TPM News

Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) is trying to attach a controversial debt-limit provision to an unrelated aviation bill, now on the Senate floor.

As described here, the measure would manage the fallout of a default on the national debt by prioritizing Treasury payments to investors -- foreign countries, financial institutions -- over other obligations like Social Security beneficiaries and veterans benefits, among others.

Read More →

1||President Hosni Mubarak has led Egypt since 1981, a nearly 30-year tenure in which he's served as one of the United States' strongest allies in the Middle East. Yet now, as protesters continue to gather in Egypt's streets and demand that Mubarak resign, his future -- and America's relationship with Egypt -- are in doubt.



Mubarak and President Obama left a meeting in Cairo in June 2009. || Official White House photo/ Pete Souza&&

2||Mubarak, Egypt's former vice president, rose to power following the assassination of President Anwar Sadat. Former Secretary-General of the United Nations Kurt Waldheim (left) shook hands with Sadat in February 1977, while Mubarak stood at center behind them. ||UN Photo/David Burnett &&

3||President George W. Bush talked with Mubarak in Sharm El Sheikh South Sinai, Egypt in January 2008. ||White House Photo/ Eric Draper&&

4||President Obama met with Mubarak in Cairo, June 2009. ||REUTERS/Larry Downing&&

5||On February 1, 2011, Mubarak addressed the growing unrest in Egypt and declared that he would not seek reelection. ||MSNBC&&

6||Mubarak has often been a key player in joint peace talks between the United States and Middle Eastern nations. In September 2010, he met in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt with (from left) Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ||U.S. Department of State&&

7||In June 2003, President Bush met with Mubarak and other Arab leaders in Egpyt for the Red Sea Summit. ||White House Photo/ Paul Morse&&

8||Bush and Mubarak shook hands at the Red Sea Summit, flanked by Prince Abdullah Bin Abd Al Aziz of Saudi Arabia (left) and King Hamad Bin Issa Al Khalifa of Bahrain (right)||White House Photo/ Paul Morse&&

9||Mubarak has also been a crucial military ally for the U.S. In June 2002, he met with Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld at the Pentagon. ||Department of Defense/ R. D. Ward&&

10||Vice President Dick Cheney met with Mubarak at the Presidential Palace in Cairo in May 2007. ||Whitehouse.gov/ David Bohrer&&

11||Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met with Mubarak in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt in July 2007. ||Department of Defense/ Cherie A. Thurlby&&

12||Secretary of Defense William Cohen met with Mubarak almost a decade earlier, in June 1998, to discuss potential U.S. military action against Iraq should Saddam Hussein refuse to comply with U.N. weapons inspectors. ||Department of Defense/ R. D. Ward&&

13||Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen met with Mubarak in February 2010 while on a week-long trip to visit with U.S. allies in the region. ||Department of Defense/ Chad J. McNeeley&&

14||Former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan met with Mubarak in November 2005.||UN PHOTO/Mark Garten&&

15||Mubarak visited President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas in April 2004||White House Photo/ Paul Morse&&

16||Bush and Mubarak took part in a joint press conference after a meeting at Camp David in June 2002.||White House Photo/ Eric Draper&&

17||Donald Rumsfled and Mubarak at the Pentagon in March 2002. || Robert D. Ward - DoD via CNP/Newscom&&

18||Mubarak (at right with back turned) at the G-8 Summit in L'Aquila, Italy, July 2009.||White House Photo/Pete Souza&&

19||President Bush and Mubarak hold a joint press conference at the President's ranch in Texas, April 2004.||WhiteHouse.gov&&

20||President Obama met with Mubarak in Egypt in June 2009.||REUTERS/Larry Downing&&

21||Mubarak welcomed President Bush and Laura Bush to Egypt in May 2008. ||White House Photo/ Joyce N. Boghosian&&

22||Mubarak and Obama at the Presidential Palace in Cairo, June 2009. ||REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh&&

23||President Bill Clinton and Mubarak at the White House in July, 1999. ||Ron Sachs - CNP/Newscom&&

24||Former Egyptian president Anwar Sadat (front right), shown here in 1977, whose assassination in 1981 propelled Mubarak (third from right) to power. ||Francis Apesteguy/Sardine Photos/Newscom&&

25|| Mubarak and Clinton at the White House in 1999.|| Richard Ellis/CNP/Newscom&&

