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

Democrats won a majority on the North Carolina Supreme Court on Election Day, but at least one conservative group has floated the possibility of flipping it back to GOP control by quickly expanding the court by two seats, securing two more conservative picks before the end of lame-duck Gov. Pat McCrory's (R) term.

Republicans have largely avoided commenting on the matter, with one GOP legislative leader denying that plans to expand the nominally non-partisan court are in the works.

Though he has yet to concede the governor's race, it appears McCrory has lost his re-election bid and will leave office Jan. 7, 2017. He is trailing Democratic challenger state attorney general Roy Cooper by about 5,000 votes. The state Republican Party has asked for a recount in Durham County, and McCrory said last week that he would not concede the race until at least Nov. 18. Despite McCrory's apparent loss, Republicans maintained their supermajority in the state legislature.

McCrory's apparent defeat came at the same time that Wake County Superior Court Judge Mike Morgan, a Democrat, defeated state Supreme Court Justice Bob Edmunds, a Republican, for a seat on the court, flipping the majority on the state's highest court from Republicans to Democrats. Elections for the state Supreme Court are not partisan, and justices are elected to eight year terms. But the governor appoints justices to fill vacancies on the court, and those justices would then be up for re-election during the next election for the general assembly, which takes place every two years.

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Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus, who is set to serve as Donald Trump's chief of staff, on Monday morning defended Steve Bannon, a voice of the alt-right who will serve as Trump's chief strategist and senior counsel, during an interview on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

"That's not the Steve Bannon that I know. and I've spent a lot of time with him and here's a guy that's a Harvard business school, London school of economics. Ten-year naval officer advising admirals. He was a force for good on the campaign at every level that I saw all the time," Priebus told "Morning Joe" when first asked about concerns about Bannon.

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Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) on Sunday threw his support behind Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) to be the next chair of the Democratic National Committee.

“My friend Keith Ellison is a terrific leader and a strong progressive who knows how to get things done,” he said in a statement. “Now is the time for new thinking and a fresh start at the DNC. Now is the time for Keith.”

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Donald Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway said on Sunday that Trump has considered calling a special session of Congress on the day of his inauguration to repeal and replace Obamacare.

"He also has talked about convening a special session on January 20 after he is sworn in as President of the United States to do this very thing, to repeal and replace Obamacare," she said on "Fox News Sunday." "It would be a pretty remarkable move."

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Following his meeting last week with President-elect Donald Trump, President Obama decided he needed to spend more time than a president typically would guiding Trump's transition to the White House, according to a Sunday Wall Street Journal report.

At the meeting, Trump seemed surprised by the duties of the president, and his staff seemed unaware that the entire administration staff had to be replaced, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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During an interview with CBS News' "60 Minutes" set to air in full on Sunday, Donald Trump defended his use of Twitter during the campaign but said that he will be "restrained" with his social media use as president.

CBS' Lesley Stahl noted to Trump that he used his Twitter account to launch attacks throughout the election cycle and asked if he would do that as president. In response, Trump launched into an endorsement for social media and noted that is was a great way for him to keep "fighting back."

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Florida state Attorney General Pam Bondi, who had endorsed Donald Trump presidential bid, said on Friday that she has joined the President-elect's transition team.

"I’m honored to serve President-elect Donald J. Trump in making this historic transition and assisting in finding the best individuals to bring change to Washington on day one, grow our economy, protect our children and families, and be unafraid to stand up for Americans," Bondi told Politico.

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During a conference call with campaign donors on Saturday, Hillary Clinton placed some of the blame for her loss on the letter from FBI Director James Comey announcing that investigators would review new emails related to the probe into her email use, according to several reports.

“There are lots of reasons why an election like this is not successful,” she said, according to the Washington Post. “But our analysis is that (FBI Director James B.) Comey’s letter raising doubts that were groundless, baseless, proven to be, stopped our momentum."

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Former Donald Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski on Friday resigned from CNN, where he had been a commentator, according to CNN.

Lewandowski's stint on CNN was controversial, since he was still being paid severance from the Trump campaign for at least some of his tenure at the news network and because he was still in touch with the Trump campaign.

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