THURSDAY’S MINI-REPORT…. Today’s edition of quick hits:
* Pakistan: “A suicide bomber killed 16 people Thursday outside a courthouse in northwestern Pakistan, the latest attack in an onslaught by Islamist militants fighting back against an army offensive in the nearby Afghan border region. The bombing was the sixth in less than two weeks in and around Peshawar.”
* Ugh: “A rising proportion of fixed-rate home loans made to people with good credit are sinking into foreclosure, adding to concerns about the strength of the economic recovery.”
* Judge David Hamilton was confirmed today to the 7th Circuit. The final vote was 59 to 39. For reasons I’ll never understand, 39 out of 40 Senate Republicans — including Snowe and Collins — voted against him.
* The White House’s Nancy-Ann DeParle also prefers the Senate provision to the Stupak language.
* It’s hard to believe how much college tuition rates are going up in California. It’s going to price a lot of students right out of their schools.
* Belgian Prime Minister Herman Van Rompuy to become Europe’s new president.
* Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) pushed a measure yesterday to freeze credit card rates on existing balances through the holiday season. Senate Republicans quickly blocked it.
* It’s painful to think about, but there are 17 counties in the United States in which the poverty rate for children is 50%.
* Steve Doocy, surprisingly bad at arithmetic.
* Charles Krauthammer understands domestic policy about as well as he understands foreign policy.
* Maybe Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) should read T.R. Reid’s book again. I don’t think he understood it the first time around.
* Good piece from Michael Crowley on President Obama’s Asia trip: “[G]ive the man some more time.”
* If conservatives disagree with the president, it’s big news. If conservatives agree with the president, it’s ignored. In terms what constitutes a newsworthy development, isn’t that backwards?
* Just two weeks after getting caught using old footage to exaggerate right-wing crowd sizes, Fox News used old footage to exaggerate a right-wing crowd size. Today, the Republican network apologized, again.
* Rupert Murdoch gets the O’Reilly treatment.
* Nice summary of the Palin problem: “Yesterday I was thinking about how everything she says sounds like it’s just plucked from the tea party talking points of the day, but … they aren’t just talking points, they’re sort of bizarrely, syntactically mashed up talking points. I wonder what really goes on inside her head? Lots of politicians have mastered the art of speaking in talking points and never going off message, but mostly they at least try to sound like they know what they’re talking about. Palin doesn’t. She just spouts the sixth grade version of the talking points with an apparently total unawareness that she sounds like a child.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.