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HUFFPOST HILL: Mitt Romney Fires Medicare..

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The Girl Scouts turned 100, but we doubt old age will stop their quest to destroy American values. In a state where almost one in five adults is illiterate (don't worry, they can't read this), more than half think Obama's a Muslim. And Mitt Romney is saying so many weird things so fast we can barely keep up with him. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Monday, March 12th, 2011:

SENATE ROAD BILL: HIGHWAYS, MORE HIGHWAYS PLEASE! HuffPost's Matt Sledge: "Gas prices are up. More people are relying on mass transit instead. But the transportation bill the Senate is taking a look at on Tuesday does very little to help shift Americans away from their car-centric, gas-dependent lifestyles. Instead, the Senate bill keeps federal funding heavily tilted towards more highways and away from more subways. Of the 18.4 cent per gallon federal gas tax, the biggest source of funding for transportation funding, the Senate bill sends 2.86 cents to transit -- the same as its current level." #Progress. [HuffPost]

Harry Reid just teed up the next big fight for when the transportation bill is done by filing for cloture on 17 judicial nominees, Mike McAuliff tells us.

Richard Burr, who owns natural gas stock, on the natural gas vote tomorrow: "This legislation benefits only one thing -- only one thing -- the future of this country."

SINCE ROMNEY'S NASCAR QUIP WORKED SO WELL... Here's Mitt Romney talking about Peyton Manning on an Alabama radio station. "I don't want him to go to Maimi or to the Jets. But I've got a lot of good friends, the owner Miami Dolphins, and the New York Jets -- both owners are friends of mine." [ThinkProgress]

BIRTHER: IT'S NOT THE IMPEACHMENT SEASON - Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) isn't sure that Obama's birth certificate is real, but spring is really busy for him, so he figures we can just drop it. ThinkProgress got him on video: "I've seen a copy of it on television. But you know the Governor of Hawaii couldn't get what he felt was an original of the birth certificate. He tried to do it and gave up on it. So I think what Obama's showing is a facsimile, but I think that debate probably is not enough, shall we say, just to impeach him. ... If we started impeachment this time of year, very difficult in terms of time and strength." [ThinkProgress]

RICK SANTORUM WAS AGAINST APOLOGIES BEFORE HE WAS FOR THEM - Under Rick Santorum's reasoning for when an apology ought to be offered, and when it connotes weakness, he ought to apologize for the sweater vest. [HuffPost]

@jmsummers: Santorum in Tuscaloosa tells reporters he is the "only person in this race that has any experience as commander in chief."

DOJ BARS TEXAS VOTER ID LAW - The Justice Department barred the Texas voter ID law today after intense lobbying from ACORN. Oh, does that not exist anymore? Because of voting rights, then. AP: "In a letter to Texas officials that was also filed in the court case in Washington, the Justice Department said Hispanic voters in Texas are more than twice as likely than non-Hispanic voters to lack a driver's license or personal state-issued photo ID. The department said that even the lowest estimates showed about half of Hispanic registered voters lack such identification." [AP]

WISCONSIN JUDGE ALSO ANTI-DISENFRANCHISING - Amanda Terkel: "A Wisconsin judge declared a state law requiring people to show photo ID in order to be allowed to vote unconstitutional on Monday, issuing a permanent injunction blocking the state from implementing the measure. 'Without question, where it exists, voter fraud corrupts elections and undermines our form of government,' wrote Dane County Circuit Judge Richard Niess in his decision." [HuffPost]

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Why hasn't the Obama administration's "Hardest Hit Fund" helped more unemployed people avoid foreclosure? Here's a Michigan paper's explanation: "The $7.6 billion federal program launched in 2010 in 18 states and the District of Columbia has had a slow start because large banks weren't participating and states had to go through the trial and error of designing their own programs. Less than 11 percent, or $830.8 million, had been committed by the end of last year. Only 6.1 percent, or $30.2 million of the $498.6 million awarded to Michigan, had been spent at the end of last year." Fail. [Livingston Daily]

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ROMNEY: I NEED A HUG - Romney asked for hugs today from "Southern girls." Politico: "Before setting off to shake hands inside the restaurant, he urged supporters to embrace him -- though only those of the female gender. 'Please give us a big hug, that's the girls,' Romney said. He added, 'I've been getting hugs from the Southern girls...from 12, to well, a lot more than 12.'" Bonus awkward Romney moment: "Look at us in here. We are all nice together, all nice and wet, you know, like a can of sardines." [Politico, HuffPost]

Romney turned 65 today, but is not signing up for Medicare.

