TPM News

The DCCC piled on criticism of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor after he canceled an income inequality speech at the University of Pennsylvania Friday.



“As soon as Eric Cantor found out that everyday Americans would be able to hear his speech about Republicans protecting ‘people at the top’, he cancelled it,” said Jesse Ferguson of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Not only does Eric Cantor not listen to the American people, now he doesn’t even want them listening to him. For 290 days, Majority Leader Cantor and House Republicans have refused to budge on making billionaires and Big Oil pay their fair share, so we can create middle class jobs and help small businesses grow – and it looks like that’s going to continue for day 291.”

Michele Bachmann’s campaign manager responded late Friday to reports that the Republican presidential contender’s New Hampshire staff resigned en masse:

“We have a great team in New Hampshire and we have not been notified that anyone is leaving the campaign,” Bachmann campaign manager Keith Nahigian said in a statement. “We look forward to spending more time in the Granite State between now and the primary, but our campaign has emphasized that our main focus is the first-in-the-nation caucus state of Iowa and we are continuing to build efforts there. While she will campaign in other states, Michele will spend the majority of her time in Iowa, doing what she does better than all the other candidates – retail politics – leading up to the all important caucuses.”

Update: The New York Times is reporting that Jeff Chidester, Bachmann’s campaign manager in New Hampshire, is in fact leaving.

Embattled former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford is heading to Fox News as a paid contributor, the New York Times reports.

President Obama addressed the White House press corps Friday afternoon, announcing that United States forces will fully withdraw from Iraq by the end of the year:

"As a candidate for president, I pledged to bring the war in Iraq to a responsible end, for the sake of our national security and to strengthen American leadership around the world," Obama began. "After taking office, I announced a new strategy that would end our combat mission in Iraq and remove all of our troops by 2011. As Commander-in-Chief, ensuring the success of this strategy one of my highest national security priorities.

"Last year, I announced the end to our combat mission in Iraq, and to date we've removed more than 100,000 troops. Iraqis have taken full responsibility for their country's security.

"A few hours ago I spoke with Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki. I reaffirmed that the United States keeps its commitments. He spoke of the determination of the Iraqi people to forge their own future. We are in full agreement about how to move forward."

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A green revival could be in store for GM's Hummer, that late 20th century icon of gas-guzzling excess famously associated in the public mind with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The notoriously oversized passenger car was based on the military's Humvee, and now the U.S. Amy is unveiling two next-generation Humvee prototypes that use 70 percent less fuel than a comparable model, the M1114 Humvee.

One of the new prototypes is a diesel-fueled model called the Fuel Efficient Ground Vehicle Demonstrator, or FED Alpha for short. It has been undergoing testing at the Aberdeen Test Center in Maryland.

The other prototype, FED Bravo, has a hybrid-electric drive. It will be ready for testing later this year.

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Herman Cain says he wouldn’t apply the 9% flat tax of his “9-9-9” tax plan for those at or below the poverty line. The move followed criticism that the flat tax portion of the plan would unfairly punish the poorest of Americans.

Yet the Washington Post is reporting that the elimination of the middle 9 doesn’t quite fix the problem.  “Poor families would see a smaller tax increase than they otherwise would see, but they will still see a tax increase,” they quote Roberton Williams, a senior fellow at the Tax Policy Center.  

The Tax Policy Center released an analysis earlier this week that criticized the 9-9-9 plan as raising taxes on 84% of Americans while lowering them for only the richest households.

The largest scientific study yet by sample size investigating the link between cell phone use and cancerous tumors in the central nervous system -which surveyed some 358,403 adult cell subscribers age thirty and over in Denmark over a 17 year period and compared them to all non-subscribers - has concluded that "there were no increased risks of tumours of the central nervous system, providing little evidence for a causal association."

Still, the results of the study, published in the British Medical Journal on Thursday, note that a "a small to moderate increase in risk for subgroups of heavy (cellphone) users" remains to be determined in further study.

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National Security Network senior adviser, Major General Paul Eaton, retired, released the following statement:



“The President made the right choice today in announcing a complete drawdown from Iraq by the end of the year. His decision honors the commitments of the United States:  to a sovereign Iraqi nation, to the brave American troops and diplomats who have served for almost a decade and to the American people. The United States has provided opportunities for Iraqis to ask for an American troop presence beyond the date agreed to by President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in 2008. They have not asked for that. It would be inappropriate to keep troops without Iraqi legal immunity for our servicemembers. Hundreds of thousands of dedicated Americans have served our country in Iraq, and nearly four thousand five hundred people have given their lives to support Iraq’s transition to a sovereign democratic nation. Today we thank and honor these men and women and mark a promise kept to Iraqis, to Americans and to the values they serve.”

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