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Wednesday's Mini-Report

Today's edition of quick hits:

* A gunman shot a security guard today at the offices of the Family Research Council, a religious right lobbying group. The guard, who was shot in the arm, is apparently OK, the shooter is in custody, and fortunately no one else was hurt. The motive is unclear, but the FBI is investigating, and will have jurisdiction if the incident turns out to be a hate crime.

* Syria: "An air strike by Syrian government forces killed 30 people in the rebel-held town of Azaz on Wednesday, a local doctor said, and a mass kidnapping linked to Syria in neighboring Lebanon raised the prospect of sectarian violence spreading."

* Encouraging economic news, Part I: "U.S. factories made more cars, computers and airplanes last month, a hopeful sign that manufacturing is recovering after a weak spring."

* Encouraging economic news, Part II: "U.S. homebuilder sentiment rose in August to its highest level in more than five years, a fresh sign that the battered housing market is turning the corner, data from the National Association of Home Builders showed on Wednesday."

* Following up on an item from this morning, Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.), the right-wing birther congressman who led a witch hunt against Planned Parenthood, conceded today after losing a primary yesterday.

* Lines worth waiting in: "Long lines of illegal immigrants hoping for the opportunity to stay in the United States without fear of being deported stretched for blocks in cities around the country on Wednesday as they sought to apply for a new federal initiative that allows young immigrants to defer deportation."

* Gov. Rick Scott's (R) pre-election voter purge isn't over, and appears poised to intensify.

* Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad (R) lied about welfare reform this morning. Kudos to MSNBC's Chuck Todd for not letting the lie go unchallenged.

* Vice President Biden "guarantees" no Social Security cuts if President Obama gets re-elected.

* I realize that Fox News loves Paul Ryan, but this adulation got a little creepy today when on-air personality Monica Crowley said the Republican "could chair my budget committee any day." Stay classy.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.