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Just when Republicans were starting to worry their 2012 presidential field would be too boring to bother with, Sarah Palin might be fixing to ride in like a movie hero just at the nick of time.

RealClearPolitics' Scott Conroy has the details on a feature-length documentary set to release next month. The film is produced by Steve Bannon and the team behind Generation Zero, a tea party favorite about the financial crisis. Bannon funded the film himself "and he insisted upon taking complete control" -- after Palin asked him to make some videos about her -- but the results as Conroy describes them sound like the best campaign commercial Palin could have hoped for.

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by Sebastian Rotella, ProPublica

This report is part of a ProPublica and PBS FRONTLINE investigation. A version of this article appeared in the Washington Post.

An officer in Pakistan's intelligence service chose a Jewish center as a target for the 2008 Mumbai attacks and then helped launch a new plot against Denmark, according to the star witness in a terror trial in Chicago.

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National Democrats were united in their post-election message after their NY-26 win, issuing a flurry of statements claiming the race as a victory over Paul Ryan's Medicare plan.

Supporters chanted "Medicare" at Democrat Kathy Hocul's victory party, and she made it a centerpiece of her speech.

"We can ensure we do not decimate Medicare," Hochul said. "We will keep the promises made to our seniors who have spent their lives paying into Medicare, so they can count on health care when they need it most."

If Democrats have their way, there will be a lot more speeches along those lines come November 2012. The chairs of both legislative election committees made clear on Tuesday that they believe they have found a winning formula they intend to use elsewhere.

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Female Democratic senators are returning to a tactic that served them well when Republicans threatened a government shutdown over federal funding of abortion. They're making the case that the House GOP budget, and the male Republican legislators who are advocating its policies in debt limit talks with Democrats, are using the deficit as an excuse to pursue an anti-woman agenda.

"[T]hey have put one thing above anything else: cutting health care for women," said Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA). "Last month they almost shut down the entire federal government in an attempt to cut off funding for health care programs for women and girls

Joining Murray were five of her female colleagues, and two male Democratic senators, Dick Blumenthal (D-CT), and Benjamin Cardin (D-MD). Together, they ran through a long list of ways the GOP budget undermines women.

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Shameless hypocrisy is nothing new in politics, but it's rarely laid out as nakedly as it has been this week on Capitol Hill.

In the coming days each chamber will hold one vote on one dead-on-arrival piece of legislation, to expose divisions within the minority party. Senate Democrats will force a vote on the dead-on-arrival House GOP budget, complete with its plan to phase out Medicare. And next week, House Republicans will force a vote on a "clean" extension of the debt limit, to prove they have a mandate to tie the debt limit to significant spending cuts.

You might not be surprised to learn that the leaders of both parties have contradictory views on these messaging votes. But you wouldn't expect them to contradict themselves so quickly.

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A day after House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (MD) confirmed that cuts to Medicare are a part of deficit reduction negotiations, progressives are out with new polling they say shows Democrats falling into a Republican trap.

The fresh numbers from Ohio, Missouri, Montana and Minnesota jibe with what national polls have shown in the past: Americans are far more concerned about job creation than they are about deficit reduction. Progressives say that shows Democrats should be leaving the deficit panic to the GOP and getting back to an agenda that protects entitlements and stimulates job growth.

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Ditching the popular spin on the right that third party challenger Jack Davis cost Republicans the NY-26 race, conservative Super PAC American Crossroads warned its supporters on Tuesday that the election is a "wake-up" call for the right.

"Republican Jane Corwin gave it her all in a very tough special election today," spokesman Jonathan Collegio said in a statement. "The debate over whether Medicare mattered more than a third-party candidate who split the Republican vote is mostly a partisan Rorschach Test. What is clear is that this election is a wake-up call for anyone who thinks that 2012 will be just like 2010. It's going to be a tougher environment, Democrats will be more competitive, and we need to play at the top of our game to win big next year."

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Republicans are going to have plenty of questions about their plan to turn Medicare into a voucher program tomorrow morning after Democrats romped to an improbable victory in a special election focused almost entirely on the issue.

Democrat Kathy Hochul lead 48-43 with over 83% of the votes counted and her victory looks to be a strong one -- the Associated Press called the race within an hour of the polls closing. Corwin underperformed in key GOP counties while Hochul's margins in Democratic areas were in line with the party's high water mark in the district from 2006, a wave year that swept the Republicans out of the majority in the House and Senate. The district is normally a safe seat for Republicans and few considered it vulnerable when Rep. Chris Lee (R-NY) resigned over topless photos he posted in a Craigslist personal.

Hochul's message focused relentlessly on the Paul Ryan budget, which she highlighted in ads, public statements, and debates at every opportunity. Her attacks on its cuts to Medicare benefits and its tax cuts for the wealthy proved impossible for Corwin to overcome, who tried her best to defend the GOP budget cuts before eventually giving in and falsely accusing Hochul of seeking similar cuts while muddying her own position on the plan.

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