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

Former Maine Gov. Angus King is a strong favorite to succeed outgoing Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and Maine voters appear poised to pass a referendum legalizing same-sex marriage, according to a poll released Monday.

The latest survey from MassInc Polling Group shows King, who served as governor from 1995-2003 and is running as an independent, with the support of 50 percent of likely voters — far outpacing Republican secretary of state Charlie Summers and Democratic state Sen. Cynthia Dill.  Summers claims the support of 23 percent, while Dill lags behind with only 9 percent.  King has not specified with which party he will caucus if elected, but he has endorsed President Barack Obama.  Snowe surprised many in February when she announced that she will not seek re-election.

The poll also shows 55 percent of voters support a referendum to legalize marriage between gay and lesbian couples, while only 36 percent oppose the proposed law.  If passed, the referendum will provide marriage licenses for same-sex couples without requiring any religion or clergy to perform a ceremony that would violate their religious doctrine.  In 2009, Maine voters repealed a law legalizing same-sex marriage.  

It seems that the confrontational questioning by The Daily Caller's Neil Munro, who made headlines Friday afternoon after interrupting President Barack Obama's news conference on a new immigration policy, was too subversive for a pair of Fox News personalities.

Appearing on "Studio B with Shepard Smith," Fox's Chris Wallace called Munro's antics "outrageous."  

"The idea that you would interrupt the president in the middle of prepared remarks and shout a question, I don't think the guy should be allowed back in the White House and my guess is he won't be," Wallace said.

Smith took issue with Tucker Carlson, a Fox News contributor and editor-in-chief of The Daily Caller, who defended Munro.

"I'm hoping maybe Tucker didn't see it, didn't know the context, 'cause Tucker knows better," Smith said.



A new ad from American Crossroads mocks President Barack Obama's Thursday speech in Cleveland with an homage to the unintelligible, muffled voices of Charlie Brown's teachers in the "Peanuts."  The ad, titled "Wah Wahh," includes several clips from Obama's speech, each followed by a "translation" of the president's message.


CBS News reports that Jerry Sandusky is expected to take the stand when the defense begins its case Monday in the child sex abuse trial of the former Penn State assistant football coach.  The prosecution ended its case Thursday with graphic testimony from an accuser who said Sandusky raped him several times.    

The BBC reports:

The head of the UN Supervision Mission in Syria (UNSMIS) says there appears to be a "lack of willingness" on the two sides to seek a peaceful transition.

Maj-Gen Robert Mood said violence had risen over the past 10 days, causing losses on both sides and putting his unarmed observers at significant risk.

The Norwegian said there was a "push towards advancing military positions".

Activists have said troops are shelling opposition-held areas and fighting rebels in several parts of the country.

President Barack Obama raked in about $2 million for his re-election campaign at a fundraiser held at the Manhattan home of actors Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick.  A number of high-profile figures attended the much-hyped fundraiser, including three-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep and Vogue editor Anna Wintour.  Parker and Wintour both starred in web videos earlier this month to promote the event.  

Judges on the Richmond Circuit Court on Thursday appointed an openly gay judge to the General District Court bench a month after the Virginia House of Delegates rejected his nomination.  Tracy Thorne-Begland told the Richmond Times-Dispatch that he is "humbled" by the court's appointment.  

"I look forward to serving the citizens of the city of Richmond as a jurist and, over the coming months, I hope that my service provides comfort to all Virginians that I remain committed to the faithful application of the laws and constitutions of Virginia and the United States of America," Thorne-Begland said.

The rejection by the Republican-controlled House of Delegates was viewed by some as a discriminatory decision.  However, Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell's office said he supports the appointment of Thorne-Begland.