Good morning — and happy Friday! Here are some of the stories we’re reading as we push toward the weekend…
Stat of the day: 23.8 percent. That’s the amount by which spending cuts and the government shutdown reduced economic growth last quarter.
Not dead yet –> House GOP leaders unveiled their principles for immigration reform this week. Salon’s Brian Beutler explains that Dems could face a tough choice if Republicans offer to legalize the undocumented without the possibility of citizenship. ALSO: Buzzfeed’s John Stanton reports that some Republicans quietly acknowledge that racism within their party is a big reason reform has been stalled for so many years.
Reverse Hoboken –> According to a Newark Star-Ledger editorial, there’s new evidence that Chris Christie promised additional Sandy relief funds to the mayor of Belleville, who then endorsed the governor for re-election.
Drugwar –> Justice Department is trying to identify low-level, non-violent drug offenders who would make good candidates for clemency, according to David Ingram at Reuters.
Dark money and the electoral college –> MoJo’s Mariah Blake reports that Koch brothers-backed groups were involved in a campaign to rig the electoral college in Republicans’ favor in 2012.
Take that, Rush –> Sandra Fluke may run for the House seat that’s opening up with Henry Waxman’s retirement. Kyle Cheney reports for Politico.
“Grim assessment” –> Pew/USA Today poll finds that a majority of Americans now believe we failed to achieve our goals in both Iraq and Afghanistan — and that the number holding those views has grown.
Hucksters –> At ThinkProgress, Zach Beauchamp takes a hard look at one of the scams that are frequently being pushed by conservative media organizations in exchange for a cut.
Death –> Feds to seek death penalty for alleged Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Catherine Shoichet reports for CNN.
Hair trigger –> Some religious conservatives are boycotting Girl Scout cookies after the organization tweeted a link to an article about potential women of the year that listed Wendy Davis as a candidate. Tara Culp-Ressler reports for TP.
Sheriff Joe may get jealous –> Actor Steven Seagal says Vladimir Putin is dreamy, Russia should be our top ally and the Sochi Olympics will offer safe fun for everyone.
But why does She care? –> Half of Americans believe that God decides which team wins the Superbowl.