Not long ago, I wrote in this space about the discouraging fact that no Ohio newspapers had taken the minimal time needed to uncover the FBI’s investigation I stumbled across into highly suspect campaign contributions from employees of a Canton company to a Republican congressman and Senate candidate in Ohio.
How quickly they forget. The 2006 midterm election that gave Democrats both chambers of Congress wasn't entirely a vote of confidence in the party's leadership or policy acumen. It was a vote against the Republican Party. In the run-up to the election, Democrats hammered on the failures of the Iraq war and the incompetency of the Bush administration, but one narrative stuck best: corruption. At the time, Republicans were reeling from a raft of scandals--there was Jack Abramoff, Tom DeLay, Duke Cunningham, and naughty instant-messager Mark Foley.
Though they differ in many ways, John McCain and Barack Obama have one thing in common: Each sees the other as a posturing phony. When McCain talks about Obama on the stump, he trades his typical graciousness for sarcasm and contempt. When McCain lectured Obama about the future of Iraq last week, he did so with what The New York Times called "a tone of belittlement in his voice." McCain has also called Obamamania a swindle. "America is not deceived by an eloquent but empty call for change that promises no more than a holiday from history," he said in Wisconsin last month.
Surry Hill. So reads a plaque at the end of the long, winding private road that leads to the crown jewel of McLean, Virginia: the 18,000-square-foot mansion that Republican lobbyist Ed Rogers and his wife Edwina call home. To get there from Washington, you drive across the Potomac River and along a parkway that, in the summer, is canopied by lush green trees. Shortly before the guarded entrance to the CIA, you turn off McLean's main road and then down a private lane, passing through brick gate posts adorned with black lanterns and into a grand cul-de-sac. A massive brick Colonial with majestic
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.