Baltimore Sun

Adios, Presidente

What Hugo Chávez's obituaries revealed

Parsing the many obituaries of Hugo Chávez

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Maryland’s 3rd congressional district, the most gerrymandered in the nation, is a Rorschach test in the most literal sense. The Washington Post called it a “crazy quilt.” A local politician compared it to “blood spatter from a crime scene.” A federal judge said it reminded him of a “broken-winged pterodactyl, lying prostrate across the center of the state.” DCist suggested we ditch metaphor altogether and change the word “gerrymander” to “Marymander.” It would be an apt name.

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In the next few weeks, the battle for marriage equality faces two crucial hurdles.

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Never quite a party (otherwise, what was that HUD official doing at your table?) and certainly not a working dinner (even back in the ’70s there was a big-time comedian and a jokey speech from the president), the White House Correspondents Dinner has always mixed its celebratory mood with an off-kilter earnestness.

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When I came to Washington from Baltimore in 1974, I had reason to be interested in a profound question: Do Republicans make better poker players than Democrats? My $15,000 salary at the Baltimore Sun remained unchanged, but the mortgage on my new house was four times the old one. So my Friday night game, which often lasted until 6 a.m., became a matter of survival. Seven years later, I moved over to The Washington Post with a modestly improved salary, a second mortgage, brutal tuition bills, and a higher-stakes poker game.

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Norm!

  The emerging narrative on John Bolton's now-likely confirmation as U.N. ambassador has produced an unexpected good guy: Ohio Senator George Voinovich. According to the accepted story line, a host of Republican Senate moderates sat shifty-eyed while Bolton's nomination rolled through the Senate; Voinovich at least had the presence of mind to bloody Bolton's nose along the way. The editors of The New York Times wrote approvingly of Voinovich's now-famous anti-Bolton soliloquy last week.

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