SANTORUM PRESIDENCY WOULD MEAN BOOMING TELEPROMPTER BLACK MARKET - Rick Santorum is so offended by the use of teleprompters that he thinks they should land you in jail. CNN: "'See, I always believed that when you run for president of the United States, it should be illegal to read off a teleprompter,' Santorum said at a Gulfport restaurant. 'Because all you're doing is reading someone else's words to people.' He continued to elaborate on why he believes prompters should have no place in politics, saying that people should know that a candidate's words haven't been "focus-grouped" and that the words are the candidate's -- not those of 'pollsters and speechwriters.'" [CNN]

Buzzfeed is the new Slate: 14 Mitt Romney Jokes That Are Actually Pretty Funny

ANN ROMNEY HEARTS HORSE BALLET - One year after Ann Romney revealed that the best gift her husband ever gave her was a horse, the definitive account of her love of dressage -- that rarified, pastoral sport -- has arrived. Romney, who returned to her childhood hobby after being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, says she sees her time with horses as a form of therapy: "'They give me balance. They give me energy. I think it's because I love them so much.'" [WaPo]

MITT ROMNEY MIGHT NOT BE A REDNECK - Yesterday Blue Collar comedy front man Jeff Foxworthy, best known for his "you might be a redneck" jokes, endorsed Romney. Today ThinkProgress has a long list of reasons why the former Wall Street investment banker Might not in fact be a redneck. "If your wife drives 'a couple of Cadillacs,' you might not be a redneck..." [ThinkProgress]

OCCUPY CONGRESS - Because sometimes camping in public parks gets results. MoJo with the ten progressive insurgents riding the Occupy Wall Street wave. [ MoJo]

SOUTHERNERS THINK OBAMA IS NOT A CHRISTIAN - "PPP's Alabama survey of 600 likely GOP primary voters found that only 14 percent consider Obama a Christian, while 45 percent said he is a Muslim and 41 percent answered that they were not sure. A similar picture surfaced in Mississippi. Of 656 likely GOP primary voters surveyed, 12 percent said Obama was a Christian, 52 percent classified him as a Muslim, and 36 percent fell in the "not sure" category. [HufffPost]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Be sure to give your friends a push in the right direction.

SECRET SPOT: HuffPost DC: At Little Falls in the Potomac Gorge, you can find wilderness inside the D.C. line.

By @bradjshannon!

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@GrahamDavidA: Actually, the phones called him. RT @aterkel: Chuck Norris robocalls for Newt Gingrich.

@MattOrtega: Mitt Romney turned 65 today. However, he insists if you go back and look at the tape he's always been 65.

@Ali_Gharib: I'm friends with lots of NFL fantasy team owners.

By @christinawilkie

5:00pm - 7:45pm: Young Jewish Professionals for Obamahappy hour: Finally, a good answer next time your bubbe asks if you've met any nice Jewish boys lately. [201 Massachusetts Ave, NE]

6:00pm: Attention lobbyists for foreign corporations: John Kerry and Joe Biden's joint fundraiser is about as close as you're going to get to POTUS this year, so don't miss it. [Sen. Kerry's ketchup mansionresidence]

6:30pm - 8:30pm: With the House gone, Senate Republicans kick off a week of steakhouse dinners with a Boozman fundraiser at Charlie Palmer's. [101 Constitution Ave, NW]

6:00 - 12:00am: Politico's Trivia night promises to take loud, competitive factoids to a whole new level. [401 Seventh St, NW]

6:30pm: Steak Week for the Senate GOP continues with fundraisers for Marco Rubio and Lindsey Graham. Charlie Palmer and Ruth's Chris, respectively. [101 Constitution Ave NW and 724 Ninth St NW]

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