The Note's Must-Reads for Thursday, December 5, 2013

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, Amanda VanAllen, Will Cantine and Jordan Mazza

HEALTHCARE ABC News' Mary Bruce and Ann Compton: "Obama Tells Youth Obamacare Cheaper Than Cell Phone Bill" President Obama is enlisting young people to help sell the Affordable Care Act to the demographic critical to the success of his signature law. "This law is already making a difference for millions of young people, and it's about to help millions more," he said at a White House youth summit. LINK

USA Today's Kelly Kennedy: "Health care site traffic up 80%; bugs called 80% fixed"The number of visitors to the website Wednesday hit 310,000 by noon, an 80% increase from the same day last week, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. " remains stable with more than 950,000 visitors to the site yesterday," said Julie Bataille, the centers' communications director. LINK

INCOME GAP The Hills' Justin Sink: " Obama: Income Gap a 'Fundamental Threat'" President Obama declared rising income inequality a "fundamental threat" to the United States on Wednesday. Speaking in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Washington, D.C., Obama pledged that for the remainder of his presidency, his administration would "focus all our efforts" on addressing an issue that threatens the economy and the American Dream. LINK

The Los Angeles Times' Christi Parnes: " Obama Turns Attention to Income Inequality" President Obama on Wednesday declared an end to the war on budget deficits and pledged instead to fight the "deficit of opportunity" for the poor and middle class. In a lengthy speech on his economic priorities, Obama said the federal deficit was under control and no longer presented a serious threat to the economy. LINK

The Washington Post's Zachery A. Goldfarb: " Obama Focuses Agenda On Relieving Economic Inequality" President Obama laid out an aspirational agenda Wednesday for the remainder of his presidency, looking past the Republican opposition that has long blocked his goals and toward policies to narrow income inequality and promote opportunity for the poor. Obama's remarks at an arts and education center in a low-income Southeast Washington neighborhood provided his most specific road map for how he intends to spend his final 37 months in office, seeking to overcome partisan fights about the budget and the troubled rollout of his health-care law. He pressed for a higher minimum wage, more spending on early-childhood education, an overhaul of immigration laws and other measures aimed at boosting the economy. LINK

The New York Times' Jackie Calmes: " Obama Presses Case For Health Law And Wage Increase" President Obama left the White House on Wednesday for one of the capital's working-class neighborhoods to talk about the economy, not simply to divert attention from the troubles of his Affordable Care Act but also to explain how that law, for all of its flaws, fits into his vision for Americans' economic security and upward mobility. That vision - of an economic partnership between government and its citizens - is one that Mr. Obama has described since he was a state senator in Illinois, and it draws on the legacies of three Republican presidents: Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Dwight D. Eisenhower. LINK

BUDGET Bloomberg's Heidi Przybyla & Derek Wallbank: " Budget Negotiators Seeking to Avoid Shutdown Near Deal" U.S. budget negotiators are near a deal in which Democrats would accept fresh revenue from user fees and Republicans would agree to more federal spending, steps that could avoid another government shutdown next year. The two leaders of the 29-member bipartisan panel aiming to reach an agreement on budget savings to replace some automatic spending cuts set to start in January are hatching a narrow deal in which both parties would have to compromise. LINK

The Wall Street Journal's Melanie Trottman: "Pension Tensions Grow as Congress Nears Budget Deal" Move over Detroit. Pension tension is also brewing in the halls of Congress, and federal workers could be the target, the nation's two largest federal employee unions say. LINK

PENTAGON The Washington Times' Kristina Wong: " Pentagon may give recruits 'a shot to start over' after shameful social media posts" Young people, beware: That drunken selfie on your Facebook page or obscene rant on your Twitter feed could come back to haunt you - by killing your job prospects. So says the country's top military officer. Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joints Chief of Staff, said Wednesday that young people need to take care about what they post in social media because today's bad behavior can cause tomorrow's job rejection, even in the military. LINK

ABC NEWS VIDEO "Obama: Health Care Reform Worth a Few Grey Hairs" LINK

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