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Study: Lawmakers Assume Voters Are Way More Conservative Than They Are

(TPM) Researchers from UC Berkeley and the Univeristy of Michigan dug up some surprising results after posing the question: How much do lawmakers really know about their voters' political views?

"Pick an American state legislator at random, and chances are that he or she will have massive misperceptions about district views on big-ticket issues, typically missing the mark by 15 percentage points," David Broockman and Christopher Skovron wrote in a study for the Scholarly Strategy Network originally published in 2013.

To investigate the question, the duo surveyed thousands of state legislators and compared their perceptions of voters to people's actual views, derived from a large body of public opinion data.


Oregon Bans Conversion Therapy

(Advocate) Oregon Gov. Kate Brown Monday signed into law House Bill 2307, which bans the use of so-called conversion therapy on minors.

The bill passed the Oregon Senate earlier this month by a vote of 21-3, after passing the House in March. Oregon now joins California, New Jersey, and the District of Columbia in outlawing the scientifically discredited therapy, which attempts to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.


The Slow-Mo Scandal That Could Crush Scott Walker's Presidential Hopes

(Mother Jones) In 2010, Scott Walker was the young, hyperambitious executive of Milwaukee County and one of three candidates angling for the Wisconsin Republican gubernatorial nomination. Part of his official duties included overseeing Operation Freedom, a charity event that raised money for veterans and their families. When Walker's chief of staff caught wind that $11,000 of the nonprofit's money had gone missing, Walker had his office ask the local district attorney to investigate. Now that he's seeking the Republican presidential nomination, he probably wishes it hadn't.

Faygo Kid

Obama: Denying climate change erodes national security

(USA Today) Obama's convocation speech at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Wednesday was his most forceful argument yet that climate change ranks alongside terrorism as a grave threat to America's future.

"I know there are some folks back in Washington who refuse to admit that climate change is real," he told graduating cadets in New London, Conn. "Denying it or refusing to deal with it undermines our national security. ... Politicians who say they care about military readiness need to care about this as well."


The Girl Scouts of America announce they will accept transgender kids

Girl Scouts is proud to be the premiere leadership organization for girls in the country. Placement of transgender youth is handled on a case-by-case basis, with the welfare and best interests of the child and the members of the troop/group in question a top priority. That said, if the child is recognized by the family and school/community as a girl and lives culturally as a girl, then Girl Scouts is an organization that can serve her in a setting that is both emotionally and physically safe.


Anti-Obamacare Republican renounces ‘pigheaded’ GOP — and he wants you to know why

(Rawstory) The 49-year-old South Carolina man who garnered attention — and thousands of dollars in donations — after revealing his medical issues online is now supporting the Affordable Care Act and turning away from the GOP, Think Progress reported.

“Now that I’m looking at what each party represents, my wife and I are both saying, ‘Hey, we’re not Republicans!'” Luis Lang said, adding that he wants to rip his voting registration card up on national television to confirm his change of political affiliation.


Senator Bernie Sanders does Reddit AMA

Hi Reddit. I'm Senator Bernie Sanders. I'll start answering questions at 4 p.m. ET. Please join our campaign for president at BernieSanders.com/Reddit. Before we begin, let me also thank the grassroots Reddit organizers over at /r/SandersforPresident for all of their support. Great work. AMA on Reddit

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Latest Breaking News

Israel's New Deputy Foreign Minister: 'This Land Is Ours. All Of It Is Ours'

4 hrs ago - Israel’s new deputy foreign minister on Thursday delivered a defiant message to the international community, saying that Israel owes no apologies for its policies in the Holy Land and citing religious texts to back her belief that it belongs to the ... (Guardian UK)

FBI Director Fears ISIS Could Launch Cyber Attack Against U.S.

