While I’m okay with my Georgia Bulldogs losing to a gritty Cal Bear team (virtual neighbors of mine, really) in overtime in the Western Regional Final of the NCAA Women’s Tournament last night, I could have done without the incessant cheerleading for Cal by the ESPN crew working the game. The Bears were pre-ordained as “the story” even when they were down by 10 points. Bloody MSM….

Let me calm down and offer you some mid-day news/views bites hot from the steam table:

* And then there were seven: Sen. Tom Carper the latest Democratic Senator to announce support for marriage equality, leaving 7 holdouts. As an added bonus, Republican Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois announced his support as well. If you are keeping score at home, that means 48 Democratic Senators and 2 Republicans are on board. Weigel predicts Bill Nelson most likely to be next.

* Obama announces $100 million brain research initiative, and mirabile dictu, Eric Cantor promptly endorses it. Wonder what Paul Broun will have to say.

* At TNR, John Judis argues economic recovery so fragile and shallow that he’s not leading any cheers for it.

* RCP’s Scott Conroy suggests Don Young’s latest gaffe probably won’t retire him any more than his last ten or eleven.

* Coals to Newcastle: Ted Cruz to headline major SC GOP event, which will also honor Jim DeMint. Expect some serious ranting and snarling.

And in non-political news:

* New frontiers in air travel: Air Samoa to charge passengers according to combined weight of baggage and their own selves.

Back after rounding up some additional blogging material.

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Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.