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Jenny Sanford – the ex-wife of disgraced “Appalachian Trail-hiking” former South Carolina governor Mark Sanford – appeared on MSNBC’s Hardball and was asked to react to the ‘Marianne’ Bombshell about to explode on Newt Gingrich tonight.

She told interviewer Chris Matthews that she thought the interview “would have an impact for some people” but that it was hard to know how much, “because most people knew” that Gingrich was on his third wife.

She told Matthews that it “does call into question his character on the personal side” and that when judging politicians you had to gather whether they had a “very strong stance” on the ideological side to compensate.

Sanford told Matthews that she felt Newt “fell short” and “he wouldn’t get my vote.” She said she had not made up her mind on which of the remaining candidates she would vote for on Saturday.

Former South Carolina First Lady Jenny Sanford on MSNBC, regarding Newt Gingrch’s history with his ex-wife Marianne, said that a person’s personal behavior has an impact on their actions in the public sphere.

Former South Carolina First Lady Jenny Sanford on MSNBC just now told Chris Matthews that Newt Gingrich wouldn’t get her vote.

The upcoming ABC News interview with Gingrich’s ex-wife, Marianne, “will have an impact for some people,” she added.

President Obama's health secretary Kathleen Sebelius made a spirited defense of the health care reform law Thursday -- one of several signs that Democrats are stepping up their defense of the law ahead of a 2012 election cycle in which Republicans plan to use it as a political pinata.

"We need to understand exactly what's at stake when people talk about repealing the health care law. And make no mistake: those attacks are going to keep coming," Sebelius said in a speech organized by Families USA.

"I believe that over the next few months, we'll see the biggest barrage of attacks and misinformation about the law that we've seen yet," Sebelius continued. "The law's opponents are going to take their best shot. And the reason why is that they know that the facts are not on their side."

So far, the law has insured 2.5 million young adults, saved seniors over $1 billion on prescription drugs and encouraged preventive care visits. But the bulk of the benefits begin in 2014, including some 30 million newly insured Americans and guaranteed coverage regardless of preexisting conditions.

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has called on senate Democrats to “shelve” the controversial internet piracy bill PIPA:

While we must combat the on-line theft of intellectual property, current proposals in Congress raise serious legal, policy and operational concerns. Rather than prematurely bringing the Protect IP Act to the Senate floor, we should first study and resolve the serious issues with this legislation. Considering this bill without first doing so could be counterproductive to achieving the shared goal of enacting appropriate and additional tools to combat the theft of intellectual property. I encourage the Senate Majority to reconsider its decision to proceed to this bill.

Employing the type of stinging criticism toward the mainstream media for which she is famous, Sarah Palin suggested that the bombshell interview with Newt Gingrich’s ex-wife that’s scheduled to air on ABC tonight will only benefit his presidential campaign.

In an interview on Sean Hannity’s radio show today, Palin dismissed Marianne Gingrich’s allegations as “old news” and contended that it will help the former House Speaker “soar even more.”

Rick Santorum's campaign wasn't having any talk of a "split decision" in Iowa, as the state GOP called it Thursday morning. They insisted that the world acknowledge what the final vote tallies plainly showed: Santorum won.

Now it seems that the GOP is coming around. State party chair Matt Strawn said in a radio interview this afternoon that he owes Santorum, who he identified as the clear winner, an apology.

The final count shows Santorum with a 34 vote lead, reversing an eight vote Romney lead in the unofficial caucus night tally. There are still eight precincts that, due to an apparent clerical error, were not properly certified. Add in their unofficial total and Santorum's lead increases to 69.

But the real point of the Iowa caucuses is election night momentum and campaign aides, robbed of their boost on January 3, were upset that both the state party and Romney campaign did not acknowledge what appeared to be a victory after the fact.

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Ours before Thursday night’s debate, Newt Gingrich releases a new ad titled “It’s Agreed…Newt’s Right.” The ad features clips of the other candidates stating that they agree with a position Newt has taken in a debate.


Last year Rep. Michele Bachmann delivered the “tea party” response to the State of the Union address. This year the major tea party group, “The Tea Party Express,” is holding another “response.” Here’s the release they just put out about it:

Sacramento, CA – Tea Party Express, the nation’s largest tea party political action committee, is announcing that Herman Cain will be delivering the Tea Party State of the Union response at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on the evening of January 24th, 2012.

Sal Russo, Chief Strategist of the Tea Party Express, said, “We are excited to have Herman Cain deliver the 2nd Tea Party State of the Union response next week. Americans are fed up with the Washington politics that fail to address America’s fiscal woes. The Tea Party Express has called for reducing the size, cost and intrusiveness of the federal government, and we have stood strongly for pro-growth policies to get the economy growing and job creation increased.

“We are enthusiastic that a successful conservative governor like Mitch Daniels of Indiana will be giving the Republican response. I know that both Governor Daniels and Mr. Cain will contribute important ideas for the future of our country.

“Herman Cain has been a steadfast advocate for the values of the Tea Party and the practical solutions needed to solve the problems that face our nation. By following President Obama, Cain will have an opportunity to square off with the failed policies of the Obama Administration. Whether it is a flat tax, a fair tax or a combination of the two, reforming the tax code must be a priority. Americans want straight talk and honest solutions, and Herman Cain will deliver a pro-growth message strongly and clearly,” Russo concluded.

The Tea Party Express hosted the first ever Tea Party State of the Union Response last year with Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.