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Tuesday's Mini-Report

Today's edition of quick hits:

* It's official: the Senate confirmed Chuck Hagel as the nation's new Defense Secretary. The final vote was 58 to 41. Every Republican but four -- Thad Cochran, Rand Paul, Mike Johanns, and Richard Shelby -- voted in opposition to the nomination.

* President Obama spoke at Newport News Shipbuilding today in the hopes that public pressure will lead congressional Republicans to be more responsible before sequestration cuts kick in. The overhaul of the USS Theodore Roosevelt, which is currently docked nearby, has been put on hold due to GOP antics, reinforcing the real-world impact of the Republicans' tactics.

* Israel: "Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday fired a rocket into Israel for the first time since a cease-fire reached three months ago ended an Israeli offensive against the militant Islamist group Hamas, police said."

* More cabinet: "The Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday approved President Barack Obama's choice of Jacob Lew to be Treasury secretary and sent the nomination to the full Senate."

* Supreme Court: "In a 5-to-4 decision that broke along ideological lines, the Supreme Court on Tuesday turned back a challenge to a federal law that authorized intercepting international communications involving Americans."

* Italy: "Markets dropped and Italians awoke on Tuesday to headlines screaming 'Ungovernability' and 'Hung Parliament' a day after national elections to replace the technocratic government of caretaker Prime Minister Mario Monti failed to produce a majority capable of governing the third-largest economy among those using the euro currency."

* Oh to be a fly on the wall: "President Barack Obama will meet Tuesday at the White House with Republican Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina to discuss immigration changes, a White House official said."

* And all of sudden, the right loves Bob Woodward. That Bob Woodward made obvious errors, which he has not corrected, doesn't seem to bother conservatives in the slightest.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.