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Continuing to exchange barbs with the Perry campaign, Mitt Romney has a simple question for his competitor: Why did you support Al Gore?

“Rick Perry supported Al Gore for president. Instead of distorting Mitt Romney’s record, Mr. Perry should explain why he lined up behind Al Gore’s radical environmental agenda,” Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said in an email.

This isn’t the first attack on the Perry to use this tactic. Ron Paul has previously run an ad calling him “Al Gore’s Texas cheerleader.”

Stepping into her new role as maverick agitator, Sarah Palin appeared on Sean Hannity’s radio show on Thursday and immediately commented on the recent controversy surrounding country singer Hank Williams Jr.

“Hank Williams and what he is going through now, I think it’s a very clear illustration of a greater societal problem and that is the hypocrisy on the left — the liberals who can throw these stones at a conservative and they knowing that they’re not going to be held accountable,” Palin said.

The 2011 Nobel Peace Prize honors three women — Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman — “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.” Click the picture above to see the rest of the 2011 Nobel Prize winners.

Three top Democratic leaders are meeting with President Obama and Vice President Biden Friday morning at 10:25, after the September jobs report is released, TPM’s Susan Crabtree reports. The meeting is closed to the press.

Did Harry Reid pull the nuclear option in the Senate Thursday night? That all depends what you mean by "nuclear option." Reid did succeed in changing the Senate's rules tonight, but in exceptionally narrow terms. And the only danger for Senate Democrats -- as with setting any new precedent -- is that an opportunistic future GOP majority will seize upon what happened Thursday as an excuse to make much bigger, broader changes to parliamentary procedure, perhaps even nixing the filibuster.

All day -- and really all week -- Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) have been involved in a procedural jousting match. McConnell's goal has been to embarrass Democrats -- to force a vote of some kind on the jobs bill President Obama sent to Congress weeks ago, and watch it go down in flames. Reid's goal has been to thwart McConnell, and to call his own vote in the coming days on a modified version of Obama's bill with broader caucus support. That will help Democrats make the case that Republicans alone stand in the way of the American Jobs Act.

Mostly this was about positioning. McConnell wants a version -- any version -- of the Obama jobs bill to fail with bipartisan opposition. He wants to upset Reid's efforts to draw a sharp contrast between the parties over jobs. Knowing that Republicans will filibuster all versions of Obama's jobs bills, Reid wants to make it clear in the public mind that it's the GOP that's preventing a bold jobs package from moving forward.

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Jonathan Silver, the director of the Department of Energy's Loan Programs Office, has handed in his resignation, the Washington Post reported Thursday.

Silver was appointed to the position in November 2009, well after the Loan Program Office made its now-controversial decision in March 2009 to grant solar company Solyndra a $535 million loan guarantee, only for the company to wind up bankrupt in September 2011.

As he noted in his testimony during the Republica-controlled House's September 14 investigative hearing into the Solyndra collapse: "Although I was not at the Department when the Solyndra loan guarantee was considered or issued, it is my understanding that the transaction went through nearly three years of rigorous and exhaustive internal and external due diligence before any taxpayer funds were put at risk."

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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) threw her weight behind the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations Thursday, showering praise on a movement that has so far spread to dozens of cities, including Washington, D.C.

"The message of the protesters is a message for the establishment in every place," she told reporters in a Capitol press conference. "The message of the American people is that no longer will the recklessness of some on Wall Street cause massive joblessness on Main Street.

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