High-Tech Industries Boost the Mountain West’s Recovery
December 16, 2011

High technology and advanced manufacturing centers are recovering strongly from the recession, reports Brookings’ latest quarterly Metro Monitor regional economic tracker, and the landscape of the Intermountain West reflects the trend perfectly.  There, Brookings Mountain West’s Mountain Monitor--a regional companion to the national readout produced in partnership with the University of Nevada at Las Vegas--reports that Utah’s three major metropolitan areas and Phoenix, Ariz.

Beware: 'Radical Centrists' On The March
November 02, 2011

Never heard of Americans Elect? You will soon. The group, which I wrote about for the new issue of the magazine, is seeking to get on the ballot in every state for the 2012 election and to nominate a bipartisan ticket for president and vice president in an online convention in June. They held their big introductory press conference at the National Press Club in Washington today; more importantly, perhaps, they announced today that they have secured ballot access in Ohio, after having already secured it in Alaska, Arizona, Nevada, Kansas, Florida and Michigan.

Saturday's Lunch Special
October 22, 2011

What's for lunch today? In many Texas prisons, nothing. The Times had a remarkable story tucked inside Friday's paper noting that Rick Perry's administration has decided to stop serving lunch on Saturdays and Sundays in order to help deal with the state's budget troubles. Not serving lunch to 23,000 inmates is the better part of $2.8 million in prison-system savings being sought this year.

Obama And The Amnesty That Wasn't
August 30, 2011

[Guest post by Nathan Pippenger] In my story yesterday, I tried to explain the longstanding practice of “prosecutorial discretion” in immigration enforcement, recently under attack by many of its former advocates, as well as some of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers tasked with carrying it out.

America Reaches a Demographic Tipping Point
August 29, 2011

The latest wave of 2010 Census data, released this week, confirms what earlier surveys have strongly hinted: Virtually half of recent births in the U.S. are minorities. We are becoming a more globalized nation than most Americans have ever experienced. This great demographic change has potential long term benefits for our economic competitiveness in the international marketplace.

Will The Supercommittee Be Different This Time?
August 03, 2011

There's been some debate over whether the supercommittee will simply deadlock over the Republican refusal to raise any taxes, or whether Republicans will roll Democrats again and force another all-cuts budget deal. I am less sure, in part because the alternative to a deal (huge cuts to medical providers and the military) frightens Republicans as much as Democrats.

How Would the Supreme Court Rule on Obama Raising the Debt Ceiling Himself?
July 29, 2011

“I’ve talked to my lawyers,” President Obama said in explaining his dismissal of the argument that Section Four of the Fourteenth Amendment authorizes him to raise the debt ceiling if Congress fails to act. “They are not persuaded that that is a winning argument.” But who are President Obama’s cowering lawyers, and why would the former constitutional law professor defer to their overly cautious prediction that the Supreme Court would rule against Obama if asked to adjudicate a dispute between the president and Congress?

The Shifting GOP Nominating Calendar Will Produce a Knockout Victory—Or an Extended Slugfest
July 28, 2011

When I last wrote about the schedule of Republican presidential nominating contests back in April, there were two dynamics that appeared to be shaping the calendar: first, the usual “frontloading” temptation of states to run to the front of the line in order to have an impact on the results, which both national parties have been fighting in recent years with less than brilliant success; and second, a more unusual “backloading” phenomenon, where other states were delaying primaries or caucuses for their own reasons, often the money savings associated with holding the contests in conjunction wi

Strong Opinions
July 28, 2011

The Supreme Court has included good writers and bad writers during the past two centuries, but the literarily challenged justices have always had a comfortable majority. In the Court’s early days, one of its clumsiest writers was Samuel Chase, who, in addition to being impeached for excessive partisanship, had a weakness for random italics.

INCOMING! A Video History of Pies, Shoes, Eggs, and More Hurled at Public Figures
July 19, 2011

On Tuesday, Parliament’s hearing on News Corp was abruptly interrupted after a protester rushed toward Rupert Murdoch and tried to hit him in the face with shaving cream. The protester was identified as British comedian Jonnie Marbles, who tweeted about his intentions before the attack. “It is a far better thing that I do now than I have ever done before (at)splat,” he tweeted, riffing off Charles Dickens’s A Tale of Two Cities. The incident caused an uproar, but Murdoch was certainly not the first public figure to be “creamed,” so to speak.