Today’s edition of quick hits:

* EU vs. Iran: “The countries of the European Union have agreed in principle to impose an embargo on Iranian oil, but there are many details to resolve before a decision is taken by heads of state and government at the end of January, European and French diplomats said Wednesday.”

* It’s a good thing Obama didn’t listen to Republicans on auto-industry policy: “Automakers finished 2011 on the upswing, with strong December sales in the United States and expectations for further growth this year. For Chrysler, December was the best month in nearly three years, as passenger-car deliveries more than doubled and total sales rose 37 percent. Chrysler’s sales for all of 2011 were up 26 percent. General Motors reported a 5 percent increase in December and a 13 percent gain for the year.”

* The inevitable litigation: “The recess appointments President Obama announced Wednesday are ‘almost certain’ to be challenged in court, according to a top official with … the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.”

* Before Republicans freak out over Obama’s recess appointments, they should take a look at Adam Serwer’s helpful new chart.

* Lorene Turner couldn’t find her 14-year-old granddaughter after she ran away in the fall of 2010. It turns out, she’d been mistakenly deported, despite being an American citizen.

* When military personnel make appearances at political campaign rallies while in uniform, it’s a real problem.

* Good call: “Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) rescinded rules limiting how many people can be inside the statehouse at any one time on Wednesday, a victory for Democrats and labor leaders who protested the restrictions as an attempt to quash the size of protests.”

* Renewables: “With two years of the Obama administration, almost four times as much clean energy has been put on the grid on public lands as in all the previous 40 years.” (via TOA)

* In the state of Washington, Gov. Chris Gregoire (D) will begin a push for marriage equality.

* Something may be amiss at Current: “Olbermann, the host of Current’s ‘Countdown With Keith Olbermann’ and listed on the masthead as the network’s chief news officer, was supposed to be on air Tuesday night, assuring a concerned Twitter follower earlier in the day that he was ‘headed into the office now in fact.’ But a few hours later, Olbermann announced he would not, in fact, be on the air.”

* Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) has some ideas about education reform at the state level. They’ve been tried, and they didn’t work.

* It’s nice of Mike Huckabee to notice: “It appears to me, and it still does to a large degree, that many of the Republicans are more interested in just defeating Barack Obama than they are in rebuilding America.”

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Steve Benen

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.