26||In 1989, Mubarak met with (from left) President George H.W. Bush, Secretary of State James A. Baker III, Vice President Dan Quayle. ||Arnie Sachs - CNP/Newscom&&

27||Mubarak, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Obama, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, and King Abdullah II of Jordan (left to right) met at the White House in September 2010 to discuss a Middle East peace plan. ||Alex Wong/UPI/Newscom&&

28||President Reagan met with Mubarak at the White House in February 1982. ||Michael Evans/ZUMA Press/Newscom&&

29||Clinton and Mubarak attended the funeral of King Hussein of Jordan in February 1999. ||Glenn Campbell/Newscom&&

30||Clinton and Mubarak oversaw the signing of the Oslo II accord in September 1995, with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzak Rabin (left) and Palestinian Authority Chairman Yassir Arafat (right.) ||Barbara Kinney-White House via CNP/Newscom&&

A Drug Enforcement Agency agent who shot himself in the foot during a classroom demonstration in a video that went viral on YouTube is asking an appeals court to rule that the disclosure of the video was an invasion of privacy.

Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Tampa Bay Bandits football player and undercover agent Lee Paige first sued over the disclosure of the April 2004 video in April 2006. Now, Mike Scarcella of National Law Journal reports, he wants an appeals court to overturn a ruling that ended the suit in December.

Read More →

Egyptians may not have believed President Hosni Mubarak's speech yesterday, in which Mubarak said he never wanted to become a dictator, but at least one person was willing to defend him: Stephen Colbert.

Reacting to Mubarak's speech last night, Colbert agreed that the Egyptian President never intended to rule the country for 30 years.

"No," Colbert began. "He wanted to dance."

Read More →

Former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele appeared on the Daily Show last night -- both of him!

"Wait a minute," Jon Stewart said at the start of the interview. "You're not Michael Steele."

"What?" Steele responded.

"We've had Michael Steele on the show, like, five times," said Stewart. "I don't -- you look -- you're not him."

"Jon, Jon, I can assure you -- I'm Michael Steele."

"I have to tell you," Stewart began -- only to be interrupted by the blue Sesame Street puppet that the Daily Show used during Steele's tenure at the RNC, voiced by a rhyming, jive-talking Wyatt Cenac.

"Yeah sorry I'm late, Watergate," said Puppet Michael Steele. "Who's this extremely handsome gentleman?"

Read More →

Two days after a Republican Florida federal court judge voided the entire health care law, the multi-front Republican war against it continues in the Senate, where members will vote today on whether or not to just repeal it, full stop.

Simultaneously, Republican members are trying to sneak grenades into the heart of the law, crafting modifications which they admit are meant to destroy it.

But that presents them with a conundrum when they head back to their states and districts and face constituents who stand to benefit from the law right now -- seniors who are entitled to free checkups, and young adults, who can now stay on their parents' insurance until they turn 26, for example. Republicans can chose to help those constituents navigate the law -- answer their questions constructively, encourage them to seek those benefits -- or they can let their political agendas interfere.

Different strokes for different folks.

Read More →

Newt Gingrich was coy about his own presidential intentions at a debate with Howard Dean on the campus of George Washington University last night. But he was quick to weigh in on the intentions of a potential rival in the fields of Iowa and hills of New Hampshire. Ambassador Jon Huntsman is "probably" running for president, Gingrich told TPM after the debate. And he's going to be a "very formidable" opponent to anyone who's trying to take on Obama next year.

"He'd certainly be a great addition for the Republican Party," Gingrich said. "He's very intelligent."

But the former House Speaker declined to weigh in on whether or not Hunstman's moderate past as governor of Utah and position in the Obama administration would cost him with a Republican primary electorate.

"He's a very smart man, we'll have to wait and see," Gingrich said. "That's what campaigns are for."

Read More →

Violence erupted Wednesday afternoon in Cairo a day after President Hosni Mubarak vowed to step down in September, as thousands of Mubarak supporters stormed Tahrir Square, some on horseback and camels, and reportedly attacked anti-government protesters.

The Mubarak supporters are said -- according to Al-Jazeera English, the BBC, CNN and the New York Times -- to be carrying machetes, sticks and other weapons. The two groups are reportedly throwing rocks at each other in Tahrir Square and the surrounding streets.

Anderson Cooper, the CNN anchor, reported that he and his crew were attacked by Mubarak supporters today.

Read More →

LiveWire