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YOU BETCHA

Never shy about weighing in, Ireland-based Paddy Power has declared “Obamacare in critical condition.” Europe’s largest online betting company had offered odds of 1-2 on the likelihood that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act gets referred to a full hearing before the Supreme Court. The justices heard the case this week.

“According to the latest betting trends, it would seem that its supporters have a heck of a fight on their hands,” Paddy prognosticators said.

FOR THE NIGHT TABLE

Now on bookshelves: “Obama’s War on Jobs and Growth and What We Can Do Now to Regain our Future” by Americans for Tax Reform founder Grover Norquist and economist John R. Lott Jr.. The authors have declared war on the stimulus package, spending increases, behemoth deficits, unemployment and other economic nightmares. Happily, they also offer a 12-step rescue plan. Just a sample:

“Step 1: Never Raise Taxes (Ever),” Mr. Norquist and Mr. Lott write. “Let the Republican Party be branded as the party that will never raise your taxes. Period. No, it’s not a completely sufficient condition to achieving limited government and greater economic freedom, but it is a necessary first step. Let every candidate for office take The Taxpayer Protection Pledge and make a simple written commitment that he or she will oppose and vote against any and all efforts to increase taxes. Coca-Cola knows the value of a strong and protected brand. Republican candidates for office should follow suit.”

POLL DU JOUR

• 71 percent of Americans worry “a great deal” about the economy; 79 percent of Republicans and 63 percent of Democrats agree.

• 65 percent overall worry a great deal about gas prices; 63 percent of Republicans and 69 percent of Democrats agree.

• 60 percent overall worry a great deal about the budget deficit; 84 percent of Republicans and 42 percent of Democrats agree.

• 60 percent overall worry a great deal about the affordability of health care; 46 percent of Republicans and 69 percent of Democrats agree.

• 55 percent overall worry a great deal about unemployment; 61 percent of Republicans and 55 percent of Democrats agree.

• 46 percent of Americans overall worry a great deal about the size and power of the federal government; 71 percent of Republicans and 31 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A Gallup poll of 1,024 U.S. adults conducted March 8 to 11.

Polite applause, indignant comments to jharper@washingtontimes .com