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- "Two turbulent months into the launch of the Affordable Care Act's insurance marketplace, President Obama moved to defend the law against Republican attacks Tuesday as the administration tried to deflect attention from the federal website's botched rollout." (Los Angeles Times)
- In AR SEN, Sen. Mark Pryor (D) is out with a new TV ad -- running "statewide" with "substantial" money behind it -- in which he "speaks directly to the camera about his faith in the Bible." (KATV-TV)
- In NH SEN, former Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) "will keynote" the state GOP's holiday reception on Dec. 19, but "he is unlikely to announce his decision" on the race "until January." (Politico)
- In WY SEN, the newly-formed Cowboy PAC, which is supporting activist Liz Cheney (R), will host "a $10,000-per-couple dinner" at Cafe Milano in Washington on Thursday featuring Cheney's father, Dick Cheney. (New York Times)
- In NH-01, state Rep. John Cebrowski (R) "said he is seriously considering a run. ... Should he get in, Cebrowski could cut into both of" former Rep. Frank Guinta's (R) conservative and Manchester-area political bases. (WMUR-TV)
- In NY-13, Rep. Charles Rangel (D) will seek a 23rd term, according to New York County Democratic Party Committee chairman/Assemb. Keith Wright (D). (New York Post)
- In WV-03, the American Energy Alliance is hitting Rep. Nick Rahall (D) in a new TV ad for supporting a carbon tax, even though he voted against the cap-and-trade bill in 2009 and says he opposes such a tax. (National Journal)
- In MA GOV, 2010 nominee Charlie Baker (R) chose former state Rep. Karyn Polito (R) as his running mate on Tuesday, but Polito wasn't Baker's "first choice -- or even his second, according to a source who said Baker considered several other female GOP running mates." (Boston Herald)
- D.C. Councilmember David Catania (I) "is planning to file papers Wednesday to create an exploratory committee for a mayoral run ... raising the possibility that the contest could remain competitive well past the April 1 primary." (Washington Post)
- Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) "says he's weighing whether he'll run" for LA GOV in 2015 and "plans to decide by January." Vitter: "This is the logical time to do it, if I'm ever going to do it." (AP)
- "Speaking at the Chatham House think tank in London on Tuesday," Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) "paid homage to the 'special relationship' between the United States and the United Kingdom and advocated a muscular foreign policy based on engagement with the world, both military and diplomatic. ... Rubio took the unusual step of directly criticizing ... Obama's foreign policy during the trip, saying he did not support a proposed military strike in Syria earlier this year and was 'personally skeptical' of the interim agreement reached last month over Iran's nuclear program." (Washington Post)
HAIR OF THE DOG
A woman shot in Wilmington, Del., on Monday night "returned home Tuesday afternoon and said she didn't want to talk about the shooting." The woman: "It's done and over with. What is there to say? There's a bullet in my ass and they can't get it out." (Wilmington News Journal)
FRESH BREWED BUZZ
- "Illinois lawmakers narrowly approved a historic, sweeping overhaul of government worker pension systems Tuesday, overcoming years of political and philosophical differences in an attempt to address one of the state's most pressing financial problems." Public-employee unions "are prepping a lawsuit to try to overturn it," contending "the benefit cuts are unconstitutional and unfair to employees and retirees." (Chicago Tribune)
- A U.S. bankruptcy judge in Michigan ruled Tuesday that the city of Detroit "is insolvent, had proper authorization to file for bankruptcy and could not practically negotiate with thousands of creditors with competing agendas." The ruling "sets up a contentious fight between the city's creditors and Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, who is now empowered to slash pensions." (Detroit News)
- "We were surprised that there was an attack launched against Liz on Facebook, and wished it hadn't happened. It's always been dealt with within the context of the family and frankly that's our preference." -- Dick Cheney, on daughter Mary Cheney and daughter-in-law Heather Poe criticizing Liz Cheney's remarks on gay marriage on Facebook (ABC News)
- "A federal immigration judge ruled Tuesday" that Onyango "Omar" Obama, President Obama's uncle, "can remain in the United States, sparing him deportation to his native Kenya in a case that riveted attention on the elderly man who had lived under the radar in this country for 50 years." (Boston Globe)
- "NH GOP star shines for national media after her candidacy greeted with 'sexist smear'" (New Hampshire Union Leader)
- "You can be the governor / You can be a friend / Maybe someday you can even be the president / People magazine says you're the sexiest of men / We know, we know" -- Billy Joel, re-writing the words to his song, "Honesty" (calling it "Albany") for a fundraiser in honor of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's (D) 56th birthday (YouTube)
- "Christine Quinn on the politics of gender and sexuality" (Capital New York)
PLAY OF THE DAY!
- Today's weather, from the National Weather Service: Mostly sunny early this morning, then becoming mostly cloudy. Patchy fog this afternoon. Highs in the lower 50s. Southeast winds around 5 mph.
- The House is back at 10 a.m.
- Obama delivers remarks on the economy at an event in Southeast Washington. (Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus, 11:20 a.m.)
- The Greek embassy hosts an event on "The Greek Diet Goes to Congress: Where Flavor Meets Good Health and Wellness." (TBA RHOB, 6 p.m.)
- It's a "Buff-Out" as GW hosts former Wizards coach Eddie Jordan's Rutgers squad. (Smith Center, 7 p.m.)
- Maryland visits No. 5 Ohio State in the Big Ten-ACC Challenge. (ESPN, 7 p.m.)
- Have an event for us to highlight? Email us!
- Then-Commerce Secretary Herbert Hoover was interviewed by the president of AT&T on the first television transmission over distance in 1927.
- The winner is Prof. John Robert Greene, and here's his Swizzle Challenge: "It should not surprise anyone that three Ivy League universities -- Harvard (5), Princeton (4), and Yale (3) -- have graduated (undergrad) the most U.S. presidents. Which non-Ivy League school has graduated the most U.S. presidents?" The 3rd correct answer gets to submit the next question.
NJ'S EARLY BIRD SPECIALS
- Meet the GOP's 2014 Bogeyman
- Somehow, Americans Think Congress Can Do Something in 2014
- Optimism Persists for Budget Deal. Is It Real?
- Staffer Leaves Hill to Stop Mom's Deportation
- The Allure of the Useful Lie
"As Republicans we need to cast a pretty wide net and find the best candidate to beat Gov. Cuomo, and we think that Mr. Trump can beat Mr. Cuomo." -- New York Assemb. David DiPietro (R), who is joining a "group of Republican state legislators and political operatives" who are meeting with Donald Trump on Wednesday "in an effort to convince him to run for governor" (New York Daily News)
"I have other things to do. I have a lot of things going on that are fabulous." -- Trump, to David Letterman in October, on why he won't run for NY GOV (TheWrap.com)
Steven Shepard, Editor-in-Chief