendment, which gives the children of illegal immigrants a right to U.S. citizenship," The Hill reports.

• "A bid to approve increased Medicaid and teacher funding failed yet again in the Senate Monday night, after" the Congressional Budget Office "said the legislation was not fully paid for," CongressDailyAM (subscription) reports.

Politics: Survey Finds Voters Prefer Candidates Who Provide Pork

• "Despite being fed a steady diet of political vitriol about the evils of earmarking, Americans are more likely to vote for a congressional candidate who brings home the bacon, according to the latest Society for Human Resource Management/National Journal Congressional Connection Poll, conducted with the Pew Research Center," reports.


• "Facing pressure from critics of Wall Street to limit its role in elections, Goldman Sachs has pledged not to spend any of its vast corporate reserves on political advertising," the New York Times reports.

Economy: Geithner Promises Quick Rulemaking On Finance Bill

• Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner "on Monday pledged that the Obama administration would move swiftly to issue rules under the recently enacted Dodd-Frank financial regulatory overhaul, vowing not to get trapped in a years-long pace that ensnarled rulemaking for major laws," CongressDailyAM (subscription) reports.

• "Federal Reserve officials will consider a modest but symbolically important change in the management of their massive securities portfolio when they meet next week to ponder an economy that seems to be losing momentum," the Wall Street Journal (subscription) reports.

National Security: Obama Seeks To Shore Up Support For Iraq Plan

• "President Obama on Monday opened a monthlong drive to mark the end of the combat mission in Iraq and, by extension, to blunt growing public frustration with the war in Afghanistan by arguing that he can also bring that conflict to a conclusion," the New York Times reports.


• "White House advisers have been dispatched to Baghdad and are working against the clock to get deadlocked Iraqi politicians to form a new government before the end of August, when the U.S. combat mission ends," the Wall Street Journal reports.

• "Defense firms poured millions of dollars more into lobbying during the first two quarters of 2010, increasing expenditures by about 7 percent over what they spent in the first half of last year, an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics shows," CongressDailyAM (subscription) reports.

• "Secretary of Defense Robert Gates met with more than a dozen top defense-industry executives last week to deliver a message: Start delivering cost savings, or the government will do it for you," the Wall Street Journal reports.

• "Three Republican senators are threatening to block the confirmation of Director of National Intelligence nominee James Clapper -- irked by the Obama administration's refusal to hand over documents that apparently have nothing to do with the nominee," Politico reports.

Energy & Environment: Flow Rate Exponentially Higher Than Estimated

• "The blown-out well in the Gulf of Mexico gushed 12 times faster than the government and BP estimated in the early weeks of the crisis and has spilled a whopping 4.9 million barrels, or 205.8 million gallons, according to a more detailed analysis announced late Monday," the Washington Post reports.

• "Higher costs arising from tough new rules for the offshore-oil industry prompted by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill could pose a serious threat to contractors with older fleets of drilling rigs," the Wall Street Journal reports.

• "Spraying dispersants on oily water in the Gulf of Mexico doesn't make the mixture any more toxic than the water was with Louisiana sweet crude alone, the Environmental Protection Agency said Monday," the New York Times reports.

• "Oil-state and centrist Democrats may unveil a compromise" today "designed to set a path forward on legislation responding to the Gulf of Mexico spill this year," The Hill reports.

Health Care: Judge Reject Dismissal Of Virginia Health Care Suit

• "In the first substantive legal ruling on" Obama's "health care reform law, a federal judge has rejected the Justice Department's request to dismiss a lawsuit from Virginia's state government challenging the reform's requirement that individuals purchase health insurance," Politico reports.

• "Consumers and policy makers will be crossing treacherous terrain as they make the transition to a new health care system in the next three and a half years," the New York Times reports.

• "The new health overhaul law will start producing savings for Medicare right away and, over time, will add 12 years of solvency to the program's giant trust fund for inpatient care, the Obama administration says in a report to be released Monday," the Washington Post reports.

Technology: Energy Department Finds Electric Grid Vulnerable

• "Computer networks controlling the electric grid are plagued with security holes that could allow intruders to redirect power delivery and steal data, the Energy Department warned in a recent report," the Wall Street Journal reports.

• "BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd. issued a statement to its customers assuring them that their data was secure, a day after regulators in the United Arab Emirates said they'd tussled with RIM over access to that data," the Journal also reports.

Supreme Court: Reid Announces Schedule For Kagan Debate

• "Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) announced Monday that, unlike previous Supreme Court nominations that included several days of back-and-forth floor debate, the Senate will conduct" Elena Kagan's "confirmation intermittently between debates and votes on other issues," Roll Call (subscription) reports.

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