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“Republican politicians oppose the Buffett rule, and there is little possibility that it will become law this year. President Obama’s intense focus on the policy and his emphasis on bringing it to a vote in Congress is thus mostly a symbolic gesture, underscoring his general presidential campaign themes this year,” notes Gallup Director Frank Newport. “An emphasis on millionaires paying higher taxes also helps position the Obama presidential campaign against his very rich GOP opponent, Mitt Romney.”

ANCHORS AWEIGH

Three cheers for these five “next generation attack submarines”: each weighs 7,800-tons, measures 377 feet long, bristles with Tomahawk cruise missiles and can travel at 25 knots submerged. Each has a reactor plant that won’t require refueling during the life of the vessel, and each is also designed to conduct covert long-term surveillance and carry special forces, if need be.

U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus says the quintet of new subs will be named the USS Illinois, the USS Washington, the USS Colorado, the USS Indiana and the USS South Dakota. For old times sake.

“Each of these five states serves as home to military bases,” Mr. Mabus says, noting that none of the states has had a ship named for it for more than 49 years. The most recent to serve was the battleship the USS Indiana, decommissioned in October 1963.

POLL DU JOUR

• 91 percent of Americans support laws requiring background checks before firearms sales.

• 87 percent overall support laws allowing law-abiding citizens to use deadly force to protect themselves in their own house.

• 77 percent say “regular people need to step up to prevent crime from happening.”

• 75 percent overall support laws allowing a law abiding citizen to get a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

• 74 percent support laws limiting the sale of automatic weapons like machine guns.

• 67 percent support laws allowing citizens to use deadly force to protect themselves in public places.

• 32 percent support laws allowing citizens to bring a firearm to church, work or a retail store.

• 23 percent support “less regulation” of ownership rights and gun laws.

Source: A Reuters/Ipsos poll of 1,922 U.S. adults conducted April 9-12.

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