TPM News

It would be a huge mistake for Democrats to dismiss the newfound economic populism of Republican presidential candidates as obviously laughable, given Republicans’ deep alliance with corporate America. Republicans are aiming to pull off a populist jiu jitsu, using anger at corporate influence over government to justify even more dismantling of government. It could work.

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Jeb Bush's foundering response to the question of whether he would have invaded Iraq sparked a wave of responses from the rest of the 2016 GOP field that amounted to a broad retrenchment on the issue.

But the politics were unmistakeable. The well-funded Bush was bleeding in the water, and his rivals were happy to be the hungry sharks. Bush has now conceded it was a "bumpy" few days. But he wasn't alone in struggling with the question.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The prevailing images of protests in Baltimore and Ferguson, Missouri, over police killings of black men were of police in riot gear, handcuffed protesters, tear gas and mass arrests. The main images of a fatal gun battle between armed bikers and police in Waco, Texas, also showed mass arrests — carried out by nonchalant-looking officers sitting around calm bikers on cellphones.

The firefight in Waco is raising questions about perceptions and portrayals of crime in America, considering the vehement reaction that the earlier protests got from police, politicians and some members of the public.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul commandeered the Senate floor Wednesday to deliver an hours-long protest against renewal of the Patriot Act, calling the post-Sept. 11 law government intrusion on Americans' privacy.

Congress faces a June 1 deadline for the law's expiration, and Paul's speech underscored the deep divisions over the National Security Agency's bulk collection of Americans' phone records, which was revealed by former contractor Edward Snowden.

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Updated at 5:33 p.m. ET

Only the top 10 candidates will be allowed to participate in the first GOP presidential debate later this year, Fox News said Wednesday.

With as many as 16 candidates expected to be in the race by the time the debate is held in Cleveland in August, a sizable chunk of the GOP field will be left on the outside looking in. That sets up an important early test for the candidates: Can they scratch and claw their way into the top 10?

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