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In the latest news from the bizarre story from the Wisconsin Supreme Court -- in which liberal Justice Ann Walsh Bradley has accused conservative Justice David Prosser of grabbing her neck in a chokehold, during an argument over the court's recent decision regarding the upholding of Gov. Scott Walker's anti-public employee union legislation -- it is now being reported that Bradley told Prosser in the days following the incident to seek anger-management therapy.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports: "The request came June 15, when all the justices met with Capitol Police Chief Charles Tubbs to discuss the June 13 altercation between Prosser and Bradley. At least some of Prosser's fellow conservatives on the court said it would be ridiculous for him to take such courses, the sources said."

Unnamed sources on Prosser's side have alleged that Bradley initiated the violence, by charging at Prosser with her fists raised. He then raised his own hands, it is said, to defend himself. Bradley has shot back publicly, saying: "You can try to spin those facts and try to make it sound like I ran up to him and threw my neck into his hands, but that's only spin."

Michele Bachmann's multi-state campaign announcement tour took her to South Carolina on Tuesday, home of some of the most right-wing Tea Partiers around. And interestingly, while she was there she made a comment that distanced herself sharply from the fringe "Birther" movement in a subtle way.

As CNN reports, Bachmann promised to run a fully national campaign. "We want to win Hawaii," she said. "And we think that there is a certain Hawaiian president who should go back to Hawaii!"

Of course, President Obama was born in Hawaii, though he made his adult life and his political career in Chicago, Illinois. Moreover, Hawaii is a heavily Democratic state, and has only voted Republican for president in the landslide re-elections of Richard Nixon in 1972 and Ronald Reagan in 1984. Obama won his birthplace state by a whopping 72%-26% margin in 2008 -- up from John Kerry's much narrower 54%-45% in 2004 -- aided by the prospect of electing the first Hawaiian president.

On the other hand, this hasn't stopped conspiracy theorists from spinning rumors that Obama was really born in Kenya, and isn't legally qualified to be president, and that the multiple Hawaiian documents attesting to his birth there are forgeries.

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The GOP has a new favorite line about President Obama and if the speed with which they've all adopted it is any indication, then it works well with focus groups, and, through sheer repitition, it makes its way seamlessly into news article after news article.

Obama inherited a tough economy, they say, but "he made it worse."

Mitt Romney's saying it, members of the GOP congressional leadership say it over and over again at their weekly press conferences. It's not going anywhere.

The problem is that, by most metrics, this is simply false. Yes, the economy shed millions of jobs in late 2008 and early 2009, so unemployment is higher now than it was when Obama took office. But, as others have pointed out, when he took office the economy was shrinking, it's now growing again. When he took office, the economy was shedding jobs, it's now creating them. You can fault him for doing too little, or not doing it well enough, but as bad as things are, they're not worse than they were two and a half years ago. And non-partisan fact checkers agree.

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Michele Bachmann has recently made a few interesting historical claims that are either clear evidence of her incompetence (or proneness to make public gaffes), or an example of a biased media out to get her (depending on one's political persuasion, of course.) Conan O'Brien mined this to an appropriately absurd level last night, in presenting his own vision of how this should play out: The Michele Bachmann History Channel!

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Progressive Super-PAC Priorities USA is hitting the airwaves in five states in an effort counter ad buys from Karl Rove's anonymous-money organization, Crossroads GPS.

The ads specifically target Rove for playing "politics at its worst" and highlight the House GOP's plan to turn Medicare into a private voucher system with stingier benefits. They'll run in Iowa, North Carolina, Virginia, Florida and Colorado, all highly competitive states in 2012 that President Obama won in his first election.

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The Democratic Governors Association is raising money for a voter protection project intended to combat the Republican-backed voter ID laws that are sweeping through legislatures around the country.

"In Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Texas, extremist governors or legislatures are willing to violate people's civil rights in order to win elections," Donna Brazile wrote in an email to supporters trying to raise money for the DGA's Voter Protection Project.

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An influential conservative activist is explicitly calling on Republicans to hold U.S. creditworthiness hostage until Democrats agree to pass a constitutional amendment requiring Congress to slash federal spending until the budget is balanced.

Erick Erickson -- a CNN contributor and founder of the conservative website Red State -- says Republicans should refuse to raise the nation's borrowing limit, likely triggering a catastrophic debt default, until a two-thirds majority in both the House and Senate sign on to the Balanced Budget Amendment.

"Make it clear that until you do get the votes necessary for passage you will obstruct and block an increase in the debt ceiling," Erickson wrote in a Wednesday morning post. "Hold the debt ceiling hostage. If the Democrats want the debt ceiling raised, they need to send [the BBA] out to the states for ratification. They can fight to stop it there. But do this for me -- draw a line in the sand. You force a vote and then another vote and then another vote until you get the two-thirds needed in both houses and don't you dare give up fighting against the debt ceiling increase until you get that two-thirds vote. The rules in this fight must be different. You must keep blocking until they give you what you want."

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Another day and more gridlock in Minnesota.

Budget negotiations continued Tuesday to try to avert a state government shutdown, but no deal has stuck yet.

Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton again met with Republican leaders of the legislature, calling the talks "constructive." But he said they still have their differences. Beyond that, details of the negations have been been intentionally vague, as lawmakers have committed not to speak publicly about the specifics of the meetings.

With a June 30 deadline to avert a shutdown, how realistic are the chances of a deal?

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Let's assume Democrats and Republicans team up in the next few weeks to pass a very GOP friendly debt reduction bill. And let's stipulate, too, that, as in Britain and elsewhere, the spending-cut magic doesn't do anything to help the unemployment crisis, leaving President Obama and the Democrats a huge political liability -- and national problem -- they won't be able to resolve by election time in November.

[TPM SLIDESHOW: Battle Over The Budget: Behind The Scenes At The White House]

This is why they're trying to squeeze something -- anything -- into the debt ceiling package that will provide near-term stimulus, to improve the jobs situation or at least counteract the austerity measures. Unfortunately, Republicans have foreclosed on the highest-impact ideas economists have recommended -- aid to states, infrastructure investment, and other direct spending projects.

So they've settled on a fourth- or fifth-best option: a plan to provide employees deeper, temporary relief from the payroll tax, and extend that relief to employers as well. It's not the most stimulative thing in the world -- but it is a tax cut for business owners, so at the very least it should have some buy-in on the right, no?

You might think so, but you'd be wrong.

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