TPM News

Democrats couldn't be more thrilled to see the Republican party turn on Newt Gingrich. And they're capitalizing on it, politically.

In a conference call with reporters Wednesday morning, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) gave Gingrich a giant bear hug, saying he agreed with Gingrich's critique of the House Republican plan to privatize Medicare and warning Republicans that rejecting Gingrich locks them into a politically disastrous position.

"Newt and I are considered political opposites," Schumer said, "but I couldn't agree more with what he said Sunday about the House Republican proposal to end Medicare.... In a straight shooting way he acknowledged that this is right-wing social engineering."

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Often lost in the fight over Newt Gingrich's takedown of Paul Ryan's Medicare plan is that Gingrich had actually said only weeks earlier he'd have voted for it. He offered his support for the GOP budget once again on Tuesday night at an event in Minnesota.

"I would have voted for the budget," he told a blogger for Media Matters. "The question is how do we go through taking the Medicare part of it and turning it into law, which is the next stage. But I would have voted for it. If you go to my website, you'll see I wrote a newsletter endorsing it. He's a very good friend of mine. And I think he's doing a brilliant job."

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Former Wisconsin Governor and Bush-era Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson, who is reportedly getting in the race for the Senate seat of retiring Wisconsin Sen. Herb Kohl (D), was once an advocate of microchipping human beings, The Huffington Post reports. Thompson once sat on the board of VeriChip, a company that makes small, implantable microchips (also known as RFIDs) that can be used for a variety of purposes.

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The runoff field remains up in the air for the CA-36 special election, where Rep. Jane Harman (D) resigned her seat, with Democratic Los Angeles City Councilwoman Janice Hahn set to face either Republican businessman Craig Huey -- or fellow Democrat, Secretary of State Debra Bowen -- for this deep-blue seat.

With 100% of precincts reporting, Hahn has 13,137 votes, for 24.7%; Huey has 11,648 votes, for 21.9%; and Bowen has 11,442 votes, for 21.5%. However, as the DCCC has noted in an e-mail to the press, there are over 9,800 absentee and provisional votes remaining to be counted, which could potentially put Bowen back ahead of Huey and result in a Dem vs. Dem runoff, in light of Huey's lead of only 206 votes for the second-place slot.

In case of a Dem vs. GOP runoff, it should be noted that the district in its current form is very blue, and has only been getting more so over the past decade: It voted 64%-36% for Barack Obama in 2008, 59%-40% for John Kerry in 2004, and 55%-37% for Al Gore in 2000.

As for Dan Adler, the Hollywood executive whose ads went viral online with such slogans as "We Minorities Should Stick Together," and "Dan Adler: He Gets Shit Done," with his young son declaring that "my dad gets shit done" -- he got only 285 votes, for 0.5%. It looks like maybe he doesn't "get shit done."

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Try as he might, Stephen Colbert couldn't keep himself from covering the juicy details of Arnold Schwarzenegger's sex scandal last night.

"I hate to disappoint you, but I am not touching this one," Colbert said. "It's a private matter between Arnold, and his family, and his other family."

But when he turned to the debate over subsidies for big oil companies, Colbert struggled to stay focused. As he droned on with details about the subsidies, he became more distracted, ultimately leaping with renewed vigor back to the sex story.

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Jon Stewart begged Donald Trump on Tuesday night to reconsider his decision to not seek the presidency, not because he thought Trump would make a good president, but because it would give him endless material for his show.

"You had us all convinced you were gonna take oil from Libya and Iraq and make the Chinese suck your giant gold balls," Stewart said. "Turns out, you've just got alluminum foil painted gold balls."

But unfortunately for Stewart, Trump announced on Monday that he would not run for President. That left Stewart with a sudden dearth of fodder for his show.

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Republican lawyer James Bopp has been chipping away at federal campaign regulations for years. He's the guy affiliated with the Republican National Lawyers Association who was behind the Citizens United case, which allowed for unlimited corporate campaign spending to influence elections. But his latest plan for a "Republican Super PAC," say good government groups, clearly violates federal law, and they're warning GOP members they'd be breaking the rules if they solicit unlimited contributions on behalf of the group.

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Kerry: Pakistan Boosting Cooperation With U.S. AFP reports: "Pakistan, under renewed US pressure since the death of Osama bin Laden, is stepping up its efforts to battle extremists and help stabilize Afghanistan, senior US Senator John Kerry said Tuesday. 'Some of them are important things that are very important to us strategically, but they are not appropriate to discuss publicly,' said the Democratic lawmaker, who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Kerry, newly returned from a whirlwind visit to both countries, said he had heard 'frustration' from top Pakistani officials about the US raid that killed the Al-Qaeda leader, but had made clear Washington expects more from its ally."

Obama's Day Ahead President Obama will depart form the White House at 8:30 a.m. ET, and depart from Andrews Air Force Base at 8:50 a.m. ET, arriving at 10 a.m. ET in New London, Connecticut. At 11:30 a.m. ET, he will deliver the commencement address at the United States Coast Guard Academy. He will depart from new London at 4:10 p.m. ET, arriving at 4:45 p.m. ET in Boston, Massachusetts. He will deliver remarks at a DNC event at 6:15 p.m. ET, and at another DNC event at 8:25 p.m. ET. He will depart from Boston at 9:55 p.m. ET, arriving at Andrews Air Force Base at 11:15 p.m. ET, and arriving back at the White House at 11:30 p.m. ET.

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