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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

The New York Police Department has ended a program that sent plainclothes detectives into Muslim neighborhoods to eavesdrop and spy on individuals, the New York Times reported Tuesday.

The unit, known to many as the Demographics Unit, would track where people ate, prayed and shopped, according to the Times. The police mapped neighborhoods and kept detailed files on where people in traditional Islamic clothing went both in and out of the city.

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Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) on Monday apologized for questioning a letter from Daniel Inouye in which the late Hawaii senator stated that he wanted Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI) to succeed him in the Senate.

"I apologize to the late Sen. Inouye, his wife, Irene, his family, friends, and former staff for the comments I made concerning the letter," Abercrombie said in a statement, according to the Los Angeles Times. "I regret that my comments were interpreted as hurtful and disrespectful to them. That was certainly not my intent. Sen. Inouye was, without a doubt, one of the finest leaders in Hawaii's history, and a mentor to me."

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After the Guardian and the Washington Post won a Pulitzer Award for their coverage of National Security Agency surveillance programs, former NSA contractor Edward Snowden praised the committee's choice.

"Today's decision is a vindication for everyone who believes that the public has a role in government," he said in a statement to the Guardian. "We owe it to the efforts of the brave reporters and their colleagues who kept working in the face of extraordinary intimidation, including the forced destruction of journalistic materials, the inappropriate use of terrorism laws, and so many other means of pressure to get them to stop what the world now recognises was work of vital public importance."

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Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) on Sunday insisted that even though Republican Senators blocked the Democrats' equal pay bill last week, her party is fighting for women's rights.

"I find this war on women rhetoric just almost silly," she said on CBS' "Face the Nation" when asked if Republicans opposed equal pay for women. "It is Republicans that have led the fight for women’s equality. Go back through history, and look at who was the first woman to ever vote, elected to office, go to Congress, four out of five governors."

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Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) has cast some doubt on the long-running narrative that it was late Sen. Daniel Inouye's (D-HA) dying wish that Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI) succeed him in the Senate.

When Inouye passed away, he wrote in a letter to Abercrombie stating that he would like Hanabusa to replace him. However, Abercrombie appointed his Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz to the vacant spot, setting up a primary battle between Hanabusa and Schatz for the 2014 election.

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