Catherine Thompson

Catherine Thompson is a news writer for Talking Points Memo. Before joining TPM, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett and interned at The L Magazine. At New York University 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

A San Diego businesswoman told CNN Wednesday that Mayor Bob Filner put his hands on her buttocks at a meeting.

Diane York, the 18th woman to allege that Filner improperly touched her, told CNN that Filner touched her backside during a photo opportunity after the meeting three months ago. York is scheduled to hold a press conference at 1 p.m. PST Wednesday, according to San Diego's KGTV.

A 17th accuser, real-estate agent Caryl Iseman, had said during a rally Sunday that Filner grabbed her breast at a fundraiser 25 years ago, according to San Diego Gay and Lesbian News

Filner's lawyers have been in mediation talks since Monday as the mayor faces both a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by his former communications director and a vocal recall effort. The Democratic National Committee will vote on a resolution that would call Filner's resignation, CNN reported Tuesday.

This post has been updated.

A bookkeeper at McNair Elementary School in Decatur, Ga. told television station WSB that she was able to talk down a gunman who entered the school Tuesday and fired shots before he was able to cause any injuries.

"I knew that if he got outside, he was unstable enough to start shooting at everybody," the bookkeeper, Antoinette Tuff, told WSB.

Tuff told the news station that she related her personal story to the shooter in hopes of keeping him calm and preventing him from going outside where he could potentially shoot at schoolchildren who had been evacuated. She told the shooter she had raised a disabled child and a law school student after losing her husband of 33 years, then bounced back to start her own business.

"I started communicating to him and to the police and to Channel 2 News, and then just started trying to talk him down, to calm him down, to let him know I understand how he was feeling," she said.

Watch the full interview with Tuff below, courtesy of WSB-TV: 

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) plans to meet with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Wednesday at the company's campus in Menlo Park, Calif., CNN reported.

A source with knowledge of the informal meeting told CNN that Rubio's and Zuckerberg's "shared commitment to fixing America's broken immigration system" is expected to be a topic of conversation.

Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald spoke with CNN's Anderson Cooper Tuesday night about his partner David Miranda's nine-hour detention in London's Heathrow Airport, excoriating British authorities for equating journalism to "terrorism."

Greenwald said that U.K. authorities' seizure of a laptop, thumb drives, and other materials from Miranda amounted to "criminalizing" journalism. Miranda was detained under Section 7 of the nation's Terrorism Act while he was en route to Brazil after picking up the materials in Germany from Greenwald's colleague Laura Poitras, who assisted him on stories about National Security Agency surveillance programs.

"If you want to start criminalizing that, it means that you’re asking as a citizen to be kept ignorant and to allow people in power to conceal what they’re doing behind a wall of secrecy and to have no accountability or transparency," Greenwald told Cooper. "Journalism is not a crime and it’s not terrorism.”

"I truly believe they will come to regret what they have done," Greenwald later added. "Aside from being oppressive and dangerous, it’s also quite incompetent and really quite dumb.”

Watch the interview below, courtesy of CNN: 

The co-chairman of Iowa's Polk County Republican Party has stepped down and registered as an Independent, writing in a resignation letter that the GOP is "headed in the wrong direction," the Des Moines Register reported Tuesday. 

Chad Brown told the newspaper he resigned his post on Aug. 5. Brown cited Rep. Steve King's (R-IA) recent comments comparing undocumented immigrants to drug mules as an example of his disagreement with the party, along with its positions on gun control and climate change. 

From Brown's resignation letter, as quoted by the Register:

In 2012, the Polk GOP lost Polk County by over 32,000 votes. Until 2002, Republicans were elected to the State House from Des Moines. In 2012, Republicans lost 2 State House seats in suburban, Republican-leaning districts and came two dozen votes from losing a third. Facts are stubborn things. I think we are now headed in the wrong direction on several fronts and regretfully must step aside.


It’s my opinion that rather than fix the problems that led to such a massive 2012 defeat, the GOP does not seem to seriously want to fix the issues. I think helping a dysfunctional Party that does not want to address its problems is enabling. I do not believe in enabling. I debated this for weeks and am certain this is the only course.

Commissioners in Colorado's Weld County voted unanimously Monday in favor of putting a 51st state initiative on the November ballot, Denver television station KDVR reported.

The initiative read "Shall the Board of County Commissioners of Weld County, in concert with the county commissioners of other Colorado counties, pursue becoming the 51st state of the United States of America?” according to KDVR.

Ten counties in the state held meetings throughout June and July to discuss seceding to form "North Colorado," partly in reaction to state legislation restricting the oil and gas industries and tightening gun control. Should a ballot initiative pass in each county, the secession plan would still require the approval of the state legislature, the governor and Congress.

[Image via spirit of america / Shutterstock]

Estimates from 19 states offering health care exchanges show that at least 8.5 million plan to buy insurance through exchanges in those states, far outpacing the federal government's estimate of 7 million new participants in exchanges across all 50 states, USA Today reported Monday.

The newspaper contacted all 50 states, and 19 were able to provide estimates for how many uninsured residents were expected to purchase health insurance through their exchanges. California alone estimated that it would sign up 5.3 million uninsured, according to USA Today.

The Congressional Budget Office had independently determined that 7 million people would purchase insurance through the exchanges nationwide, which are open for enrollment between Oct. 1 and March 31, 2014, according to the newspaper.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) released a TV ad Monday that slams his primary challenger Matt Bevin's college education record.

The 30-second spot is based on an article in The Hill newspaper that was published in March, stating Bevin had listed the Massachusetts Institute of Technology at the top of his educational profile on his LinkedIn page. MIT officials told The Hill that the program Bevin had listed on his career profile was not affiliated with the university.

"Newspapers say Bevin was dishonest about his resume, claiming he graduated from prestigious MIT," the ad's narrator said. "Not true again. Bevin never attended MIT, and MIT has no record of Bevin." 

The six-figure ad buy will run in Kentucky, according to a press release from the campaign. 

A trauma surgeon who treated Dzhokhar Tsarnaev said the alleged Boston Marathon bomber suffered a gunshot wound to the face and a skull fracture among other injuries before he was captured, NBC News reported Tuesday.

Dr. Stephen Ray Odom, a certified surgeon at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, said in newly unsealed court documents that he was the surgeon on call when Tsarnaev was brought to the hospital and Tsarnaev's attending physician in the following days.

“He has multiple gunshot wounds, the most severe of which appears to have entered through the left side inside of his mouth and exited the left face, lower face” resulting in a skull-base fracture and other injuries, Odom said in a transcript dated three days after Tsarnaev's capture, as quoted by NBC News.

“He has multiple gunshots [sic] wounds to the extremities that have been treated with dressing to the lower extremities; and in the case of his left hand, he had multiple bony injuries as well that were treated with fixation and soft-tissue coverage, as well as tendon repair and vascular ligation,” Odom told U.S. Magistrate Judge Marianne B. Bowler, as quoted by NBC News.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) said Monday at a Verona, Va. town hall meeting that he does not support a path to citizenship included in the Senate's comprehensive immigration reform bill.

"It is not a bill I can support. That bill gives legal status to people not lawfully here before the enforcement is put in,'' Goodlatte said, as quoted by the Waynesboro News Virginian.

Pressed by pro-immigration reform organizations who showed up in large numbers to the town hall, Goodlatte said the Senate's bill lacked a plan for proper enforcement and gave a special path to citizenship to immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally, according to the News Virginian. The Virginia congressman said the House will not take up the Senate's legislation.