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

Updated at 8:54 a.m. Jul 9th 2015

In a sudden late-night reversal Wednesday, House Republicans unexpectedly rallied to the defense of the Confederate flag. The surprise move came just one day after the House passed Democratic amendments to restrict the display of the flag on federal lands and to limit the sale of items with the notorious icon at national parks, Roll Call reported.

Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) announced the course change Wednesday evening, telling a nearly empty chamber that House Republicans had scheduled a vote for Thursday to undo the Democratic amendments, which were made to the Interior spending bill on Tuesday.

The move caught Democrats off guard. Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN) quickly opposed the new amendment and said on the House floor that she "cannot hide my surprise and my outrage," according to Roll Call.

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Donald Trump is convinced that he will win over Latino voters in the 2016 presidential election despite recent comments he made calling Mexican immigrants "rapists" and drug dealers.

"I have a great relationship with the Mexican people. I have many people working for me -- you can look at the job in Washington -- I have many legal immigrants working with me. And many of them come from Mexico," he told NBC News on Wednesday, referencing a report that undocumented immigrants have been employed to help build Trump's new hotel project in Washington, D.C.

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Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (R) on Tuesday issued an executive order to protect religious leaders and groups who do not approve of same-sex marriage in the wake of the Supreme Court decision that gay couples have the right to marry, the Wichita Eagle reported.

The order keeps the government from taking action against officials and organizations "on the basis that such person or organization believes or sincerely acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman."

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The Capitol Police have allegedly suspended a sergeant for leaking information about guns left behind in bathrooms in the Capitol, Roll Call reported on Tuesday.

The sergeant has not been back at work since two officers were called to speak with investigators at the Office of Professional Responsibility in June. Investigators were looking into separate incidents in which officers left their weapons behind in bathrooms and other public spaces, which Roll Call reported on in May. Capitol Police were also investigating who leaked a photo of a Glock left behind by an officer in a Capitol Visitor Center bathroom.

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After the Oklahoma Supreme Court last week ordered the state to remove a controversial Ten Commandments monument from the Oklahoma state capitol grounds, some legislators are looking for ways to keep the monument in place.

With the help of numerous Republican legislators, state Rep. John Paul Jordan (R) introduced a constitutional amendment for the legislature's 2016 session that would remove the portion of the state constitution cited by the Oklahoma Supreme Court in its ruling against the Ten Commandments monument, Oklahoma City television station KOCO reported on Monday.

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Two members of the Marion County Republican committee resigned on Monday after they flew three Confederate flags from the county GOP's float in a local Independence Day parade on Saturday, the Des Moines Register reported.

Owen and Linda Golay, both members of the Marion County, Iowa, Republicans' central committee, pulled the GOP's parade float behind their truck, from which they hung three Confederate flags. Owen Golay also hung signs detailing the congressional acts that have recognized Confederate veterans. In the float behind the Golays' truck, Republican party members held campaign signs for GOP candidates, including Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad (R) and Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA), according to the Des Moines Register.

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Sarah Palin announced on Saturday that she would stop selling subscriptions to the Sarah Palin Channel in August, a little over a week after Fox News cut ties with the former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential candidate.

Palin told subscribers to her channel that the content on her site will now be free, and that those with annual subscriptions would be refunded for the rest of the year, according to Mediaite.

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