The Note’s Must-Reads for Thursday, March 10, 2011

By Jayson

Mar 10, 2011 4:48am

The Note's Must-Reads are a round-up of today's political headlines and stories from ABC News and the top U.S. newspapers. Posted Monday through Friday right here at

Compiled by ABC News Digital News Associates and Desk Assistants Jayce Henderson, Claudia Morales, Jacqueline Fernandez, and Jordan Manor

Bloomberg’s John McCormick: “Obama Lacks Economic Strategy in Poll Seeing Republicans Worse” Americans say President Barack Obama lacks an effective strategy for improving the U.S. economy. They have much less confidence in the Republican vision for success. By a margin of 51 percent to 40 percent, a Bloomberg National Poll shows Americans say Obama lacks the right formula for long-term growth, a goal he presented in his State of the Union address with the phrase “win the future.” LINK

Politico’s Glenn Thrush & Carrie Budoff Brown: “W.H. struggles to lead on spending” The budget debate has been galloping away from Democrats since the passage of a two-week spending bill — and President Barack Obama tried to grab back the reins on Wednesday. The White House has tried to keep its distance from Senate and House negotiators, fearing being dragged into another partisan food fight after the bipartisan triumph of the December lame-duck session. LINK

ABC News’ Ariane De Vogue and Barbara Pinto: “Illinois Abolishes Death Penalty; 16th State to End Executions” In a ceremony behind closed doors today Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn signed a bill that will make Illinois the 16th state to abolish the death penalty.  "I have concluded that our system of imposing the death penalty is inherently flawed," said Quinn in a statement issued after the signing. LINK

The New York Times’ Monica Davey: “Wisconsin Senate Limits Bargaining by Public Workers” The bitter political standoff in Wisconsin over Gov. Scott Walker’s bid to sharply curtail collective bargaining for public-sector workers ended abruptly Wednesday night as Republican colleagues in the State Senate successfully maneuvered to adopt a bill doing just that. LINK

The Washington Post’s Michael Fletcher: “Republican Wisconsin senators bypass Democrats in vote on collective bargaining” Senate Republicans abruptly passed Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's plan to sharply curtail collective-bargaining rights for public employees Wednesday night, using a legislative maneuver to approve the measure without 14 Democratic senators who fled the state in an effort to block it. LINK

The Hill’s Jordan Fabian: “Wisconsin Senate uses ploy to advance controversial union bill” Surprising their opponents, and everyone else, with a procedural manuever, Republicans in the Wisconsin state Senate passed a controversial bill Wednesday night that curtails public employees' ability to collectively bargain with the state government. LINK

ABC News’ Jason Ryan: “Holder Criticizes Tone and Focus of Rep. King Hearings on Muslim Radicalization” The afternoon before House Homeland Security Chairman Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) kicks off hearings looking at the issue of radicalization of Muslims in America, Attorney General Eric Holder rebuffed allegations by Rep. King that members of the Muslim community had not been helpful to law enforcement in counterterrorism investigations. LINK

NY Daily News’ Michael McAuliff and Richard Sisk: “52% of Americans think Rep. Peter King Muslim radicalization hearing is appropriate: poll” Long Island Rep. Pete King has become as much a target as the Muslim terror threats he hopes to expose in controversial hearings beginning Thursday.  Even his buddies in New York's congressional delegation turned against him – though a new poll showed a majority of Americans supported his investigation into American-Muslim radicalism. LINK

ABC News’ Devin Dwyer: “Navy Sailor Faces Discharge for Falling Asleep With Another Man” Navy petty officer facing discharge for falling asleep in bed with another male sailor last month says his ouster is motivated by homophobia, not a legitimate crime, a claim that has some gay rights advocates worried about life after "don't ask don't tell." LINK

The Hill’s Alexander Bolton: “Votes backfire on Senate Dems” Senate Democrats suffered a wave of defections Wednesday as their proposal to cut just over $6 billion from federal spending this year went down to defeat. The Democratic bill attracted two fewer votes than the rival GOP measure that would cut spending by another $57 billion this year. The 11 defections will give Republican leaders ammunition in subsequent talks, as they were able to keep their caucus more unified. LINK

The Wall Street Journal’s Douglas Belkin and Kris Maher: “GOP Ends Union Stalemate” Republican senators in Wisconsin Wednesday night maneuvered around Democrats to pass legislation stripping public employees' unions of collective-bargaining rights, setting the stage for other states to pursue similar steps in one of the broadest challenges to organized labor in decades.  LINK

The Washington Time’s Stephen Dinan: “Senators hail defeat of rival spending cuts” The Senate on Wednesday first rejected House Republicans’ broad spending-cuts bill, then turned around and defeated the much shallower cuts backed by Democrats and President Obama, and both sides said it constituted progress. LINK

The Hill’s Russell Berman: “Duncan says 82% of schools could be failing under No Child Left Behind” Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Congress needs to act now to change the law that was enacted in 2002.  Education Secretary Arne Duncan told Congress on Wednesday that 82 percent of the nation’s public schools could be failing by next year under the standards of the Bush-era No Child Left Behind law.  The projection amounts to a startling spike from current data, which shows that 37 percent of schools are on track to miss targets set by the law.  LINK

LA Times’ Andrew Zajac: “FDA approves first new treatment for lupus in five decades Benlysta, developed by Human Genome Sciences, offers possible relief to symptoms such as joint pain, fatigue, fever and rashes, and could allow patients to use less prednisone. The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday approved Benlysta as the first new drug treatment for lupus in 56 years, offering possible relief from painful symptoms of the sometimes fatal autoimmune disease. LINK

Rep. King: Muslims Being radicalizedLINK
Congressional Persecution of Muslims?LINK
Joe Barton Defends Oil Company Tax CreditsLINK
Exclusive: Obamas’ Anti- Bulling MessageLINK

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