They've got muck; we've got rakes. TPM Muckraker

Update: December 19, 2013, 4:57 PM

Did Garden State Gov. Chris Christie (R) really paralyze Fort Lee, N.J. with gridlock to exact revenge after the local mayor crossed him?

It's an allegation that sounds almost too weird to be true. But even though no one has found a smoking gun directly linking Christie to the lane closures on the George Washington Bridge that shut down Fort Lee for five days in September, one prominent Democrat with intimate knowledge of the investigation is convinced political forces were behind Bridge-gate.

New Jersey state Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg explained her Christie-centric traffic conspiracy theory to TPM in a phone conversation Wednesday.

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Monday marked the beginning of the end for for Nathan Bedford Forrest High School in Jacksonville, Fla.

In a 7-0 vote Monday afternoon, the Duval County School Board approved a change for the 54-year-old school named for the former Ku Klux Klan leader. When the new school year begins in August 2014, the school will have a new name, presumably one not associated with the KKK.

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A major character in a legendary congressional corruption scandal has been hiding out by the docks in Baltimore under an assumed name and remained unseen for about eight years. Until now.

It is the ship once known as the "Duke-Stir," a 42.2 foot yacht that was home to ex-Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, a California Republican who pleaded guilty in 2005 to taking part in a massive, multimillion dollar bribery scheme. During his days on the Duke-Stir, Cunningham reportedly was fond of entertaining female guests by the light of a lava lamp. Today, the boat is home to a bartender named Greg Banker and his girlfriend, Doreen Sweeten.

On Tuesday, Banker invited TPM to come on board for a tour of the boat and the things Cunningham left behind. Banker declined to discuss some of what he originally found on the boat to avoid "dishing dirt," but he said it would be safe to describe the ship as a former congressional "party palace."

"He was a partier," said Banker. "It was obviously a fun place for him to hang out."

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