Zoe Schlanger

Zoë Schlanger is Frontpage Editor at TPM. Zoë was a TPM intern in 2011, and prior to returning here she was editor in chief of NYU Local, the alternative independent student news site at NYU. Zoë has interned at places like the Nation, InsideClimate News, The Rachel Maddow Show and Gothamist. She can be reached at zoe@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Zoe

In an interview with Germany's Der Spiegel last year, Egypt's new Prime Minister Mohamed ElBaradei criticized the country's constitutional commission for its inclusion of a member who denied the Holocaust.

"Who sits in this group? One person, who wants to ban music, because it's allegedly against Sharia law; another, who denies the Holocaust; another, who openly condemns democracy," ElBaradei said.

His comment drew fire from the Muslim Brotherhood, who most recently invoked the interview in a blog post accusing Egypt's new interim President Adly Mansour of participating in a global conspiracy involving the United States, Israel and ElBaradei, the Washington Post reported.

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Sen. John McCain urged the US government to suspend financial aid to the Egyptian army Friday evening, Al Jazeera reported.

“We cannot repeat the same mistakes that we made in other times of our history by supporting removal of freely elected governments,” McCain said.

Since 1979, US has routinely granted financial aid to Egypt, and the country receives the second-highest amount of American financial assistance after Israel, according to Al Jazeera. 

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A young girl was shot in the shoulder while she watched Fourth of July fireworks in Oklmulgee, Oklahoma, KWTV Channel 9 News reported.

Police believe the shot was fired from a distance. 

“What goes up, must come down,” Stephen Sutton, from Oklahoma City, said according to the Examiner. “A bullet doesn't just disappear when it leaves a gun. It has land somewhere. Until people learn that and stop shooting guns in the air, there will be more accidents like this. People need to practice gun safety, not gun stupidity.”

The toddler was taken to a local hospital.

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A South Dakota man fell asleep on his back porch while holding a loaded handgun, and accidentally shot himself in the midsection when a relative turned on the porch light, the Daily Republic reported.

The 34-year-old man suffered minor flesh wounds and was able to transport himself to the hospital.

Baltimore man Lassiter Basket, 82, was careful to use blanks and shoot indoors when he fired his handgun to celebrate the Fourth of July, the Baltimore Sun reported. Fragments of a blank moved through his great-granddaughter's bedroom wall, and burned into her wrists and leg. 

"[Blanks are] just as dangerous. As you can see they can hurt people as well," Baltimore police spokeswoman Det. Angela Carter-Watson told the Baltimore Sun. 

The 17-year-old suffered minor injuries and was brought to a local hospital Thursday evening.

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Stock markets wobble as employment boom heightens jitters over central bank's $85bn-a-month bond-buying programme. Read this story on the Guardian here.

Stock markets came under pressure and the dollar soared on Friday after better-than-expected US employment figures brought the end of the huge stimulus package for the economy a step closer.

The US added 195,000 jobs in June, beating expectations but leaving the unemployment rate unchanged at 7.6%. The headline figure was better than the 160,000 forecast by economists, while the numbers for the two previous months were revised upwards.

Last month the US Federal Reserve chairman, Ben Bernanke, sent markets tumbling when he hinted that the central bank's $85bn-a-month bond-buying programme might ease by the end of the year if the economy continued to strengthen.

The jobs figures added further evidence that could prompt the Fed to turn off the money taps that have helped support global markets for months.

Tanweer Akram at ING said: "The decent improvement in employment is likely to induce the Fed to begin moderately tapering its asset purchase programme by September, even though the unemployment rate is still high ... while inflation is undershooting the Fed's long-term target."

After an early surge when the figures were released, stock markets fell, with the FTSE 100 closing down 0.72% at 6375.5, having risen to 6,498. In the US, Wall Street was up just 16 points, or 0.1%, by the time London closed.

The dollar rose to a near three-year high against major currencies. Sterling slid to a near four-month-low against the dollar at $1.4855, before recovering to $1.4915, down 1.5 cents.

