In President Obama's first term, when the Department of Health and Human Services overrode consensus in the medical community and made the "morning-after pill" available over-the-counter only to women 17 and over, liberals were angry but also somewhat understanding: It was 2011, and the election cycle was underway. In a second term, it seemed, President Obama would no longer feel the need to play politics with women's reproductive health. No such luck. READ MORE >>
Did a presidential contender quash an unfriendly biography?
Late Monday night, the New York Times posted a story that has set off voluminous chatter in the New York political class. A year ago, HarperCollins announced it planned to bring out a biography of Gov. Andrew Cuomo by Fredric U. READ MORE >>
Why states should not pass new mandatory minimums for firearm possession
Expanded background checks may have been defeated last month in the Senate, but one area of bipartisan gun-control consensus is gathering steam in American cities: tougher sentences, including mandatory minimums, for illegal firearm possession. READ MORE >>
Even with 2004's turnout, Mitt Romney still would have lost
After decades dreaming of high black turnout, Democrats finally got their wish in the last two elections, with obvious results. President Barack Obama overcame a strong Republican performance among white voters last November, and Monday, an analysis by William Frey, a demographer at Brookings, found that black turnout actually exceeded white turnout in 2012. He also concluded that Mitt Romney would have won last year if racial turnout levels had mirrored 2004's. Both conclusions are premature—and the latter is plain wrong. READ MORE >>
Across America, states are taking over cities and school boards. Does it make a difference?
You’re a local government. You have a mostly minority population in an impoverished post-industrial area. You’re in debt by the billions, but paying it off would require taxes that residents can't afford. But wait, you’re in luck! Or maybe you’re out of luck? Either way, get ready: You’re about to get taken over. READ MORE >>
The CIA's Afghanistan bribes join a long and storied genre
Yesterday The New York Times reported that the Central Intelligence Agency has been funneling tens of millions of dollars to the Afghan government for more than a decade, in the form of "bags of cash." For anyone surprised to discover that a foreign intelligence service would underwrite the daily operations of President Hamid Karzai’s National Security Council, it is perhaps worth noting that the paper exposed a simila READ MORE >>
A reason to hope that implementation won't go as badly as people fear
The "chaos" of Obamacare just got a little less chaotic. On Tuesday morning, the Obama Administration released its new insurance application, for use on the new health insurance marketplaces. The marketplaces are for people without employer-sponsored coverage, and the idea has always been to make the application process as simple as possible. READ MORE >>
In a recent article, John Judis makes many excellent points about poorly compensated work in America. But he mischaracterizes the role that immigration, in general, and the “Gang of Eight"s immigration reform, in particular, is likely to have on the wages of American workers. Contrary to what some claim, immigration has economically benefitted U.S. workers. READ MORE >>
The comedian couldn't help making himself, not the media, the butt of his jokes
When Conan O’Brien took the stage Saturday night at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, he looked a bit like a giant, flame-haired mannequin, smiling tensely and reciting his jokes with one eye trained on his notes. READ MORE >>
Politico's piece about Mark Leibovich's book is exactly what's wrong with 'this town'
It's not fun, having to apply a therapeutic reading to some of the Washington press corps's most inscrutable minds. We really don't want to know—and don't have the requisite time to learn—about the fears haunting Politico senior writer Mike Allen, a man in his 40s who refuses to show or tell any of his friends where he lives. READ MORE >>