PM Note: ABC / WaPo Poll on Guns, Obama on Deadbeats, Dine-n-Dashers and Debts, Clarence Thomas Breaks 7 Year Unspoken Streak

George H.W. Bush Discharged from Hospital -

Justice Clarence Thomas Speaks, but What Does He Say?- Nearly seven years since he last spoke up during oral arguments, Justice Clarence Thomas cracked a joke today. Unfortunately, it's unclear exactly what he said. (Ariane de Vogue)

ABC / Washington Post Poll - Most Support New Gun Restrictions - Gary Langer reports: With Vice President Joe Biden set to present recommendations that were prompted by the Newtown, Conn., school shootings last month, this latest poll shows overwhelming support for certain moves: Eighty-eight percent favor background checks on firearms buyers at gun shows; 76 percent support checks on buyers of ammunition and 71 percent back a new federal database that would track all gun sales.

Sixty-five percent also support banning high-capacity ammunition magazines, a high in three ABC/Post polls to test the idea since early 2011, and up by 6 percentage points since just after the Newtown shootings.

58 percent favor banning the sale of so-called assault weapons,

55 percent support the National Rifle Association's call for armed guards in schools

51 percent would ban semi-automatic handguns.

The Full Poll - Why Mali is in the News and Why You Should Pay Attention to It - The U.S. today pledged to aid France's widening aerial assault on al Qaeda-linked rebels in Northern Mali, as Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said the U.S. would provide the French with intelligence and airlift support and the State Department said it would send civilian contractors to the region as early as this week to train an African-led military force. (reporting from Dana Hughes, Bazi Kanani and Luis Martinez)

President Obama Can't Get a Republican Date - Rick Klein points out that when President Obama said at his press conference today that he was sitting up at that big lonely house, he had a point of sorts… There is precedent for Republicans rejecting White House invitations -

Maybe more Republicans will be enticed to call on Obama now that he put out there that: 'I Like a Good Party' (Mary Bruce)

Deadbeats and Dine-n-Dashers - Obama's Metaphors - Fielding reporters' questions for nearly an hour today, President Obama repeatedly warned how failing to raise the nation's debt limit would negatively impact the economy, and he tried to put it in terms people could understand - like "deadbeat" - we're "not a deadbeat nation," he declared. And he compared failing to raise the debt ceiling to skipping out on the check. Those were tame compared to his gun-to-the-head metaphor. (Mary Bruce)

Here's Devin Dwyer's full wrap of the Obama press conference, which was heavy on the debt ceiling - where he still won't negotiate and which he said squarely would be Congress's decision not to pay IT's bills. He was less definitive on guns, where he doesn't hold as strong a hand and where he was talking about "starting points", not lines in the sand.

President Obama Mulls Gun Control Steps - President Obama held the final press conference of his first term the day before Vice President Joe Biden is set to present his task force's recommendations for curbing gun violence in the wake of the deadly Newtown, Conn., shooting.

Boehner, GOP Ready for Fight With Obama, Dems Over Debt Limit - House Speaker John Boehner openly challenged President Obama to another battle over the country's mounting deficit today, answering Obama's declaration that "America cannot afford another debate" over the debt limit by saying that Americans "do not support raising the debt ceiling without reducing government spending at the same time." (John Parkinson)

Military Suicides in 2012 Tops Military Deaths in Afghanistan - The number of suicides among active duty service members, across all four military branches, reached a record high of 349 in 2012, compared with 301 in 2011. (Luis Martinez) From Univision / ABC The Napolitano Connundrum - Janet Napolitano has overseen 1.59 million deportations at DHS, so see why immigration advocates are cheering her decision to stay: (Jordan Fabian)

Immigration Group Bashes Deferred Action, Other 'Amnesties' - (Emily DeRuy)

Ann Romney Says No to 'Dancing With the Stars' - It looks like Ann Romney's dancing partner will still only be Mitt. Despite an offer from "Dancing With the Stars" to dance for the mirror ball trophy in the upcoming season, she turned the show down. (Shushannah Walshe)

U.S. Constitution to Be Read Aloud in House Tuesday - For the second time ever, the U.S. Constitution will be read aloud in the House chamber Tuesday morning. (John Parkinson)

Inauguration Apps: Obama Swearing In Goes Mobile - Welcome to the age of the iPhone, inauguration. (Sarah Parnass)

Maryland Gov. O'Malley Backs Gun Control Bill - BALTIMORE-Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley announced today that he will bring legislation to his state's legislature that would become one of the nation's most expansive responses to last month's tragic school shootings in Connecticut. (Matthew Larotonda)

Emanuel Wants Chicago Pension Funds to Divest Gun Makers - Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Monday he would ask the city pension funds to divest from any investments in companies that manufacture guns and will "lead a charge" among all mayors to tackle the issue. (Arlette Saenz)

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