TPM News

Sen. Ted Cruz may be trailing Donald Trump in the 2016 polls. But at least on Capitol Hill the firebrand from Texas is top contender for Republican troll-in-chief. Cruz’s scorching floor speech Friday calling Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) a liar and the Sunday Senate shenanigans that followed are the only latest chapter in a series of public beefs with Republican leadership the Texas senator has had since taking office in 2013. Here’s a look back at the previous times the conservative troublemaker has ruffled the feathers of his fellow GOPers:

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Most of the fallout was predictable from a video released a couple of weeks ago that falsely accused Planned Parenthood of selling fetal body parts: that there would be an initial flurry of media excitement followed by an inevitable debunking, that the people behind it would turn out to be a bunch of unsavory religious-right radicals, that media interest would wane while Republicans continue to puff up in feigned outrage and use this as a pretense to attack family planning programs.

But there was one thing up in the air: Which of the Duggar family-sized team of wannabe Republican presidential candidates was going to grab the brass ring as the most opportunistic exploiter of this non-scandal? This week, it looks like the winner of this stiff competition is the dark horse: “libertarian” candidate Rand Paul.

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Planned Parenthood confirmed Monday that its internal systems were the target of a cyber attack, hours after reports that hackers had gained access to the organization's internal databases and employee records. Planned Parenthood said that it was targeted by abortion "extremists" and had asked federal law enforcement to investigate the breach.

"Today Planned Parenthood has notified the Department of Justice and separately the FBI that extremists who oppose Planned Parenthood's mission and services have launched an attack on our information systems, and have called on the world's most sophisticated hackers to assist them in breaching our systems and threatening the privacy and safety of our staff members," Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said in a statement. "We are working with top leaders in this field to manage these attacks. We treat matters of safety and security with the utmost importance, and are taking every measure possible to mitigate these criminal efforts to undermine our mission and services."

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Fox host Geraldo Rivera exploded at presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) on Monday for comparing President Barack Obama's nuclear deal with Iran to the Holocaust.

"As a Jew... it was inappropriate. There are some places you cannot go," Rivera said during Huckabee's interview on the Fox News show "The Five." "You cannot compare the slaughter of six million Jews to anything other except maybe the slaughter of the Armenians or something else in history. You cannot compare it to a negotiation over a deal like this, Governor."

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