TPM News

Tar Sands Action, an environmental group fighting against the proposed Keystone XL pipeline is releasing a new ad campaign in the run-up to a planned DC protest scheduled for November 6th.

The ads, which call on the president to stop development of the pipeline, will appear in the print editions of the New York Times and Washington Post as well as at online media outlets such as CNN.com and ForeignPolicy.com.  

The ad comes as environmentalists are questioning the recent hiring of a former lobbyist for the Keystone XL project, Broderick Johnson, as a top Obama campaign adviser.

“The President is at a major crossroads in his presidency,” said Bill McKibben, who is leading protests against the pipeline. “The Keystone XL pipeline was pushed through by the worst kind of political cronyism, exactly the kind of thing President Obama promised to stamp out in Washington. The American people deserve better.”

In a story published this morning, PBS examines the recent re-tooling of the Perry campaign. The governor is adding experienced staff, releasing his first T.V. ads and rolling out a proposal for an optional 20% flat tax.

The tax proposal and ads are all part of a strategy that seeks to distinguish Perry from his competitor, Mitt Romney.

The new team of advisers includes former Bush campaign manager Joe Allbaugh and Bob Dole’s 1996 pollster Tony Fabrizio. Curt Anderson, Jim Innocenzi and Nelson Warfield are also joining the campaign as media consultants. All of them have extensive national campaign experience.

In a memo released by the Obama campaign, policy director James Kvaal rebutted the Texan’s tax plan.

“While the details of Perry’s plan will be announced today, flat tax proposals reduce the contributions of the most fortunate households, shifting the burden onto the middle class,” Kvaal writes.

For the past few weeks, the questions about Occupy Wall Street have been about its direction and policy positions.

"Where are the protesters taking this thing?" media-types ask. "What are their demands?" people want to know.

The real question? Why are we trying to blast past the reason that people are down at Zuccotti Park, or in Madrid's main square, or on the streets of Tokyo? -- A combination of high unemployment (and maybe even moreso, underemployment), income inequality and easy access to the offending economic data has made people angry enough to get out and protest.

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Henry Cray Glaspell, a 34-year-old Texas man who admitted to burning down a playground at an Islamic center, throwing cat litter at the mosque's door and yelling racial and ethnic slurs at people entering the building, just landed in prison for 14 months.

Glaspell, who had been out on bond, surrendered to federal authorities on Nov. 21 and was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Terry R. Means, the Justice Department announced Monday.

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A few weeks ago, the CBS News/New York Times poll showed businessman Herman Cain and former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney tied at 17 percent nationally in a trial heat of the GOP Presidential primary. Now, the poll shows what other surveys have — a first place finish for Cain at 25 percent, with Romney in second at 21 percent. Former frontrunner Rick Perry has slipped all the way to six percent, good for 5th place.

From CBSnews.com:

“The race is still open, as voters are not firm in their support of any of the candidates. About four of five voters said it is too early to say for sure who they support for the nomination, with just 19 percent saying their minds are already made up. That’s about the same as it was at this point in 2007.

Americans are getting interested in the 2012 race for president. About 70 percent of registered voters nationwide are paying at least some attention to the 2012 election campaign, including 31 percent who said they are paying a lot of attention.

Republicans, of course, are paying closer attention to the campaign. About 78 percent said they were following the campaign closely, compared to about 68 percent of Democrats."

The Herman Cain camp released a new campaign video last night featuring Cain’s chief of staff Mark Block touting his boss' ability to put the “united” back in United States. What you might find a little odd, however, is Block’s dramatic drag on a cigarette, closing out with a smiling Herman Cain. Watch:



After a week-long trial, a federal jury in Georgia is deliberating the strange case of birther OathKeeper Darren Huff, who allegedly attempted to take over a Tennessee courthouse and conduct citizens arrests on local judges and officers.

"My government has called me a potential domestic terrorist," Huff said on the stand on Friday as he fought back tears.

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The House GOP has hit upon a way to undercut President Obama's attacks on them and advance conservative policy goals all at once. This week, they'll pass legislation that includes perhaps the least stimulative measure in President Obama's jobs bill and pay for it with perhaps the most regressive measure in a recent package of deficit reducing proposals he submitted to the joint deficit super committee.



It's a case study in the perils of offering concessions to your opponents before negotiations have begun. And it will force Democrats in both chambers, but particularly in the Senate, to decide whether to pass a proposal comprised of measures Obama's backed in the past, even though they've been cherry picked to essentially constitute a Republican piece of legislation. If Senate Dems block the measure, Republicans will accuse them of wanting to pick political fights instead of passing Obama jobs legislation. If Dems pass the measure, and Obama signs it, the GOP can cite it as evidence that they're not simply standing in the way of action on the economy.

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Wisconsin Democrats are gearing up for their petition drive to recall Republican Gov. Scott Walker, in the wake of his anti-public employee union legislation, with a series of public rallies and closed volunteer-training sessions.

The opening rally will be in Madison, on Tuesday.

The Madison event will feature some high-profile special guests: Former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, who ran for governor in the Democratic primary in 2002, and was the narrowly unsuccessful Dem nominee for attorney general in 2006; state Sen. Jon Erpenbach, who was one of the 14 Dems to flee the state and temporarily block passage of Walker's legislation; former Congressman Dave Obey, who is a potential gubernatorial candidate in a recall, and the current Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. Plus, it will be emceed by local talk radio personality John "Sly" Sylvester.

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