TPM News

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) issued the following statement Friday regarding Justice John Paul Stevens' retirement from the Supreme Court. Here's the full text: While Justice Stevens' retirement is not unexpected, the loss of such a great leader at a time of great change for America and the Court is worrisome. Justice Stevens' greatness is marked not only by the length of his service, but the enduring quality of his jurisprudence. His leadership will affect America for much longer than the 35 years he served on the Court. At a time when Americans are yearning for bipartisanship, we hope the President will choose a candidate who both merits consensus support and lives up to Justice Stevens' fine legacy. We hope both sides of the aisle in the Senate would quickly confirm such a nominee.

Reacting to the retirement announcement of Justice John Paul Stevens, a conservative operative who was one of the fiercest critics of Sonia Sotomayor tells TPMDC that he believes President Obama is in a weaker position now that he was fresh off the election last summer -- and that he will pick a "moderate" for the court.

Curt Levey, executive director of the Committee for Justice, tells TPMDC: "We'll certainly be involved one way or another. As the loyal opposition I'm sure we'll point out what we see as the weaknesses" of any Obama nominee.

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Sen. Orrin Hatch released the following statement in response to Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens' announcement to retire earlier today:

Justice Stevens' has had a profound impact on the judiciary and the law. He is a remarkably dedicated public servant and a profoundly decent human being. All Americans should thank him for his dedicated service and we all wish him a happy and healthy retirement.

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Last night, The Daily Show's Jon Stewart attacked Fox News and Sarah Palin for ignoring the facts about President Obama's nuclear treaty with Russia.

Stewart reminded them that President Reagan had also called for a one-third reduction in nuclear arms, and spoke of a world without nukes.

He also wondered why Megyn Kelly's head exploded.

Watch:

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These aren't the best of days for Don Blankenship, whose systematic downplaying of safety concerns as the CEO of Massey Energy helped lead to last week's deadly mining disaster, and got him named the "seventh scariest person in America." But by next January, things may be looking up for the hard-charging coal boss: He could have a very close friend in Congress.

Elliot "Spike" Maynard is running in the Republican primary to take on Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.V.), whose district encompasses the heart of West Virginia coal country. Maynard, a former State Supreme Court judge, has said that his campaign "is about protecting the coal industry, including all the jobs associated with it," and has charged that Washington Democrats have "declared war on the coal industry."

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Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens will retire from the nation's highest court this summer, at the end of this session.

Stevens' retirement, announced in a statement by Chief Justice John Roberts, will give President Obama his second opportunity to appoint a justice.

The statement from Roberts:

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At the Southern Republican Leadership Conference last night, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich declared that President Obama's administration is "the most radical administration in American history."

He also referred to the president's "secular socialist machine," and declared that "the end of Obama-ism will be a new Republican Congress in January that simply refuses to fund any of the radical efforts."

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South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster (R-SC), who is one of the Republican state officials across the country who are filing lawsuits to challenge the health care bill, sure seems to be making his work against the bill a centerpiece of his campaign for governor in the crowded Republican primary.

Upon visiting McMaster's campaign website, the first thing that comes up is a YouTube video that begins playing automatically, along with an e-mail sign-up sheet and a banner heading that declares McMaster is "leading the fight to stop ObamaCare."

The video's introductory text, set to ominous music, reads as follows: "March 23. National healthcare signed into law...Our Liberty...Our Freedom...Our Sovereignty...threatened. Held by a thread. Who stands with us?" The video then cuts to various news clips of McMaster declaring that the bill is unconstitutional, and he is fighting it in court.

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In an interview with Good Morning America, President Barack Obama brushed aside Sarah Palin's recent criticism of his nuclear policy, saying, "Last I checked, Sarah Palin's not much of an expert on nuclear issues."

Palin had said on Sean Hannity's Fox News show on Wednesday night that Obama's new nuclear policy was "kinda like getting out there on the playground, a bunch of kids ready to fight, and one of the kids saying, 'Go ahead, punch me in the face and I'm not gonna retaliate.'"

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