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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

During his speech at the Republican convention on Tuesday, Dr. Ben Carson tried to tie Hillary Clinton to Lucifer with a bizarre side note about Saul Alinsky, a progressive activist who Clinton wrote about in her college thesis.

Carson brought up Alinsky while warning against "secular progressives," diverting from his speech script.

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Although it became clear fairly quickly after Melania Trump's Monday night speech that her remarks has used significant portions from Michelle Obama's 2008 Democratic convention speech, the Donald Trump campaign on Tuesday morning struggled to acknowledge the plagiarism.

Initially, the campaign issued a bizarrely vague statement in the middle of the night that failed to acknowledge directly that the speech included lines from Michelle Obama's speech. And then campaign chair Paul Manafort spent much of Tuesday morning denying that the campaign had plagiarized parts of the speech at all.

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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Tuesday morning brushed off questions about the portions of Melania Trump's Monday night speech lifted from the speech Michelle Obama delivered at the 2008 Democratic convention.

Matt Lauer, co-host of NBC's "Today," asked Christie if he could "make a case for plagiarism."

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Hillary Clinton on Monday tore into Donald Trump during an interview with CBS News' Charlie Rose, charging that Trump has "no self-discipline, no self-control, no sense of history, no understanding of the limits of the kind of power that any president should impose upon himself."

She noted that he's called for reinstating waterboarding and would "order the American military to commit war crimes."

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Paul Manafort, the chairman of the Donald Trump campaign, on Tuesday morning denied that Melania Trump's Monday night speech used part of Michelle Obama's address at the 2008 Democratic convention, arguing that Melania Trump's speech used "common words."

"There's no cribbing of Michelle Obama's speech," Manafort said on CNN's "New Day" when co-host Chris Cuomo asked about the speech "cribbing" from the now-First Lady. "These were common words and values — that she cares about her family, things like that. I mean, she was speaking in front of 35 million people last night. She knew that. To think that she would be cribbing Michelle Obama's words is crazy."

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Following revelations that Melania Trump appeared to lift portions of her speech from the address that now-First Lady Michelle Obama delivered at the 2008 Democratic convention, the Donald Trump campaign issued a vague statement that did not directly address accusations of plagiarism.

"In writing her beautiful speech, Melania's team of writers took notes on her life’s inspirations, and in some instances included fragments that reflected her own thinking," Trump spokesman Jason Miller said in a statement issued early Tuesday morning. "Melania’s immigrant experience and love for America shone through in her speech, which made it such a success."

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) again placed some blame on President Obama for a terrorist attack, this time for the deadly truck attack in Nice, France, last week.

McCain said on Friday that Obama's policies gave rise to the Islamic State, which the senator argued is responsible for the attack.

"As far as the tragedy in France is concerned, obviously this is an act of mayhem and despicable. But I also have to tell you — and our prayers are with the families, obviously, and the French people — but I also have to tell you, that as long as we have a leadership in this country, the president of the United States, who allowed this to happen, his policies are directly responsible for ISIS and ISIS is responsible for these attacks," McCain said on Arizona radio station KTAR.

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With Donald Trump set to secure the Republican nomination for president this week, the ghostwriter behind Trump's book "The Art of the Deal," revealed the real estate mogul's true character that the book ignored.

"I put lipstick on a pig," writer Tony Schwartz told the New Yorker. "I feel a deep sense of remorse that I contributed to presenting Trump in a way that brought him wider attention and made him more appealing than he is."

Schwartz actually suggested that Trump write "The Art of the Deal" instead of the autobiography Trump had set out to pen. The real estate mogul then asked Schwartz to help him write the book, and Schwartz agreed when Trump offered him half of the advance and of the royalties.

"It was one of a number of times in my life when I was divided between the Devil and the higher side," Schwartz told the New Yorker.

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Vulnerable Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), had been one of a few Republican senators up for re-election this year who planned on avoiding the GOP convention, but now he is scheduled to speak in Cleveland.

Johnson, who is enganged in a tough re-election fight against former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI), will deliver a speech on Tuesday, according to the updated speaker list revealed by the Republican National Committee on Sunday. Tuesday's theme will be "Make America Work Again," and Johnson's bio on the speaker list notes that the senator "is focused on reining in government spending and bringing jobs back to the people of Wisconsin

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