The Note’s Must-Reads for Thursday, April 28, 2011

By Jayson

Apr 28, 2011 3:25am

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 www.abcnews.com

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

PRESIDENT OBAMA:
The New York Times’ Michael Shear: “With Document, Obama Seeks to End ‘Birther’ Issue” President Obama released his long-form birth certificate on Wednesday, a step that injected him directly into the simmering “birther” controversy in the hope of finally ending it, or even turning it to his advantage. LINK

Politico’s Ben Smith: “Rebirth: Barack Obama plays off controversy” President Obama made clear Tuesday night that his release of his birth certificate was intended not just to answer conspiracy theorists but also to embarrass Republicans, and to contrast his presidential stature with a party whose most visible face is a that of celebrity developer Donald Trump. “My name is Barack Obama. “I was born in Hawaii, the 50th State of the U.S.A.” he began at his final stop Wednesday evening, drawing roars of approval from a crowd of some 1,300 donors at The Town Hall in New York. LINK

New York Daily News’ Aaliyah Shahid: “President Obama Releases Birth Certificate, Ripped by GOP, Including Romney, Palin, Cantor, Gingrich” Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Conservatives slammed President Obama shortly after he released his long-form birth certificate, arguing either that the commander-in-chief should not have caved into pressure from fringe conspiracy theorists or that the document should have been released sooner. "What President Obama should really be releasing is a jobs plan” tweeted aspiring presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. LINK

The Hills’ Sam Youngman: “Obama Hopes to be Seen as the Adult in the 'Birther' Fight” President Obama hopes his release of a long-form birth certificate Wednesday will leave voters seeing him as Washington’s last standing grown-up. It’s a continuation of a strategy the White House has employed since the mid-term election, when Democrats lost the House and saw their majority narrow in the Senate. LINK

LEON PANETTA:
The Washington Post’s Craig Whitlock: “From CIA to Defense, Leon Panetta is a quintessential Washington Player” At 72, Leon Panetta will be the oldest man nominated as defense secretary. He has more experience in walnut farming than in military matters, though he did briefly serve in the Army — almost a half-century ago. But what Panetta would bring with him to the Pentagon are two critical skill sets: how to play power politics in Washington, and how to manage enormous sums of taxpayer money. LINK

The Washington Post’s Karen DeYoung: “Obama to nominate CIA Director Leon Panetta as defense secretary” President Obama has opted for continuity in a major reshuffle of his national security team, choosing familiar names to help him complete the U.S. withdrawal from Iraq, define the endgame in Afghanistan and give the Pentagon its fair share of budget cuts. LINK

2012 ELECTION:
The Boston Globe’s Matt Viser: “Trump gets N.H. buzzing with visit” He stepped off a Trump helicopter, proclaimed he had caused President Obama to release his full birth certificate, and showed off all the bombast and bravado that within weeks have catapulted him into the conversation about who will be the next president of the United States. Whether Donald Trump will seek the Republican nomination, and whether he has significant support here in the first-primary state or elsewhere, seemed beside the point. LINK

LA Times’ Jean Merl: “Jane Harman's 36th District Seat Attracts a Crowded Field” Volunteers are knocking on doors and working the phones, and the campaign brochures are landing in mailboxes with increasing regularity. Mail-in ballots are available this week, and a couple of dark-horse candidates have shown they have money to spend. The crowded May 17 election to succeed Jane Harman in Congress has entered a new phase. LINK

FEDERAL PRESS CONFERENCE:
ABC News’ Daniel Arnall: “Bernanke Holds First Press Conference in Fed's History” Wearing a grey suit and sitting at a podium in a conference room at the Fed's C Street Annex Building, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke made history this afternoon, talking to the media for the first time in a post-FOMC meeting briefing. No other Fed chairman in the 98-year history of the nation's central bank has done this. Bernanke offered a stoic presence in a room filled with more than 50 reporters and dozens of cameras, confidently fielding more than 18 questions during the hour-long news conference. LINK

HEALTH CARE:
The Wall Street Journal’s Janet Hook and Danny Yadron: “Democrats Focus on Medicare” Congressional Democrats, on the defensive for months on federal spending issues, see an opportunity to seize the political initiative by pushing to the forefront a House Republican plan to overhaul Medicare. LINK

ABC NEWS VIDEOS:
Obama Releases Birth CertificateLINK
Trump 'Proud' Obama Released Birth CertificateLINK
Did Obama Put Birther Issue to Bed?LINK

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