TPM News

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), the Tea Party star and possible presidential candidate, is really determined to repeal health care reform. Indeed, as she told a Montana state GOP dinner on Saturday, it's "my motivation in life."

As the Missoulian reports:

"I take my first political breath every morning with one thought in mind - repeal Obamacare," Bachmann said. "That's my motivation in life. ... This bill is something else. It is the crown jewel of socialism. President Obama, and I'm willing to say it, ushered in socialism under his watch."


It's not exactly clear what Bachmann is referring to. How is a health care law based around private insurance corporations a crown jewel of socialism?

Former President George W. Bush said recently he is concerned the U.S. is returning to a 'nativist' mindset.

To explain his concern, Bush spoke of three recurring "isms" in America: "One is isolationism, and its evil twin, protectionism, and its evil triplet, nativism," Bush said at Southern Methodist University in Dallas late last month.

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Former Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld is starting to allow for the idea that maybe, just maybe, he and the Bush administration should have sent more troops to Iraq -- though he's not ready to say that it's true.

Rumsfeld sat down for an interview Diane Sawyer of ABC News. He said of the troop level question that he was not ready to agree with the criticism, but that it was "possible." He also added: "You know, the path you didn't take is always smoother."

Pressed on the fact that President Bush has written that cutting troop levels in Iraq was "the most important failure in the execution of the war," Rumsfeld called that "interesting."

"I don't have enough confidence to say that that's right. I think that it's possible. We had [an] enormous number of troops ready to go in. They had -- we had off-ramps, if they weren't needed."

"It's hard to know," Rumsfeld continued. "You know, the path you didn't take is always smoother."


Rumsfeld was also asked about whether he would have gone to war if he had known about the lack of actual weapons of mass destruction. He said that he did not know -- and offered these words of wisdom: "What you know today can help you on things you're thinking about tomorrow. It can't help you with things you were thinking about back then."

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President Obama sat down with Fox News host Bill O'Reilly yesterday in a pre-taped interview that aired before the Superbowl, and O'Reilly grilled him on Egypt, health care reform, and, of course, how Obama is a "big government liberal who wants to intrude on [Americans'] personal freedom."

"I think that a lot of folks who watch you, Bill, believe that," Obama replied.

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New Hampshire's state government publicly embraced the open source movement recently by allowing its residents extensive access to app-friendly state legislature activity, arranged in handy pipe-separated database and spreadsheet files.

Simply put, this means that researchers, journalists and developers can now access the minutiae of government data in New Hampshire in an extremely easy-to-use manner. Previously, this information was only available in print or through clunky, hard-to-operate web pages.

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Conservatives, clutch your guns again!

Actually, not really. The White House has denied a request from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms to expedite a new rule requiring gun dealers along the southwest border to report bulk sales of rifles, many of which get trafficked into Mexico.

New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who co-chairs Mayors Against Illegal Guns, labels the Obama administration unconcerned.

"The White House decided that the illegal trafficking of thousands of semiautomatic assault rifles from the U.S. to Mexico is not an emergency, our coalition of over 550 mayors strongly disagrees," Bloomberg says in a statement. "These guns are fueling violence that has claimed more than 30,000 lives and putting our law enforcement officers at risk. ATF recognizes the emergency but we need the White House to give the agency the support it needs do its job effectively."

That means semi-automatic rifle dealers will have months, at least, during which to sell semi-automatic rifles in bulk without telling anybody.

GOP Senators Wait For 2012 Field To Take Shape Roll Call reports: "Republican Senators remain hesitant to publicly wade into the GOP presidential primary, although some Members are less shy than others in revealing whom they intend to support in a candidate field only beginning to take shape."

Obama's Day Ahead President Obama will receive his daily briefing at 9:30 a.m. ET. He will deliver remarks to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce at 11:30 a.m. ET. He will have lunch with Paul Volcker at 12:30 p.m. ET, and meet with Vice President Biden at 2:30 p.m. ET.

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