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

An asteroid the size of a city block will travel by Earth Thursday.  Experts say there is no risk of a collision and people of Earth may be able to play the role of spectators.  The team running the Slooh Space Camera will train a telescope on the Canary Islands and stream the footage live online beginning at 8:00 PM EDT.  


(h/t MSNBC)

As Republicans assail President Barack Obama for blaming the country's woes on his predecessor, Americans continue to attribute the ongoing economic problems to George W. Bush, a poll released Thursday shows.

A new survey from Gallup shows that 68 percent of Americans blame Bush either a "great deal" or a "moderate amount" for the economic problems that threaten to make Obama a one-term president. Conversely, 52 percent blame Obama. 

Gallup began asking the "blame assessment" question in July 2009, a mere seven months into Obama's opening term. At that time, 80 percent pinned a "great deal" or a "moderate amount" of blame on Bush. That percentage has remained virtually static since August of 2010, when 70 percent assigned the lion's share of blame on Bush.  

The Gallup poll was conducted June 7-10, with a sample of 1,004 adults and a margin of error of four percentage points.


President Barack Obama's lead over Mitt Romney in Nevada is dwindling, according to a new poll released Wednesday.

The latest survey from Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling (PPP) shows Obama winning the support of 48 percent of Silver State voters, compared with 42 percent who prefer Romney. Obama's lead is slightly down from the 8-point advantage he held in PPP's previous survey of Nevada in late March and much smaller than his 12-point margin of victory in the state in 2008.

"Barack Obama's still a clear favorite to win Nevada this fall," writes Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling. "But he's not nearly as strong there as he was in 2008."

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A slight majority of New York City voters oppose Mayor Michael Bloomberg's call to ban the sale of over-sized sugary beverages, according to a new poll released Wednesday. 

The survey from Quinnipiac University shows that 51 percent of New Yorkers oppose Bloomberg's much-ballyhooed plan, while 46 percent support the proposal.  Men and women are sharply divided on the issue.  Male voters overwhelmingly oppose the ban, 55 percent to 41 percent.  Women, on the other hand, support it by a narrow margin, 50 percent to 47 percent.  

First Lady Michelle Obama joined the social photo sharing website Pinterest on Wednesday.  Her account currently contains three boards, titled "Around the White House," "Great memories" and "Father's Day."  The first lady planted her flag in another popular social networking site earlier this year when she joined Twitter in January.  

Henry Hill, the mobster who served as the basis for Ray Liotta's character in Martin Scorcese's iconic 1990 film "Goodfellas," died Tuesday in Los Angeles.  He was 69.  

Mitt Romney's campaign rolled out a new infographic Wednesday detailing how the Republican nominee's first 100 days in office would differ from the opening 100 days of President Barack Obama's first term.

The graphic contains a number of Romney's most oft-invoked campaign pledges — from repeal of the new health care law to approval of the Keystone Pipeline — along with conservative boilerplate, such as pledges to undo regulations, slash government spending and pursue tax reform. 

A referendum on Washington's law allowing same-sex marriage will appear on the state's November ballot, the secretary of state's office announced Wednesday.

Opponents to the law submitted 247,331 signatures last week — vastly exceeding the minimum of 120,577 valid signatures required.  The signatures then passed the signature-verification process, bringing Referendum 74 to a statewide vote this fall.

If passed, the referendum will overturn a measure that was passed by the state legislature and signed into law by Gov. Chris Gregoire (D) earlier this year.  Washington is one of two states that legalized same-sex marriage in 2012.  A similar law was passed and signed into law earlier this year in Maryland, where there will likely be a referendum on the measure as well.  

Most Americans — including independent voters who will likely tip the election — hold a negative view of President Barack Obama's vision for the United States economy, according to a new poll released Wednesday.  

In the latest ABC/Washington Post poll, 50 percent view Obama's plans for the nation's economy unfavorably, while 43 percent have a favorable view.  It's even more grim for the president among independents, 54 percent of whom have an unfavorable view of Obama's economic plans.

Presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney does not fare any better.  Only 37 percent have a favorable view of Romney's plans for the economy, while 47 percent view his economic outlook for the country unfavorably.  But more Americans are undecided when it comes to the former Massachusetts governor, giving him room to build support for his economic plans.  Sixteen percent have no opinion of Romney's plans for the economy, compared to only 7 percent who have yet to make up their minds on Obama's plans.  

The top two Hawaii Democrats vying to replace longtime U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka (D) are deadlocked, according to a new poll released Tuesday. 

In the latest survey from Civil Beat, Ed Case and U.S. House Rep. Mazie Hirono both at 46 percent among Hawaii voters.  Case represented Hawaii's 2nd Congressional District from 2002-2007, when Hirono succeeded him.  The two faced each other in a 2002 Democratic gubernatorial primary, which Hirono won narrowly.  

Hawaii Democrats will select their nominee in a statewide primary on August 11, with the winner likely to face Republican Gov. Linda Lingle. Lingle became the state's first female governor after defeating Hirono in the 2002 general election campaign.