The Note's Must-Reads for Monday, February 10, 2014

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' Jayce Henderson, Will Cantine and Janine Elliot

FOREIGN AFFAIRS Bloomberg's Sanat Vallikappen and Rosalind Mathieson: " U.S. General Tells Japan, Philippines to Cool China Rhetoric" Comments by the leaders of Japan and the Philippines drawing parallels between China's growing assertiveness in the region and events in pre-war Europe are "not helpful," said the commander of U.S. air forces in the Pacific. "The rise of Germany and what occurred between the U.K. in particular and Germany, and what happened in Europe, I don't draw that comparison at all to what's going on today" in the Asia-Pacific, General Herbert "Hawk" Carlisle, 58, said in an interview yesterday in Singapore. LINK

DEBT LIMIT DEAL Washington Post's Paul Kane and Robert Costa: " With the clock ticking, Republicans seek a solution to raising debt limit, but not a fight" House Republicans return to Washington on Monday still struggling to find a path to raising the Treasury Department's borrowing authority, but the normally raucous caucus is in unusual agreement that the best option is to put the white-knuckle confrontations of recent fiscal wars behind them. Facing a timeline that leaves no room for trial and error, some party leaders were advocating a debt-ceiling solution that would wrap several popular, must-pass items around a provision to extend the federal government's borrowing authority beyond the November midterm elections. LINK

Senate Majority HARRY REID The Hill's Alexander Bolton: " Reid again eyes Senate rulebook" Liberal groups are agitating for another round of filibuster reform after Senate Majority Harry Reid's (D-Nev.) controversial triggering of the nuclear option last year has done little to alleviate Senate gridlock. A coalition of labor and liberal groups have pressed Reid to make additional changes to the Senate rules this year, something that senior Democratic aides say is very possible. "We strongly urge Majority Leader Reid and Chairman [Patrick] Leahy [D-Vt.] to consider reforms to floor and committee rules that will hasten the confirmation of President Obama's talented and qualified set of nominees," they said in a statement. LINK

New Jersey Gov CHRIS CHRISTIE The New York Daily News' Adan Edelman: " New Jersey's largest paper 'blew' its endorsement of Gov. Chris Christie's re-election campaign" The Newark Star-Ledger, New Jersey's largest newspaper, "blew" its endorsement of Gov. Chris Christie's 2013 re-election campaign, according to a member of paper's editorial board. "An endorsement is not a love embrace. It is a choice between two flawed human beings. And the winner is often the less bad option. But yes, we blew this one," Tom Moran, who helped pen the October endorsement, wrote Sunday in a heated column blasting the embattled governor. "Yes, we knew Christie was a bully. But we didn't know his crew was crazy enough to put people's lives at risk in Fort Lee as a means to pressure the mayor," Moran wrote. "We didn't know he would use Hurricane Sandy aid as a political slush fund." LINK

2016 ELECTION ABC News' Jonathan Karl: " Did Petraeus Just Endorse Hillary Clinton?" Among Republicans, there is no more popular general than David Petraeus, the commander credited for salvaging the Iraq war and the architect of the counter-insurgency strategy pursued by President Bush. Petraeus has always shied away from politics, but in a new book he is quoted lavishing so much praise on Hillary Clinton, he seems to be endorsing her as a candidate for President. "She'd make a tremendous president," Petraeus says in the new book "HRC" by Jonathan Allen and Aimee Parnes. LINK

USA Today: " The 2016 Presidential Prospects - So Far" The 2016 presidential election is a thousand days away, but that doesn't stop the speculation that's rampant over who will run and how they'll do. Democrats have a dominant front-runner. The Republican field is wide open. LINK

The Washington Times' Seth McLaughlin: " Rand Paul launches pre-emptive 2016 strike on Bill Clinton" Seeking to dent Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential aspirations and to combat the accusation that the GOP is waging a war on women, Sen. Rand Paul is waging a war on Bubba. The Kentucky Republican and likely 2016 presidential candidate is making a habit of ripping former President Bill Clinton, dubbing the 42nd president a "sexual predator" and suggesting that it is hypocritical of Democrats to cast the GOP as anti-women when they celebrate someone who preyed on women working under him in the workplace. LINK

The Los Angeles Times' Maeve Reston: " With election on horizon, each party is tracking the opposition" In the midst of a busy 2012 election cycle, Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin's offhand remark to a local television station about what constituted "legitimate rape" might have slipped under the radar. But Akin was a prime target for an opposition research powerhouse, American Bridge 21st Century, and their Akin tracker was on the ball. Within hours, the Democratic "super PAC" had uploaded the clip to YouTube and pushed it to reporters - ensuring that it blew up on Twitter and headed to the top of national news. Akin's candidacy was doomed. LINK

IMMIGRATION The Wall Street Journal's Christopher Weaver: " Million Trapped In Health-Law Coverage Gap" Ernest Maiden was dumbfounded to learn that he falls through the cracks of the health-care law because in a typical week he earns about $200 from the Happiness and Hair Beauty and Barber Salon. Like millions of other Americans caught in a mismatch of state and federal rules, the 57-year-old hair stylist doesn't make enough money to qualify for federal subsidies to buy health insurance. If he earned another $1,300 a year, the government would pay the full cost. Instead, coverage would cost about what he earns. LINK

GOP NY Times' Jeremy W. Peters: " Chastened G.O.P. Tries to Foil Insurgents at Primary Level" Richard H. Black is a Republican state senator from the Northern Virginia suburbs who once sent plastic fetuses to his colleagues with a note attached: "Would you kill this child?" He said a statue of Lincoln had no business going up in Richmond because it would be "sort of like putting the Confederate flag at the Lincoln Memorial." And he tried to block unmarried, gay and lesbian couples from receiving state home loans, saying that would "subsidize sodomy and adultery." Mr. Black easily won his latest race, and had party leaders on his side. But when he started exploring a run for Congress last month, he felt a distinct chill. LINK

HEALTH CARE Politico's Kyle Cheney: " ACA enrollment: Mayors hold the key" The road to Obamacare enrollment runs through City Hall. The Obama administration is relying on friendly mayors to coordinate enrollment efforts, circumvent tricky state politics and put a local stamp on the vast federal law. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has stood alongside mayors in at least seven cities in the past three weeks as she has taken the sign-up message across the country and rubbed elbows with dozens of other mayors at a recent conference in Washington. "We're the fourth-largest market in the United States," Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said after bantering with Sebelius in the hallway at the January meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors. "A lot of uninsured and underinsured folks." LINK

MINIMUM WAGE NY Times' Eric Lipton: " Fight Over Minimum Wage Illustrates Web of Industry Ties" Just four blocks from the White House is the headquarters of the Employment Policies Institute, a widely quoted economic research center whose academic reports have repeatedly warned that increasing the minimum wage could be harmful, increasing poverty and unemployment. But something fundamental goes unsaid in the institute's reports: The nonprofit group is run by a public relations firm that also represents the restaurant industry, as part of a tightly coordinated effort to defeat the minimum wage increase that the White House and Democrats in Congress have pushed for. LINK

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