The Note’s Must-Reads for Thursday, June16, 2011

Jun 16, 2011 3:43am

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

LIBYA
ABC News’ Jake Tapper: “Obama Administration: Libya Operation Has Cost More than $716 Million, Does Not Require Congressional Authorization” In a report revealing that the total cost of US intervention in Libya as of June 3 has been $716 million and will reach $1.1 billion by the end of September, the Obama administration today told congressional leaders in a report that the role of the US military is so limited, congressional authorization is not needed. LINK

The Hills’ Sam Youngman, Russell Berman and Mike Lillis: “War Powers standoff escalates over Libya” The White House on Wednesday argued President Obama has acted consistently with the War Powers Resolution in using U.S. military forces in Libya without first asking for congressional approval. The administration’s argument, made in a more than 30-page report and legal analysis sent to congressional leaders, is that Obama is in compliance with the resolution because the U.S. does not have a lead role in the Libyan operation, which is being carried out by NATO. LINK

Politico’s Reid J. Epstein: “Libya clash reaches tipping point” The fight over presidential authority in the military conflict in Libya reached a tipping point Wednesday, morphing from an academic discussion over the War Powers Resolution to a serious challenge to President Barack Obama’s authority to keep U.S. forces involved in the NATO-led air bombings of the North African dictatorship.  LINK

The New York Times’ Charlie Savage and Mark Landler: “White House Defends Continuing U.S. Role in Libya Operation” The White House, pushing hard against criticism in Congress over the deepening air war in Libya, asserted Wednesday that President Obama had the authority to continue the military campaign without Congressional approval because American involvement fell short of full-blown hostilities. LINK

Bloomberg’s  Richard Rubin and Kathleen Hunter: “Senate Rejects Coburn Bid to Eliminate Ethanol Tax Break, Tariff” The fight over presidential authority in the military conflict in Libya reached a tipping point Wednesday, morphing from an academic discussion over the War Powers Resolution to a serious challenge to President Barack Obama’s authority to keep U.S. forces involved in the NATO-led air bombings of the North African dictatorship. A day after House Speaker John Boehner declared Obama would soon be in violation of the 1973 War Powers Resolution, a bipartisan coalition of 10 members of Congress sued the president and Defense Secretary Robert Gates, arguing they are violating the law. LINK 

GOP
The Washington Post’s David Fahrenthold and Karen Yourish: “Some Republican Freshman in Congress hold major debt, disclosure forms show” Members of the firebrand class of Republican freshmen on Capitol Hill — elected on a pledge to attack the U.S. debt problem — have, in some cases, accumulated tens of thousands of dollars in personal debt, according to financial documents released Wednesday. LINK

The Wall Street Journal’s Jonathan Weisman and Danny Yadron: “Romney Solidifies 2012 GOP Lead” Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has surged to a clear lead in the Republican race for the presidential nomination, but his party's attacks on President Barack Obama's economic stewardship have yet to shake the president's lead over the GOP, a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll finds. LINK

LA Times’ Lisa Mascaro: “GOP shifting on anti-tax policy” One of the most treasured tenets of the Republican Party— "No new taxes" — has been thrown open to debate by a simple question: What, exactly, is a new tax? The answer, argues Grover Norquist, the godfather of contemporary anti-tax conservatism in Washington, is anything that increases federal revenue. Thus, closing loopholes that have allowed corporate giants and millionaires to slice away at their tax bills would constitute an unacceptable new tax — unless a comparable tax cut is made elsewhere. LINK  

OTHER
The New York Times’ James Risen: “Ex-Spy Alleges Effort to Discredit Bush Critic” A former senior C.I.A. official says that officials in the Bush White House sought damaging personal information on a prominent American critic of the Iraq war in order to discredit him. LINK

NY Daily News’ Alison Gendar, Alex Katz and Corky Siemaszko: “Dems mull action on Anthony Weiner as photos emerge showing congressman in bra and pantyhose” Things went from drag to worse on Wednesday for Anthony Weiner – and could get even bleaker for him Thursday. Hours after photos of the creepy congressman vamping in a bra and pantyhose popped up, and porn star Ginger Lee accused him of telling her to lie, reports surfaced that House Dems may start trying to force him out. LINK

USA Today’s Richard Wolf: “U.S. debt limit debate down to wire” Exactly one month ago, the Treasury Department began issuing IOUs rather than bonds to some government pension funds. That allowed for continued auctions of so-called "risk-free" Treasury bonds until Aug. 2. LINK

ABC NEWS VIDEOS:
“Nancy Pelosi: 'Congressman Weiner Should Resign'” LINK

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