TPM News

The manager of the night club where anti-gay California state Sen. Roy Ashburn was reportedly hanging out before his 2 a.m. DUI arrest Wednesday tells TPMmuckraker she didn't see him at the club that night.

Tuesday night is Latin night at Faces, explained manager Laurie Bonifield in a phone interview. The club describes itself as "Sacramento's premier GLBTI Nightclub since 1985."

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Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele appeared on Fox News this afternoon, and had to answer some tough questions about the recent internal fundraising presentation that included negative depictions of President Obama, Speaker Nancy Pelosi -- and the RNC's own donors.

The fundraising presentation, which was originally reported by the Politico, included the infamous illustration of Obama as the Joker, and also compared Pelosi to Cruella de Vil. It also directed how to appeal to "ego-driven" large donors, and to appeal to small donors through "fear" and "extreme negative feelings" and "reactionary" attitudes against the Obama administration.

Steele said he just became aware of the presentation yesterday, and that the RNC is looking into it through an internal process. When asked by Megyn Kelly how to defend it, Steele responded: "Well you don't defend it. It was unfortunate."

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It's no secret that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi won't have an easy time rounding up the votes to pass Senate health care legislation. She'll almost certainly have to convince members who voted "no" on the House bill last November to change their minds, and a number of in-play Democrats have said they're not likely to budge.

At her weekly press conference this morning, Pelosi suggested that this is all part of the negotiations.

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The White House added something new to President Obama's schedule today - meetings with key members of House Democratic caucus groups who want to have their say on health care.

The conservative Democrats Obama is attempting to woo - several who attended his party last night - to win the needed votes on the final health care plan this month will get to speak with the president in the Oval Office at 2:30.

They are all leaders of the New Democrat Coalition. As we mentioned earlier the group's Health Task Force Co-Chair Rep. Jason Altmire told reporters today he won't change his mind.

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Gov. Dave Freudenthal (D-WY) announced in a statement today that he would not seek a third term. Here's the full text:

"We are here today, in part, to confirm that I will not be a candidate for Governor in 2010. This decision is not made lightly but enjoys strong support from my family. I suspect this statement comes as no surprise to most observers of the Wyoming political scene," Freudenthal said.

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At her weekly press conference this morning, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters that she had no prior knowledge of allegations that Rep. Eric Massa (D-NY), harassed a junior staffer.

"I asked my staff, has there been any rumors [about this] before," Pelosi said. "There had been a rumor...nobody made a formal notification to our office that anything happened. A one, two, three person rumor that had been reported to Mr. Hoyer's office, and then reported to my staff, which they did not report to me, because you know what? This is rumor city."

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The office of the Louisiana sheriff who's forming a citizen militia to defend the parish in the event of a terrorist attack says it has information about possible Islamic terrorist activity in its midst.

"We understand, based on some intelligence that we've collected over the last year, year and a half, that there have been cells and people operating even within our parish that have been trained as terrorists or went overseas to be trained as terrorists," Ed Baswell, a spokesman for the Bossier Parrish Sheriff's Office, told TPMmuckraker this morning.

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As part of a push to pass the public option using reconciliation, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee has been collecting both signatures to a letter urging Senate leadership to pass the measure, as well as statements of support from senators.

Here is our running list of both statements of support and signatures on the letter, written by Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO). Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's office has also said he would support the procedure if it has enough support.

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