FRIDAY’S MINI-REPORT…. Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Sounds like encouraging progress on START: “The United States and Russia have reached agreement on most major issues in a new treaty that would cut their deployed strategic nuclear warheads by one-fourth and allow each side to continue to verify the other’s stockpiles, officials said Friday…. President Obama said that the two sides are ‘quite close’ to concluding a new version of the pact.”

* Congressional Republicans will throw a fit, but for now, there’s marriage equality in the nation’s capital: “District of Columbia Mayor Adrian Fenty signed a measure recognizing such marriages as legal…. Fenty signed the measure at All Souls Church, a Unitarian Universalist house of worship in the northwest part of the district that is known for its diversity and for the welcoming of same-sex couples.”

* Keep an eye on this one: “The Iraqi government said Friday that Iranian troops had crossed the border and occupied a portion of an oil field situated on disputed land between the two countries, but Iranian officials immediately and vehemently disputed the account.”

* If someone could please address this: “Militants in Iraq have used $26 off-the-shelf software to intercept live video feeds from U.S. Predator drones, potentially providing them with information they need to evade or monitor U.S. military operations.” (thanks to reader R.M. for the tip)

* It doesn’t sound like Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) will filibuster health care reform.

* Paul Krugman defends the Senate health care proposal: “[L]et’s all take a deep breath, and consider just how much good this bill would do, if passed — and how much better it would be than anything that seemed possible just a few years ago. With all its flaws, the Senate health bill would be the biggest expansion of the social safety net since Medicare, greatly improving the lives of millions. Getting this bill would be much, much better than watching health care reform fail.”

* Jon Chait “defends” Bill Kristol from my pointed abuse.

* I guess congressional gridlock doesn’t apply to college football’s postseason.

* Remember Michael Zak, the right-wing author the Republican National Committee hired to write content for the new RNC website? This week, Zak compared President Obama to Hitler. Classy.

* I’m a little surprised to see Joe Trippi become a contributor to Fox News.

* Betsy McCaughey awarded the Health Care Misinformer of the Year prize. Well deserved.

* How ridiculous is right-wing radio host/GOP activist Laura Ingraham? Bill O’Reilly told her on the air, “You are a blind ideologue.” Ouch.

* RNC Chairman Michael Steele is easily confused. Today, the poor guy argued that health care reform is “going to cost us over a trillion dollars a year.” What a strange man.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.