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

Actress Emily Blunt recently joked that she questioned her decision to be come a United States citizen following the first Republican presidential debate.

"I became an American citizen recently, and that night, we watched the Republican debate and I thought, 'This was a terrible mistake. What have I done?'" she told The Hollywood Reporter at the Toronto International Film Festival in an interview published on Monday.

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President Obama on Monday said that college students should not be protected from differing points of view and should not reject guest speakers with a different or conservative point of view.

During an education town hall in Iowa, an audience member asked Obama about Ben Carson's proposal that the Department of Education deny federal funding to colleges with "extreme political bias." Obama said he hadn't heard those comments.

"I have no idea what that means, and I suspect he doesn’t either," Obama responded.

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Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis declined an offer from the Oath Keepers, an anti-government group comprised of former law enforcement officials and military members, to protect her from arrest by federal authorities, the group announced on Friday.

"Upon request by Kim Davis’ legal team, Oath Keepers is canceling the planned security detail for Mrs. Davis in Morehead, Kentucky," the group's founder, Stewart Rhodes, said in a statement. "We will, of course, respect her wishes, and are hereby issuing a stand-down for our security volunteers who were planning on deploying to Morehead, Kentucky on Monday."

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A lawyer for Kentucky clerk Kim Davis on Monday said that her legal team will file a new lawsuit against Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear (D), accusing him of failing to provide an accommodation for Davis.

Harry Mihet, a lawyer with the conservative Liberty Counsel, told reporters that Davis is happy to allow her deputy clerks to issue licenses to gay couples and "does not want to defy the orders of the federal court." But Mihet said she will not authorize the licenses herself.

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Red State editor Erick Erickson on Monday urged Republicans to defund Planned Parenthood despite signs from Republican Congressional leadership that shutting down the government over funding for the women's health clinics would only hurt the party.

"Children in the United States of America are being cut up and sold for scrap. That Republicans in Washington think they can excuse their way out of a fight says too much damning about them," Erickson wrote in a Monday morning post.

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After Donald Trump took a jab at Carly Fiorina's appearance, the super PAC supporting the former Hewlett Packard CEO's presidential bid turned Trump's comment on its head with a web video.

Trump had made a comment about Fiorina's appearance on his private jet with a writer for Rolling Stone. While watching the news, Fiorina appeared on the screen, prompting Trump to say, "Look at that face!" He later claimed that he was merely talking about Fiorina's "persona," a claim the writer of the article disputed.

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A lawyer representing Kim Davis on Sunday defended the Kentucky clerk's refusal to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples by comparing her situation to President Abraham Lincoln's opposition to the Dred Scott ruling.

During a segment on C-SPAN, Mat Staver, a lawyer for the conservative Liberty Counsel, responded to a caller's condemnation of Davis' refusal to fulfill her duties as a government worker.

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Ahead of Kentucky clerk Kim Davis' return to work on Monday after being jailed for contempt of court, a gay rights group put up a billboard in her hometown taunting her about the definition of marriage.

Planting Peace, the same group that painted a rainbow flag on the house across the street from the anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church, is responsible for the billboard. It reads, "Dear Kim Davis, The fact that you can't sell your daughter for three goats and a cow means we've already redefined marriage."

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After Ben Carson this week dismissed those who believe in climate change and claimed that there is not significant evidence to back it up, California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) took it upon himself to provide Carson with some reading material on the science behind climate change.

Carson made the remarks on Tuesday in response to July comments made by Brown, in which the governor called climate change skeptics "troglodytes."

"I know there are a lot of people who say ‘overwhelming science,’ but then when you ask them to show the overwhelming science, they never can show it,” Carson told the San Francisco Chronicle on Tuesday. "There is no overwhelming science that the things that are going on are man-caused and not naturally caused."

"Gimme a break," the presidential candidate added.

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Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) on Friday morning defended the 1995 government shutdown, arguing that government shutdowns are effective if lawmakers reach a resolution quickly.

"The government shutdown actually worked because it ended up, Brian, at the end of the day producing the first balanced budget since we walked on the moon," Kasich told Fox News radio host Brian Kilmeade when asked about the 1995 shutdown and how another government closure could hurt Republicans.

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