TNR Staff

Michigan And The Romneys

In response to my item about Michigan being better for McCain than for Romney, a commenter objects that Romney was born and raised in the state, and that his father was governor in the 1960s. That's got to count for something, right? Maybe. But, since the '60s, the Romney family hasn't had a lot of success in statewide politics there. Romney's mother lost a U.S. Senate race in Michigan in 1970. His former sister-in-law Ronna Romney lost two U.S. Senate races there in the 1990s.

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The Afternoon News

SEEING GREEN: Jim Kuhnhenn, AP: "Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton has pulled ahead of rival Barack Obama at the bank as well as in the polls and both continue to crush Republicans in the money race." FAMILY FRIENDLY: Klaus Marre, The Hill: "Clinton proposed to let states come up with 'innovative paid family leave programs' that would be funded through a $1 billion grant program.

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Dep't Of Contradictions

The media is too soft on John Edwards! The media is too mean to John Edwards! --Michael Crowley

Blog Talk

A Pro-Choice GOP? [Ramesh Ponnuru, The Corner]: "There have always been a substantial number of Republican primary voters who are pro-choice, and there have always been a substantial number of Republican primary voters who are pro-life but do not consider abortion one of their top issues. So I think it was always possible, under the right circumstances, for a pro-choice candidate to do well in the Republican primaries." Who Could It Be?

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The most recent IMF report discusses such results of globalization as the increased wealth in all participating countries and all social quintiles, along with a widening of the gap between top and lowest quintiles due largely to the technology transfers which have made skilled, education-dependent work ever more valuable even as profit-seekers shift as many low chores as possible to unskilled, low-paid workers. The theme of the champions of human capital since Adam Smith rings a bell with all teachers: education is the key to personal advancement.

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A Creepy Suspicion

Do you recognize the name "Madonna Constantine?" A few days ago, you probably would have said "no." Now, she is the putative victim of a race crime ... and quite famous, besides. Columbia University is in another mêlée, and Lee Bollinger -- a clumsy oaf strategically -- is trying to calm the struggle. The incident is that someone put a noose around the doorknob of Professor Constantine's office door. Constantine is a professor at Columbia's Teachers College which used to have people like John Dewey on its faculty. Ah, no longer.

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The U.n.-a.u. Charade

Maybe one of the reasons why the world can't sustain attention to the hundreds of thousands Sudanese black Muslims who have been murdered in Darfur (with the count continuing) by Sudanese Arab Muslims is that for nearly two decades about 2 million Sudanese Christians had already been murdered by their Arab cousins, and nobody noticed that at all. Of course, the murder of Christians in the Third World is no big matter to the First World. Why should you care for your own? That's clannish and ethnocentric.

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In my wrap-up of the debate, I said there were two small but telling moments that could provide a hint as to where the nomination is headed. I should have added a third: Romney's line about talking to "the lawyers" before authorizing military force could easily come back to haunt him--Jason's exactly right. I don't think the substance of the response was so bad, even from the perspective of GOP primary voters.

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Obama's New Iraq Ad

Via Ben Smith, I see that Barack Obama has a new web ad up about the war. Still no mention of Hillary, but it's pretty tough stuff.

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Ben Smith highlights the back-and-forth today between the Obama and Clinton camps over an Obama op-ed in the Manchester Union-Leader. First, the key grafs in the Obama piece, which focuses mostly on that Lieberman-Kyl Iran amendment: I strongly differ with Sen. Hillary Clinton, who was the only Democratic presidential candidate to support this reckless amendment. We do need to tighten sanctions on the Iranian regime, particularly on Iran's Revolutionary Guard, which sponsors terrorism far beyond Iran's borders.

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