TPM News

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) in his first visit to Libya since Muammar Qaddafi’s fall said the “Libyan people have inspired the world,” CNN reports.

“They have turned cynics into supporters,” McCain added.

Former New York Governor George Pataki joined the growing list of people urging Chris Christie to run for the GOP nomination on Thursday.

“America is in a crisis, and none of the current candidates or the President has leveled with the American public about what needs to be done to rescue our future,” Pataki wrote in a statement. “This country needs a straight shooter and a proven leader. I urge Governor Chris Christie to run for President to fill the void and lead America forward.”

China on Thursday successfully launched an unmanned orbital spacecraft that will pave the way for the country's planned space station.

The Tiangong-1, "Heavenly Palace 1" in English, blasted off at 9:16 pm Beijing time for the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in the Mongolian desert as Chinese President Hu Jintao and other officials observed a broadcast of the launch from Beijing, Chinese state news outlet Xinhua reported.

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Mike Huckabee is scheduled to interview Mitt Romney, the New York Times reports, for a segment set to air this weekend.

After President Obama unveiled his jobs and deficit reduction plans, he took to the road to draw a contrast between himself and the Republican politicians who want to end his political career. Obama's proposes to spend money now on hiring people and cutting taxes temporarily to spur further job growth, and pay for it in just over a year, in large part by raising taxes on wealthy Americans.

The Republican vision -- phasing out safety net programs like Medicare in order to maintain low tax rates on the same group of affluent people -- is far less popular. So in their own tried and true way, Republicans recast Obama's plan for "shared sacrifice" as "the largest tax increase in history."

What a difference! But also untrue.

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The robust Texas economy Rick Perry is using to sell his presidential campaign may be more fragile than advertised.

According to testimony from the state's chief revenue estimator, John Heleman, the state economy is in for weak growth this year, a situation that could put pressure on a state budget already barely held together with a series of short-term fixes this year.

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The last time Rezwan Ferdaus, the 26-year-old Massachusetts man accused of plotting to attack the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon with C-4 loaded model airplanes, had a run-in with the law was when he and two other students poured concrete in front of 10 doors to his high school in 2003.

Ferdaus, nicknamed "Bollywood," was the original drummer of the Goosepimp Orchestra when the band formed in 2004 until he "moved on to become a devout spiritual practitioner," according to the band's website. He also apparently played drums with a punk band named Silk Road, which has songs named "No Pilot" and "Gaza Dozer."

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Mexican astronomers running computer simulations believe that rocks blasted upward by the impact of giant meteorites hitting Earth at one time may have sailed past Jupiter and out of the solar system. The astronomers speculate that some of those rocks may have carried with them samples of Earth's lifeforms to seed terrestrial life on Mars and the moons of Jupiter.

That rocks erupting from the impacts could have made it into space is not controversial. Astronomers think some of them could have gone fast enough to leave the Earth's gravity and even hit the moon and Venus. Meteorite impacts have occurred throughout the history of the Earth, including times when the Earth teemed with life: indeed, one of the most significant collisions, it is believed, wiped out the dinosaurs.

What is likely to be very controversial is the Mexican astronomers' theory that life on Earth may have hitch-hiked on the rocks. The theory is based on the notion that all life shares a common origin and spread throughout the cosmos, including Earth, traveling on meteors.

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Stephen Colbert has a -- to put it lightly -- extreme plan to address illegal immigration in America. It starts with pregnant illegal immigrants who, he says, are the most "devious kind."

"They sneak across our border with another immigrant hiding inside them," Colbert said. "For all we know, there's another one hiding inside the baby."

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