TPM News

Witness the mainstreaming of Orly Taitz?

The longtime Birther agitator and dentist who is now running for the GOP secretary of state nomination in California was a "special guest" of the Republican Jewish Coalition at the group's "annual summer bash" at the Beverly Hills Hilton Sunday. Also in attendance: GOP heavyweights Karl Rove, former Senator Norm Coleman, and California Senate candidates Chuck DeVore and Carly Fiorina.

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June 7, 2010: White House reporter and Hearst columnist Helen Thomas retires after covering the White House since 1960. Thomas had been at the center of a media firestorm after saying that the Jews should "get the hell out of Palestine" and "go home. Poland. Germany. And America and everywhere else." The 89-year old Thomas retired after 50 years in the White House, during which she covered ten Presidents.

Above, President Gerald Ford holds a press conference with Thomas and others on September 30, 1976. White House Chief of Staff Dick Cheney looks on from the left.

Wikimedia Commons: Library Of Congress




August 23 1962: President John F. Kennedy addresses the AMVETS convention in New York City by telephone, from the Oval Office. Thomas, third from the right, is also present.

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum




August 4, 2006: President George W. Bush wishes Thomas a happy 86th birthday.

Wikimedia Commons: White House photo by Eric Draper




August 4, 2009: President Obama brings Thomas cupcakes to celebrate her 89th birthday.

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza




August 4, 1995: President Bill Clinton helps Thomas celebrate her 75th birthday.

Newscom/UPI




December 3, 2007: Caroline Kennedy with Thomas at the AARP The Magazine's 2008 Inspire Awards held at the New York Public Library.

Newscom/Zuma




May 28, 2009: Actress Mary Tyler Moore, who played a reporter on TV, meets Thomas at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

Newscom/Zuma




November 12, 2008: White House Press Secretary Dana Perino welcomes Helen Thomas back to the White House after an illness.

Newscom/BS




July 11, 2007: Thomas takes her seat in the front row of the newly remodeled Brady Press Briefing Room.

Newscom/Sipa




October 25, 2006: Thomas waits for President George W. Bush to hold a news conference in the East Room of the White House.

Newscom/KRT




November 12, 2008: Thomas asks a question at a press briefing.

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November 14, 2008.

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March 24, 2009: Thomas, prior to President Obama's second primetime news conference.

Newscom/Zuma




February 9, 2009: Thomas asks Obama a question during his first press conference as President in the East Room of the White House.

Newscom/UPI




July 11, 2007.

Newscom/Sipa

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is now walking back his statements from earlier this morning, which cast serious doubt on the prospects of the Senate addressing climate change.

"To the senator's knowledge, no decisions have been made yet on the floor strategy for legislation addressing the nation's urgent energy challenges, nor is it his decision to make," says Schumer's spokesman Brian Fallon. "Senator Schumer speculated on one procedural option, but make no mistake: he believes climate change legislation is vital to our nation's energy security and looks forward to voting for it. He is working with his colleagues to get the strongest, most comprehensive bill possible and looks forward to discussions with the rest of the leadership later this week on how to best move forward."

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South Carolina Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer has released the results of a polygraph that he says prove he did not push the story of an affair between Larry Marchant, his former campaign consultant, and Nikki Haley, Bauer's opponent in the GOP gubernatorial primary.

Haley had publicly accused Bauer of pushing the story of an affair, which she denies. Check out the results below.

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As a tribute to White House reporter Helen Thomas, who resigned today after making controversial remarks about Israel, Comedy Central rounded up some of the best Thomas moments from The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

See Thomas smack down John Oliver, stalk Stephen Colbert, and somehow morph into Brad Pitt over the course of the Bush Administration...

[TPM SLIDESHOW: Covering The President -- Helen Thomas And The White House]

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With tomorrow's Nevada primary coming up, it's worth looking back on the many gaffes and errors of former state GOP chair Sue Lowden, whose once-mighty Senate campaign has fallen behind Tea Party favorite Sharron Angle. Simply put, the chickens have come home to roost for what may be one of the worst-run Senate primary campaigns of this cycle.

Lowden shot to national fame in April, when she was caught on tape telling people to barter with their doctors in order to lower health care costs. Her other policy prescription for people grappling with expensive health care: "And if you want to save $20,000, good for you. Save it pre-tax."

A week later, Lowden dug in on the barter system: "Let's change the system and talk about what the possibilities are. I'm telling you that this works. You know, before we all started having health care, in the olden days, our grandparents, they would bring a chicken to the doctor. They would say I'll paint your house."

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One of the most eye-popping recent revelations about former Florida GOP chair Jim Greer is that, when he was struggling with money problems, one generous Republican donor ponied up $10,000 per month for over 18 months to help Greer out, according to the criminal fraud charges against Greer.

But the story just got even better: none other than Palm Beach County businessman Harry Sargeant, who has been popping up as a player in political scandals since John McCain's 2008 presidential campaign, has acknowledged to the Miami Herald that he is the donor who stepped in to give Greer a hand. Sargeant is a friend of Gov. Charlie Crist and a former state GOP official.

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Tomorrow is a veritable "Super Tuesday" of primaries in this non-presidential election year, with a whole host of top-tier primaries going on across the country. A total of 11 states are holding primaries: Arkansas, California, Iowa, Maine, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota and Virginia.

So let's take a look at some of the most notable races.

AR-SEN (D): One of the biggest races tomorrow is the Democratic Senate primary runoff between incumbent Sen. Blanche Lincoln and Lt. Gov. Bill Halter. Lincoln has been aggressively targeted for defeat by organized labor and liberal activists, due to her opposition to the public option during the health care debates. (She did vote for the final bill that was signed into law, and which did not include a public option.) The TPM Poll Average gives Halter a lead of 49.7%-44.9%, but there is also an important caveat: Research 2000 has been the only pollster to publicly release numbers on this race during the runoff period, so we are dependent on only one source of data.

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