4 hrs ago - (CNN) — ISIS is “waking up” to the idea of using sophisticated malware to cyber-attack critical infrastructure in the U.S., FBI Director James Comey said Wednesday, May 20, 2015. “Logic tells me it’s coming,” and that the terror group is “looking in ... (CNN)

Federal Judge Rules Again That Gay Couples Have Right to Wed in Alabama

5 hrs ago - Federal judge rules again that gay couples have right to wed in Alabama Thu May 21, 2015 11:50pm EDT (Reuters) - A federal judge on Thursday reaffirmed her earlier ruling that same-sex couples in Alabama have a right to wed under the Constitution, ... (Associated Press)

Police: Suspect arrested in D.C. quadruple homicide

6 hrs ago - A suspect charged in the killing of three family members and a housekeeper last week in a $4.5 million mansion in Washington, D.C., was taken into custody late Thursday, police said. Daron Dylon Wint, age 34, of Maryland was taken into custody in No ... (USA Today)

Vote in Ireland Could Complete a Rapid Shift on Gay Marriage

6 hrs ago - DUBLIN — In 1993, Ireland was among the last countries in the Western World to decriminalize homosexuality. Some 22 years later, it could become the first to legalize same-sex marriages by popular vote. With a rapidity that has astonished even propo ... (New York Times)

US stocks notch record as rising oil boosts energy sector

6 hrs ago - By STEVE ROTHWELL NEW YORK (AP) — The stock market eked out another record close on Thursday as rising oil prices boosted energy stocks. Best Buy was among the biggest gainers after reporting earnings that exceeded the expectations of Wall Street a ... (AP-Excite)

Report: Pipeline in Calif. spill operated below capacity

7 hrs ago - snip: About 4 miles of beach were inundated with oil, and the Coast Guard reported Wednesday that two slicks stretched over 9 miles. snip: It's the second time in a year that a Plains pipeline has ruptured in California. Last May, a stretch of a 1 ... (USA Today)

NH Senate Votes To End Medicaid Expansion And Leave 40,000 Stranded Without Insurance

7 hrs ago - Today, the New Hampshire Senate voted straight down party lines against continuing the state’s partisan Medicaid expansion. New Hampshire Senate Republicans including Jeb Bradley have praised the state’s bipartisan Medicaid expansion program, saying ... (NH Labor News)

Cleanup Of Oil-Fouled California Beach Could Take Months

7 hrs ago - US | Thu May 21, 2015 9:32pm EDT The U.S. Coast Guard captain overseeing cleanup of oil spilled from a pipeline rupture that closed two California state beaches and fouled offshore waters near Santa Barbara said on Thursday it may take months to res ... (Reuters)

53 people in 9 states sickened after eating raw tuna

8 hrs ago - LOS ANGELES (AP) — Health officials are investigating a salmonella outbreak likely linked to raw tuna that has sickened 53 people in nine states. The California Department of Public Health said Thursday that 31 of the cases are there. Other affected ... (AP)

Hillary Clinton's first 2016 rally set for June 13

8 hrs ago - Hillary Clinton will hold her presidential campaign’s first major event, a formal announcement rally, on June 13, according to a post on her official Twitter account Thursday afternoon. The Democratic 2016 front-runner had initially intended to ho ... (Politico)

British Police Find Jimmy Savile Case Has Spurred Reports of Child Sexual Abuse

8 hrs ago - LONDON — Jimmy Savile, the disgraced British television personality the authorities say sexually abused dozens of victims over more than two decades, died before he could be prosecuted. But new data released this week by the police suggests that reve ... (The New York Times)

Atlantic City union workers find unique way to spotlight casino labor strife

8 hrs ago - By Jeff Goldman ATLANTIC CITY — If you're headed to either the Tropicana or the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City for Memorial Day weekend, you might be greeted by a message asking you to stay away. A union in the middle of a prolonged battle with billion ... (NJ.com)

The Latest on Waco Shooting: Police Defend Arrests

9 hrs ago - Police are defending themselves from suggestions that innocent bystanders might have been swept up in the arrests of about 170 people after a biker shootout at a Texas restaurant left nine dead. Waco police spokesman Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said Thu ... (ABC News)

Illinois lawmakers pass marijuana decriminalization bill

10 hrs ago - The Illinois Senate on Thursday passed a bill decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, sending it to the governor for signature. The bill, which passed 37-19 vote, makes possession of up to 15 grams of marijuana a civil law violatio ... (Reuters)

U.S. vows to continue patrols after China warns spy plane

10 hrs ago - The United States vowed on Thursday to keep up air and sea patrols in international waters after the Chinese navy repeatedly warned a U.S. surveillance plane to leave the airspace over artificial islands China is creating in the disputed South China ... (Reuters)

U.S. Military Confirms First Civilian Casualties In War Against Islamic State

10 hrs ago - By Missy Ryan and Karen DeYoung May 21 at 5:47 PM American airstrikes have killed at least two civilians since they began in Iraq and Syria last year, the Pentagon said Thursday, in its first acknowledgment of noncombatant deaths in the U.S ... (Washington Post)

