I am using WP 2.1 w/ Automattic Widgets. I’m creating a hardcoded link section using a text widget ul in my sidebar. The resulting link, while appearing to be coded correctly, is inserting the URL for my site in front of the external URL for the target site – giving me a malformed URL.
Did you copy and paste those from something like Word? The problem is that you have the wrong kind of quote marks in your text. You need to change the “smart quotes” in the href’s into regular quote marks. Or into single quote marks. Either will do.