Sam Stein

White House Indicates Obama Willing to Circumvent Republicans on Health Reform

The White House insisted on Thursday that it was open to the use of a parliamentary procedure that would prevent health care reform from being filibustered by Republicans in the Senate.

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Obama and DNC Try Turning Angry Mobs Into Benefits

The White House and allied Democrats are ramping up efforts to make belligerent anti-Obama town hall crowds -- and the media outlets that feed their resentment -- the face of opposition to the president's health care agenda, aides tell the Huffington Post.

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Senators Urge Progressives To Keep Targeting Dems On Health Care

Two Democrats in the Senate said on Tuesday that they disagreed with President Obama's backchannel complaints that progressive advocacy groups ought to stop targeting Democrats on health care.

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Bernie Sanders Demands Democrats Commit To Stopping Health Care Filibuster

One of the Senate's most vocal progressives is demanding that the Democratic Party commit to voting against filibustering health care legislation now that, with the impending arrival of Al Franken, the party has 60 caucusing members.

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White House Smacks Gingrich for Calling Sotomayor a Racist

The White House hit back at Newt Gingrich on Wednesday for a twitter post made by the former House Speaker accusing Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor of being a racist.

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Pressure Mounts on Minnesota Governor to Seat Al Franken

DNC Chairman Tim Kaine penned a letter to Tim Pawlenty on Tuesday, asking the Minnesota Governor to persuade Norm Coleman to concede and, short of that, sign the certification of Al Franken's election once the state's Supreme Court makes its final ruling.

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MoveOn Torture Ad Highlights Cheney for Investigation

MoveOn.org is set to launch an aggressive new ad campaign calling on Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate the use of torture during the Bush administration and even raising the specter of targeting former Vice President Dick Cheney.

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Tea Parties Succeed in Turning Off Independents

It's been two days now since angry conservatives hosted a series of tea parties across the country, and the fallout has some Republicans nervous.

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Activists Jump On Stage During Larry Summers Speech

Larry Summers' address before the Economic Club in Washington D.C. on Thursday was interrupted for several minutes as a group of protesters jumped on the stage and held up a large sign behind Summers' head that said, "We Want Our $$$ Back!"

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Geithner Bank Plan Faces New Wave of Criticism

Two weeks after being introduced, Timothy Geithner's bank rescue plan is facing a new round of withering criticism from economists who say the proposal is likely to produce major losses for taxpayers as banks and investors game the system.

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Obama Takes Pot Legalization Question During Online Townhall

The White House's innovative Open for Questions forum has produced plenty of substantive questions on wonky issues. But roughly midway through, the president preemptively took one of the more popular and provocative questions of the bunch.

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Obama Asks Supporters to Go Door-to-Door Canvassing for Budget

President Barack Obama released a new video Wednesday morning through his campaign-offshoot organization, Organize for America, asking viewers to rally in support of his proposed budget.

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Robert Gibbs Slams Dick Cheney

The White House has benefited from no shortage of partisan enemies to attack. On Monday, Dick Cheney played the punching bag role, with spokesman Robert Gibbs calling the former vice president the latest member of the "Republican cabal" to be "trotted out" by the Republican Party.

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DNC Releases Top Five Limbaugh Billboard Slogans

Democrats are not slowing down their efforts to try and tie the Republican Party to Rush Limbaugh.

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Will the Stimulus Actually Kick-Start a New Economy?

While the loudest fireworks in the stimulus debate have come from Republicans on Capitol Hill, another telling, albeit quieter, argument is creating fissures among Democrats and some conservatives. It is not, necessarily, a disagreement over the size of the economic recovery package, but rather whether the legislation has the right kind of underpinning philosophy.

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RNC Candidate Causes Immigration Stir With Seriously Offensive Song

The race for the next chairman of the Republican National Committee is being waged along lines that separate the party into factions: social conservatives vs. moderates; South vs. North, outside Washington vs. the insider crowd.

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Admitting Defeat? Norm Coleman Takes New Job

Former Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman is making preparations for life after office, having signed up as a paid adviser to the Republican Jewish Coalition earlier this week.

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McCain Says GOP Must Work With Obama on Fox News

Reverting to the role of Republican foil that made him an unpopular figure for many conservatives, John McCain argued on Friday that historical circumstances should compel his GOP colleagues to work closely with Barack Obama.

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Deal or No Deal? Obama and Reid Butt Heads Over Burris

The apparent decision to seat Roland Burris came after aides to President-elect Barack Obama contacted senior Senate Democrats and suggested that they reverse course and accept Gov. Rod Blagojevich's controversial appointment, according to a senior Dem congressional aide.

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Conservatives Preparing for Franken Victory

As the window closes on Norm Coleman's chances for retaining his seat in the Senate, some conservatives are beginning to envision life without the Minnesota Republican.

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Potential Franken Victory Sends GOP into Paranoid Fits

The possible, perhaps, impending victory of Al Franken to the Senate has sent GOP officials into a paranoid tizzy.

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Gates Is Making it Hard for Obama to Staff the Pentagon

President-elect Barack Obama has run into some difficulty staffing the top rungs at the Department of Defense, with the expected short tenure of Secretary Robert Gates creating a problem for potential candidates, officials within the transition and in the defense community said.

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Is Caroline Kennedy Winning Over Skeptics?

When Caroline Kennedy first let it be known that she was interested in being New York's junior Senator, she received a chilly reception from Hillary Clinton backers and some members of the progressive community. Now, it seems, the tide of popular opinion is turning towards the former first daughter and Barack Obama confidante.

