Archives for Politics

Laughing all the way to the end

In the standard metaphor of the presidential election race, it is the candidates who are said to be running. My friends, to borrow John McCain's phrase because soon he will not be needing it, we are all runners.

Over and over, we have slogged up one side of a debate and down the other, we have pushed hard against unfavorable political headwinds, we have stopped for liquid refreshment (energy drinks, i.e., beer), we have laughed, we have cried and we have seen our brains turned into mush by ridiculous TV commercials and robo-calls.


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Obama took cash from Ayers: That’s bad

Barack Obama's critics appropriately have spotlighted his ties to William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, the remorseless co-founders and leaders of the terrorist Weather Underground. However, Obama's detractors largely overlook Ayers' campaign contribution to Obama.

On April 2, 2001, Ayers donated $200 to Obama's Illinois State Senate re-election campaign. Though not a jackpot, this represents Ayers' only recorded political contribution.


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Obama’s foreign policy: Still an unknown

When it comes to economics, we know our right from our left. Those on the right, trust markets more than governments. For those on the left -- it's the other way around.

Where international affairs are concerned, it gets more complicated. Even so, I was stunned by columnist Peggy Noonan's assertion that Barack Obama could "more easily go left in foreign relations for the precise reason no one knows what going left is, because no one knows what going right in foreign relations is, at least if 'right' means 'conservative.'"


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And now a word from an informed voter

My wife is the kind of person who volunteers every election season, knocking on doors to canvass for a candidate. I'm the kind of person who immediately shuts the door.

I don't do phone surveys, I hang up on callers both robo and real, and I never, ever, offer my hard-earned (or easily earned) money for some promises in a suit. Some, my wife among them, would argue that keeping my cash to myself can mean giving it up to the government later. And I'm willing to take that chance.


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Driving off the bridge to nowhere

Sen. Ted Stevens is an institution in Washington, D.C., and Alaska, where he moved before it was a state. He is legendary for the hundreds of millions of dollars he directs to his state, which leads the nation in its per capita share of federal funds and, say watchdog groups, pork per person. (Stevens was behind the notorious "bridge to nowhere.") He is a seven-term senator and the Senate's senior Republican.


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What if…Obama is not that good?

In some ways, he has seemed too good to be true, this spectacular Democratic star named Barack Obama, this honest, moderate, nonpartisan, interest-shorn, unifying candidate for president, this harbinger of change, this vessel of hope.

And the truth is he is not that good, that he has sometimes been a scheming, manipulative panderer, that he divides to conquer, that he scrapes and bows to special interests and that the change he offers is more collectivism, not fewer of the bad old Washington ways.


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Memo to media: Let the candidates speak

As we enter the final daze of the marathon presidential race of 2008, there is one last campaign reform that we in the news media still have time to push.

It is about us, not them.

With just a handful of days remaining until the votes are cast and counted, we need to remember that ultimate truth about the closing messages of the campaign: It is their messages, not ours that the voters need to hear.


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Both sides vow to fight to the end

The one week countdown to the most hardfought presidential election in history gets underway Tuesday with Barack Obama and John McCain vowing to fight to the finish for every last vote.

The White House rivals were to hold competing rallies Tuesday in the rust-belt state of Pennsylvania before splitting, with Republican McCain fighting a rearguard action in North Carolina and Obama heading to Virginia.

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