Tea party implosion

29 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Next week’s National Tea Party Convention in Nashville. Tenn. has run into trouble with two of its top conservative stars – Reps. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) – deciding to withdraw their plans to speak at the… read full story

Jobs, jobs, jobs

28 January 2010 |permalink | email article

In his first State of the Union speech Wednesday night President Obama used the occasion to recapture some of the energy that propelled him into the White House. By far, his central focus was on jobs. “Rescue, Rebuild, Restore… read full story

The Obama conundrum

27 January 2010 |permalink | email article

FDR and JFK each had a special way of connecting with, and inspiring the American people. President Obama, despite his popularity, cool but aloof rhetoric and effort to portray himself as a born-again populist, remains a political riddle.

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Obama acts on budget deficit

26 January 2010 |permalink | email article

In the run up to his State of the Union address on Wednesday President Obama plans to announce a three-year freeze on discretionary, “non-security” spending. The initiative is intended to signal his seriousness about cutting the budget deficit.

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Arnold: failed politician

25 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Gov. Schwarzenegger called New York Times columnist Maureen Doud from L.A. on Friday in response to her wonder about how he felt on the crumbling Kennedy legacy in Massachusetts legacy and the rocketing Scott Brown, who has promised to… read full story

State of The Union

24 January 2010 |permalink | email article

A feisty President Obama, according to a preview of his speech on Wednesday night, will attempt to persuade an angry nation that he’s on their side. In a plainspoken narrative he’ll reassert that his agenda works for the middle… read full story

Spending ruling reshapes political map

21 January 2010 |permalink | email article

A bitterly divided Supreme Court on Thursday overruled two key precedents about the First Amendment rights of corporations, and ruled in a 5-to-4 decision – and in a sharp doctrinal shift – that the government may not ban political… read full story

Obama: new populist?

21 January 2010 |permalink | email article

John Harwood, writing about economic and political issues for The New York Times, suggests a possible Congressional Democrats’ 2010 midterm survival strategy: economic populism to counter the antigovernment populism of the Tea Party movement and its Republican allies.

“At… read full story

GOP Senate win: is healthcare dead?

20 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Tip O’Neil, the iconic Massachusetts Speaker of the House, once famously said that “all politics is local.” Martha Coakley, the lackluster Democratic candidate for the seat long held by Senate Lion Edward M. Kennedy, forgot about the meaning of… read full story

Jerry Brown: early annoucement

19 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Some California Democrats have expressed concern that Jerry Brown has yet to officially announce that he’s running for a third term as governor. But an informed source, who asked not to be identified, confirmed to me that Brown [1975-83],… read full story

Rebuilding Haiti

17 January 2010 |permalink | email article

George Packer, in The New Yorker’s January 25 issue, offers some thoughtful comments on the earthquake in Haiti which he says seemed to follow a malignant design.

In a country without a building code, it wiped out whole… read full story

Arnold’s Last Yodel

15 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Gov. Schwarzenegger and California legislative leaders are preparing for a three-day trip to Washington next week to lobby federal lawmakers and the Obama administration for more federal aid. In advance Democrats are trying to get Schwarzenegger to lower his… read full story

Haiti quake: the good and ugly

14 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Headlines say everything – number of dead could reach into the tens of thousands; beleaguered government appears paralyzed; global rescue and relief efforts underway. In a nutshell, the world, despite its many problems, is mobilizing to help the impoverished… read full story

Waking up Jerry Bown

13 January 2010 |permalink | email article

California Democrats are growing increasingly worried about the slow start of Democratic State Attorney General’s Jerry Brown’s campaign for governor. Lacking any primary opponent the former two-term governor has not yet declared himself a candidate, and is in no… read full story

Apology Monday

12 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader, said yesterday that he “could have used a better choice of words” in discussing Barack Obama’s skin color. It all came to light in a new book “Game Change” by John Heilemann and… read full story

Truth: how bailed-out banks got whole

11 January 2010 |permalink | email article

This week, 16 months after the crash precipitated by the 9/15 failure of Lehman Brothers wrecked the American economy, a long-awaited bipartisan commission Congress created last year to investigate how the meltdown happened begins its closely watched public hearings.

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Arnold loses it

10 January 2010 |permalink | email article

Appearing on NBC News’ Meet the Press this morning lame duck California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger recklessly accused Congress of passing health care reform by “buying votes.” His target was Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Nebraska), who provided the pivotal 60th vote… read full story

Ace reporter, institutional memory

09 January 2010 |permalink | email article

“He [McChrystal] calls me and asks if there was anything I learned in Vietnam that we could use in Afghanistan. Well, I didn’t have a long conversation with him but I did say if we’re going to talk about… read full story

Why Obama’s mea culpa matters

08 January 2010 |permalink | email article

President Obama accepted personal responsibility on Thursday for what he called the “systemic failure” by government agencies to detect an attempt to explode a U.S. airliner on Christmas Day.

Saying he was “less interested in passing out blame”… read full story

Arnold backs off health care reform

07 January 2010 |permalink | email article

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has previously expressed strong support for the health care legislation emerging in Washington, as noted by the New York Times in a late update yesterday, criticized the bill in his last annual State of… read full story

Can Obama end intel failures?

06 January 2010 |permalink | email article

AFTER a belated return from a Hawaii vacation in the wake of a botched terror plot to blow up a commercial airliner on Christmas Day President Obama, in remarks carried by all networks, said the failed attack could have… read full story

1937 all over again?

05 January 2010 |permalink | email article

The next employment report could show the economy adding jobs for the first time in two years, certain to generate much bullish commentary. But for Nobel economist Paul Krugman it’s not good news because he believes the drumbeat to… read full story

California: back from the brink?

04 January 2010 |permalink | email article

The Guardian noted in October that while California may be the eighth largest economy in the world, its state staff are being paid in IOU’s, unemployment is at its highest in 70 years, and teachers are on a hunger… read full story

2009: Annus horribilis

01 January 2010 |permalink | email article

In Latin the phrase means “a horrible year.” It describes well the end of the first decade of the 21st Century — an inept Bush White House, the unsteady first year of the Obama administration which has so far… read full story

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