Catherine Thompson

Catherine Thompson is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. Before joining TPM, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She is a graduate of New York University, where she served as the deputy managing editor of NYU's student newspaper, the Washington Square News. She can be reached at

Articles by Catherine

When former Rep. Allen West (R-FL) saw a sign at a Wal-Mart checkout lane indicating that a cashier with a non-Anglo-Saxon name couldn't sell alcohol products, he immediately accused the retail giant of bowing to Sharia law.

Except that it's actually store policy not to allow underage employees to sell cigarettes and alcohol.

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Politicians across the country jockeyed to get a piece of the "Jade Helm 15" action after Gov. Greg Abbott (R) asked the State Guard to monitor the planned U.S. military training exercise. Texans waded into the fever swamp of conspiracy theories surrounding the training exercise in recent weeks and took some of their elected representatives along for the ride.

But what's lost in all that noise is the training exercise itself: how service members plan to execute it and what the military aims to accomplish.

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