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 catherine@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Catherine

Former President George W. Bush had some encouraging words for University of Alabama kicker Cade Foster. 

"Dear Cade (#43), Life has its setbacks. I know!" Bush wrote in a letter to Foster, which the kicker posted to his Twitter and Instagram accounts on Wednesday. "However you will be a stronger human with time. I wish you all the best- Sincerely- another 43 George Bush."

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AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka blasted Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-WI) newly reached budget deal for leaving out an extension of unemployment benefits.

"It is shocking that Republicans have refused to include an extension of unemployment benefits in today’s budget agreement," Trumka said in a written statement. "At the end of December, federal unemployment benefits will expire for 1.3 million jobless workers. Lawmakers must not desert these workers by going home for their own holidays without extending the federal unemployment benefits program."

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Using a line from an old "Popeye" comic, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) said Wednesday that the newly reached budget agreement was like paying "Tuesday for a hamburger today."

"There is a recurring theme in Washington budget negotiations. It's I'll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today," Paul said in a statement. "I think it's a huge mistake to trade sequester cuts now, for the promise of cuts later. The small sequester spending cuts were not nearly enough to address our deficit problem. Undoing tens of billions of this modest spending restraint is shameful and must be opposed. I cannot support a budget that raises taxes and never balances, nor can I support a deal that does nothing to reduce our nation's $17.3 trillion debt."

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A day after explaining that Obamacare is not the same as apartheid, Jon Stewart had to explain on Tuesday's "Daily Show" that shaking hands with Cuban President Raul Castro is not the same as shaking hands with Adolf Hitler.

The media flipped out over Obama shaking hands with Castro at Nelson Mandela's memorial service, Stewart said, "a gesture so meaningless you could train a bassett hound to do it."

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Pope Francis was named Time Magazine's Person of the Year on Tuesday.

"For pulling the papacy out of the palace and into the streets, for committing the world’s largest faith to confronting its deepest needs and for balancing judgment with mercy, Pope Francis is TIME’s 2013 Person of the Year," Time editor Nancy Gibbs wrote.

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