2:14 PM, May 15, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Pablo Pantoja made news this week by publicly leaving the Republican party to become a Democrat. "In a letter released by The Florida Nation on Monday, RNC State Director Of Florida Outreach Pablo Pantoja announced that he is changing his political affiliation to the Democratic Party," the Huffington Post reported.
"It doesn’t take much to see the culture of intolerance surrounding the Republican Party today," he wrote. "I have wondered before about the seemingly harsh undertones about immigrants and others. Look no further; a well-known organization recently confirms the intolerance of that which seems different or strange to them."
The weird thing is, Pantoja is said to have been seeking employment by the Republican National Committee only months earlier. And only when those efforts failed did Pantoja apparently decide that the Republican party was too intolerant for him to call himself a member.
Reached by the phone this afternoon, Pantoja confirmed that he did recently seek a job with the Republican National Committee. But, citing complications with his current employer, Pantoja said he was unable to discuss the matter on the record.
He worked for the Republican party in Florida for about 12 weeks, ending employment there almost a year ago, back in July. He is said to have quit when his portfolio wasn't expanded, and tried almost immediately to get his job back. That effort was not successful.
Pantoja is currently employed by the LIBRE Initiative, a group devoted to economic freedom. A spokesman for LIBRE called the matter "personal."
9:47 AM, May 7, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Elizabeth Colbert-Busch, the Democratic nominee for the South Carolina First Congressional District special election, is listed twice on today's ballot. Colbert-Busch is also the nominee of the Working Families party.
The special election is today. Here's a screen shot of the ballot those South Carolina voters will see today, courtesy of the South Carolina State Election Commission:
12:00 AM, May 4, 2013 • By IRWIN M. STELZER
A funny thing happened to our dysfunctional government. It functioned, unwittingly perhaps, but function it did. President Obama forced Republicans, unwilling to risk the political consequences of taking America over the fiscal cliff, to accept a $180 billion tax increase.
5:31 PM, Apr 26, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
As Pete Kasperowicz reports in The Hill, some Democratic lawmakers have found the solution. Solution to what, you ask. Well, to unfairness, which is big this week, what with the effort to make internet businesses collect sales taxes and deal with the rules and interpretations of some 9,000 different taxing jurisdictions.
11:17 AM, Apr 26, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Legislators who voted in favor of Obamacare in 2010 appear to be getting jumpy as implementation of the law and their campaigns for reelection draw ever closer. First, Max Baucus says he fears a "train wreck," when the bill begins to go into effect. Then, he announced he will not run for re-election. Now, as Robert Pear reports in the New York Times:
9:47 AM, Apr 25, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Congress is reportedly trying to exempt itself from Obamacare. "Congressional leaders in both parties are engaged in high-level, confidential talks" to figure out how to do this, Politico reports.
7:32 AM, Apr 25, 2013 • By JERYL BIER
Congress is preparing to take action on a bipartisan proposal to raise taxes on flu vaccines. This is not a tax on the wealthy, but rather on a broad swath of Americans, or at least those who choose to be immunized against the flu.
8:20 AM, Apr 17, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Joe Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia, says the gun bill will not pass the Democratic-controlled Senate today. NBC reports:
12:00 AM, Apr 13, 2013 • By IRWIN M. STELZER
To understand the American economy, you have to answer four questions. How can it be that unemployment remains high at the same time the number of job vacancies is rising? Will consumers keep buying cars and houses at anything like the current pace despite the recent increase in payroll taxes? How long will Ben Bernanke’s Fed keep printing money to keep interest rates close to zero? Finally, will Washington do what the president asks and get out of the way of an economy “poised for progress”?
8:12 AM, Apr 11, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz made a special request of the United States Capitol Police for her staff members to be treated well during sequester:
12:22 PM, Apr 10, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
MSNBC has hired a new producer. This one comes directly from the Democratic party.
As Mike Allen reports in this morning's "Playbook":