Photo: 3arabaway, CC licence
Here’s what you need to know this morning:1. The United States openly breaks with Egypt. Egypt lashes back but the Obama administration is not backing down.
2. The U.S. is depending on the Egyptian military to facilitate a smooth transition of power. So far, no such luck.
3. Between 2005 and 2010 people living in Egypt and Tunisia increasingly described themselves as “struggling,” rather than “thriving,” according to Gallup data.
4. More than 43 million Americans relied on food stamps in November. That’s roughly 15% of the population.
5. David Cole makes the case for why President Obama’s healthcare legislation is constitutional. The legal battle will eventually be decided by the Supreme Court, where the vote is expected to be close.
6. NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposes sweeping changes to the city’s wildly expensive pension system. The aggressive proposal reflects growing concerns about the financial impact of costly public pensions.
7. “Days of rage” are scheduled to take place across the Arab world over the next few weeks, according to the Financial Times. Opposition groups have planned demonstrations in Yemen today and protests are expected in Syria tomorrow. Algeria could see demonstrations Feb. 12, followed by protests in Bahrain on Feb. 14, and in Libya on Feb. 17.
8. Tax receipts are up so the U.S. is unlikely to hit the debt ceiling limit until the end of May.
9. Jihadi groups aren’t quite sure what to make of the political upheaval in the Middle East. The online Al-Qaeda movement is ambivalent about the uprisings, but looking for ways to use the unrest to its advantage.
10. 2012 Campaign Watch: Sen. John Thune (R-SD) seems likely to pass on a presidential campaign in 2012. Six-term Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) will have a primary opponent in his bid for re-election next year.
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