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ThinkFast: March 30, 2010

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"ThinkFast: March 30, 2010"

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Karl Rove

Members of the left-wing activist group Code Pink tried to make a “citizen’s arrest” of Karl Rove last night at a book signing in Beverly Hills. The event was eventually shut down and Rove was forced to leave the stage after being heckled as a “war criminal.” Rove said the interruptions reflected the “totalitarianism of the left.”

Federal authorities have indicted nine members of the anti-government Hutaree militia, which “allegedly plotted to kill police officers.” Members of the group describe themselves as “Christian warriors.” The Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson writes the news shows “there is good reason to worry about right-wing, anti-government extremism — and potential violence — in the Age of Obama.”

A Philadelphia man was charged yesterday with threatening to kill Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) and his family. “Norman Leboon, 33 posted a YouTube video last week in which he threatened to shoot Cantor,” but an affidavit “did not say why.” It is the first arrest since an “outbreak of harassment” against congressmen began after the health care vote.

The RNC staffer who “who accompanied a group of young donors to a bondage-themed West Hollywood club and then expensed the nearly $2,000 tab has been fired by the committee.” The staffer “was aware that this activity was not eligible for reimbursement,” wrote RNC Chief of Staff Ken McKay in an internal e-mail. “Accordingly, that staff person has been terminated.”

The health insurance companies’ chief lobbyist Karen Ignagni says that the industry will “accept new regulations to dispel uncertainty over a much-publicized guarantee that children with medical problems can get coverage starting this year.” Coverage for kids with pre-existing conditions under the bill just passed was originally challenged by the industry.

President Obama is set to claim final victory on his top domestic priority Tuesday by signing into law a package of changes to the newly enacted health care reform bill.” Obama will also sign into law an overhaul of the national college student loan system that will shift “government funding for loans away from commercial banks to new education initiatives.”

Consumer spending increased for the fifth straight month in February even though Americans’ incomes remained unchanged. “People are spending a little bit more,” said economist Brian A. Bethune. “When you give somebody a great deal, they will tend to move on it.”

The government “could earn a profit of more than $7 billion on its investment in Citigroup Inc. under its plan to sell off its $32 billion stake over about six months.” Citigroup is one of the only Wall Street banks yet pay off its TARP bailout and the sale would be the “largest U.S. profit” on any such investment.

The Environmental Protection Agency said yesterday that “it would not require power plants or other industrial sites to obtain federal pollution permits for emitting greenhouse gases before next January.” The EPA found last year that greenhouse gases are a threat to human welfare and will phase in their regulation over several years, starting with the largest emitters.

And finally: Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) sits down for a serious conversation with Politico about his P90X workout.

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