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

Progressive groups and lawmakers blasted state politicians after North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) signed a bill Wednesday night that keeps cities from passing anti-discrimination measures.

The new law, rushed through a special session of the legislature called by McCrory, was ostensibly intended to block a Charlotte ordinance that would provide protections for LGBT individuals in public spaces, but LGBT advocates note the law goes much farther.

"Governor McCrory’s reckless decision to sign this appalling legislation into law is a direct attack on the rights, well-being, and dignity of hundreds of thousands of LGBT North Carolinians and visitors to the state," Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said in a statement. "This outrageous new law not only strips away the ability of local jurisdictions to protect LGBT people from discrimination, but it goes further and targets transgender students who deserve to be treated equally at school -- not harassed and excluded. Governor McCrory’s action will be judged sorely by history and serve as a source of deep shame, remorse, and regret."

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Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who has started fundraising for Sen. Ted Cruz's (R-TX) presidential campaign, said on Thursday morning that his support for the Texas senator is not about winning the election, suggesting that he would rather Republicans lose the election than see Donald Trump win the nomination.

During an interview on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," Graham was asked if he was concerned that the Republican party could split into two wings.

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Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) on Wednesday said that she doesn't believe it is fair of Republican senators to block any Supreme Court nominee from President Obama.

"I think it’s simply not fair and not right to say that no matter who the President was going to nominate, that we should not look at this person the way that we normally would do," she told the Maine Public Broadcasting Network. "That doesn’t mean that I’ve reached a decision on Judge Merrick [Garland]. That’s what the process is for."

Collins has previously said that she believes the Senate should hold hearings and that she was willing to meet with Garland. On Wednesday, she said she would meet with Garland in early April.

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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) on Wednesday seemed confident that he would win the Republican nomination if the presidential primary leads to a contested convention.

Speaking to reporters in New York, Cruz laid out two paths to securing the nomination -- securing 1,237 delegates outright or heading to a contested convention to compete against Donald Trump if neither candidate meets the delegate threshold.

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During a press conference in Argentina on Wednesday, President Obama dismissed the call by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) in the wake of the Brussels attacks to "patrol and secure" Muslim neighborhoods in America.

Obama said that an attempt to target of Muslim neighborhoods would be "wrong and un-American."

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Updated at 12:10 p.m. ET

In a speech on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) called for more civility in politics, slamming the divisive and ugly rhetoric that has dominated the presidential election cycle.

Ryan did not mention the presidential campaign or Donald Trump, but warned against playing into voters' "anxieties" and insulting opponents.

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Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Tuesday rejected Sen. Ted Cruz's (R-TX) call for police to patrol Muslim neighborhoods in the wake of the attacks in Brussels, arguing that "the last thing we need is more polarization," according to the New York Times.

Kasich told reporters at a press conference that "we don’t want to create divisions where we say, ‘O.K., well your religion, you’re a Muslim, so therefore we’re going to keep an eye on you,'" according to the New York Times.

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