TPM News

The White House says its finalizing a strategy to combat violent extremism in America, and is speaking publicly about it just a few days before Rep. Peter King (R-NY) holds hearings on "Muslim radicalization." (On Sunday, in a move The New York Times called "no accident," White House Deputy National Security Adviser Denis McDonough gave a speech at a Muslim center in Virginia, laying out the administration's efforts.)

Read More →

The recall efforts in Wisconsin are gathering steam -- and as WisPolitics reports, one of the targeted Republicans, state Sen. Dan Kapanke, now says he expects organizers to gather enough signatures to trigger a recall election against him.

However, Kapanke says he is not backing down from his support of Gov. Scott Walker's anti-union budget proposals:

Still, he said he was undeterred by the effort and remained committed to the guv's budget repair bill.


"I'm willing to stand up and take that vote," Kapanke said.

Read More →

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee, harshly criticized the CIA and the rest of the intelligence community for failing to forecast the uprising in the Middle East and warned the White House not to intervene in Libya without international support.

"Our intelligence, and I see it all ... was woefully inadequate. [The unrest in] Tunisia was the only intelligence we got right," Feinstein told TPM Tuesday, adding that U.S. intelligence completely missed the instability in Egypt, Yemen and Bahrain.

Read More →

Sen Claire McCaskill (D-MO) may face a tough road to reelection in 2012 according to a new PPP poll of registered voters that shows her just barely squeaking past a number of potential challengers.

McCaskill won election to her first term in 2006, but by a slim two-point margin in a year when Democrats romped to victory nationwide. As a result, her seat has been viewed as a toss-up heading into 2012, something the poll's results seem to confirm.

Read More →

The narrative in the Wisconsin political standoff over Gov. Scott Walker's budget proposal and its anti-public employee union provisions seems to have shifted very quickly. Just two days ago, the media was abuzz with talk that the state Senate Democrats who had fled the state in order to block budget quorum might come back -- and now, the chatter is about how some key Republican legislators could derail the bill.

On Sunday night, Dems were knocking back a Wall Street Journal report that they were soon to return. Instead, Minority Leader Mark Miller (D) called for a meeting with Walker at the state line.

In response, Walker and state Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R) blasted the Dems for the negotiations that had already gone on, and claimed that some of the Dems were on the verge of coming back -- which only led to those same key Dems making clear that they weren't splitting from the caucus.

But with the GOP's efforts to wear the Dems down now stalling out, is it in fact Republicans who might be getting worn down? It appears that more Republican state Senators have been becoming critical of the package. This, too, could very well sputter out -- but Dems only need three defections out of the 19-member GOP caucus to defeat the bill.

Read More →

Since late last week, Senate Democrats have been knocking their Republican colleagues for running away from a vote on controversial House spending legislation. Republican leader Mitch McConnell put it on the calendar himself, but every time Democrats have tried to hand them a vote on it, he's demurred.

Ask Republicans what's up, and they say Dems are being disingenuous. They say they have no problem voting on the House plan, and are prepared to do so in the next day or so.

It got so bad that, on Tuesday, Harry Reid accused McConnell et al of reneging on an agreement they all struck together with Joe Biden last week.

So what gives?

Read More →

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is arguing that Democrats should accept IRS penalties on working- and middle-class health insurance consumers as the price of making one key tweak to the health care law.

"The 1099 is something we're going to look at," Reid said at his weekly Capitol briefing with reporters. "Me personally I like the House payfor better than ours, so we'll have to see."

Read More →

Democrats and their allies in Wisconsin have identified weak links in the Republican state Senate conference and are tugging away, hoping to make them break. One of them, who seems prepared to deal, once called the idea of eliminating collective bargaining rights for public sector workers "radical."

"They're in the minority but holding some cards so you've got to negotiate, you can't give up the whole ship," said Sen. Luther Olsen (R). He and other state senate Republicans have been discussing their options among themselves all day, to figure out their next move.

This is the same Luther Olsen who, at the outset of this fight, wasn't fully on board with Governor Scott Walker's plan.

Read More →