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Here’s How Republicans Can Take Over the Senate

August 5, 2013 One difference between professional athletes and fans, and between coaches and cheerleaders, is that while all of them see opportunities for their teams, the athletes and coaches are more likely to also see, and at least privately acknowledge, potential pitfalls. The 2014 Senate races, which are really a fight over ...

So Much for Immigration Reform

July 29, 2013 It's hard to be optimistic about the prospects for comprehensive immigration reform when you talk to House Republicans. My conversations suggest that if anything passes the House, it will most likely be small, bite-sized morsels of largely noncontroversial ideas—lowest-common-denominator items that bear little resemblance to the sweeping immigration measure that ...

Don’t Stereotype Voters

July 15, 2013 Many of us who write about politics have a sloppy habit of using catchall phrases when we should be more specific. We use terms such as “Hispanics” and “Latinos,” for example, to describe a group of 52 million Americans whose politics differ greatly, partly depending on their ancestral country. Cuban-Americans ...

Why Americans Are Divided Between the Two Parties

July 1, 2013 After President Obama’s rather comfortable victory over Mitt Romney last November, some Democrats thought the president could defy the laws of political gravity. They are now disappointed. So are Republicans who thought that controversies over Benghazi, the Internal Revenue Service, and domestic surveillance would bring Obama’s approval ratings crashing down ...

Republicans' Choice: Expand or Expire

June 25, 2013 As the immigration issue moves front and center in Congress, a chorus of GOP voices is warning that if immigrants—and, let’s face it, the debate is focused mostly on those from Mexico, Central America and South America—are provided a path to citizenship, Republicans will never again win a national election. ...

Why Obama’s Approval Rating Isn’t Higher

June 17, 2013 The good news for President Obama and his administration is that all the controversies swirling around the White House have not had a significant impact on his job-approval ratings. The bad news is that, like so many other second-term administrations, Obama’s may end up spending so much of its last ...

Gallup’s Open Book

June 11, 2013 It isn’t unusual for individuals, organizations, or even political parties to make mistakes, but it is unusual, certainly in Washington, to see anyone own up to them. What is truly extraordinary is for any person or group to conduct, release, and publicize an exhaustive research project detailing what went wrong ...

No Wonder Republican Criticism of Obama Isn’t Working

May 28, 2013 Henny Youngman, the late borscht belt comedian, told hundreds of politically incorrect jokes. One of them was his response when asked, “How’s your wife?” “Compared to what?” he’d say. Many women find the joke tasteless, but it can be a useful framework for thinking about national politics. Americans may not ...

Republicans Should Go Easy on Obama, At Least in Public

May 20, 2013 With the newest controversy over Justice Department subpoenas of Associated Press reporters’ and editors’ telephone records, President Obama and his administration find themselves drawing fire from three different directions. Last week’s stories indicating that the Internal Revenue Service targeted tea-party groups and other conservative organizations for investigation sent a shiver ...

Virginia Means More Than South Carolina

May 13, 2013 Republican Mark Sanford’s victory Tuesday in South Carolina’s 1st Congressional District tells us only one thing about the 2014 midterm elections—that Democrats still need to capture 17 seats to win back the House majority they lost in 2010. Nothing more, nothing less. Had Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch won the special ...