US Treasury yields - in effect the interest rate on government bonds - rose 0.19 basis points to 2.69% as investors bet on an end to the Fed's bond-buying programme, while gold tumbled 3% to $1,211 an ounce.

The pound was also weaker, after the Bank of England governor said on Thursday that UK interest rates were not likely to rise in the foreseeable future.

Last month, Bernanke said the US economy was improving but Washington's budget cuts were stalling the recovery. Some business leaders and Republicans argue that the imposition of the president's healthcare laws is slowing hiring, while Democrats say Republican-backed spending cuts are hurting the economy.

Responding to the latest monthly figures, Alan Krueger, chairman of the White House's council of economic advisers, said: "In the four years since the recession ended in June 2009, the economy has added 5.3m jobs, thanks to the resilience of the American people and policies like the Recovery Act, which helped bring the recession to an end and put us on the path to recovery. With the recovery gaining traction, now is not the time for Washington to impose self-inflicted wounds on the economy."

But Barack Obama's opponents said his policies were holding back further growth in the jobs market. The Republican House speaker, John Boehner, said: "There's some good news in this report, but economic growth is still tepid, the unemployment rate is far too high, and the president continues to promote policies that undermine robust job creation.

"Just look at the last few weeks: the president admits that his healthcare law is a drag on businesses; he threatens to veto a bill based on his own plan to make paying for college easier, then watches quietly as Senate Democrats let interest rates double; and he makes up new reasons to delay the Keystone pipeline in a speech about imposing a national energy tax.

"Imagine how many jobs would be created if the president stopped trying to expand government and started working with Republicans on policies that create sustained economic growth and expand opportunity for all Americans."

The Bureau of Labour Statistics, which compiles the report, said leisure and hospitality added 75,000 jobs in June. Monthly job growth in this industry has averaged 55,000 in 2013, almost twice the median gain of 30,000 per month in 2012. Employment in professional and business services rose by 53,000 in June.

Employment in most other major industries, including mining and logging, construction, manufacturing, and transportation and warehousing, showed little change. The government continued to cut jobs during the month, shedding another 5,000 positions to comprise 65,000 in the past 12 months.

The number of long-term unemployed (those left jobless for 27 weeks or more) was essentially unchanged at 4.3m, accounting for 36.7% of the unemployed. Unemployment rates for teenagers (24%), black people (13.7%), and Hispanics (9.1%) remained stubbornly high.

Dan Greenhaus, chief global strategist at BTIG called the latest figures a "darn good report". In a note to investors he highlighted a 0.4% rise in average hourly earnings, "tied for the highest rate of increase during the entire recovery. Finally, yes the unemployment rate did hold steady but it did so for all the right reasons. The number of unemployed people in the economy barely budged while the number of people working rose considerably," he wrote.

On Wednesday, ADP, the payroll processor, said the private sector had added 188,000 jobs from May to June. The previous month's tally was revised down marginally from 135,000 to 134,000.

The rise was across the economy, it said. Goods-producing employment rose by 27,000 jobs in June, the largest increase in four months. Construction payrolls rose by 21,000 in June, its biggest gain since January, and manufacturers added 1,000 jobs after a two-month decline.

Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody's Analytics, which helps compile the ADP report, said: "The job market continues to gracefully navigate through the strongly blowing fiscal headwinds. Healthcare reform does not appear to be significantly hampering job growth, at least not so far. Job gains are broad based across industries and businesses of all sizes."

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Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ) held an event in New Hampshire Friday urging the state's political leaders to fight for an expansion of background checks on gun purchases, the Associated Press reported. Giffords, 42, survived an assassination attempt in January 2011.

Associated Press reporter Steve Peoples posted this photo on Twitter, which he describes as showing a protester at the event holding an AR-15 and taking a nap:


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Seventeen people were killed in Friday's clashes between pro- and anti-Morsi protestors, Egypt's health ministry reported, according to Reuters. The death toll rose from seven killed earlier today.

Egyptian military have deployed armored vehicles onto the bridge where protesters are in the midst of violent clashes in Cairo, AP reports.