TPM News

By a bipartisan vote of 59-36 Friday, Senate Democrats and several Republicans tabled (read: effectively killed) House-passed legislation to fund the federal government beyond September 30. The development escalates a new round of brinkmanship with disaster aid for FEMA and a government shutdown at stake.

Democrats are enraged by a provision of the GOP legislation, which holds disaster aid hostage to partisan budget cuts.

They're also unhappy with the amount of disaster relief money House Republicans included in their bill. Last week, the Senate passed legislation on a bipartisan basis that provided FEMA about twice as much disaster aid as the House bill, without requiring any offsets.

Read More →

In these times of secretive deficit super committee meetings, back-room pressuring on particular proposals and endless speculation on what the panel will wind up doing, it might be a good idea not to leave internal working deficit-reduction documents lying around the Capitol.

TPM got a hold of what appears to be an internal GOP Super Committee wish list -- a chart of working proposals for finding hundreds of billions of dollars in cost savings. A source recently forwarded the documents after finding them lying on a table outside the Speaker's lobby at the end of August, just when members selected to serve on the joint-deficit panel were being announced.

Read More →

A California jury has found 10 Muslim students guilty of disrupting a speech by the Israeli ambassador to the U.S. at the University of California, Irvine, last year the AP reports.

After last night's debate, the conservative establishment might just be seceding from Rick Perry.

It was only six weeks ago that Perry declared his candidacy, and quickly shot to the top of the polls as the conservative, populist alternative to Mitt Romney. But since then he's been knocked around for his statements against Social Security, and for his heresies from social-conservative orthodoxy on such issues as the HPV vaccine and in-state tuition for the children of illegal immigrants. And it has been the debates where he has been the main target of attacks from other candidates.

The Republican frontrunner didn't do himself any favors at Thursday's debate. The worst moment came when he attempted to deliver a knockout blow against Mitt Romney's various changes of position -- only to trip over all his words as he tried to keep track of them.

After that, Romney easily squashed Perry in a rebuttal.

Read More →

NASA has adjusted the prediction for when and where its defunct climate satellite will fall to earth, moving the potential window of re-entry from Friday afternoon to "late Friday, Sept. 23, or early Saturday, Sept. 24" ET.

Even more surprising: After noting on Thursday that the satellite wasn't expected to be over North America at all during it's re-entry window, NASA has since revised that call, now saying "There is a low probability any debris that survives re-entry will land in the United States, but the possibility cannot be discounted because of this changing rate of descent."

Up to 26 distinct pieces of debris are expected to make it through to the ground (or plunge into the ocean), with one of them weighing up to 300 lbs., according to NASA's risk assessment.

Read More →

Leon H. Wolf is worried. He admits that ‘by any objective measure, Rick Perry did not perform well in last night’s debate.“ But that doesn’t mean he’s ready to be seduced by the smooth, convicted and convincing Romney.

“The main problem with Romney, as always, is that he is a little too good at sounding convincing and convicted, no matter what it is that he is saying,” Wolf writes in a post on RedState. “He will sound good in the debates, he will push all the right buttons and say all the right buzzwords, but it will be anyone’s guess as to whether he really means them, or whether he will pull an abrupt about-face two years (or less) from now.”

In an article on RedState, Erick Erickson ponders the question: can the right live with Romney? He points out Romney’s continued existence in the field as “a less likable John McCain in this election cycle” and wonders if Perry can get his act together quickly enough to take his place.

“If Perry can hold his own in the debates he’ll be fine not winning the debates outright,” Erickson concludes. “But another performance like last night could push him off the edge of support among people who want an anti-Romney alternative, but who really ant to beat Barack Obama even more.”