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Daniel Strauss

Daniel Strauss is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. He was previously a breaking news reporter for The Hill newspaper and has written for Politico, Roll Call, The American Prospect, and Gaper's Block. He has also interned at Democracy: A Journal of Ideas and The New Yorker. Daniel grew up in Chicago and graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.A. in History. At Michigan he helped edit Consider, a weekly opinion magazine. He can be reached at daniel@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Daniel

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said Friday that Congress's conversation on passing new gun control laws is "not over."

Reid's comments came a day before the first anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Conn., which resulted in 20 children and six school staffers being killed.

"Last December I promised the families a meaningful conversation about how to change America's culture of violence," Reid said in a floor speech, according to The Hill. "I want everyone within the sound of my voice to know that the conversation is not over."

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Gun Owners of America, one of the most aggressive pro-gun lobbies in America, posted a message to its website on Friday celebrating its victories in the year since the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre and asking people to give money to its organization.

"Since the shooting last year, Gun Owners of America has spent thousands upon thousands of hours debating anti-gun spokesmen ... lobbying Congress ... and blanketing the airwaves with a hard-hitting, pro-gun message," the fundraising post on the website said.

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Rep. Tom Rice (R-SC) wants Congress to take action against President Barack Obama for moving his administration in the direction of an "imperial presidency."

Rice introduced a House resolution that directs the chamber "to bring action for declaratory or injuctive relief to challenge certain policies and actions taken by the executive branch." The resolution is cosponsored by a number of House lawmakers including Reps. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), Jim Bridenstine (R-OK), Tom Price (R-GA), Joe Wilson (R-SC) and Ted Yoho (R-TX).

The lawmakers want Congress to take civil action in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia for aspects of Obamacare as well as the Obama administration's deferred deportation policies for certain immigrants living in the country illegally.

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Proponents of a minimum wage increase see an unlikely beneficiary: red state Senate Democrats facing tough re-election campaigns.

A handful of states will be pushing ballot initiatives to boost the statewide minimum wage in 2014; three of those are where Democrats are looking to hold onto Senate seats: Alaska, Arkansas and South Dakota.

"It's only through the ballot that you can pass a minimum wage increase in a Republican-controlled state," National Employment Law Project Policy Analyst Jack Temple told TPM.

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A top operative of a conservative caucus who repeatedly proved to be a thorn in the side of establishment Republicans became the latest casualty of the so-called Republican civil war on Wednesday.

Paul Teller was fired from his job as the executive director of the Republican Study Committee (RSC) by Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), the group's current chair. The group sees its mission as pushing an increasingly conservative caucus of House Republicans even further to the right.

Officially, the reason Teller was fired was for leaking conversations between RSC members. "Trust between senior staff and RSC members is paramount," a spokesman for the group said according to Politico. "Every decision Chairman Scalise makes is in the best interest of the RSC and advancing conservative causes."

But Teller's far more serious offense seems to be that he had been working with groups now under fire from Republican leaders for speaking out against the two-year budget deal introduced earlier in the week by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senate Budget Committee Chairman Patty Murray (D-WA).

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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) announced Thursday that he opposes the two-year Ryan-Murray budget deal.

Cruz released a statement Thursday saying the bill goes in the wrong direction:

The new budget deal moves in the wrong direction: it spends more, taxes more, and allows continued funding for Obamacare. I cannot support it.

"Under the sequester, Congress took a small step forward by reducing spending by 2.4 percent. We should increase that number while protecting the military from disproportionate cuts.

"Instead, this proposal undoes the sequester's modest reforms and pushes us two steps back, deeper into debt. Supporters of this plan are asking for more spending now in exchange for minor changes that may possibly reduce spending later. That may be a fine deal for Washington, but it’s not for the American people.

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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) praised House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) for snapping at conservative outside groups for pushing lawmakers to oppose a two-year bipartisan budget deal introduced by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-WA).

"I think it was a breath of fresh air as far as I'm concerned," Reid said at a press conference where he was flanked by Sens. Dick Durbin (IL), Charles Schumer (NY), and Murray, the other members of the Senate Democratic leadership.

A day earlier, Boehner slammed the groups (which include Club for Growth, FreedomWorks, and Heritage Action) at a press conference for quickly denouncing the budget framework.

"They're using our members and they're using the American people for their own goals. This is ridiculous," Boehner, visibly angry, said. Boehner made similar comments on Thursday.

"Why are they doing this?" Reid continued Thursday. "What is this supposed to accomplish? It is showing the American people why the rules had to be changed."

Reid's rule's comment was a reference to his decision to remove the filibuster option from executive and judicial appointments save the Supreme Court in the chamber.

Rep. Steve Stockman's (R-TX) surprise tea party challenge to Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) hasn't gone exactly as planned. Even though some conservatives have been calling for a tea party challenge against Cornyn, prominent conservative groups and supporters didn't exactly flock to the firebrand Republican congressman.

In fact, more than a few tea partiers and prominent conservative groups that usually quickly back far-right challenges to incumbent lawmakers have either held back from endorsing in the race or said they plan to stay out all together.

Here's a list of who isn't endorsing Stockman:

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The budget framework introduced by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-WA) is really more Murray's preferred budget plan, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) said Thursday.

"I understand what Paul was trying to do. I don't want to shut down the government. It's not the plan he would enact. This is more of a Patty Murray budget," Johnson said in an interview on MSNBC.

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