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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

Alaska Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell will announce Tuesday that he's challenging freshman Sen. Mark Begich (D) in 2014, The National Journal reported.

A Democratic source told "The Hotline" that Treadwell called Begich to inform him in advance about the announcement. Begich beat longtime Sen. Ted Stevens (R) in a tight 2008 race.

Treadwell will face Joe Miller, the activist who beat out incumbent Sen. Lisa Murkowski in the 2010 GOP primary, in the red state's general election primary.

NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Monday that Americans would have understood the need for the National Security Agency's secrecy-shrouded surveillance programs if they had been made aware of the data collection.

“I don't think it ever should have been made secret," Kelly said at an event dedicating new harbor patrol boats, as quoted by the New York Daily News. "I think the American public can accept the fact if you tell them that every time you pick up the phone it's going to be recorded and goes to the government."

The police commissioner also called for more transparency about the mechanisms of NSA oversight, adding that such disclosure would ease the public's concerns about the surveillance programs.

"We can raise people's comfort level … that we have these controls and these protections inside the NSA," Kelly said, per the Daily News.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) will introduce a series of amendments to the Senate immigration reform bill that would position him for a potential Republican presidential primary bid, The Hill reported Tuesday.

Paul's most prominent measure would eliminate a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants while lifting a cap on guest workers, Senate aides familiar with the proposals told The Hill. Under that amendment, to be introduced this week, employers who demonstrate need would be provided with immigrant workers while the workers themselves would have to apply for permanent residency and citizenship according to the policies of their native countries.

In March Paul laid out a plan that would allow immigrants to obtain green cards and eventually become naturalized citizens, but denied that such a plan constituted a "path to citizenship."

The senator is also working on an amendment that would compel states to ensure that registered provisional immigrants do not vote in elections in order to receive federal election funding, according to The Hill.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) expressed concern Monday that Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) may be walking away from immigration reform legislation that the two lawmakers spent months hammering out with the support of the bipartisan "Gang of Eight" in the Senate.

"How do we put together a bill and then the guy who put it together says that he may not vote for it?" Graham told the Huffington Post. "I just don't get what we're doing here."

Rubio has said that border security provisions in the immigration reform bill are not strong enough and has threatened to vote against the legislation if amendments fortifying border security aren't adopted.

Graham said in an appearance on NBC Sunday that the Republican Party will begin a demographic "death spiral" if it doesn't court the Hispanic community and pass comprehensive immigration reform.

Yahoo announced Monday that it received between 12,000 and 13,000 data requests from U.S. law enforcement agencies, including criminal requests and requests under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), between December 1, 2012 and May 31, 2013.

The company joined heavyweight tech firms Facebook, Microsoft, and Apple in disclosing partial data request numbers while challenging the federal government to allow it to disclose FISA request figures.

"Like all companies, Yahoo! cannot lawfully break out FISA request numbers at this time because those numbers are classified; however, we strongly urge the federal government to reconsider its stance on this issue," CEO Marissa Mayer and General Counsel Ron Bell wrote in a statement on the company's blog.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) announced Monday that he'll be introducing an amendment to the Senate immigration reform bill permitting states to require identification from Americans registering to vote.

The amendment comes in the wake of a Monday morning Supreme Court ruling that overturned an Arizona law requiring proof of citizenship to register to vote.

The conservative senator has a record of defending voter fraud prevention measures, and has also been vocally opposed to the Gang of Eight's plan for comprehensive immigration reform.

Federal officials on Monday seized 7-Eleven franchises in New York and Virginia as part of an investigation into a ring of undocumented workers who were allegedly forced to work slave hours in a "modern day plantation system," ABC News reported.

Nine individuals, including store owners and managers from ten New York franchises and four Virginia franchises, were charged with "conspiring to commit wire fraud, stealing identities and harboring undocumented immigrants," according to federal prosecutor Loretta E. Lynch.

Federal authorities told ABC news that at least 18 undocumented workers, reportedly from Pakistan, were given identities stolen from children and deceased persons and forced to work 100 hours a week while paying rent to their employers to live in boarding houses.

"7-Eleven is aware of today's activity and has been cooperating with federal authorities during their investigation," Margaret Chabris, director of Corporate Communications for 7-Eleven, told ABC News. "We will have no further comment until we learn more."

Miss Utah gave her unique take on how to achieve pay equity for women through "creating education better" at the Miss USA competition Sunday night.

Panelist NeNe Leakes posed the million-dollar question to Marissa Powell, 21: “A recent report shows that in 40 percent of American families with children, women are the primary earners, yet they continue to earn less than men. What does this say about society?”

“I think we can relate this back to education, and how we are continuing to try to strive … to ...," Powell responded before pausing to think.  "… figure out how to create jobs right now. That is the biggest problem."

“I think, especially the men are … seen as the leaders of this, and so we need to try to figure out how to … create education better. So that we can solve this problem," she added.

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) said Monday that the so-called Gang of Eight immigration reform bill has already been so weakened by concessions on border security that it would be a "big mistake" to push for 70 votes, according to The Hill.

Durbin responded with a firm "no" when asked on CBS News whether the bill needed more than 70 votes.

"We need 60 votes by the Senate standards," he told CBS, as quoted by The Hill. "The more the better though. I just don’t want to compromise the values in this bill."

"We worked for four months, had 30 minutes, [Sens.] John McCain [R-AZ], Chuck Schumer [D-NY], Lindsey Graham [R-SC], Marco Rubio [R-FL], myself, Bob Menendez [D-NJ], we worked all this time to come up with a basic framework, and if we’re going to abandon this now to pick up 2, 3, 4 or 5 votes, that’s a big mistake," Durbin added.

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