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Franken Camp Calls for Investigation of Missing Ballots

Al Franken's Senate campaign called on the Minnesota Secretary of State to launch a comprehensive investigation into the possibility of missing ballots in the state's recount election.

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Unhinged Chambliss Grabs Camera When Asked About Lawsuit

The pressures of the runoff election and the continuing questions about his ties to a large, scandal-scarred sugar company seem to be getting to Sen. Saxby Chambliss.

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Kristol Continues His Love Affair With Sarah Palin

Bill Kristol defended yet again of the choice of Sarah Palin as McCain's Vice President during a breakfast conference on Thursday. But the prominent neoconservative pundit and Weekly Standard editor did make one small concession: had John McCain tapped Sen. Joseph Lieberman for his number-two post, the results could have been just as good, if not better for the GOP ticket.

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Obama Hires Progressive Liaison for Transition Team


Veteran Democratic official Mike Lux has been tapped by Barack Obama to serve as an adviser and progressive liaison during the transition period, the Huffington Post has learned.



Lux, who worked on the Clinton administration transition efforts in 1992, confirmed the hiring but, citing a need for clearance, declined to offer further information.



The staffing move provides the Obama team with an important outlet to the progressive community -- a constituency from which the president-elect currently enjoys great support but one that has a wide range of priorities and will be holding Obama most firmly to his campaign promises once he takes office.

Was McCain Involved in a Deadly Car Crash in 1964?


For the past two months, a major American magazine and an allied news service have been engaged in a legal battle with the United States Navy over records that they believe show that John McCain once was involved in an automobile accident that injured or, perhaps, killed another individual.



Vanity Fair magazine and the National Security News Service claim to have knowledge "developed from first-hand sources" of a car crash that involved then-Lt. McCain at the main gate of a Virginia naval base in 1964, according to legal filings. The incident has been largely, if not entirely, kept from the public. And in documents suing the Navy to release pertinent information, lawyers for the NS News Service allege that a cover-up may be at play.



"Plaintiffs have also obtained documents showing that law enforcement officers were ordered back to the accident scene to retrieve personal physical effects. The Navy has never publicly acknowledged this information," one document reads. "This request involves federal government activity, as it addresses what may be an attempt by the Navy to protect by concealment the involvement of a former Navy officer, sitting Senator and Presidential candidate in a serious incident involving the injury or death of another human being."



The first request for information concerning duty assignment logs to Portsmouth Naval Hospital -- where McCain was allegedly brought after the accident -- came in the form of a Freedom of Information Act request on August 28, 2008. The Navy acknowledged receipt of the request and advised that it had located the relevant information a few weeks later, only to deny the FOIA on grounds that it didn't prove an "imminent threat to the life or physical safety of an individual" or satisfy the criteria of "a breaking news story of general public interest."

McCain Makes Moves to Run His Campaign on the Cheap


With the presidential campaign approaching its long-awaited conclusion, the McCain campaign has begun making a series of budgetary decisions designed to stretch its resources for maximum political gain.



On Tuesday, multiple news outlets reported that the Senator would be reducing his advertising presence in New Hampshire, Wisconsin, Colorado, Maine, Minnesota and -- a Democratic source alleges -- Iowa, all states that represent Electoral College opportunities.



But while Democrats greet the news as validation of Barack Obama's more envious electoral position, media analysts and political observers caution that the effect may be marginal. For starters, McCain's ad drops may not actually be taking place. Officials at various stations in Wisconsin noted that the campaign retains the prerogative to pour money back into their media market should slots be still available. Moreover, a spokesperson for WKBT in La Crosse, Wisconsin told the Huffington Post that -- far from drawing down -- the McCain camp had actually put in an additional "several thousand dollars" for advertisements on its station through November 3rd.

McCain Says Western Pennsylvania Is Racist


Sen. John McCain offered, on Tuesday, what may go down as one of the more awkward moments of this campaign cycle, in which -- speaking in Western Pennsylvania -- he declared he 'couldn't agree more' with the sentiment that some of the people from that region were openly racist.



"You know, I think you may have noticed that Senator Obama's supporters have been saying some pretty nasty things about Western Pennsylvania lately," McCain told the audience in the town of Moon Township. "And you know, I couldn't agree with them more."







Oops. It was, in many ways, a reflection of how tired these candidates have become as this nearly two-year-long campaign hits its final strides. And, to be fair, the crowd eventually got the point; booing at the reference to John Murtha, who said last week that some of his Western Pennsylvania constituents were racist. But there was a stunned silence after the gaffe.

McCain Employing GOP Operative Accused of Voter Registration Fraud


John McCain's campaign has directed $175,000 to the firm of a Republican operative accused of massive voter registration fraud in several states.



According to campaign finance records, a joint committee of the McCain-Palin campaign, the RNC and the the California Republican Party, made a $175,000 payment to the group Lincoln Strategy in June for purposes of "registering voters." The managing partner of that firm is Nathan Sproul, a renowned GOP operative who has been investigated on multiple occasions for suppressing Democratic voter turnout, throwing away registration forms and even spearheading efforts to get Ralph Nader on ballots to hinder the Democratic ticket.



In a letter to the Justice Department last October, House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers said that that Sproul's alleged activities "clearly suppress votes and violate the law."



That Sproul would come under the employment umbrella of the McCain campaign -- the Republican National Committee has also separately paid Lincoln Strategy at least $37,000 for voter registration efforts this cycle -- is not terribly surprising. Sproul, who has donated nearly $30,000 to McCain's campaign, has been in the good graces of GOP officials for the past decade despite charges of ethical and potentially legal wrongdoing.
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