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02/15/12 07:00PM

Bill Wolff, executive producer for the Rachel Maddow Show, shares a preview of tonight’s show – the Maine GOP caucus reaches a new level of farce, plus the... watch

And many more...

And many more...

02/15/12 06:51PM

TRMS would like to thank everyone for wishing the great state of Arizona a happy 100th birthday and add these wishes of our own: We kid because we love —have you ever seen a celebrity roast?— and mostly we're just jealous because Arizona (and its people) are so off-the-charts beautiful. We got many, many astute comments, like this one:akmadison: Happy Centennial, Arizona! As you walk along life's highway, pause to consider that you might all be considered illegal immigrants--to the Navajo...But the one I like best is this:Angeni Lemieux: Happy 100th Birthday! read more

Wednesday's Mini-Report

02/15/12 05:31PM

Today's edition of quick hits:* Contradictory reports out of Tehran today over Iranian threats to cut off oil to six countries in Europe.Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy* Officials in Greece have reportedly "met the final two demands set by the country's international lenders to seal a bailout, paving the way for a deal and an agreement to ease its debt burden to be announced on Monday."* In the meantime, as Europe slips closer to a recession, it's worth remembering a simple rule: austerity doesn't work.* Syria: "With Syrian cities under fire and reside read more

Michael Grimm's health care problem

Michael Grimm's health care problem

02/15/12 04:40PM

Rep. Michael Grimm (R-N.Y.) was delighted this week to announce more taxpayer spending in his district: the Richmond University Medical Center would receive a $3 million annual increase, thanks to aid from Washington."I have worked tirelessly, from day one, to address the issue of a looming physician shortage," Mr. Grimm said a statement touting the new funding. "his announcement to reward RUMC with additional residency slots is welcomed news."The Staten Island Advance echoed this sentiment, reporting Mr. read more

Paul Ryan was against Social Security before he was for it.

Paul Ryan forgets the recent past

02/15/12 03:36PM

The bipartisan agreement on the payroll tax break is not yet final, though officials in both parties on Capitol Hill are optimistic about the deal coming together. Some high-profile opponents, however, remain unconvinced.House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Wednesday that he has "a problem" with the tentative agreement to extend the payroll tax cut without paying for it.Ryan warned that the move could erode the Social Security Trust Fund, which is funded by the payroll tax."Members on our side of the aisle are divided on this question. read more

'Some people' believe conspiracy theories

'Some people' believe conspiracy theories

02/15/12 01:01PM

When it comes to recent evidence pointing to a stronger economy, the right is clearly concerned that the news will bolster President Obama's re-election odds. That's understandable; Obama's rising approval ratings are not an accident, and are tied directly to recent economic trends.Republicans have a few options. They can try to change the subject, for example, and shift attention to culture-war fights such as the war on contraception. read more

Who benefits from health care reform?

Who benefits from health care reform?

02/15/12 12:31PM

Just about every American stands to get new benefits from the Affordable Care Act, if and when it's fully implemented. Even those who like their current coverage will get some additional piece of mind from consumer safeguards.But the Kaiser Family Foundation has a new report out today noting that some stand to benefit more than others. In this case, Kaiser takes a look at the breakdown by geography. (via Kay at Balloon Juice)As Sarah Kliff explained, the above image breaks down the nation by zip code, looking for households earning less than 400% of the federal poverty rate. read more

Wednesday's campaign round-up

02/15/12 12:00PM

Today's installment of campaign-related news items that won't necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:* The latest New York Times/CBS News poll shows President Obama leading each of his Republican rivals in hypothetical matchups. Mitt Romney comes closest, and he trails by six, 48% to 42%. The two were tied in the same poll a month ago.* A new CNN poll shows Rick Santorum leading Romney at the national level, 34% to 32%. read more

A 'uniquely terrible' transportation bill

02/15/12 11:30AM

As a rule, the details of massive transportation bills in Congress are dull enough to make reasonable folks' eyes glaze over. But the one pending on Capitol Hill right now is not just another transportation bill.Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, a former Republican congressman, recently explained, "It hollows out our No. 1 priority, which is safety, and frankly, it hollows out the guts of the transportation efforts that we've been about for the last three years. read more

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