Caitlin MacNeal

Caitlin MacNeal is a News Writer based in Washington, D.C. Before joining TPM, Caitlin interned and wrote for the Huffington Post, the Sunlight Foundation and Slate. She is a graduate of Georgetown University.

Articles by Caitlin

Alabama updated its science education standards for the first time in a decade, requiring schools to teach students about evolution and human activity's impact on climate change, starting in 2016.

Previously, the standards did require schools to touch on evolution, but the new standards direct teachers to teach the scientific evidence that supports the evolutionary theory, according to the Associated Press.

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After a hospital in rural Kansas announced last week that it will have to close, Republicans in Kansas may reconsider expanding Medicaid in the state.

Republican state Sen. Jeff King, the vice president of the state senate, expressed willingness to expand Medicaid in some form to prevent additional hospital closures.

"I've never been amenable to just an expansion of the Affordable Care Act," he told the Lawrence Journal-World on Tuesday. "But as we look at states like Indiana that take a real state-centric approach to addressing the health care needs of their poor, I think that's something that Kansas needs to strongly consider."

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Donald Trump has often mentioned his love for Ronald Reagan, a popular name-drop among Republicans, but a Wall Street Journal report published on Wednesday show that Trump may have been a little late to donate to the Republican idol.

FEC records reviewed by the Wall Street Journal show that after Reagan announced his bid for president in 1979, Trump donated to the campaign of his Democratic opponent, Jimmy Carter.

When approached about this, Trump told the Journal, "Keep checking." He said he believed he had donated to Reagan.

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During a speech at a Hispanic Heritage Month event in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, Vice President Joe Biden criticized Donald Trump's "sick message" about immigration.

"There’s one guy absolutely denigrating an entire group of people, appealing to the baser side of human nature, working on this notion of xenophobia in a way that hasn't occurred in a long time," Biden said, according to CNN.

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After a super PAC supporting Hillary Clinton circulated an email criticizing Bernie Sanders, the Vermont senator compared them to the Koch brothers.

Correct the Record, a group founded by Clinton ally David Brock to defend her throughout her presidential bid, has been circulating a memo critical of Sanders, the Huffington Post reported on Monday. The email compared Sanders to Jeremy Corbyn, the recently elected leader of the United Kingdom's Labour Party, after highlighting Corbyn's comments referring to Hamas and Hezbollah as "friends," according to the Huffington Post. The memo also reportedly linked Sanders to the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

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This post has been updated.

A group of House Republicans plans to call for action on climate change in time for Pope Francis' visit to the Washington, D.C. next week, according to National Journal.

Rep. Chris Gib­son (R-NY) penned a resolution stating that human activity contributes to climate change and urged his fellow Republicans to sign on.

"This is a call for ac­tion to study how hu­mans are im­pact­ing our en­vir­on­ment and to look for con­sensus on areas where we can take ac­tion to mit­ig­ate the risks and bal­ance our im­pacts," he told National Journal.

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This post has been updated.

The political arm of the conservative group Club for Growth on Tuesday announced that the organization will spend a million dollars on ads in Iowa attacking Donald Trump as too liberal.

The first ad, "Politician," highlights Trump's "very liberal" record on tax policy and health care. The ad's narrator says, "He's really just playing us for chumps." The spot concludes by calling Trump "the worst kind of politician."

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It seems Donald Trump has not quite moved on from his tiff with Fox News over Megyn Kelly's line of questioning during the first Republican presidential debate.

During his Monday night rally in Dallas, the real estate mogul referenced his comment that Kelly had "blood coming out of her wherever" during the debate. The August remark had sparked a cold war between Trump and Fox News before chairman Roger Ailes and the presidential candidate cleared the air.

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