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

A man shot and killed his stepdaughter Monday morning after apparently mistaking her for a burglar, according to police.

Colorado TV station KKTV reported the shooting happened at around 6 a.m. at the family's residence in Colorado Springs. The girl, 14, was taken to the hospital where she later died.

Colorado Springs police spokesman Larry Herbert told CBS News that the stepfather did fire a weapon, although it was unclear if he in fact thought the girl was a burglar. The station had received a report of a "burglary in progress."

The shooting was under investigation, accordion to KKTV, and the District Attorney's office was expected to decide whether the stepfather would face charges.

American Catholics are feeling a whole lot of goodwill for Pope Francis on his first Christmas as pontiff, according to a new poll.

A CNN/ORC International poll released Tuesday showed 88 percent of American Catholics approved of Francis' job as head of the church.

And among the American public in general, nearly three in four have a favorable view of the pontiff, according to the poll. As CNN points out, those figures suggest the Pope is arguably the most well-regarded religious figure among the American public today.

Francis earned the distinction of being named Time Magazine's 2013 Person of the Year for reforming the tone and focus of the Catholic church set by his predecessors. In his nine months as Pope, Francis chided church officials "obsessed" with abortion and gay marriage, spoke out against capitalist economic policies that generate inequality (which earned a shout-out from President Barack Obama and accusations of Marxism from Rush Limbaugh), and possibly snuck out of the Vatican at night to commune with the homeless.

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Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked top-secret documents on mass government surveillance programs to journalists this spring, has declared his mission accomplished.

“For me, in terms of personal satisfaction, the mission’s already accomplished,” Snowden told Barton Gellman, the Washington Post journalist to whom he leaked some of the documents he took from the NSA, in an interview published Monday night.

“I already won," he said. "As soon as the journalists were able to work, everything that I had been trying to do was validated. Because, remember, I didn’t want to change society. I wanted to give society a chance to determine if it should change itself.”

Snowden spoke with Gellman in Moscow, his first in-person interview since arriving in Russia in June and securing temporary asylum. Gellman described Snowden as "relaxed and animated" over the course of their two-day conversation.

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There's a lot Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) wants to gripe about, from the Washington establishment to the food in the Senate cafeteria.

So in the spirit of Festivus, the secular holiday popularized by "Seinfeld," Paul aired his grievances in a lengthy series of Tweets.

The Kentucky Republican's first grievances were with the Senate's bipartisan budget deal and recent filibuster rules change:

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