TPM News

Would Hillary Clinton somehow run with President Obama to take Vice President Joe Biden's place in 2012? It's the latest -- but utterly nonsense -- idea generating cable chatter to rival the "dream ticket" rumors from 2008.

Obama allies have been shouting "No!" as loud as they can, but given the long, rocky Clinton-Obama history, the train has left the station and there's no turning back.

Clinton said today at the Fortune "Most Powerful Women" summit that she has "absolutely no interest and no reason for doing anything other than just dismissing these stories and moving on."

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The new Rasmussen poll of the Connecticut Senate race gives Democratic state Attorney General Richard Blumenthal a big lead over Republican former World Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon.

The numbers: Blumenthal 54%, McMahon 43%. The survey of likely voters has a ±4% margin of error. In the previous Rasmussen poll from a week and a half ago, Blumenthal led by only 50%-45%.

Along with two other recent surveys, one from Public Policy Polling (D) and the other from Fox News (conducted via a Rasmussen offshoot), the evidence is piling up that Blumenthal appears to be pulling away after McMahon had previously been closing the gap.

The TPM Poll Average gives Blumenthal a lead of 51.1%-44.0%.

Delaware Republican Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell has put leading Republicans in a tough (and funny) spot. In response to her 2006 claim that she had seen classified information about a secret Chinese plot to take over the United States, the current Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele and former RNC chair Ed Gillespie are saying that hey, maybe she's right.

Back when she first ran for Senate in 2006, losing the Republican primary, O'Donnell claimed during a debate that China had a "carefully thought out and strategic plan to take over America," and criticized one of her GOP opponents for wanting the United States to pursue cooperation with the country. "There's much I want to say. I wish I wasn't privy to some of the classified information that I am privy to."

[TPM SLIDESHOW: Christine O'Donnell: Anti-Masturbation Crusader. Witchcraft Dabbler. Republican Senate Nominee.]

Appearing last night on MSNBC's The Last Word With Lawrence O'Donnell, Steele was grilled by Lawrence O'Donnell (no relation) about this matter. "Michael, you know she`s lying about the classified information, right? I mean, reassure the country," said Lawrence O'Donnell.

"Do you know -- do you know that, Lawrence?" Steele replied. When Lawrence O'Donnell stated that he was certain that Christine O'Donnell was lying, Steele answered back: "Produce your evidence and invite me back on the program and talk about it."

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Democratic Senate candidate Joe Sestak is up with a new TV ad that seeks to remind voters of Republican rival Pat Toomey's affinity for Rick Santorum and Sarah Palin.
The 30-second spot, which was not released by the campaign but was airing Tuesday night and Wednesday morning in the Philadelphia media market, refers to Toomey as "Pennsylvania's most right-wing congressman"--a reference to an American Conservative Union rating that has put him to the right of former Senator Rick Santorum.

It goes on to air a clip in which Toomey says "my voting record's pretty heard to distinguish from Rick Santorum's," and reminds viewers that Toomey called Palin "a spectacular governor." It also airs a clip in which Toomey voices support for outlawing abortion and enacting penalties for doctors who perform them.
With most public polls showing Toomey leading Sestak one month before Election Day and with the race expected to tighten, the new ad underscores a key pillar of Sestak's strategy: make Toomey unacceptably conservative to Pennsylvanians.
"Pat Toomey," the ad says, "he's not on our side."

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Two bloggers who co-owned a "sex-positive" URL shortener at say the Libyan domain authority, which registers ".ly" domains, has shut them down for violating "Islamic morality."

Violet Blue and Ben Metcalfe founded last year to offer a URL shortening service that wouldn't screen out sexual, adult, and generally NSFW links. Other shorteners, such as, do.

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Louisiana's leading Senate candidates gathered last night for their first scheduled debate in Houma, LA. Well, one of them gathered. Front-runner David Vitter (R) didn't show.

Instead of joining his Democratic rival Charlie Melancon for an hour-plus long, unscripted Q&A, Vitter skipped the session entirely, according to tracker footage taken by the Louisiana Democratic party, headed to an event for Republicans only in Kenner, some 50 miles away.

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The family of the man reportedly killed on the Mexican side of Falcon Lake on the Texas border has been publicly pleading that American officials be allowed to cross over the border to search for his body. But the Sheriff leading the investigation on the U.S. side told Today this morning that Mexican officials invited his office to participate in the search last night, but that he declined the offer "because it's dangerous." (The man's wife, Tiffany Hartley, appeared in the same segment)

Hartley has maintained that her husband was shot in the head by "lake pirates" while the couple were on jet skis. His body hasn't been recovered, and she says she was able to escape on her own jet ski.

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Another Rasmussen poll of the West Virginia Senate race has Republican businessman John Raese extending his lead over Democratic Gov. Joe Manchin, in the race for the Senate seat that was held for over 50 years by Democrat Robert Byrd.

The numbers: Raese 50%, Manchin 44%. The survey of likely voters has a ±4% margin of error. In the previous Rasmussen poll from last week, Raese had just taken a narrow edge of 48%-46%.

Polls have consistently shown that Manchin is very popular, and few would question the idea that he is the best candidate the Democrats could have recruited for the race. However, President Obama remains highly unpopular in this state, Republicans are clearly capitalizing on this very effectively.

The TPM Poll Average gives Raese a lead of 49.4%-43.4%.

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