TPM News

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said in a statement today that passing a climate and energy bill this year is "impossible" after the Gulf oil spill and the Democrats' new push on immigration reform. Sens. John Kerry (D-MA) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT) apparently weren't listening.

Kerry and Lieberman released a statement today announcing their plan to roll out a climate and energy bill on Wednesday.

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The new Daily Kos/Research 2000 poll of the Illinois Senate race finds that Democratic candidate Alexi Giannoulias has fallen behind Republican Mark Kirk in the race for President Obama's former Senate seat, likely due to the collapse of Giannoulias's family bank. But at the same time, the underlying issue climate should be favorable to the Democrats here.

The numbers: Kirk 41%, Giannoulias 38%. The poll of likely voters has a ±4% margin of error. Back in late February, before the bank collapsed, Giannoulias was ahead by 43%-36%. The TPM Poll Average puts Kirk ahead by 41.9%-36.0%.

In addition, Giannoulias's favorable rating is only 38%, with 46% unfavorable, down from a 49%-34% favorable rating in late February. Kirk's rating is 39%-33%, not significantly changed from a 42%-35% rating in late February.

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It's probably a safe bet that if House Republican Leader John Boehner backs away from a conservative, terrorism-related bill called "TEA," the legislation both goes too far, and isn't going anywhere.

Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) captured big headlines, and interesting supporters, when he proposed the Terrorist Expatriation Act, which would amend current law to allow the State Department to revoke the citizenship of Americans they deem to be members of foreign terrorist organizations. Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) joined his push. So did House Democrat Jason Altmire, who hails from a competitive district in Pennsylvania.

But that's about all she wrote.

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The leader of a movement seeking to have President Obama indicted for treason told TPMmuckraker he was interviewed this week by the FBI.

Carl Swensson said that FBI agents, accompanied by state police, came to his Georgia home Wednesday asking for information about what law enforcement fears is a plan to take over a Tennessee judicial building. "They were concerned that we were gonna storm the courthouse," said Swensson.

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A new ABC/Washington Post poll finds some curious facts about Birthers, the people who think that President Obama was born in another country instead of in Hawaii. As it turns out, there is a divide between those who only suspect this to be the case, and those who think there is solid evidence -- and furthermore, some of them approve of his job performance.

As part of its general national survey of adults in late April, ABC/WaPo asked, "where was Barack Obama born, as far as you know?" The initial answer was 68% United States, 14% another country. ABC then pushed the undecideds, by asking for their best guess. After those leaners were pushed, the final result was 77% United States, 20% somewhere else.

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President Obama is getting this close to making his Supreme Court selection to fill the vacancy left by the retirement of Justice John Paul Stevens, so we know what that means -- Washington is in a tizzy about when and how and who will be his choice.

Politico's Mike Allen set the Internet aflame this morning by reporting in his Playbook newsletter that the nomination would definitively come on Monday and with a strong suggestion it would be Solicitor General Elena Kagan. Is the report accurate? I asked the White House.

"In a word? No," an aide told me.

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Carly Fiorina -- who's trailing in the Republican Senate primary in California -- is apparently already looking ahead to the general election, releasing two new campaign ads this morning targeting Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer.

The ads target Boxer's record on job growth, taxes, and supposed history of "bitter partisanship and huge expansion of our federal government."

The 30-second ads, entitled "Work" and "Jobs," intone ominously on "deficits," "spending," and "trillions in new taxes."

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A new Gallup poll finds that the passage of the health care bill has not actually improved Americans' outlook on their health care costs, with people still worried about whether they would be able to pay their medical bills.

The poll found that 61% of Americans are very or moderately worried about being able to pay medical costs for normal healthcare, up from 58% a year ago. Also, 48% are very or moderately worried about not being able to pay medical costs in case of a serious illness or accident, up from 48% a year ago. And in both cases, these figures are the highest they've been in Gallup's annual figure for the entire past decade.

The poll of American adults has a margin of error of ±4%.

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President Obama hailed new job numbers today that show 290,000 new jobs were created in April, saying the numbers are "very encouraging" -- though "we still have more to do."

Obama said "the truest measure of progress would be whether or not we are creating jobs. That's what matters in people's lives. What matters is whether someone who needs a job can find work, and that people can provide for their families and save for their future."

"Everything we've done," the president said, "has been with this goal in mind. And today I'm happy to report that we received some very encouraging news."

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