GOP created Trump’s voters

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Is Donald Trump so different from Ted Cruz? From Ben Carson? The Republican establishment is in a panic over the billionaire real estate mogul, whose poll numbers continue to rise despite (or because of) his racist and Islamophobic rhetoric, his disinterest in the workings of government and his disdain for the boundaries of normal political […]

Joe Biden and the war on cancer

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After Joe Biden’s Rose Garden announcement, news reports naturally focused on his decision not to seek the presidency. But the overarching theme of his short address was something more powerful and less political: This is a great country that ought to be more optimistic about its potential, more ambitious in its goals, more confident about […]

The Pope can’t move GOP on immigration

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In a more generous political climate, an adorable little girl who gave a letter and a hug to Pope Francis could make a difference. In an era with a more pragmatic Congress and a less balkanized electorate, five-year-old Sophie Cruz could break through the gridlock around immigration reform. But we are living through a deeply-polarized […]

Donald Trump’s not-so-winning strategy

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Not so long ago, leaders of a chastened Republican Party issued a report urging a new way forward for a GOP spurned by voters of color. Following Mitt Romney’s unfortunate language about “self-deportation,” which likely contributed to his defeat, party strategists were especially concerned that the GOP find a way to reach out to Latinos, […]

Poor babies and the ‘pro-life’ crowd

Smiling Mother and Toddler

Another year, another controversy over Planned Parenthood. Selectively-edited videos filmed by an anti-abortion activist have given partisans another excuse to attack women’s reproductive services, starting with those provided by a well-established non-profit dedicated to women’s healthcare. Never mind that abortions represent a tiny percentage of Planned Parenthood’s work. Some Republicans have gone so far as […]

White panic over a browning America

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Norman Rockwell is dead. So is his America.If you find that declaration sad, or possibly slanderous, you probably have fond memories of “the way we were” during a supposedly kinder and gentler time before the civil rights movement, women’s lib and cell phones. If you don’t shed tears over that America, you may have grown […]

Why is the GOP attacking Ambassador Susan Rice?

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In 2000, John McCain seemed a respectable political figure — admired for his wartime heroism, well-regarded for his refusal to kowtow to partisan dogma, liked by journalists for his refreshing candor.  He failed that year in his bid for the Republican presidential nomination, but he ran a decent campaign, sticking to the high road even […]