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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

Donald Trump's advisers spent weeks planning an unprecedented call between the President-elect and the president of Taiwan as part of a new strategy toward Taiwan, the Washington Post reported Sunday.

Per the Post:

The historic communication — the first between leaders of the United States and Taiwan since 1979 — was the product of months of quiet preparations and deliberations among Trump’s advisers about a new strategy for engagement with Taiwan that began even before he became the Republican presidential nominee, according to people involved in or briefed on the talks.

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Donald Trump on Monday morning announced that he will nominate former Republican presidential candidate and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson to be the secretary of housing and urban development.

"I am thrilled to nominate Dr. Ben Carson as our next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Ben Carson has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities," Trump said in a statement. "We have talked at length about my urban renewal agenda and our message of economic revival, very much including our inner cities. Ben shares my optimism about the future of our country and is part of ensuring that this is a Presidency representing all Americans. He is a tough competitor and never gives up."

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The North Carolina NAACP on Friday announced that it will ask a federal judge to deny a conservative group's request to delay the state elections board from certifying the results of the November election.

The NAACP chapter's move comes in case filed by the conservative Civitas Center in November. Civitas asked the judge for a preliminary injunction stopping certification of the results until officials have completed a lengthy process to verify the registrations of voters who registered on the same day that they voted. The judge set a hearing for Dec. 8.

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Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), the chair of the House Oversight Committee who has pledged to continue investigating Hillary Clinton, said on Thursday that it's not yet appropriate to investigate Donald Trump.

"I will when there is an allegation of wrongdoing. But he hasn't even been sworn in yet," Chaffetz told the Salt Lake Tribune when asked about a letter from Democrats pressuring the GOP congressman to look into Trump's business conflicts of interest.

"At least let the guy actually become a federal employee before you start screaming for investigations," Chaffetz added.

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Aides from the campaigns for Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump on Thursday night sat down for a panel discussion at Harvard University about the 2016 race, but the forum devolved into acrimony when a Clinton aide accused the Trump campaign of peddling racism.

After Trump aides gloated about their victory and attributed their win in part to Steve Bannon, who has given a platform to white supremacists with his news website Breitbart, former Clinton campaign spokeswoman Jennier Palmieri blasted Bannon and the Trump campaign's tactics.

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During his first stop on his victory tour on Thursday night, Donald Trump told a crowd in Cincinnati, Ohio, that he has chosen retired Gen. James Mattis to serve as secretary of defense.

Trump geared up to announce his pick by telling the audience that he wanted to create suspense.

"I don’t want to tell you this because I want to save the suspense for next week. So I will not tell you. I refuse to tell you," he said.

"Don’t let it outside of this room. Do you promise?" he then asked, telling people in the crowd to raise their hands and promise.

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House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) on Thursday continued to push for some form of Medicare privatization, but he did not offer many details on what changes to the program he would seek or when the House would tackle it.

Ryan told reporters at a press conference that Congress is "going to have to do things to preserve" Medicare, again claiming that the program "is on a path to going bankrupt."

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Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) on Thursday blasted Donald Trump's reported deal to keep 1,000 Carrier jobs in Indiana, warning that the agreement could set a bad precedent for companies looking for tax breaks.

"Trump has endangered the jobs of workers who were previously safe in the United States. Why? Because he has signaled to every corporation in America that they can threaten to offshore jobs in exchange for business-friendly tax benefits and incentives," Sanders wrote in a Washington Post op-ed published Thursday morning. "Even corporations that weren’t thinking of offshoring jobs will most probably be re-evaluating their stance this morning. And who would pay for the high cost for tax cuts that go to the richest businessmen in America? The working class of America."

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