TPM News

After the White House announced yesterday that President Obama has made 15 recess appointments, two Republican senators denounced the action on this week's Sunday shows.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) said on CNN's State of the Union that Obama has thrown "fuel on the fire at a time when the civil, when the debate about politics is a very angry debate to begin with."

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In October 2008 -- in the midst of the financial crisis, and as it appeared increasingly likely that Barack Obama would be elected president -- a man with a balaclava over his face, dressed in combat fatigues and holding an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, posted a video on YouTube. Using the alias Pale Horse and describing himself as a member of the Ohio Militia, the man warned: "Things are bad. Things are real bad, and it's going to be a lot worse--our country is in peril," before encouraging viewers to arm themselves. The video, billed as a "wake-up call" for America, was viewed more than 70,000 times before being removed last spring.

Today, Kristopher Sickles -- aka "Pale Horse" -- was one of the nine people charged with seditious conspiracy in connection with an alleged plot to kill law enforcement officers, and to "oppose by force the authority of the U.S. government," as part of a Christian militia group known as the Hutaree, based primarily in Michigan.

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The Republican National Committee spent thousands of dollars at hotels and clubs in February, the Daily Caller reports.

According to FEC reports, the RNC spent $1,946.25 at Voyeur West Hollywood, which the Caller describes as "a bondage-themed nightclub featuring topless women dancers imitating lesbian sex." Voyeur is an exclusive, expensive club frequented by celebrities and, for example, hosted Heidi Klum's Halloween party last year.

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And so it begins -- less than a week after health care reform was signed into law, it has become a problem for Mitt Romney.

In an interview with a New Hampshire newspaper over the weekend, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) used GOP anger over the Democratic reform bill to make a not-so-veiled attack on Romney, who signed a similar plan into law when he was governor of Massachusetts.

Romney and Pawlenty, of course, are central players in the nascent 2012 GOP presidential nomination fight. And New Hampshire, of course, is a central battlefield in that fight. So it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out why Pawlenty chose the Nashua Telegraph to slam RomneyCare as a bad example for the nation to follow.

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Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) suggested on Sunday that President Barack Obama is "mocking Americans" by challenging Republicans to run on repealing health care reform, and criticized the president's weekend recess appointments.

DeMint said although "hundreds of his nominations have been confirmed unanimously," Obama has "mixed in with these batch of nominations some pretty radical folks."

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The Minuteman Civil Defense Corps (MCDC), the Arizona-based anti-illegal-immigration group whose members keep watch on the border, is disbanding as a national organization, after its leader asked for volunteers to come "locked, loaded, and ready," then got more than she bargained for.

On March 16, Minuteman president Carmen Mercer sent out an email to members, urging them to come to the border "locked, loaded and ready," reports the Arizona Daily Star. She added: "You are strongly encouraged to exercise your rights and duty as an American citizen to carry a long arm and if challenged use it to defend the United States of America." Mercer also suggested changing the group's rules to allow members to track illegal immigrants and drug smugglers, rather than just reporting them to the Border Patrol.

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Nine members of the Christian militia group Hutaree have been indicted on multiple charges involving an alleged plot to attack police, including seditious conspiracy and attempted use of weapons of mass destruction, the U.S. Attorney in Michigan announced this morning.

"Six Michigan residents, along with two residents of Ohio and a resident of Indiana, were indicted by a federal grand jury in Detroit on charges of seditious conspiracy, attempted use of weapons of mass destruction, teaching the use of explosive materials, and possessing a firearm during a crime of violence," according to the government's press release, which you can read in full below.

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A caller to C-Span this morning, who identified himself as a Republican from North Carolina, accused the network of taking too many phone calls from black people.

"You have black folks calling in on the Republican line, independents. And you have so many of 'em I can't believe this is just an accident. If you keep on with the way you've been programming, you should change your name from C-Span to black-span," he said. "I know they have an opinion but I wish that they would be honest and call in on the right line."

"Everyone one of 'em thinks that Obama is Jesus Christ and they don't like when anybody criticizes him," he added.


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Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL), known for saying outrageous things to rile Republicans, told a radio show last week that he received a threatening phone call, according to Politico.

Grayson said a woman called his home and threatened his life. "If you vote for health care, I'll kill you," he said she said.

He then compared Republicans to Nazis:

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