TPM News

When the Obama Administration argued in a filing earlier this month that the Supreme Court should not consider an appeal by Don Siegelman, the former Alabama governor wasn't surprised, even though the Obama filing maintained the Bush-era stance in Siegelman's controversial corruption case.

"There's really been no substantial change in the heart of the Department of Justice from the Bush-Rove Department of Justice," Siegelman tells TPMmuckraker in an interview.

Read More →

This past Saturday, at the beginning of a marathon health care debate, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid took a pot shot at Washington Post columnist, and liberal bête noir David Broder.

"To focus on a man who has been retired for many years and writes a column once in a while is not where we should be," Reid said.

Well now Broder, typically not much one for diving into the mud, is hitting back.

"I hope he's more accurate about the [health care] bill than he is about me," Broder told Politico. "And I'm not retired."

Broder didn't limit his critique to Reid's accuracy, and hammered the Nevada senator for his parochial approach to leadership.

Read More →

The White House this afternoon will be releasing more names of visitors who came through the gates at Pennsylvania Avenue this year.

Last month the administration for the first time offered citizens a look at names - requested by watchdog groups and press - and starting at the end of this year they will release every name.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs told reporters in his morning gaggle this morning there are about 1,600 names on this list that covers requests before Sept. 15.

The names would normally come out at the end of the day the last Friday of the month. They are being posted at early due to the holiday.

President Obama will address the nation from West Point Military Academy at 8 p.m. Tuesday to explain his decision on sending more troops to Afghanistan, Robert Gibbs told reporters in his morning gaggle.

Another poll suggests that Rudy Giuliani could potentially beat appointed Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), if he enters the 2010 Senate race as he's reportedly been considering.

The new numbers from Rasmussen: Giuliani 53%, Gillibrand 40%, with a ±4.5% margin of error. A Zogby poll yesterday gave Rudy a narrower lead of 45%-43%, within that poll's ±3.2% margin of error.

The pollster's analysis speculates that Giuliani could be getting a short-term boost in this Democratic state, due to the Obama administration's decision on terrorism trials: "Fifty-five percent (55%) of New York State voters oppose U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder's decision to try the confessed mastermind of the 9/11 attacks and five other suspected terrorists in a civilian court in New York City rather than before a military tribunal."

A White House official tells TPMDC President Obama will attend the climate talks in Copenhagen on Dec. 9. The trip coincides with Obama's acceptance of the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo.

In addition to the president's address, the White House will send a large delegation, including Obama's "Green Cabinet" who aim to "maximize" chances of success at Copenhagen.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs told reporters the move would "give momentum" to the U.S. position on climate talks.

EPA administrator Carol Browner told reporters he would lay out clear goals for cutting carbon emissions, in metrics that are "fairly similar" to the bill which passed the House and what is being considered by the Senate.

Read More →

Obama To Explain Surge, Exit Plan In Afghanistan The Washington Post reports President Obama will use his speech on Afghanistan next week to simultaneously explain his plan to increase America's troop presence, and to lay out an exit strategy: "Obama's prime-time address, tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, will begin the White House effort to sell his revised war plan -- one leading scenario calls for sending 30,000 additional U.S. troops -- to powerful skeptics within his party, reluctant allies abroad and an Afghan public uncertain whether international forces or the Taliban will win the war."

Obama's Day Ahead President Obama will hold the annual turkey-pardoning ceremony, at 11:35 a.m. ET in the Rose Garden. In the afternoon, the First Family will participate in a service event in the Washington area.

Read More →

Former Bush press secretary Dana Perino made a rather odd claim on Sean Hannity's Fox News show last night. Talking about how we ought to label the deadly shooting at Fort Hood -- and implying that the Obama administration was shying away from calling it a terrorist attack out of political concerns -- Perino said no terrorists attacked the U.S. while President Bush was in office.

We did not have a terrorist attack on our country during President Bush's term. I hope they're not looking at this politically. I do think that we owe it to the American people to call it what it is.

Perino's claim went unchallenged -- no one on screen mentioned the 9/11 attacks.

Read More →

Move over, BarneyCam!

The White House new media team had some fun with President Obama's first official pardoning of a turkey for the Thanksgiving holiday.

In a video posted to the White House YouTube page, a "turkey" does the slow walk right through the gates outside 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, past "Pebble Beach" where reporters do stand-up television shots, through the West Wing and Oval Office into the Rose Garden.

The spoof is the brainchild of Arun Chaudhary, who traveled with Obama during the long primary and general election campaigns.

But Ben LaBolt from the White House press shop steals the show as narrator.

The bird will "be trotting a little prouder as he walks down these hallowed halls for his appointment with destiny," LaBolt deadpans.

It's all geared toward getting people to watch the pardoning live today on the White House Web site.

Today, "one turkey will be a free bird," LaBolt said.

Watch it after the jump:

Read More →