TPM News

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) kicked off his third run for the presidency on Good Morning America Friday morning. And in keeping with his role as the Libertarian anomaly of the Republican field, Paul launched his new campaign with some strong opposition to the concept of government assistance.

In response to a question from a viewer, Paul outlined to ABC's George Stephanopoulos his contention that government aid for victims of natural disasters goes against the foundations of America laid down by its founders.

"Do you think everyone should just be responsible for themselves and if a flood washes your house away no FEMA?" the viewer asked via email. "Sink or swim?"

"I think that's the way a free society works and that's what the Constitution mandates," Paul replied.

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Despite the White House and Democratic leadership's seeming reluctance to discuss it, House progressives say their budget proposal didn't just come out of left field and deserves to be part of the discussion.

Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) told TPM that though he's been "somewhat disappointed" with the response from Democratic leadership, and the White House, he thinks it's because "we have a platform that probably scares people more than anything else."

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1||The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 caused more than $400 million in damage and killed almost 250 people. Floodwaters spilled over an estimated 27,000 square miles over seven states. More than 700,000 people lost their homes, and nearly half those people were forced to live in displacement camps. Herbert Hoover called it "the greatest peace-time calamity in the history of the country."

The train carrying vice-president Charles G. Dawes and Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover wrecked near Heads, Miss., on the Yazoo & Mississippi Valley railroad. The engine went into 40 feet of water, killing the engineer, during the flooding in the Mississippi Delta on July 29, 1927.||flickr/jwinfred&&

2||Torrential rain poured on the U.S. for eight months in 1927-1928, starting in the upper Midwest.||flickr/jwinfred&&

3||Train floats.||flickr/jwinfred&&

4||Lifeboats at Memphis headed for the Delta.||flickr/jwinfred&&

5||Opera House--Red Cross headquarters in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

6||Washington Avenue in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

7||Greenville, Miss. levee.||flickr/jwinfred&&

8||Goyer Service Station in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

9||Stoneville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

10||Plantation workers.||flickr/jwinfred&&

11||Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

12||Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

13||Main Street viewed from the Greenville, Miss. levee.||flickr/jwinfred&&

14||Washington Avenue in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&


16||Rolling Fork, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

17||Convicts doing labor in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

18||Near Helms, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&


20||Relief fleet and personnel of the Mississippi River Flood Relief Service.||.mil&&


22||From John M. Barry's Rising Tide: ". . . Out on the water there was unimaginable silence. As far as the eye could see was an expanse of brackish chocolate water. There was not the bark of a dog, the lowing of a cow, the neighing of a horse. Even the trees turned dingy, their trunks and leaves caked with dried mud. The silence was complete and suffocating."||.mil&&

23||Cary, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&


25||47 train and Red Cross.||flickr/jwinfred&&

26||Rescue boats.||flickr/jwinfred&&

27||Mississippi Delta.||flickr/jwinfred&&

28||Washington Avenue in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

29||Mules on Greenville, Miss. levee.||flickr/jwinfred&&

30||Holly Bluff, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

31||The beginning of crevasse breaching levee at Mounds Landing, Miss.||.gov&&

32||Refugees in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

She was listed in his phone under "Aunt Judy." He told her he wanted to marry her at the National Prayer Breakfast. There were secret cell phones which the two used to exchange text messages at a rate of nearly 20 per day. And after her husband spotted the lovers' cars outside a hotel in Nevada, his long-time spiritual adviser called and told him to "put your pants on and go home."

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Former Sen. John Ensign's (R-NV) Chief of Staff John Lopez told the Senate Ethics Committee that he was surprised Ensign had hired him because Ensign preferred the company of "alpha males" as his confidantes and friends, according the ethics panel's final report.

Lopez became chief of staff when the previous aide in that position, Scott Bensing, went to work as the executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, when Ensign became chairman in 2006. Lopez had worked for Ensign for 15 years in various legislative and campaign positions, but the two had only a professional relationship not a close, personal friendship. Lopez told the committee his ties to the Ensign were "an inch deep and a mile wide."

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Senate Democrats are ratcheting up the pressure on their Republican colleagues over their support for billions of dollars in subsidies to oil companies, releasing a new video asking the GOP to just say 'no.'

The approximately minute-long ad features no narration, but rather relies on the background noise of reports about surging gas prices to make its case. That backing audio is layered over images of gas stations with high prices, and news articles about the tax incentives that go to oil companies.

The ad also features clips of two oil executives directly saying they do not need government subsidies. In one clip, former Shell Oil CEO John Hofmeister tells an MSNBC host, "The actual subsidies are so small they're very incidental to a business the size of the one I was formerly with."

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Mitt Romney appears to have found friends in all the wrong places with his Thursday speech explaining why RomneyCare wasn't at all like ObamaCare. The Massachusetts' Democratic Party chairman praised the ex-governor for giving the right a "courageous" lecture on the merits of the state's health care law.

"I think what i heard in the speech was a full-throated defense of Massachusetts' health care," state chair John Walsh said in a conference call after the speech. "To the degree that this is a position that many members of his party will not be happy with, from what I can understand, I give him credit."

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New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly described Thursday how the NYPD investigated and arrested two men week who allegedly plotted to blow up a Manhattan Synagogue.

Kelly said in his Thursday press conference that Ahmed Ferhani and Mohamed Mamdouh, both residents of Queens, were arrested on Wednesday evening on conspiracy, weapons, and hate crimes charges, following a seven-month long undercover operation. Just before his arrest, Kelly said, Fehrani explained that he was "fed up with the way Muslims were being treated around the world. They are treating us like dogs."

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Former Sen. John Ensign (R-NV) was so aggressive in helping Doug Hampton, the husband of his ex-mistress and a former top Senate aide, violate the one-year lobbying ban after Hampton resigned that he threatened to cut off constituents who refused to hire Hampton.

After Hampton learned about the affair between his wife, Cynthia, and Ensign, the senator told Hampton he could not longer work for him and started negotiating a severance payment. Ensign also set out to find him work, meeting with constituents and recommending they hire Hampton.

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Well, that didn't last long.

At nearly the exact same time 42 House Republicans were calling on President Obama to stop the heated rhetoric about their Medicare plan Wednesday, the National Republican Congressional Committee announced a new ad in California that accused a Democrat of "bankrupting Medicare" and putting benefits in jeopardy.

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