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

Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) continues to enjoy enormous popularity among his constituents in the Empire State, according to a new poll released Monday.

The latest Siena College Research Institute poll shows that the first-term Democratic governor is viewed favorably by 70 percent of registered voters in New York, while only 24 percent view him unfavorably.  Additionally, 60 percent give Cuomo a positive job performance rating.  

Still, New Yorkers remain divided on a bill to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana that is being pushed by Cuomo and is expected to be taken up by the state assembly this week.  Among those surveyed, 40 percent say they support treating the sale and possession of marijuana as a crime, while 39 percent are opposed.  

The TPM Poll Average shows that Cuomo, who was elected in a landslide over Republican Carl Paladino in 2010, has maintained an extremely strong favorability rating throughout his first term. 


CNN reports:

Federal health officials say 14 people in six states have been sickened by the same strain of E. coli over the past couple of months.

According to CDC spokeswoman Lola Russell, 14 cases of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O145 infection with the same DNA fingerprint were identified in six states. "Their illness onsets range from April 15 to May 12, 2012," she said. "Three ill persons have been hospitalized. One death has been reported in Louisiana."

Cases have been reported in Louisiana, Georgia, Alabama and Florida, according to local health departments and media reports. The CDC would not reveal which other two states were reporting cases.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) latched onto remarks from President Barack Obama's Friday morning news conference, during which Obama said that the private sector is "doing fine" but problems remain due to cuts to state and local governments.

"My question would be to the president, are you kidding?" Cantor said during a press conference held jointly with House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) Friday afternoon on Capitol Hill. "Did he see the job numbers that came out last week? The private sector is not doing fine. And, frankly, I'd ask the president to stop engaging in the blame game. It's not because of the headwinds of Europe. It's not, despite his attempt and his party's attempts here in Congress, it is not because of House Republicans. It's because of the failed stimulus policies and other items in his agenda that small businesses in this country just aren't growing."

President Barack Obama said his administration has "zero tolerance" for those who divulge classified national security information.  Responding to a question about alleged leaks from his administration's intelligence apparatus during a news conference Friday, Obama said he will punish anyone within his administration who discloses such information.

"We have mechanisms in place where if we can root out folks who have leaked, they will suffer consequences," Obama said.

But the president took umbrage to the accusation that his administration deliberately leaked information regarding cyber attacks against the Iranian nuclear program and his much-publicized "kill list."

"The notion that my White House would purposely release classifed national security information is offensive," he said.  




President Barack Obama said that the United States will help its European allies navigate their way through the poor economic climate Friday during a news conference in the White House briefing room.  But the U.S. will not tell Europe what to do, the president said.  

"But you know, what we've tried to do is to be constructive, to frame this as us not scolding them or telling them what to do but give them advice based on our experiences here and having stabilized a financial situation effectively," Obama said.  "What we can do is prod, advise, suggest, but ultimately they have to make these decisions."   

President Barack Obama was asked Friday at a news conference in the White House briefing room about the role the United States is playing in the European debt crisis.  Obama took the opportunity to detail the complexities that have disrupted the fragile European economy.

"First of all, the situation in Europe is not simply a debt crisis," Obama said. "You've got some countries like Greece that have spent more than they're bringing in, and they've got problems. There are other countries that actually were running a surplus and had fairly responsible fiscal policies but had weaknesses similar to what happened here with respect to their housing market and that has weakened their financial system." 

President Barack Obama took aim at Congress during a Friday morning news conference at the White House for failing to pass a jobs bill he advocates.  Had Congress passed the bill last September, Obama said, "we'd be on track to have a million more Americans working this year."

"We could be putting he a lot of people back to work rebuilding our roads, bridges, some of our schools," Obama said. "There's work to be done. There are workers to do it. Let's put them back to work right now."

President Barack Obama highlighted the economic struggles in Europe during a news conference Friday morning at the White House, while calling on the continent's leaders to help stabilize the Eurozone.

"Obviously this matters to us because europe is our largest economic trading partner, if there's less demand for our products in places like Paris or Madrid, it could mean less businesses or less business for manufacturers in places like Pittsburgh," Obama said.   

Most Americans don't know enough about Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), a man pegged by many as a potential running mate to Republican nominee Mitt Romney, according to a new poll released Friday.  

The latest ABC/Washington Post poll tracks Americans' opinions of three current and former elected officials considered to be possible vice presidential nominees on the Republican ticket: Portman, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.  

Among those surveyed, 51 percent have no opinion of Portman, a reflection of his status as a low-key senator.  Thirty percent have an unfavorable view of the Ohio senator, while 19 percent view Portman favorably.  Rubio and Bush fare a bit better — at least in terms of recognition.  Twenty-nine percent view Rubio favorably, compared 36 percent who have a favorable view of Bush.  Only 19 percent have no opinion of Bush, while 39 percent feel the same way of Rubio.