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Afternoon Fix: Obama giving debt ceiling speech tonight

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Tim Pawlenty took another swipe at Michele Bachmann, a Huckabee veteran is working for Santorum, Gawker is suing Chris Christie and Nancy Pelosi wants an ethics investigation into David Wu.

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WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:

* President Obama will address the nation tonight from the East Room of the White House, his first speech in recent weeks on the debt ceiling as bipartisan negotiations continue to flounder. The president has given four press conferences on the unresolved crisis; the prime time speech underscores Obama's unprecedented personal involvement in this fight. The speech is at 9 PM; we’ll be liveblogging on The Fix, so come back tonight!

* The Minnesota feud continues. At a town hall in Davenport, Iowa, former governor Tim Pawlenty said of Rep. Michele Bachmann, “I know Congresswoman Bachmann and I respect her. ... But ... she has a record for saying things that are off the mark and this is another example of that in terms of the accuracy of those comments.” He was referring to Bachmann’s comments on Sunday likening Pawlenty’s governing philosophy to that of President Obama. The two candidates have been sniping at each other for the past couple weeks.

* Gawker is suing New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) to obtain correspondence between the rising conservative star and Fox News President Roger Ailes. The American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey filed the suit on the website’s behalf. According to a recent New York magazine article, Ailes tried to persuade Christie to run for president. Ailes denies doing so. Christie says that there are no relevant records, and if there were, they would fall under executive privilege.

* A top Mike Huckabee staffer has signed onto former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum’s presidential campaign. Hogan Gidley, the executive director of Huckabee’s political action committee, will help lead Santorum’s media strategy through the consulting firm Brabender Cox. He will stay on as a consultant to HuckPAC. Huckabee’s daughter Sarah is working for Pawlenty, so it’s hard to read anything about Huckabee’s preferences into this move.

* Missouri Republicans have filed an FEC complaint against Sen. Claire McCaskill (D), alleging that the freshman senator failed to report thousands of contributions to her 2006 campaign. McCaskill recently amended her report from that year, revealing that the senator failed to account for 143 contributions for nearly $277,000. Republicans argue that there are further unacknowledged errors in that report.

WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T MISS:

* Nevada state Sen. John Lee (D) is running for the House in 2012, Jon Ralston reports. The Las Vegas politician is expected to make a formal announcement this week. Former Rep. Dina Titus is also running, as is Assemblyman John Oceguera. District lines have yet to be finalized so none of the three Democrats have named a particular target.

* Scott Brown has a new campaign manager: Jim Barnett, the strategist behind Sen. John McCain’s New Hampshire primary win in 2008. Barnett has also served as chairman of the Vermont Republican Party and worked for former Vermont Governor James Douglas.

* Bachmann will deliver the opening night keynote at the California Republican Party’s state convention, being held in Los Angeles this September. “I know her pure energy, vibrancy and leadership will be a hit with our delegates,” said California Republican Party Chairman Tom Del Beccaro. “This is a great opportunity for us to hear directly from one of the Republican Party's leading presidential candidates.”

* House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has formally requested an ethics investigation into Rep. David Wu (D-Ore.) over allegations of sexual misconduct. According to the Oregonian, Wu is accused of having “unwanted sexual conduct” with a teenager. The accuser, who was 18 at the time, is a friend’s daughter. Wu advisers say the congressman will not run in 2012 but has no plans to resign.

THE FIX MIX:

For a case of the Mondays:

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With Rachel Weiner and Aaron Blake

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