TPM News

The Republican National Committee is firing back at a scathing resignation letter dropped by RNC Political Director Gentry Collins today.

Sort of.

In a brief statement, RNC spokesperson Doug Heye offered up a defense of the RNC's fundraising apparatus under Chairman Michael Steele -- but offered only a vague defense in response to Collins' charge that of the money Steele raised, he spent poorly. Nor did the RNC respond to Collins' claim that the party has been left with crippling debt that must be paid off before the 2012 cycle begins.

"For the first time in 16 years the Republican Party held neither the White House or either Chamber of Congress," Heye wrote. "Despite lacking that fundraising advantage, the RNC was able to raise more than $175 million, over $24 million more than the RNC raised during the entire 1994 cycle and over $36 million more than the DNC raised during the entire 2006 cycle, indexed for inflation."

Read More →

As you may recall, erstwhile Senate candidate Alvin Greene (D-SC) was arrested in November 2009 on obscenity charges for allegedly showing pornography to an uninterested female college student. Greene had a hearing today, and it seems his loss to Sen. Jim DeMint this month hasn't dampened his spirits.

"Write about me running for president," Greene told the Columbia Free Times. "I'm running for president of the United States."

Read More →

Rep.-elect (and physician) Andy Harris (R-MD) stood up at an orientation of newly elected members, flabbergasted that he'd have to wait a month for his government-provided private health insurance to kick in.

"This is the only employer I've ever worked for where you don't get coverage the first day you are employed," he reportedly complained, outraged by the delay.

For a man of the people, that's a pretty impressive résumé. Most workers in this country have to wait weeks between their first day on the job and the day their health insurance kicks in. Sometimes more.

According to the 2010 Kaiser Family Foundation annual survey of employer-provided health benefits, most workers would be lucky to start a new job in Harris' shoes.

Read More →

The Committee on Standards of Official Conduct announced late Monday that they have agreed to "continue to defer taking action into whether Representative Jesse Jackson Jr., or an agent of Representative Jackson, may have offered to raise funds for then-Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich in return for the appointment of Representative Jackson to the Illinois Senate seat vacated by President Barack Obama."

But Jackson hadn't heard about their decision when asked about it by TPM on Tuesday.

Read More →

A day before House Democrats are expected to vote current Majority Whip Jim Clyburn into a newly-created position in the leadership of their new minority, no one can really say what the new job will entail.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi -- expected to be elected Minority Leader in the next Congress at tomorrow's Democratic Caucus meeting -- averted a potentially nasty leadership fight between Clyburn and currently Majority Leader Steny Hoyer over the number two slot in the minority by creating a new number three job called "Assistant Leader" in the next Congress. Hoyer is expected to be elected the Democrats' number two -- also known as Minority Whip -- and Clyburn the caucus' Assistant Leader.

A Democratic caucus aide said today that the Assistant Leader slot will be created by renaming the current Assistant To The Leader position when the caucus meets tomorrow. The current job is occupied by Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), who is not expected to challenge Clyburn's bid for the position.

Read More →

Rep. Charlie Rangel believes that the House ethics committee's findings, that he has committed 11 ethics violations, are "unfair."

In a statement released this afternoon, Rangel excoriated the committee once again.

"How can anyone have confidence in the decision of the Ethics Subcommittee when I was deprived of due process rights, right to counsel and was not even in the room?" he said. "I am disappointed by the unfortunate findings of the Ethics Subcommittee. The Committee's actions are unprecedented in view of the fact that they arrived at without rebuttal or counter evidence on my behalf."

Read More →