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A Hardin Montana official is trying to quell rumors that the town is "becoming a police state, having private paramilitary security forces, building gates at the town entrances, taking residents to the detention center that refuse to get swine flu shots, registering your firearms, and blocking off our main street," among other fears.

In a statement, Al Peterson of the city's economic development agency, the Two Rivers Authority (TRA), responds to fears stoked by Hardin's deal with American Police Force, a mysterious private security contractor, to provide prisoners for an empty prison in town.

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A new Daily Kos/Research 2000 poll of the New Jersey gubernatorial race provides further corroboration that the race between Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine and his Republican challenger Chris Christie is getting closer -- but another claim, that there is a potential latent minority vote for Corzine that is yet to surface, is not necessarily the case.

The top-line numbers: Christie 46%, Corzine 42%, independent Chris Daggett 7%. The margin of error is ±4%. Two months ago, Christie led by 48%-40%, and Daggett was not included in the poll. This in line with other polls that have shown Christie only leading by three or four points.

Kos makes an observation that his internals show a whopping 25% of black voters, 1% percent of Hispanics, and 13% of other groups are undecided -- meaning that those voters could potentially break big for Corzine. However, a key issue here is that racial sub-samples have a higher margin of error, and minority sub-samples in polls have a very high margin of error. Let's look at two other recent polls.

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Conservatives, in a tizzy over the White House's failed bid to bring the 2016 Olympics to Chicago, have been gleefully celebrating the defeat. And while RNC chairman Michael Steele was more restrained than his co-conservatives, he still took a shot at President Obama for not giving the country his "undivided attention."

"While I am disappointed with the IOC's decision, I look forward to the president returning stateside so that he can refocus his efforts on the growing unemployment crisis that was highlighted by today's monthly jobs report," Steele said in a statement. "Our country needs the president's undivided attention on the urgent issues facing American families today: rising unemployment, soaring health care costs, winning the war in Afghanistan and dealing with Iran's nuclear threat."

On the plane back from Copenhagen, a reporter asked White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs to respond to Republicans who "argued that this trip was not wise, given everything on the President's plate."

"I want to know what was Michael Steele doing about 1:50 a.m. when we landed," Gibbs responded. "1:50 a.m. in the morning when we landed in Denmark."

Here are the line-ups for the Sunday talk shows this weekend:

• ABC, This Week: Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX).

• CBS, Face The Nation: National Security Adviser Gen. James Jones, Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI), Gen. Anthony Zinni, Rep. Ike Skelton (D-MO).

• CNN, State Of The Union: National Security Adviser Gen. James Jones, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-AZ).

• Fox News Sunday: Sen. Evan Bayh (D-IN), Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA).

• NBC, Meet The Press: Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice.

In short remarks in the Rose Garden this afternoon, President Obama extended his "hearty congratulations" to Rio de Janeiro for getting to host the 2016 Olympics, saying "We welcome this extraordinary sign of progress" for South America.

This will be the first time the Olympic games will be hosted in South America.

The United States "would've been eager to host these games," he said. "This nation and our athletes are still very much excited to compete in 2016."

The President also addressed today's unemployment numbers.

"My principle focus each and every day ... is putting our nation back on the path to prosperity," he said.

Although unemployment is rising, "We've certainly made some progress," he said since a year ago when the country was losing 700,000 jobs a month.

Today's numbers are "a sobering reminder that progress comes in fits and starts and we're gonna need to grind out this recovery step by step," he said.

Full remarks after the jump.

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When the International Olympic Committee voted against Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics this morning -- after the President and First Lady flew to Copenhagen to push for it in person -- the Weekly Standard newsroom burst into applause.

"Cheers erupt at Weekly Standard world headquarters," wrote editor John McCormack in a post titled "Chicago Loses! Chicago Loses!"

The line was quickly removed, but ThinkProgress caught it in time and posted a screenshot of the post.

But even with the edits, McCormack is still obviously reveling in America's defeat.

"As a citizen of the world who believes that No one nation can or should try to dominate another nation, I'm glad that the Obama White House's jingoist rhetoric and attempt to pay back Chicago cronies at the expense of undermining our relationships with our allies failed," he wrote.

McCormack's fellow conservatives joined in the celebration.

"Chicago and Tokyo eliminated. No Obamalypics," Michelle Malkin tweeted, following up with, "Game over on Obamalympics. Next up, Obamacare."

"Please, please let me break this news to you. It's so sweet," said Glenn Beck on his radio show.

"Hahahahaha," wrote Red State's Erick Erickson. "So Obama's pimped us to every two bit thug and dictator in the world, made promises to half the Olympic committee, and they did not even kiss him. So much for improving America's standing in the world, Barry O."

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Democratic candidate Creigh Deeds has released a new ad in the Virginia gubernatorial race, attacking Republican candidate Bob McDonnell as being driven by a pro-life agenda -- and eager to have power.

The video uses video of a McDonnell speech to the National Right To Life Committee: "These elections matter because elections determine who's got the power."

"It's why Bob McDonnell is running," the announcer says, followed by more of McDonnell's words: "Whether they are pro-life or not will make an eternal difference."

Wesley Denton, a spokesman for Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), just told TPM that the Senator is not attempting to intervene in support of the military coup in Honduras, as part of his trip there today -- that it is simply a fact-finding mission to find out about the events on the ground.

The New York Times had reported: "One of the de facto government's main supporters in Washington, Senator Jim DeMint, Republican of South Carolina, has announced plans to visit Tegucigalpa on Friday. One Congressional staff member said Mr. DeMint hoped to meet with members of the de facto government and other Hondurans. Other staff members said he intended to encourage Mr. Micheletti and his supporters to resist."

"Sen DeMint did not announce that to the New York Times, they did not get that from our office," said Denton. "They did not speak to staff members from our office that I know of -- they certainly did not talk to me."

DeMint and his Congressional delegation did meet today with de facto Honduran President Roberto Micheletti.

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As the Senate gets set to take up climate change legislation, one of the key opponents of serious efforts to stop global warming may find its clout on the issue badly weakened.

That's because in recent weeks, several high-profile members of the Chamber of Commerce have gone public over their disagreement with the group's position, with some leaving the Chamber altogether over the issue.

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An interesting pattern has been emerging in the Republican Party's handling of foreign policy: Individual GOP officials are now making a regular point of not only formulating an alternative foreign policy, to be presented to the American people and debated in Congress -- they're acting on it too, and undermining the official White House policies at multiple turns:

• Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) is visiting Honduras in order to support the recent military coup against a leftist president, which has been opposed by the Obama administration and all the surrounding countries in the region. (Late Update: DeMint's office says he is not taking sides during his visit to the current Honduran leadership, denying the New York Times reports that this was his intention.)

• Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) will be going to the upcoming climate change conference in Copenhagen, bringing a "Truth Squad" to tell foreign officials there that the American government will not take any action: "Now, I want to make sure that those attending the Copenhagen conference know what is really happening in the United States Senate."

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