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

Democrats in the Senate are preparing to make the confirmation hearings for Donald Trump's choice to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, a big fight given Pruitt's skepticism of climate change.

"This is a four-alarm fire. We are going to do everything we can to stop his nomination," Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI) said on a Thursday call organized by the League of Conservation Voters, according to CNN.

"This is a full-fledged environmental emergency, and we have a person who's not just a climate denier, but a professional climate denier," Schatz added, per CNN. "This is going to be a litmus test for every member of the Senate who claims not to be a denier."

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House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) on Thursday would not say how quickly he would like Congressional Republicans to replace Obamacare after they repeal the health care law.

"We’ll get to that next year," Ryan told reporters when asked how long the transition away from Obamacare would be. "We just had a meeting with all our authorizers this morning about working on this with the Senate and the transition team. Those talks are ongoing."

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Koch Industries, owned by influential Republican donors Charles and David Koch, has warned that part of Congressional Republicans' plan to change corporate tax rates "could be devastating" to the United States economy, Bloomberg Politics reported on Thursday.

Republicans in Congress are considering a plan that would apply corporate taxes to imports but remove them from exports in an attempt to keep U.S. companies from moving abroad.

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A U.S. district court judge on Wednesday denied Donald Trump's request to throw out a lawsuit against his golf club in Jupiter, Florida, allowing the case to proceed as Trump prepares to take office in January, the Palm Beach Post reported.

Members of the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club & Spa, which Trump bought and turned into the National Golf Club, filed a lawsuit against Trump in 2013, accusing him of canceling their memberships without refunding their deposits to the old club. The Ritz club had a policy of refunding deposits. But when Trump let members join his new club, he cancelled their old memberships and did not return their deposits, according to court documents reviewed by the Palm Beach Post.

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Donald Trump does not plan on completely divesting from his businesses, but plans to have his two oldest sons, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, run his companies, the New York Times reported Wednesday, citing unnamed sources familiar with the discussions.

Ivanka Trump will also likely leave the Trump Organization and is looking into ways to separate herself from her own businesses, according to the New York Times. Ivanka Trump has been the most outspoken of Trump's children on policy issues and has reportedly expressed interest in addressing climate change. Her husband, Jared Kushner, is also close to Donald Trump and has served as a key adviser.

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The president of Carrier's union started receiving threats after Donald Trump launched a Twitter attack going after the union leader for noting that Trump inflated the number of Carrier jobs he saved in Indiana.

Trump last week touted his deal with Carrier's parent company, United Technologies, to save jobs at an Indiana Carrier factory, claiming that he convinced the air conditioner manufacturer to keep 1,100 jobs in the U.S. However, United Technologies had never planned to move 350 of those jobs to Mexico and still plans to cut 700 jobs from another factory.

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Donald Trump on Thursday morning formally announced that he will nominate Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, a climate change denier, to lead the Environmental Protection Agency.

"For too long, the Environmental Protection Agency has spent taxpayer dollars on an out-of-control anti-energy agenda that has destroyed millions of jobs, while also undermining our incredible farmers and many other businesses and industries at every turn. As my EPA Administrator, Scott Pruitt, the highly respected Attorney General from the state of Oklahoma, will reverse this trend and restore the EPA’s essential mission of keeping our air and our water clean and safe,” Trump said in a statement. “My administration strongly believes in environmental protection, and Scott Pruitt will be a powerful advocate for that mission while promoting jobs, safety and opportunity."

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Even though Gov. Pat McCrory (R) ultimately lost his re-election bid, Republican legislators – with a veto-proof majority – may still seize on his allegations of widespread voter fraud to push for new voting restrictions next year.

“We have a very strong suspicion that the purpose of all of these challenges and allegations of irregularities, at least for the last three of the last four weeks, haven’t really been about McCrory winning. They’ve been about building a 'record' for the legislature in the next session, passing more voter restriction laws,” Allison Riggs, a lawyer with the Southern Coalition for Social Justice which advocates for voting rights, told TPM.

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Donald Trump's unprecedented phone call with the president of Taiwan last week was the culmination of a lengthy lobbying effort by former Sen. Bob Dole (R-KS) to help Taiwanese officials gain access to Trump and his advisers.

Documents filed with the Justice Department and reviewed by the New York Times show that Dole spent several months lobbying Trump officials for the Taiwanese government and arranging meetings.

His efforts with the firm Alston & Bird led to the call between Trump and the president of Taiwan that prompted a warning from China. The disclosure documents were submitted about a week ago, before the phone call, and Dole later confirmed that he played a role in setting up the call.

"It’s fair to say that we had some influence,” Dole told the New York Times on Tuesday. “When you represent a client and they make requests, you’re supposed to respond."

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