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As the world copes with online document dumps by WikiLeaks, Julian Assange has been jailed in England. Has he made the work of American diplomats harder than ever, or created a new standard of openness and accountability? Has he violated the law? Also, President Obama defends his tax-cut compromise, and Thomas Porteous of New Orleans has become the eighth federal judge in history to be removed by the US Senate.

Banner image: The face of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is seen through a magnifying glass on December 6, 2010. Photo: Thomas Coex/AFP/Getty Images

Making News Obama Defends His Tax-Cut Compromise 7 MIN, 35 SEC

After fuming yesterday about the "sanctimonious" left of his own party, President Obama dispatched Vice President Biden to Capitol Hill today to talk with angry Democrats.  After meeting with the President of Poland, Mr. Obama answered questions about his tax cut deal with Republicans. Michael Crowley is senior correspondent at Time magazine.

Michael Crowley, Politico (@MichaelCrowley)

Main Topic Sex, WikiLeaks and the Law 38 MIN, 39 SEC

Julian Assange spent last night in a London Jail, without bail on an arrest warrant from Sweden. He has not been charged with a crime, but Swedish authorities say two women have accused him of rape and sexual harrassment. Assange says it's really all about WikiLeaks. Meantime, the international uproar over WikiLeaks continues. Today, the Foreign Minister of Australia, where Assange is a citizen, called him "irresponsible" but innocent and blamed the United States for the leak of classified cables. A Swiss bank has frozen his legal defense funds, and Visa and MasterCard have cut him off. American politicians have called for his head from the Right and the Left. Could he be extradited to the US? Would WikiLeaks retaliate with a massive document dump? What about the First Amendment?

John Burns, New York Times
Afua Hirsch, The Guardian (@afuahirsch)
James Rubin, Sunday Times
Glenn Greenwald, Salon.com (@ggreenwald)

Reporter's Notebook Senate Impeaches Louisiana Judge 4 MIN, 30 SEC

For only the eighth time in history, but the fourth since 1989, the US Senate convicted a federal judge today on four articles of impeachment and disqualified him from ever holding federal office again. His defense was addiction to gambling. Thomas Porteous corrupted all those around him, according to California Democrat Adam Schiff, impeachment manager in the Congress. The New Orleans judge was nominated to the federal bench in 1994 by another Democrat, Bill Clinton. Bruce Albert is Washington reporter for the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

Bruce Alpert, Washington Reporter, Times-Picayune (@AlpertDC)

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