TPM News

Former Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL), the ex-Congressman who infamously resigned in 2006 as a result of a scandal involving his sexually explicit instant message conversations with male Congressional pages, is making his way back out into the public eye. As the Palm Beach Post reports, he spoke last week -- at a meeting of the Palm Beach County Young Republicans.

In addition, the paper notes, he gave an introduction speech this past Tuesday for freshman GOP Rep. Allen West, who hails form a neighboring district, at the grand opening of West's district office in West Palm Beach.

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If soon-to-be former China Ambassador Jon Huntsman were to jump into the 2012 presidential race (as many expect he will), Mormon Republicans would more than likely find themselves with two candidates from their faith on the ballot: Huntsman, the former governor of Utah, and Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts.

In Mormon-heavy Utah, one early poll shows that Romney has the edge. Though Huntsman held the state's highest elective office from 2005 until 2009, when President Obama tapped him to be Ambassador to China, the new poll shows voters there prefer Romney as their presidential nominee by 20 points.

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Verizon's alleged "legal games" are pretty transparent -- and the D.C. Court of Appeals doesn't seem to be too amused. On Wednesday, the court rejected Verizon's request for the same panel of judges that ruled against the FCC in favor of Comcast to hear their own appeal against the Commission's new net neutrality rules. With Verizon's attempt to hand-pick its judges foiled, lawyers agree that their base strategy of ensuring their case will be heard by the D.C. Court of Appeals is still their best bet.

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Verizon's alleged "legal games" are pretty transparent -- and the D.C. Court of Appeals doesn't seem to be too amused. On Wednesday, the court rejected Verizon's request for the same panel of judges that ruled against the FCC in favor of Comcast to hear their own appeal against the Commission's new net neutrality rules. With Verizon's attempt to hand-pick its judges foiled, lawyers agree that their base strategy of ensuring their case will be heard by the D.C. Court of Appeals is still their best bet.

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The U.S. intelligence community warned President Obama about instability in Egypt late last year, according to a CIA official.

Stephanie O'Sullivan, the President's nominee for principal deputy director of national intelligence who currently serves as associate deputy director of the CIA, told the Senate intelligence committee Thursday that the agency briefed Obama. She did not indicate how specific the information they provided was.

"We warned of instability but not exactly where it would come from [and in what form]," she said. "That happened at the end of last year."

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A new survey of Arizona from Public Policy Polling (D) finds an interesting result: This red state wants more gun control -- indeed, they favor it more than national surveys have shown since the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D) in the Tucson area.

The poll asked: "In general do you think Arizona should have stricter laws concerning who can buy guns or not?" The answer was Yes 55%, No 38%.

As PPP's Tom Jensen points out: "That's a higher degree of support for increased gun control in the wake of last month's shootings in Tucson than national polls are showing. A recent CBS poll showed just 46% of voters across the country in support of tougher laws on guns and ABC and NBC both put the number at 52%."

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Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad's office is putting the kibosh on a report that he was supporting former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty in the state's key early presidential caucus -- saying that he is remaining totally neutral instead.

In a column today, David Broder mentioned as a side point:

An exceptionally skilled politician, Branstad is generally counted in the Pawlenty camp. His support is the main reason Pawlenty is given a chance in the leadoff caucuses - even against Huckabee, the surprise 2008 winner in Iowa; Romney, who has invested heavily in organizing the state; and perhaps others, including Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House.


Branstad's people moved quickly to refute the story, with a pair of tweets on his account.

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