Tierney Sneed

Tierney Sneed is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. She previously worked for U.S. News and World Report. She grew up in Florida and attended Georgetown University.

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Jeb Bush called for Donald Trump to apologize to his wife Columba during Wednesday's GOP presidential debate for comments Trump made about her in an interview in July, but Trump refused.

Trump was quoted as saying at the time that "if my wife were from Mexico, I think I would have a soft spot for people from Mexico." Columba is a Mexican immigrant.

"To subject my wife into the middle of a raucous political conversation was completely inappropriate and I hope you apologize for that," Bush told Trump, standing next to him on the debate stage, when asked about the comment.

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Even though Donald Trump wasn't onstage for the lower-tier GOP debate Wednesday, that didn't stop CNN -- to the objections of those participating in debate -- from making him the subject of the first several questions.

Former Gov. George Pataki snapped at the moderator Hugh Hewitt for pressing him about his willingness to support Trump if he becomes the GOP nominee.

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A member of the House Freedom Caucus -- the hard-right conservative group of representatives known for engineering government crises from the basement of Tortilla Coast -- announced his resignation from the group Wednesday over its threats to shut down the government over Planned Parenthood funding.

Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA) released a letter to Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), the caucus' chairman, explaining his reasons for resigning. He said that while he supports the conservative principals espoused by the group, he objects to its tactics, pointing to the House Freedom Caucus-driven antics this year over homeland security funding, a trade bill, the Iran deal and now, Planned Parenthood.

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With threats of a government shutdown and a possible plot to oust House Speaker John Boehner, a Boehner ally lobbed the ultimate insult at the hardliners in his party: he compared them to Saul Alinsky, a lefty community organizer who became known in the 1950s and 1960s for embracing radicalism.

"This is a continuation of the strange virus that’s running through the Republican Party, which I define as a weird form of right-wing Marxism where people are using Saul Alinsky-type tactics,” Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) told the Washington Post.

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A motion by Kim Davis -- the anti-gay marriage clerk in Kentucky -- to halt a requirement that she issue marriage licenses to gay couples was denied by a federal appeals court Tuesday.

Davis is suing Kentucky Gov. Steven Beshear (D) and state librarian Wayne Onkst for enforcing a requirement that Kentucky clerks grant same-sex marriage licenses, which she objects to on religious grounds. She had ask the 6th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to temporarily halt the requirement while the lawsuit proceeds.

"Davis has not demonstrated a substantial likelihood of success on her federal constitutional claims," the panel of judges said in their order denying the request.

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As the Sept. 30 deadline to fund the federal government approaches and conservatives dig in on a fight to defund Planned Parenthood, the White House and Senate Democratic leadership signaled they would be open to a short-term spending bill to avoid a government shutdown.

From the Senate floor Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said that any short-term bill must be "clean."

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A leading conservative lawmaker eager to dethrone House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) is ratcheting up the pressure for a shutdown battle over Planned Parenthood that neither Boehner nor Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) want and are trying desperately to avoid.

“I cannot and will not fund a vile, racist organization who specializes in convincing mothers to kill their children and then selling their baby parts to the highest bidder," Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) said in a written statement to TPM Tuesday. "During the funding debate two years ago, Mitch McConnell finagled a $2.8 billion dam for his home state. And now when it comes to keeping his pro-life campaign promises, I’m pretty certain he still knows how the process works.”

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