Ann Richards

Editor’s Note: We’ll be running the article recommendations of our friends at TNR Reader each afternoon on The Plank, just in time to print out or save for your commute home. Enjoy! Life of a liberal firebrand: Why does Ann Richards’ legacy loom so large?   Texas Monthly | 7 min (1,686 words) You can’t have pediatric care without Elmo. Before you treat the disease, you have to treat the child. The Atlantic | 5 min (1,341 words) When movies mattered: Pauline Kael’s capacious, casual criticism. NYRB | 15 min (3,648 words) “Neuroscience” books on the rise.

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Todd Akin joins the pantheon of moron politicians who have said abhorrent things about rape and rape victims.

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The Southern Coup

When the new Republican Congress was sworn in last January, the South finally conquered Washington. The defeated Democratic leadership had been almost exclusively from the Northeast, the Midwest and the Pacific Northwest, with Speaker Tom Foley of Washington, Majority Leader Dick Gephardt of Missouri and Majority Whip David Bonior of Michigan in the House, and, on the Senate side, Majority Leader George Mitchell from Maine. The only Southerner in the Democratic congressional leadership was Senate Majority Whip Wendell Ford of Kentucky.

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