TPM News

Conservative blogger Erick Erickson over at RedState is having a lot of fun with what they're calling "P-Day." That's the blog's term for the last day of September, the final day Sarah Palin has said would pass without her making an announcement one way or another about her presidential campaign.

Obviously, no announcement has come, leading to mocking by the RedState gang. Palin's fans, to put it mildly, are not happy.

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Poor Jon Huntsman. Not only did Donald Trump reject the candidate's request for a meeting, he then used social media to publicly mock the former Ambassador to China.

"@JonHuntsman called to set up a meeting. Haven't returned his call," Trump tweeted on Friday.

The tweet is only the latest in what has quickly become an escalating feud between the two men.

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A transcript of former President Richard Nixon's testimony on the Watergate scandal before a grand jury in 1975 is going to be unsealed thanks to a lawsuit filed by Public Citizen on behalf of an historian.

Over the objection of the government, a federal court granted Public Citizen's request to unseal the 36-year-old transcript in July. The order became final this week when the Justice Department declined to appeal.

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Yes it's early, and it's Connecticut. It's a strongly Democratic state, and it's highly unlikely that anyone else but President Barack Obama will win it in the 2012 election.

But former Mass Gov. Mitt Romney within two points?

A new poll from Public Policy Polling (D) shows Obama with a nearly split approval rating in the very blue state, with 48 of CT voters approving of his job performance and 49 against. The President's struggles with his job approval numbers have been well documented, and Dean Debnam, President of PPP, got right to it in the release: "Connecticut probably won't be a swing state at the end of the day," he said. "But the fact that it's even close there at this point is symbolic of his broader issues."

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A trio of government agencies are working to develop a project that sounds like something out of a science fiction novel: They're working to create a tiny chip, made with bioengineered human tissue that researchers hope will allow them to model how drugs and vaccines could potentially affect the human body.

The new project is a joint effort between the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA,) the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH.)

The chip, which was created through DARPA's Accelerated Manufacture of Pharmaceuticals Program, is intended to help the Defense Department quickly develop and distribute medical countermeasures against attacks against American troops. According to a recently released agency announcement, the completed chip will simulate the circulatory, endocrine, gastrointestinal, immune, musculoskeletal, nervous, reproductive, respiratory and urinary systems.

DARPA expects to have chips available and ready for research by 2016. The tiny chips will contain integrated cells from a variety of organs including the liver, heart and muscles. DARPA and the FDA will both be investing more than $70 million each into the project.

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Tired of media speculation about new candidates entering the presidential race? Too bad! Mike Huckabee is now reportedly considering a bid as well.

That's right, the fantasy field is still expanding. Huckabee, who very publicly declared his intention not to run in a special episode of his FOX show featuring Ted Nugent, is apparently telling confidants that he's now open to joining the fray.

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Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) is gearing up for a potential recall election in 2012, with his chief of staff, Keith Gilkes, now departing in order to become a lead adviser to Walker's campaign.

It's a return of sorts to Gilkes' previous role as campaign manager in the regularly scheduled election that Walker won in 2010.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports:

Gilkes disclosed his plans to top Walker aides during a cabinet meeting Friday at a Madison hotel. In an interview, he said he would serve as lead adviser to Walker's campaign, but also take on other clients for campaign work. He said he would not go into lobbying.

His departure comes at a time of strain for the administration, with Democrats poised to try to recall the governor next year and a widening John Doe investigation of current and former Walker aides.

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A panel of three federal judges ordered Texas not to move forward with redistricting plans for both congressional and state legislative seats until they are approved in court.

Justice Department lawyers have declared in court that they believe the congressional and statehouse redistricting plans signed into law by Gov. Rick Perry have been adopted at least in part for the purpose of "diminishing the ability of citizens of the United States, on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority group, to elect their preferred candidates."

They've argued that regardless of intent, the plans would have the effect of diminishing the ability of Hispanic voters to pick their preferred candidates.

A panel of three federal judges in San Antonio ruled that Texas should wait until the courts rule on the legality of the maps. In San Antonio, the panel of judges has heard testimony about the maps but hasn't ruled on their legality, while the D.C. panel -- charged with deciding whether to preclear the maps -- won't hold hearings for a month, according to the Texas Tribune. The court in San Antonio is handling a separate suit filed by opponents of the plan, while court in D.C. is handling the suit involving the Justice Department.

"According to the Texas Election Code, any changes that must be made in the county election precinct boundaries 'to give effect to a redistricting plan' must be finalized by October 1, 2011," the judges wrote, according to the Texas Tribune. "Because the redistricting plans have not been precleared ... all persons or entities that would otherwise have a duty under Section 42.032 of the Texas Election Code are relieved of those duties until further order of the Court."

For years, white-collar workers have been insulated from the perils of automation, sitting comfortably in their offices while reading news stories of blue-collar workers getting replaced by robots.

But emerging trends in artificial intelligence and automation are going to change that, according to entrepreneurs speaking at the think tank The New America Foundation Thursday.

One example of this new, super-capable form of artificial intelligence is StatSheet, a software program that takes sports statistics, integrates them with a human vocabulary and churns out news stories -- all by itself -- about baseball and football.

The application generates more than 15,000 articles a month and over the course of its nearly four-year lifespan, has created a million pages of news.

"It's getting better every day," said Robbie Allen, who invented StatSheet in 2007. "Within the next three to four years, it will be better than what a human can produce. And the reason for that is pretty much the foundation of computation: We can analyze and access significantly more data than one person can on their own."

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President Obama’s approval rating in New Hampshire has sunk to 31 percent, according to the American Research Group’s Quarterly New Hampshire Poll.

Via CNN.

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