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DES MOINES, IOWA -- It's hard to say who was more excited Tuesday night: Rick Santorum, who came within eight votes of beating Mitt Romney or the Democrats watching on their couches at home.

The theory from the Democrats: if that's the best Romney can do, the general election is looking better and better. Democrats have long focused on Romney as the likely nominee, and the results here in the Caucus race bear that plan out: even with just an eight-vote margin of victory, Romney's path to the nomination looks smoother than ever. Democrats have also said the primary process exposes how vulnerable Romney can be. Tuesday night's results seemed to prove that point as well.

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President Barack Obama had a key line in his speech to Ohioans on Wednesday, touting his recess appointment of former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to the top spot of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, created by the Dodd-Frank financial regulatory reform legislation. "Now is the time to do everything we can to protect consumers and prevent a financial crisis like the one we've been through from ever happening again," Obama said. "And that starts with letting Richard Cordray do his job."

The day after Republicans took their first step in their nominating process, seeing former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney edge out former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum (R) by eight votes in the Iowa caucuses, it was a clear message.

I'm doing my job, GOP. What are you doing?

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The White House distributed the following remarks shortly ahead of President Obama's 1:25pm speech in Ohio in which he announced the recess appointment of Richard Cordray to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau:

As Prepared for Delivery --

Hello, Cleveland! It's great to be back in Ohio. And it's great to be here at Shaker Heights, home of the Red Raiders. I want to thank your mayor, Earl Leiken, for hosting us today. I also want to thank your superintendent, Mark Freeman, and your principal, Mike Griffith, for everything they do. I heard you have some pretty good basketball teams this season - boys and girls. It makes me wish I had some eligibility left.

Finally, I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year. One of my resolutions is to make sure I get out of Washington enough and spend more time with people like you. Because folks here in Ohio and across the country - you're the reason why I ran for this office in the first place. And on days like today, you remind me what we're still fighting for. An America where hard work and responsibility pays off. An America where anyone who puts in the effort and plays by the rules can get ahead.

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A German man has been charged with multiple counts of arson in connection with the Los Angeles arson fires over the past week, the AP reports. More than 50 fires were set across the L.A. area, mostly targeting cars and parking garages. See pictures of the fires here.

Rick Santorum will appear on CNN’s “John King USA” at 6 p.m. ET, Fox News' “The O'Reilly Factor” at 8 p.m. ET and CNN’s “Pier’s Morgan Tonight” at 9 p.m. ET. Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Herman Cain are scheduled to be on Fox News' “Hannity” at 9 p.m. ET.

Via Politico’s prime-time TV list.

Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) is officially on board with President Obama’s recess appointment of Richard Cordray to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, sending reporters the following statement:

I support President Obama’s appointment today of Richard Cordray to head the CFPB. I believe he is the right person to lead the agency and help protect consumers from fraud and scams. While I would have strongly preferred that it go through the normal confirmation process, unfortunately the system is completely broken. If we’re going to make progress as a nation, both parties in Washington need to work together to end the procedural gridlock and hyper-partisanship.

Flagging former Web great Yahoo shocked the tech world on Wednesday by announcing it had finally appointed a new CEO to lead the company's latest turnaround attempt: Scott Thompson, the current president of PayPal.

"Yahoo! is an industry icon and I am very excited about the prospect of working with one of the great teams in the online world to deliver Yahoo!'s next era of success," Thompson said in a statement released Wednesday.

The news confirmed a report by All Things D's Kara Swisher on Tuesday. Swisher observed that Thompson had recently "Liked" Yahoo on his Facebook page.

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