Pushing the Envelope:

A menacing letter addressed to President Obama and said to possibly contain ricin was intercepted before it reached its intended target, the Secret Service confirmed Thursday. The letter was similar to those sent last week to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and his gun control group in Washington, D.C. A Secret Service spokesman says the letter sent to the president has been turned over to the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force for further investigation. NBC 4 in New York reports: “The text of that mailing was identical to the letters sent to the mayor and his gun group, which threatened: ‘what’s in this letter is nothing compared to what I’ve got planned for you,’ police and law enforcement sources said.” (Read more)

Tea and No Sympathy: During a conference call sponsored by the tea party Wednesday night, a participant suggested that the best way to get Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, to change her mind on the issue of immigration reform was to “shoot her.” The threat of violence against the sitting senator elicited not shock, but laughs from other callers on the line. It should be noted that threatening to assassinate a U.S. senator is a federal crime. According to Think Progress: “Despite the ‘joking’ nature of the caller, this is not the first time that Tea Partiers have made explicit threats toward government officials. A Tea Partier once threatened a state senator for supporting a bill he believed would lead to government seizure of land, and famed Tea Partier Glenn Beck also called for the use of Special Ops to incite a revolution.” (Read more)

For the Record: The Associated Press, The New York Times, CNN and The Huffington Post will all decline an invitation to meet with Attorney General Eric Holder regarding guidelines on how to handle investigations into leaks unless the meeting is on the record. Holder wants the discussion with media representatives to be off the record. Among the news outlets that plan to attend regardless of whether it is on or off the record: Politico, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal. The meeting was scheduled after the revelation that the Obama administration obtained phone records from the AP and the phone records and email of a Fox News reporter. (Read more)

Family Disagreement: Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush disagrees with his mother Barbara Bush’s recent assertion that there have been two many Bushes in the White House. The former first lady told NBC’s “Today” last month that she thought that Jeb was “by far the best qualified man” for the office, but that the country has “had enough Bushes” in the Oval Office. Countered Jeb during a speech to business and government leaders in Michigan on Wednesday: “What can I tell you? All I can say is we all have mothers, right?” He added: “She is totally liberated, and God bless her.” Jeb Bush’s name has been floated as a possible Republican presidential contender, but so far he said he’s unsure whether he will run for the office formerly held by his father and his brother. (Read more)

Mitt’s Man: We’re still a few years off from the 2016 presidential election, but Mitt Romney has evidently already made up his mind as to whom he wants to represent the Republican side. According to Ann Romney, the former Republican presidential nominee is “very, very partial” to his ex-running mate, Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan. She added, however, that she and her husband “don’t even know if he’s going to run.” Romney made the remarks during an interview with CBS News on Thursday. (Read more)

Video of the Day: Conservative commentator Erick Erickson responded to a recent Pew Study that reported women to be the primary or sole breadwinner in 40 percent of American households with children by making sexist statements. “Professor Erickson” tried to explain that liberals who defended the study as a positive development are “anti-science” because, hey, biology! “When you look at biology — when you look at the natural world — the roles of a male and a female in society and in other animals, the male typically is the dominant role,” Erickson told Fox Business on Wednesday. “The female, it’s not antithesis, or it’s not competing, it’s a complementary role.” The “science lesson,” if one could call it that, is almost funny coming from the man who tells us we should get used to climate change rather than try to solve the problem.

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