Easter

Sun Myung Moon, who died last week at the age of 92, assumed many roles in life—media mogul, real estate developer, tax cheat, freelance diplomat. But for members of the church he founded, it’s clear which was most important: messiah. After all, Moon was more than just the founder of the Unification Church; he was also, according to church members, its divinely-appointed savior.

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Commentators were right to point out that Mitt Romney committed a flagrant gaffe last week. Unfortunately, they were only half-correct in identifying the offense. Yes, Romney was impressively inartful in announcing that he was “not concerned about the very poor” because “we have a safety net there,” managing to upset both liberals (for his apparent insensitivity) and conservatives (for his apparent satisfaction with a welfare state they believe promotes dependency).

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Although I don’t have time to count them, since life expectancy in the United States is only 78.2 years, I suspect that the number of winter holiday songs—and I refer ecumenically not only to Christmas music but to tunes broadly celebrating the wintery season—must be around a zillion kazillion. From the morning after Halloween until New Year’s Day, they are inescapable, and singers in innumerable styles (and of varying religious and cultural backgrounds) keep making CDs of songs still widely thought of as Christmas music.

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On Sunday morning, children all over the country will embark on an annual hunt for Easter eggs, hopefully full of sugary treats. The White House expects 30,000 attendees for its annual Easter Egg Roll, and Americans will buy 71 million pounds of chocolate candy for the holiday. In spite of her responsibilities as the mother of 21 children, the Easter Bunny is one of the most familiar mythical figures in American folklore. Nevertheless, not every child believes in the Easter Bunny, as anyone who's ever debated said bunny's existence in kindergarten can tell you.

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Both General Petraeus and President Obama have made the argument that if Pastor Terry Jones and his congregation of Christian haters actually make their Koran bonfire Islamist fanatics will take it out on our troops on the Afghan (and Iraqi) war front. As it happens, I don't think that the First Amendment protects this ghoulish horror walpurgisnacht. Indeed, the founding fathers could not have intended the protection of such infamy as a cardinal principle of the constitution. So, yes, I am an originalist in that the grotesque discourse of burning some one else's bible was never a thought in Th

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The Hill reports that conservatives in Congress are rebelling against the "repeal and replace" message on health care, preferring a straight repeal message: In the days following the enactment of Obama’s sweeping healthcare reform measure, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) agreed to pursue a “repeal and replace” strategy as lawmakers headed home for the Easter recess. That has frustrated King and other conservatives. “Sell the repeal idea. We can debate the replace idea.

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From Kent Brockman's "Smartline," in a 1990 Simpsons episode: I'd like to alert our affiliates that we will be ending our show early tonight. Join us tomorrow, when our topic will be, "Religion: Which is the one true faith?" Fareed Zakaria's "GPS," March 28: (COMMERCIAL BREAK) ZAKARIA: Now for the question of the week. Here's what I want to know. As we head into the Easter period for Christians, and Passover for the Jews, I want you to answer an age-old question: Is religion more of a force for good or evil in today's world?

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Somewhere in the White House or Capitol Hill, I imagine, is a whiteboard that looks like this: August recess September Columbus Day Thanksgiving Christmas New Year's State of the Union Valentine's Day St. Patrick's Day And now passing health care reform by St. Patrick's Day, which is next Wednesday, seems impossible.

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Labor and Delivery

In a few weeks, Barack Obama will have a chance to do something he hasn’t done particularly well during his first year in office: successfully defy his opponents and, at the same time, reassure his most loyal supporters. At issue is the fate of Craig Becker, one of Obama’s nominees for the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Last month, Becker was denied a vote on his nomination when Senate Democrats failed to overcome a GOP filibuster. Now, the Senate’s coming Easter break will give Obama an opportunity to put Becker on the NLRB via recess appointment.

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Inside Health Policy's Julian Pecquet and Amy Lotven report on a Democratic memo sketching out a timeline for passage of health care reform. The gist is pretty simple: The House takes up the Senate bill and passed it by March 19. A few days later it passes a reconciliation bill and sends it over to the Senate, which starts the voting process on March 26. It's a "process" because, even though the reconciliation process limits debate to 20 hours, it doesn't limit amendments.

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