TPM News

Former Sen. Adlai Stevenson III (D-IL), who ran for governor as an independent in 1986 after he was saddled with an unacceptable running mate for lieutenant governor in the primaries, just told TPMDC that if he were in the situation that Gov. Pat Quinn (D-IL) is today, with controversial candidate for lieutenant governor Scott Lee Cohen, he would do the same thing -- quit the Democratic ticket, and run as an independent.

"Well, you know I've been asked that over and over again, and I just don't want to be presumptuous by advising the governor what to do," said Stevenson, when asked if Quinn should run as an independent. "I'm saying what I did. I could not run in good conscience with someone unqualified as my running mate for lieutenant governor, so I resigned and ran as an independent."

When asked if he would personally run as an independent rather than run alongside Cohen, Stevenson answered: "Absolutely. No question about it."

Read More →

House Democrats are going to force their Republican colleagues to vote on a resolution opposing the privatization of Social Security. The move shows Democrats are putting their full political muscle into painting the Republicans as enemies of Social Security and using the chief GOP budget writer Rep. Paul Ryan's plan to cut benefits as evidence.

Rep. John Larson (D-CT) and Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-CA) this afternoon introduced the resolution which "expresses the will of House Democrats to preserve Social Security and reaffirms our commitment to working in a bipartisan way to make common sense adjustments to strengthen the program for generations to come."

It's the sort of tough political vote that Democrats have rarely pushed Republicans on since winning back control of Congress in 2006, and similar to resolutions the GOP constantly forced the Democrats to take positions on when they were in power.

Read More →

Landrieu phone-tampering defendant Joseph Basel isn't letting a little thing like felony charges hang over his head and prevent him from achieving professional goals.

With a week until he's due in federal court in New Orleans for a Feb. 12 hearing, Basel has been spotted at the national tea party convention in Nashville by the Washington Independent's Dave Weigel.

Read More →

Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) has decided to place a hold on all pending executive branch nominees, and that has all of Washington asking: Who does such a thing?

A Senate leadership aide even says: "I am not aware of that ever happening."

But it has happened. And perhaps the most recent perpetrator was none other than Harry Reid, before he became Senate Majority Leader.

"Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., is increasing pressure to have one of his aides confirmed to a top post at the federal agency that will decide the Yucca Mountain Project," reads a June 2004 article in the Las Vegas Review Journal.

Read More →

Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), and Wall Street Journal columnist John Fund are engaged in a bitter war of words stemming from an inaccurate charge made by Fund against the congressman in a speech last fall.

In an interview with TPMmuckraker, Frank called Fund "a liar and a coward," and launched a broadside at "the right-wing echo chamber" that picked up on Fund's erroneous charge against the congressman. For his part, Fund called Frank's outrage "a little sad."

Read More →

A Congressional Research Service report about Twitter use by members of Congress finds that the median number of followers for House Republicans is greater than for House Democrats, while the reverse is true for Senate Tweeters.

Clearly not enough people are aware of Sen. Chuck Grassley's (R-IA) tweets, such as this classic: "Pres Obama while u sightseeing in Paris u said 'time to delivr on healthcare' When you are a "hammer" u think evrything is NAIL I'm no NAIL"

Read More →

The Virginia Republican Party is out with a whopper Web video today mocking the incoming massive snowstorm as "global warming."

Showing images of cars stuck in giant snow banks, ominous weather reports and a ruler showing more than a foot of the white fluffy stuff, the Virginia GOP attempts to exploit the storm for political gain.

The ad, called "12 inches of Global Warming" is specifically targeting Reps. Rick Boucher (D-VA) and Tom Perriello (D-VA) in advance of the fall midterm elections.

Boucher and Perriello "think global warming is a serious problem for Virginia" the ad claims, "so serious" they voted to "kill jobs" by backing the House cap-and-trade bill this summer.

Read More →

Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele released a statement today regarding the January unemployment report. Here's the full text:

"Close to one year ago, President Obama and Congressional Democrats passed their $862 billion stimulus package promising it would 'fix the economy' and keep unemployment below 8 percent. Unfortunately, these have proven to be empty promises. More than 20,000 Americans lost their jobs in the month of January, meaning more than 2.8 million Americans have lost their jobs since the stimulus passed, and 171,000 workers became discouraged last month from seeking work. The resiliency of the American economy given its current challenges is incredible but later today President Obama plans to travel to Maryland to tout his binge spending agenda that will kill, not create, jobs. Congressional Democrats that choose to join President Obama in doubling down on his costly plans will face the harsh reality of being out of a job in November."