TPM News

The threat of a government shutdown could have been averted entirely if Democrats hadn't sucked so much last year, according to Jon Stewart.

Stewart said on Monday night that the entire budget debate this year was caused by Democrats' failure to pass a budget last year. Democrats, concerned about making unpopular decisions in an election year, punted on a number of legislative decisions until after last year's midterms.

Read More →

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), the national Tea Party star who is considering a run for president, appeared Monday night on Sean Hannity's TV show to clarify something: If elected, she is not ruling out a second term.

Earlier in the day, the Des Moines Register reported Bachmann as saying: "I'm a principled reformer, and my goal is to see the country turn around. I'm also committed to being a one-term president if that's what it takes in order to turn things around, because this is not about a personal ambition." This was widely interpreted as a one-term pledge.

"Why would you say just one term?" Hannity asked.

"Well, I didn't say -- what I said is that if it would mean only serving one," said Bachmann. "I didn't close the door on two, but I think it's important to be serious enough about the issues that if it meant not being able to run for a second term, I think dealing -- we need to get serious now. We can't be about anyone's political career. We have to get serious quickly, now, and turn the country around, get it back on track."

Read More →

House Republicans and Senate Democrats have posted details of the bipartisan spending agreement that staved off a shutdown, providing a first look at where the $39.9 billion of cuts come from on a program by program basis.

Republican priorities can be seen throughout the agreement, with reduced funding for enforcing environmental regulation, scientific research, health care, and education all leaping out.

One of the hardest hit institutions is the Environmental Protection Agency, whose power Republicans have sought to curtail in recent years through a variety of legislative means. The agency will receive $1.6 billion less in funding than current levels, a 16 percent drop, including a $49 million reduction in climate change programs and $149 million cut to the Land and Water Conservation Fund. In a press release, Senate Appropriation Committee Democrats noted that the EPA cuts, while tough, were nearly $1.6 billion less than Republicans' original proposal. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration also saw a $142 million reduction in funding and is prohibited from creating a Climate Service.

Read More →

A 60 year old man, described by the FBI as an "extremely dangerous" transient, was arrested on Monday evening in Ohio, in connection with a powerful explosion that rocked a synagogue on Thursday morning in Santa Monica, California.

Read More →

by Marian Wang, ProPublica

"No leniency." That was the warning from Bahrain's Crown Prince last week as government forces continued cracking down on protesters, activists, journalists and doctors. It was issued alongside yet another promise of reform by the Bahraini government.

Read More →

Stephen Colbert had some fun with Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) Monday night over Kyl's argument that his hyperbolic claim about Planned Parenthood was never intended to be taken as fact.

In the heated budget debate last week, Kyl erroneously claimed on the Senate floor that 90% of Planned Parenthood's services are abortions; the real number is more like 3%. Rather than admit a mistake, Kyl defended that claim by saying it was, "not intended to be a factual statement."

Read More →





The delicate dance between people who believe President Obama has illegitimately obtained his position as leader of the free world and Republicans who aspire to take that position away from him continues. Rep. Michele Bachmann visited Sean Hannity today to wink at supporters that she is considering a presidential run, and in an overt slap on the wrist to birther enthusiasts suggested all candidates should show their birth certificates publicly, too.

Read More →

Gov. John Kasich (R) has suffered mightily for his plan to restrict the collective bargaining rights of unionized state workers in Ohio. Though the Republican-controlled state legislature passed the law, known as Senate Bill 5, and Kasich has signed it, the optics of passage have been terrible and voters have turned on their new governor less than six months after he defeated a Democratic incumbent.

Now, as the fight over SB5 shifts to a massive ballot repeal initiative organized by labor, Democrats and progressives in Ohio, Kasich's got a new problem on his hands: the support of the state Chamber of Commerce, which broke with tradition and made Kasich the first gubernatorial candidate to ever get its endorsement, is fracturing. The break is slight at the moment, but a growing number businesses who support the union cause and/or serve union members are breaking with the Chamber -- and the man they helped propel into office.

Read More →

Democrats Allow Trims To Favored Programs The New York Times reports: "After a bruising battle with Republicans over financing the government through the rest of the fiscal year, Democrats spoke proudly of their success in staving off painful cuts to programs near and dear to them, ones that became the centerpiece of their fight against huge cuts sought by Republicans. But as some details of the plan to cut roughly $38 billion in federal spending came trickling out Monday, it was clear that many of those programs, while cut nowhere near as much as Republicans had hoped, were significantly nibbled at."

Obama's Day Ahead President Obama will receive the presidential daily briefing at 9:30 a.m. ET, and meet at 10 a.m. ET with senior advisers. At 12 p.m. ET, the President, Vice President, First Lady and Dr. Jill Biden will deliver remarks at the launch of the First Lady and Dr. Jill Biden's national initiative to support and honor America's service members and their families. Obama will meet at 2:15 p.m. ET with Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry. Obama and Biden will meet at 4:30 p.m. ET with Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, and meet at 5 p.m. ET with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Read More →

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and 40 other protesters -- including members of the city council -- were arrested by Capitol Police on Monday after they blocked Constitution Avenue near the Capitol in protest of aspects of the budget deal reached by Congress which limit the city's autonomy, specifically prohibiting the use of DC public funds for abortions.

Read More →

LiveWire