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

Nearly two-thirds of Americans are opposed to the consequences of the landmark 2010 Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, a new poll released Tuesday shows.

The poll, conducted by the PERT Group on behalf of the First Amendment Center, shows that 63 percent disagree with the notion that corporations and unions should be allowed to engage in unlimited campaign spending.


While the likes of Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) and Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) vow to resist implementation of state-level insurance exchanges mandated under the Affordable Care Act, former Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN) is one notable Republican who endorses the provision.

In an editorial for The Week published Tuesday, the former majority leader of the Senate writes that both parties should support the insurance exchanges, noting that they were originally a "Republican idea."  A doctor, Frist says that he "sees little advantage" for Republican governors to refuse to set up exchanges in their own states and "default to the federally designed, one-size-fits-all exchange when they can design and run their own."

From the piece:

State exchanges are the solution. They represent the federalist ideal of states as "laboratories for democracy." We are seeing 50 states each designing a model that is right for them, empowered to take into account their individual cultures, politics, economies, and demographics. While much planning has yet to be done, we are already seeing a huge range in state models. I love the diversity and the innovation.


President Barack Obama holds a slim lead over Mitt Romney in New Hampshire, according to a new poll released Tuesday evening.

The latest poll from the University of New Hampshire Survey Center, Obama claims the support of 49 percent of likely voters, while Romney trails with 45 percent.  Obama held a 9-point lead over Romney in UNH's previous poll in April.

Democrats have carried New Hampshire in four of the last five presidential elections, but the Granite State is favorable terrain for the presumptive Republican nominee in 2012.  Romney has a home in New Hampshire and he served as governor in neighboring Massachusetts. In January, he won the state's Republican primary handily.  

The PollTracker Average currently shows Obama narrowly edging Romney in New Hampshire.

Even as President Barack Obama's campaign continues to levy tough criticism at Mitt Romney, a new poll released Wednesdays shows that the presumptive Republican nominee's campaign performance is viewed more unfavorably than the incumbent's re-election efforts.

In the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, the public is split over the way Obama is running his campaign: 46 percent view the president's campaign favorably, compared with 45 percent who view it unfavorably.  Romney, on the other hand, gets low marks for his campaign.  Only 38 percent have a favorable view of the way Romney is running his campaign, while 49 percent have an unfavorable view.


President Barack Obama's campaign is keeping the heat on Mitt Romney for his tenure at Bain Capital with the release of a new web video.

The video incorporates vox populi, with individuals on the street asked to read Romney's explanation for his retention of ownership of Bain between 1999 and 2002 while ostensibly playing no role in the management operations of the firm.

Watch the video:


Speaking at a private fundraiser Tuesday night in Austin, Texas, President Barack Obama said the stakes are higher in 2012 than they were in 2008 due to a partisan shift within the Republican Party.  

Obama told the crowd of donors that his opponent four years ago, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), was a moderate compared to the likes of Mitt Romney, creating a much starker "contrast of visions" in this year's race.  

Per a White House pool report:

I mean, John McCain believed in campaign finance reform.  He believed in climate change.  He believed in science.  (Laughter.)  No -- I mean, when I speak about climate change, I mean, I think that’s -- I pay attention to scientists.  He believed in immigration reform. 

And right now, what we’ve seen is just a much more sharp division in terms of how we should move this country forward.  And so, in some ways, this election I think is more important than in 2008, and it’s going to be a very close election. 

A strong majority of voters believe Mitt Romney should take a cue from his father when it comes to releasing his tax returns, a new poll released Tuesday shows.

The latest survey conducted by Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling (PPP) on behalf of Daily Kos and SEIU shows that 56 percent of American voters believe Romney should release his tax returns for the last 12 years, compared with only 34 percent who believe he should not.  

George Romney, the late former governor of Michigan and father of the presumptive Republican nominee, released 12 years' worth of his tax returns when he ran for president in 1968, famously quipping that "one year could be a fluke." 

Reuters reports that Mitt Romney has reached the final stages of selecting a vice presidential running mate, with growing speculation that he has narrowed the short list to three prospective candidates: Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.  

A report in the New York Times on Monday suggested that Romney had already decided on the other half of the Republican ticket and that the announcement could come as early as this week.  

A new poll shows that while New Jersey voters widely approve of the job their outspoken governor is doing, they don't think much of his vice presidential prospects.  

In the latest poll from Quinnipiac University released Tuesday, Gov. Chris Christie (R) boasts an impressive 54 percent approval rating among Garden State voters.  The first term governor's approval rating has been above 50 percent in each of Quinnipiac's surveys of New Jersey this year, peaking at 59 percent in April.  

But those same New Jersey voters aren't convinced he'd make a good running mate to presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney.  Fifty-three percent say Christie would be a bad addition to the Republican ticket, compared with 40 percent who think he would be a good choice.

The PollTracker Average shows that Christie has maintained a high marks for his job performance throughout 2012, a turnaround from where his approval rating stood a year ago.

By a two-to-one margin, the public views President Barack Obama's call to raise taxes on high-income earners as good for the economy, a new poll released Monday shows.

According to the latest survey from Pew Research Center, 44 percent believe that raising taxes on income above $250,000 would help the economy, while 22 percent say it would hurt the economy.  The same percentage — 44 — says such a tax increase would make the current tax system more fair.  

It's little surprise that strong majorities of Democrats support Obama's proposal and believe that it would make the tax system more equitable, but Republicans are not as virulently opposed as one might assume.  Forty-one percent of Republicans say that it would hurt the economy — compared with 27 percent who believe it would help — but 24 percent say it would make no difference.  And while 36 percent of Republicans believe the proposal would make the tax system less fair, 30 percent say it would make no difference at all and 25 percent say it would make the system more fair.