The group blog of The New Republic

July 17, 2013

The general problem with the media's coverage of Eliot Spitzer and Anthony Weiner has been the near-fanatical assumption that people care whether their politicians have morally upstanding sex lives. Thus, the news that Spitzer or Weiner is doing well in the polls is greeted with shock or surprise or handwringing about what it says about today's electorate. Now, certainly there are some people out there who really, truly care whether Silda Spitzer has given her blessing to Eliot Spitzer's run for government office.

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July 16, 2013

Because I had a good friend who went there and because it had a (deserved) reputation for being more of a party school than the college I attended in a nearby city, I spent a weekend at the University of Pennsylvania about once a semester.

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As you’ve heard or read by now, perhaps from my colleague Alec MacGillis, the big standoff over presidential nominations and the filibuster is over. On Tuesday morning, Democrats and Republicans reached an agreement about those seven nominees that the GOP was blocking. Basically, the Republicans are relenting. Votes on all seven will take place.

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Of course the George Zimmerman trial was about race, and it’s natural for us to spend the days after the verdict deliberating that in all its particulars.

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The news that juror B37 from the Zimmerman trial was signed by a literary agent—Sharlene Martin, persuasively described on her website as “the Jerry Maguire of literary agents” and tied to books written about the trials of Jodi Arias, O.J. Simpson, and Amanda Knox—was hardly surprising. But within hours the rumblings of outrage began.

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When Rick Perry, who has been the governor of Texas for over a decade, announced last week that he wouldn’t run again, he set off a flurry of speculation about who would replace him next year.

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Kirsten Gillibrand has made two unlikely allies in her efforts to address the military’s endemic problems with sexual abuse: Rand Paul of Kentucky and Ted Cruz of Texas.

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Just over two months ago, I wrote that Terry McAuliffe had to overcome a big challenge to win Virginia’s gubernatorial contest: a white and old off-year electorate. In a state where Democrats are dependent on non-white and young voters, McAuliffe would need to compensate for low turnout by faring much better among white and older voters than President Obama.

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Chris Davis did not win last night’s Home Run Derby—¡Felicidades, Yoenis Céspedes!—but the Baltimore Orioles first baseman who will bat clean-up for the American League in tonight’s All-Star Game is engaged in an actual, real-life home run derby. His 37 home runs tie him for the pre-All Star break American League record with Reggie Jackson (in 1969, Mr. October was more like Mr.

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The constitutional crisis du jour has been averted. The Senate will proceed with the confirmations of most executive branch nominees that have been held in limbo by Senate Republicans threatening a filibuster, including new chiefs for the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Labor and the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

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