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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

After a tense Republican nomination contest that bordered on hostile at times, Newt Gingrich said he bears no ill-will toward former rival and presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney.

In an interview with MSNBC's Chris Matthews Thursday, Gingrich said Romney showed his political mettle in the campaign, particularly when the contest shifted to Florida in late January.

“Mitt Romney did what he had to do to become the nominee,” Gingrich said. “He’s worked at this six years…When he got to the crunch, he was tough enough and smart enough to beat me in Florida." 

In an appearance on CNN Thursday, former Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman dismissed Mitt Romney's tough talk on China as "typical" campaign rhetoric.

Romney's campaign claimed that the presumptive Republican nominee would "stand up to China on trade" in a new ad released this week.  Huntsman, the former U.S. ambassador to China, suggested Romney's tone would likely change after entering office.

"This is a typical trajectory, where during a campaign season you're going to talk about China in ways that you're hearing today," Huntsman told CNN's Erin Burnett.  "Then you get in office."  

The candidate representing Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood has advanced to a run-off in the country's first legitimate presidential election.

According to partial results from Friday's vote, the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi will face former prime minister Ahmed Shafiq in a June run-off.  The election is the result of last year's uprising that ultimately led to the undoing of leader Hosni Mubarak.      

Presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney will be joined by former rival Newt Gingrich and Donald Trump at a campaign event on Tuesday in Las Vegas.

The event, which will be held at Trump's hotel located on the Las Vegas strip, is coupled with a fundraising contest launched by the Romney campaign on Thursday.  Supporters who donate to the presumptive Republican nominee's campaign will be entered in a raffle for a prize package that includes dinner with Romney and Trump.

Trump endorsed Romney in February during a press conference that was also held at the real estate magnate's Las Vegas hotel.  

 

A new poll shows that Americans are more likely to identify themselves as conservative on both economic and social issues.

That was the outcome of Gallup's annual "Values and Beliefs" poll, which surveyed adults aged 18 and over nationwide from May 3 to May 6.  

Among those who participated in the poll, more twice as many described themselves as conservative on the issue of the economy as liberal: 46 percent to 20 percent.  On social issues, 38 percent identify themselves as conservative while 28 percent call themselves liberal.  

A new ABC News/Washington Post poll shows that most Americans believe presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney would be a better president for financial institutions and the wealthy while a slight majority pegs President Barack Obama as the better candidate for the middle class.

The poll examines how Americans feel about the economy — unquestionably the bellwether issue in the 2012 presidential campaign — as well as their perceptions of the two candidates. Among those surveyed, 65 percent believe Romney would do more to advance the interests of wealthy Americans, while only 24 percent believe Obama would do more on that front.  

The venture capitalist turned Massachusetts governor is viewed as the candidate who would do more to advance the interests of financial institutions by a similarly large margin, 56 percent to 32 percent.  When asked who would do more to advance the interests of middle class Americans, 51 percent give the edge to Obama while 42 percent say Romney would do more.  

Despite this ostensibly favorable outcome in the poll, the president is still locked in an extremely competitive campaign with Romney — a reflection of the economic pessimism that still pervades the country.  

From ABC News:

Other elements also will inform the economic debate in the months ahead. More people think new regulations on financial institutions are too weak rather than too strong, by a 15-point margin, 38 to 23 percent. More also feel that unfairness in the economic system that favors the wealthy is a bigger problem than overregulation that stifles free enterprise.

Both those may help Obama, but broader economic discontent works against him. And the public divides on whether or not they feel they have a fair chance to get ahead, a weak report on the American dream that reflects the still-sour public mood after four-plus years of downturn.

An endorsement of same-sex marriage was long considered risky for President Obama because of the expected backlash from the African-American community. Few seemed to consider the alternative, which polling suggests is playing out instead: Rather than changing their minds about the president, some black voters are reconsidering gay marriage.

A pair of polls released in the last week suggest Obama's highly publicized announcement may have helped trigger a shift in attitudes among African-Americans, a historically socially conservative voting bloc, in states where same-sex marriage has been at the forefront of public debate. On Thursday, Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling (PPP) released the results of a survey showing that the state law legalizing same-sex marriage in Maryland is a strong favorite to be upheld by voters in November, with 57 percent of likely voters saying they will vote for the referendum and only 37 percent intending to vote against.

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This might be Mitt Romney's classiest fundraising effort yet.  

Romney's campaign is urging supporters to make a donation for the chance to win a prize package that includes a dinner with the presumptive Republican nominee and Donald Trump. The winner will also receive airport transportation in "the Trump Vehicle," a free stay at Trump International Hotel & Tower New York and a tour of the board room used in Trump's NBC reality series, "The Celebrity Apprentice."  

Trump, who has emerged as one of President Barack Obama's most outspoken critics, endorsed Romney in February.  

Former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum has endorsed Ted Cruz in the increasingly competitive Republican primary for open U.S. Senate seat in Texas.

"Ted Cruz is spellbinding, a tremendous orator and principled," Santorum said on Glenn Beck's radio show. "Understands these issues at his core. We need people who can motivate and lead. Ted has that capability."

Cruz, the state's former solicitor general and a tea party favorite, has already won the endorsement of Sarah Palin.  Cruz is viewed as the top challenger to state Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, with both candidates vying for the seat being vacated by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R).

(h/t CNN

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