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How did we get from nearly $6 trillion projected surpluses in 2001 to $6 trillion in new debt?

As President Obama and Republican leaders in Congress square off on the debt-cutting measures that could send us over the fiscal cliff, “it’s crucial to remember the source of our deficit and debt. The Center for American Progress’ Michael Linden explains the laws passed during the Bush administration along with the wars and the bad economy over a decade made up 86 percent of the debt we’ve accumulated since 2001. President Obama’s spending and the stimulus are responsible for only 14 percent.

Keep that in mind as Republicans demand concessions from the president and the middle class.

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The political world is still digesting Tuesday’s referendum vote in Kansas, where voters resoundingly rejected a proposed amendment that would have removed constitutional protections for abortion rights in this Republican-dominated state. The final result was not even close, with the pro-choice side winning 59 percent of the vote in the first direct political test of abortion rights since the Republican appointees on the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade over a month ago.

The referendum received high turnout despite being scheduled during a summer primary, which typically should have favored conservatives in this red state. In fact, a large number of independent voters participated in the referendum outside of the party primaries, while NBC News elections expert Steve Kornacki has estimated that at least 20 percent of Republican voters opposed the amendment. The referendum’s defeat also occurred despite weeks of national and local media coverage that has often platformed anti-abortion advocates with little pushback.

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Former President Donald Trump

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Attorneys for Donald Trump, the former president, are now in direct talks with officials from the U.S. Dept. of Justice.

CNN calls it “the first sign of talks between the two sides as the criminal probe into January 6, 2021, accelerates.”

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