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Yes it is! No it isn't! OK, it is!

Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV) can't make up his mind about whether Social Security is or is not a pyramid scheme. His latest contention is that it is, indeed, a pyramid scheme that should be privatized, though last week he walked back the same claim.

Last week, the GOP freshman told a group of constituents, "when they first conceived Social Security, they didn't think they were going to be paying benefits for 13-15 years. That's one of the reasons why this pyramid scheme isn't working."

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President Obama has dispatched Vice President Biden, the number two man in the government and nominally the head of the U.S. Senate, to handle negotiations with the GOP over deficit reduction.

Today, Republicans said that shows Obama doesn't really care much about getting the economy back on track.

"As a business person, the people I know running businesses, if their business was in jeopardy of going out of business, they'd be rolling up their sleeves, they'd be working 16, 17, 18 hours a day to solve a problem," Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) said. "And yet our president is totally disengaged. He sent his Vice President to negotiate what, maybe once a week? Twice a week?"

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Don't let anyone say there isn't bipartisanship in Wisconsin.

The newest example of Wisconsin Republicans recruiting fake Democratic candidates, to force Dem primaries and make trouble in the state Senate recalls: Otto Junkermann, an 82-year old former Republican state representative, who will challenge official Democratic candidate Nancy Nusbaum for the recall against GOP state Sen. Rob Cowles.

As the Green Bay Press Gazette reports, Junkermann very openly professes to support Cowles:

Otto Junkermann, 82 of Allouez, said he thinks "very highly" of Cowles, a Republican also from Allouez, and will run against Nusbaum as a "conservative Democrat."

"I respect Rob a great deal. I've known him, I followed him into the Assembly and took the position he had when he went into the Senate, and I always admired him," Junkermann said.

Junkermann served in the Assembly as a Republican for one term from 1987-88. He was also a Brown County supervisor from 1982-87 and ran again in 2002, 2004 and 2008 but lost.

Asked if he was a so-called "spoiler candidate," Junkermann said: "I don't know how I could avoid being considered that."

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Republicans have seized on a new study to argue that health care reform will harm workers, and that's put the White House on the defensive.

One of the key political planks of President Obama's universal health care push was the claim that his reforms would allow people who are happy with their current benefits to keep them. The argument was never completely true. In the pre-reform era, employees have been at their employers' whims, unable to count on their benefits remaining unchanged. And come 2014, when the law is fully implemented, the reforms themselves will mean some employees are nudged into different insurance policies. But the law was designed to minimize this sort of turbulence.

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After positioning himself as the candidate of tough choices, Tim Pawlenty drew widespread ridicule from experts across the political spectrum on Wednesday for his wildly optimistic economic plan.

Pawlenty unveiled his platform at a speech in Chicago, a combination of tax reforms and budget cuts that he said would yield an explosive economic recovery. The centerpiece of his proposal was setting a goal of 5% economic growth per year for a decade.

"Growing at 5% a year, rather than the current level of 1.8%, would net us millions of new jobs," he said. "Trillions of dollars in new wealth. Put us on a path to saving our entitlement programs. And balance the federal budget."

But a group of former CBO directors, who are chosen by Congress to analyze the budget from a nonpartisan perspective, are lambasting the number, saying it's completely out of line with any mainstream assessment of the American economy.

"The trend growth rate is not going to be 5% in the United States," Douglas Holtz-Eakin, director of the CBO under President Bush and a top GOP advisor, told TPM. "The market just doesn't support that. It just doesn't."

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Call the police! Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is a terrorist, according to Stephen Colbert.

On his show Tuesday night, Colbert highlighted Paul's suggestion that people should be deported or imprisoned simply for "attending speeches" by someone advocating the overthrow of the government.

"That is perfectly consistent with Rand Paul's libertarian constitutional ideals," Colbert said. "The bill of Rights guarantees freedom of speech, not freedom of listen."

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More than 400 organizations around the world are turning on the next version of the internet protocol for a day to test how it works on a large scale. The successful deployment of the scheme is crucial if the internet is to grow.

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Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum has for four years served on the board for a group of hospitals facing a number of legal problems, including a lawsuit by the Department of Justice for Medicaid fraud, The Huffington Post reports.

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