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Tom Kludt

Tom Kludt is a reporter for Talking Points Memo based in New York City, covering media and national affairs. Originally from South Dakota, Tom joined TPM as an intern in late-2011 and became a staff member during the 2012 election. He can be reached at tom@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Tom

Russian officials on Friday said that Maria Alekhina, a jailed member of the Russian punk rock group Pussy Riot, has been moved to solitary confinement amid tension with other inmates, the Associated Press reports.

The move comes at the request of Alekhina, who the AP reports asked for a change of location "because of her perception that fellow prisoners had a negative attitude to her." Alekhina and a fellow band member were sentenced in August for their performance of a song critical of Russian President Vladimir Putin in one of the country's most prestigious churches back in February.

Hordes of customers flock to various stores the day after Thanksgiving in what's become an annual rite of the holiday season, but a Gallup survey out today shows that "Black Friday" shoppers comprise a relatively small, but youthful sliver of the overall population.

Only 18 percent of American adults said they plan to shop today, according to the survey, while 81 percent said they do not. Those who will brave the crowds to take advantage of the sales are generally on the younger side. Thirty-four percent who said they will shop on "Black Friday" are under the age of 30.

A mere 11 percent of respondents between the ages of 50 and 64 said they intend to shop today, while the intention to shop dips to 8 percent among those above the age of 65.

A naked man on Friday climbed and mounted a statue of the Duke of Cambridge in central London. The Telegraph reports that "unnamed man was spotted waving his arms and striking up various positions on the statue."

 

(Photo: Stillwell John/PA Photos/ABACA/Newscom)

When the new year begins, the number of state governments under the control of one party will be higher than it has been in more than half a century.

The New York Times reports:

Though the Nov. 6 election maintained divided government in Washington, the picture is starkly different in capitals from California to Florida: one party will hold the governor’s office and majorities in both legislative chambers in at least 37 states, the largest number in 60 years and a significant jump from even two years ago.

 

A violence monitoring group on Friday said that more than 40,000 people have been killed in the fighting between rebels and President Bashar al-Assad's forces, Reuters reports

The head of Syrian Observatory for Human Rights provided Reuters with a breakdown of the death toll, contending that 40,000 may actually be a low estimate:

Rami Abdelrahman, head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said about half the fatalities were civilians and the other half split about evenly between rebels and government soldiers.

"The figure is likely much higher as the rebels and the government lie about how many of their forces have died to make it look like they are winning," Abdelrahman told Reuters.

 

A horde of customers gather in the early morning hours at Macy's in New York City on Friday, as "Black Friday" sales across the country heralded the arrival of the holiday shopping season. 

 

(Photo: Kyodo/Newscom)

An early morning Thanksgiving fire at an apartment building in Wheaton, Mo., left five people dead, including a 7-year -old child, the Associated Press reports

The fire was reported at 3:20 a.m. Thursday morning, and the cause is still the subject of an investigation.

The nation's capital has become a decidedly less violent place over the last few decades, and the improvement to public safety has the city on track to make 2012 a milestone year.

With the number of killings for 2012 currently at 78, the District of Columbia is on pace to finish the year with fewer than 100 homicides for the first time since 1963, the Associated Press reports

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