TPM News

Imagine a future in which each row of annuals and perennials in the flowerbed outside your house was a line of defense against dangerous chemicals and explosives. Biologist June Medford and her team at Colorado State University made a big step towards turning plants into chemical security guards when they recently inserted a computer-redesigned receptor protein into a living plant -- giving it the ability to detect explosives.

Medford described her research to TPM: "Okay. I'm a plant. There is a chemical on the outside, and I'm going to recognize this and do something about it on the inside."

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Roger Stockham, a 63-year-old Army veteran from California who was reportedly angry at the U.S. government, was arrested by police in Michigan and charged with allegedly threatening to blow up a Mosque in Dearborn.

Dearborn police allegedly found Stockham inside his vehicle outside the Islamic Center of America with a load of M-80s in his trunk and other explosives, the Detroit News reported.

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Hillary Clinton Calls For Democracy In Egypt Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appeared on all five major Sunday morning talk shows, calling for a peaceful transition to democracy in Egypt. She said on State of the Union: "We want to see this peaceful uprising on the part of the Egyptian people to demand their rights to be responded to in a very clear, unambiguous way by the government, and then a process of national dialogue that will lead to the changes that the Egyptian people seek and that they deserve,"

Daley: Mubarak Must Support "Basic Human Rights" Appearing on Face The Nation, White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley called for the Egyptian government to show restraint in the current political crisis. "The determination of Egypt will be done by the people of Egypt," said Daley. "The U.S., again, can stand by, we can support, we can support the basic human rights of the people of Egypt."

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Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) said on Bill Maher's show on Friday that he doesn't believe in evolution because he doesn't believe that he came from a monkey or that a "creature crawled out of the sea and became a human being one day."

"I believe I came from God not from a monkey so the answer is no," Kingston said when Maher asked him whether he believed in evolution.

"Where's the missing link?"

"I know there is a difference between adaption and evolution," Kingston said.

Video embedded below.



[Daily Kos via Gawker]

Bill Weimar, the Alaska halfway house mogul who went to prison for attempting to bribe state politicians, is being sought by Florida police for allegedly sexually battering a child under the age of 12.

The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office this week posted a photo of Weimar, whose last known address was a boat dock, and said they were seeking him on the sexual battery charge. Online records found by TPM show a William C. Weimar has a registered a 59.5 ft recreational boat in the state called "RENEWAL II."

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Rep. Daniel Lipinski (D-IL) is going on the record about the controversial abortion bill he co-sponsored in the House that would only allow pregnant women to obtain insurance coverage for an abortion if they were the victims of a so-called "forcible rape," rather than other criminal sexual act.

In a statement sent to TPM, Lipinski says the intent of the abortion law -- known in the House as H.R. 3, or the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act -- was to make permanent the existing limits on abortion in the federal code, including the existing exemptions for women who were raped. Lipinski suggests he will reexamine the issue as the bill moves forward.

"The language of H.R. 3 was not intended to change existing law regarding taxpayer funding for abortion in cases of rape, nor is it expected that it would do so," Lipinski said in the statement. "Nonetheless, the legislative process will provide an opportunity to clarify this should such a need exist."

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Obama Promotes Clean Energy Development In Web Address This weekend's YouTube address was recorded during President Obama's visit this past week to Manitowoc, Wisconsin, with Obama promoting the clean energy technology produced by Orion Energy Systems.

"And as we can see here in Manitowoc, we need to ensure that we are promoting innovation - especially in promising areas like clean energy. This is going to be key to growing our economy and helping businesses create jobs," said Obama. "Orion, for example, was able to open with the help of small business loans and incentives that are creating demand for clean energy technologies like wind power and solar panels. That's why I've proposed a bigger tax credit for the research that companies do. And to give these companies the certainty of knowing there will be a market for what they sell, I've set this goal for America: by 2035, 80 percent of electricity should come from clean energy."

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Two Democrats on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights say that J. Christian Adams, the former Justice Department lawyer at the heart of the scandal over the New Black Panther Party voter intimidation case, isn't credible because he contributes to a "race-baiting" website run by conservative pundit Andrew Breitbart.

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Rep. Daniel Lipinski (D-IL), a chair of the House pro-life caucus, isn't answering questions today about the controversial abortion law -- or its potential deleterious effects on rape or incest victims -- that he's cosponsored along with many big names in the Republican majority.

H.R. 3, known as the "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act," is essentially a rewrite of existing anti-abortion language in the federal code. It would make permanent some well-known provisions like the Hyde Amendment, which bans federal funding of abortion in all cases (as it's written now, the Hyde Amendment expires at the end of every fiscal year and has to be reauthorized as part of the Health and Human Services funding bill) and eliminate employer and individual tax deductions for private insurance plans that cover abortion.

But the bill does more than just make permanent the prohibition on the government paying for abortions or make it harder for people to use insurance to pay for abortions. As Mother Jones' Nick Baumann reported today, it also redefines what the government considers rape.

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