TPM News

Republican Senate candidate Carly Fiorina went straight for the jugular today with her first television ad slamming rival Sen. Barbara Boxer (D) as arrogant. Fiorina's camp uses footage from Boxer's famed exchange with Brigadier Gen. Michael Walsh of the Army Corps of Engineers.

During a June 2009 hearing, Boxer asked Gen. Walsh to call her "senator," not "ma'am." The moment has been conservative catnip for more than a year, and Fiorina mentioned it in her first debate with Boxer last month.

Read More →

TPM has obtained a draft version of the GOP "Pledge to America" -- the House Republicans' official platform going into November.

Republicans have been very public about certain aspects of their agenda, which we've reported here. They are contained in the Pledge, along with other proposals.

Despite indications earlier this summer that Republicans might use the Pledge to call for Social Security privatization, the language used in the document is much softer. It says, instead, "We will make the decisions that are necessary to protect our entitlement programs for today's seniors and future generations. That means requiring a full accounting of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, setting benchmarks for these programs and reviewing them regularly, and preventing the expansion of unfunded liabilities."

You can access the entire document below, but here are some other highlights:

Read More →

Some Democrats want to let the high-income Bush tax cuts expire, some don't, and yet a third category thinks touching tax rates right before an election is positively nuts.

Put Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) in the latter category.

"In my opinion, I don't know who takes a tax vote, in their right mind, just before an election," she told reporters yesterday.

If Chuck Schumer's reaction earlier today is any indication, she's not alone.

Things are looking up for House Democrats who want to see a vote on the Bush era tax cuts before they adjourn to campaign in the final weeks of the election.

A top House Democratic leadership aide told TPM that an early caucus meeting on Thursday is being viewed as one of the last chances for Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other advocates of holding a vote before the elections to make their case. We've covered the wrangling all week, and the Democratic aide said yesterday it had seemed like people who don't want a vote were winning. The leadership aide told TPM the conversations today are trending toward holding a vote before they adjourn next week.

Read More →

Rand Paul, Republican nominee for Senate in Kentucky and all-around tea party uber-star, has a penchant for predicting the demise of the United States government and its replacement. And often, he's used the failure of the Weimar Republic and the rise of Adolf Hitler's fascist regime as an example to illustrate his point. It's not that Paul thinks any particular politician alive today is Hitler -- or even Hitler-like -- but Paul's reasonably sure that unless something changes soon, America's financial desperation will put some sort of new Hitler-like regime just around the bend.

Earlier today, Paul's Hitler-is-coming meme grabbed headlines when it made an appearance in GQ's fat new profile of Paul and his campaign in Kentucky (you might remember the GQ piece for the pre-release excerpt which led to the truly amazing Aqua Buddha mini-scandal.)

I emailed the Paul campaign to ask about Paul's theory that an American Hitler was on the way -- I have yet to hear back. It was the same story the last time we highlighted Paul's Hitler warnings, in May. Back then, we only had one.

That's no longer the case. Trusty TPM intern Jon Terbush and I spent the afternoon combing through old Paul public appearances to find other references to Hitler and his potential re-emergence on the American political scene. We found quite a few.

Read More →

A new CNN/Time poll of the Wisconsin Senate race finds Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold trailing Republican businessman Ron Johnson 51%-45%.

This is the first CNN/Time poll on the race, so there are no numbers available for direct comparison. A PPP survey out yesterday saw the three-term Democratic Senator down 52%-41%. Rasmussen polled the race on September 15 and found Johnson on top of Feingold, 51%-44%.

The margin of error for the latest survey is ±3.0 percentage points. The TPM Poll Average shows Johnson ahead in the contest 51.8%-43.5%.

For more on the race, check out TPMDC's full coverage here.

Stephen Colbert is scheduled to testify Friday morning at a House Judiciary Committee hearing titled "Protecting America's Harvest."

A press release from the United Farm Workers describes how Colbert will appear before the Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International law to testify on the group's "Take Our Jobs" campaign, which encourages "U.S. citizens and legal residents to replace hundreds of thousands of immigrant field laborers, most of whom are undocumented."

Read More →

Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D-IN) said today he wants to extend the Bush-era tax cuts for every income bracket and said he's not sure what House Democratic leaders are going to decide about holding a vote.

"I don't think now is the right time to let those tax breaks expire," Ellsworth told Neil Cavuto on Fox News. "I would vote to extend both all across the board. ... [W]e should pass those directly, and we should do it before we go home, before we recess."

Ellsworth was one of the 31 Democrats to sign a letter asking Speaker Nancy Pelosi to keep the tax cuts for the wealthy. (Our updating list on wavering Democrats and their positions here.) He's also in a unique position among the Democrats on this issue because he is running in a statewide race for the seat of retiring Sen. Evan Bayh (D). His rival Dan Coats (R) wants them extended permanently for everyone.

Read More →

LiveWire