In defeating House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, David Brat didn't garner the support of big national Tea Party groups or heavily-funded outside groups. Instead, his energetic grassroots campaign was buoyed by a few prominent conservative voices, most notably, Laura Ingraham.
As The New York Times notes, Ingraham even spoke at a rally for Brat:
Ms. Ingraham was so taken aback at the size of the crowd — inside the clubhouse, hundreds of people crammed onto staircase landings, leaned over railings, and peered down at her from above — she wondered aloud what was really going on.
"We all looked at each other, saying, 'He could totally win,'" Ms. Ingraham said in an interview. "I've had two moments in American politics in the last 15 years where I knew there was a big change afoot. One was when I left the Iowa caucuses in 2008. I walked out of there and said to a friend, 'Barack Obama is going to win.' And the other was when I left that rally last Tuesday." [The New York Times]
There were other prominent conservative boosters. Some (like radio host Mark Levin and Breitbart.com) were mentioned in the article, others, like Daily Caller blogger Mickey Kaus, were omitted. But Ingraham is arguably the biggest name, and she seems to relish this role as kingmaker:
— Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) June 12, 2014
But is she a kingmaker? Not that long ago, Ingraham was among those voicing some concern that Nebraska Senate candidate Ben Sasse might be soft on immigration. By that time, however, nearly the entire conservative and tea party movement was on Sasse's side, and he easily won his primary. This time, however, Ingraham and her pals saw the potential to shock the American political world — and they had the game all to themselves. Matt K. Lewis
Here's a heartwarming story this holiday weekend: A man stolen as a baby has finally been reunited with his mother.
Travis Tolliver, who was kidnapped in Chile more than 41 years ago, just hours after his birth, has reunited at last with his mother, Nelly Reyes, in Santiago.
Reyes, 61, told CNN that hospital employees told her the baby had died after being born with a heart condition, but she was never given a certificate of death for her son. It turned out he wasn't dead at all, though Tolliver and Reyes still aren't clear who took him from her that day.
Prosecutor Mario Carroza investigated Gerardo Joannon, a priest who was accused of stealing minors and acting as a liaison between Chilean families and adoptive parents. The 1970s scheme also involved medical staff, including doctors and nurses. But Carroza told CNN the statute of limitations in Joannon's case is expired, so he can't be prosecuted.
Tolliver's adoptive parents in Tacoma, Washington, meanwhile, had no knowledge of his tragic past. He told CNN that his parents believed he was an abandoned baby. Tolliver eventually found his biological mother through DNA testing.
Andrzej Duda, representing Poland's opposition Law and Justice party, won as much as 53 percent of the vote in Poland's presidential elections on Sunday, according to exit polls. Bronislaw Komorowski, who had been Poland's president since 2010, conceded defeat in the tight election. Duda promised to increase tax benefits for families and to tax banks and retailers. The election suggests that the Polish parliament's current ruling Civic Platform, a center right party, could be unseated in the fall's parliamentary elections, or at least forced to change its policies. —Meghan DeMaria
President Obama is heading to Arlington National Cemetery on Monday to mark Memorial Day.
Obama said the annual holiday honoring America's war dead was especially meaningful this year because it is "the first Memorial Day since our war ended in Afghanistan." The U.S. still has about 9,800 troops expected to remain in Afghanistan until next year, though.
Observances began a day early on Sunday, when thousands of motorcycle riders participated in the annual Rolling Thunder rally in Washington, D.C., to draw attention to prisoners of war and soldiers missing in action. Harold Maass
A bomb squad Sunday destroyed a pressure cooker found near Washington's Capitol building. The car's owner, Israel Shimeles of Alexandria, Virginia, was arrested and charged with operating a vehicle after revocation.
Authorities said the vehicle was "suspicious" when they found the unattended car smelled of gasoline, and an investigation revealed the pressure cooker. After the pressure cooker was destroyed, authorities said that "nothing hazardous" was found in the vehicle.
Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, 69, was sentenced Monday to eight months in prison for unlawfully accepting money from a U.S. supporter. Olmert, who was forced to resign in 2009, was convicted in March in a retrial in the Jerusalem District Court.
The eight-month sentence is in addition to a six-year prison sentence Olmert received last year for a separate real estate bribery conviction. Olmert's new sentence also includes a $25,000 fine.
In 2012, Olmert was acquitted on charges including "accepting cash-stuffed envelopes" from Morris Talansky, a U.S. businessman, according to The Associated Press. Talansky apparently gave Olmert about $600,000 while Olmert was mayor of Jerusalem. But later, Olmert's former office manager, Shula Zaken, served as a state's witness, offering recorded conversations between her and Olmert about illicit money deals, which led to a retrial.
Malaysian authorities have discovered more than 139 graves they believe contain the bodies of Bangladeshi and Rohingya migrants.
Police found the graves in abandoned human trafficking camps on the country's border with Thailand. Authorities haven't announced how many bodies were recovered, but each grave likely contained between one and four bodies. The find was part of an investigation that began on May 11.
"I am deeply concerned with graves found on Malaysian soil purportedly connected to people smuggling," Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak tweeted. "We will find those responsible."
Since May 10, more than 3,600 migrants have landed in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand, and thousands more may be trapped at sea. Meghan DeMaria
Secretary of Defense Ash Carter on Sunday faulted Iraqi troops for allowing the Islamic State to conquer Ramadi, saying the homegrown forces lacked the "will to fight."
"What apparently happened is the Iraqi forces just showed no will to fight," Carter said in an appearance on CNN. "They were not outnumbered. In fact, they vastly outnumbered the opposing force. That says to me, and I think to most of us, that we have an issue with the will of the Iraqis to fight ISIL and defend themselves."
Last weekend, ISIS captured Ramadi as Iraqi troops fled and left behind weapons provided by the U.S. Days later, ISIS overran the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra as well. Jon Terbush