Washington officer shoots men accused of earlier beer theft

10 hrs ago - Washington officer shoots men accused of earlier beer theft By RACHEL LA CORTE, Associated Press | May 21, 2015 | Updated: May 21, 2015 5:58pm OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Two stepbrothers suspected of trying to steal beer from a grocery store were not a ... (Associated Press)

Union bulletin: Gov. Rauner wants wage freeze, vacation and holiday time reductions

10 hrs ago - By Doug Finke The Rauner administration is seeking a wage freeze from unionized state workers as well as reductions in vacation and holiday time, the American Federation of State County and Municipal employees said in a bulletin sent to members. A ... (SJ-R)

Honolulu mayor vetoes expanded sit-lie ban

10 hrs ago - Honolulu mayor vetoes expanded sit-lie ban By CATHY BUSSEWITZ, Associated Press | May 21, 2015 | Updated: May 21, 2015 4:50pm HONOLULU (AP) — Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has vetoed a bill that would have expanded the city's ban on sitting and lyi ... (Associated Press)

Justice Department eyes voting reforms for American Indians

10 hrs ago - Justice Department eyes voting reforms for American Indians By FELICIA FONSECA, Associated Press | May 21, 2015 | Updated: May 21, 2015 5:00pm FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Justice is seeking legislation that would require state a ... (Associated Press)

Josh Duggar Admits Molestation, Resigns from Family Research Council

10 hrs ago - Josh Duggar has resigned as Executive Director of the Family Research Council, acknowledging he sexually molested underage girls including some of his sisters, calling his conduct inexcusable. Josh just told People, "Twelve years ago, as a young tee ... (TMZ)

GOP blocks Warren trade bill demanding transparency

11 hrs ago - Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) blocked legislation from Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) on Thursday that could have complicated ongoing trade talks by demanding public disclosure of deals before they get “fast-track” status. Warren and Sen. Joe Manchin ( ... (The Hill)

No more impunity for Romero's murder, says El Salvador prosecutor

11 hrs ago - No more impunity for Romero's murder, says El Salvador prosecutor EFE | San Salvador 21 May 2015 By Hugo Sanchez. The investigation of the 1980 assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero should be reopened and impunity for the killers - in which the ... (EFE (Spain))

Nursing home chain asks judge to dismiss NM lawsuit

12 hrs ago - US, Cuba see differences as talks open May 22, 2015 By - Associated Press - Thursday, May 21, 2015 SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - A Texas-based nursing home chain has asked a judge to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office, ca ... (Associated Press)

Baltimore Grand Jury Indicts Six Officers in Freddie Gray's Death

12 hrs ago - A grand jury in Baltimore has indicted six officers in the death of Freddie Gray, the city's top prosecutor said Thursday. In a hasty news conference, State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby reeled off the charges handed down by the grand jury against the of ... (NBC)

The Latest on Waco shooting: Neighbor eatery sues Twin Peaks

12 hrs ago - A Texas restaurant that was the scene of a motorcycle club conference that ended in gunfire is being sued by a restaurant next door. A lawsuit was filed Thursday in Dallas. Attorneys for Don Carlos Mexican Restaurant allege the Twin Peaks restaurant ... (AP)

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu signs his own executive order, responds to Gov. Bobby Jindal

12 hrs ago - New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu announced Thursday that he's signed an executive order "affirming discrimination will not be tolerated in" New Orleans. “With this executive order, I am issuing a clarifying call to the nation that New Orleans is an ... (The New Orleans Advocate)

Lawmakers pass bill allowing driver's licenses for young immigrants

12 hrs ago - By Paul Hammel LINCOLN — State lawmakers gave final approval Thursday to a bill ending Nebraska’s status as the only state to deny driver’s licenses to the children of illegal immigrants. The vote on the bill was 34-9, which would be four more vote ... (Omaha World Herald)

Scott Walker misses jobs promise by about 121,000 jobs

13 hrs ago - Gov. Scott Walker made it only about halfway toward fulfilling his signature 2010 campaign promise — repeated in the 2012 recall — that 250,000 private-sector jobs would be created over four years under his leadership. New figures released by the Re ... (Twin Cities/Pioneer Press)