DAY'S END ROUNDUP

FROM THE BLOGS:

GDP falls in the fourth quarter

The Daily Beast's Megan McArdle discusses the surprising news that, for the first time since 2009, the national GDP contracted.

Why it won't be Barney Frank

Steve Kornacki of Salon.com explains why Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) won't (and actually didn't) pick former Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) to serve in the Senate on an interim basis.

Will the foreign policy version of "fast & furious" ever end?

The Washington Monthly's Ed Kilgore compares Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) intense focus on the attacks in Benghazi to the focus on DOJ's Operation Fast and Furious in the House.

Valentines for Hagel were posted from Tehran

Kenneth R. Timmermanin The Washington Times writes how the nomination of former Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) to be secretary of Defense sends the wrong message to Iran.

OTHER NEWS SOURCES:

Giffords to panel: 'You must act'

The Hill's Mike Lillis reports on ex-Rep. Gabrielle Giffords's (D-Ariz.) emotional testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee in favor of new gun control measures.

Sen. Cochran becomes first Republican to back Hagel to lead Pentagon

Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) supports Hagel's nomination for secretary of Defense, The Hill's Jeremy Herb reports.