To celebrate International Women's Day, former President of Crazyland Michele Bachmann assured the crowd at the Conservative Political Action Conference that "We will have a woman for president, just the right one." Bachmann went on to attack Hillary Clinton's record as secretary of State, including her handling of Russia and — what else? — Benghazi. The Minnesota congresswoman noted that "we are the party, the only party, that had a woman on the presidential ticket this century." That's true, though the GOP's decision to unleash Sarah Palin on the world doesn't really inspire much confidence in their ability to produce the "right" female president, at least according to one definition of that word.
When the Obama administration was formulating the Affordable Care Act, policy advisers wanted to include medical malpractice reform. President Obama had advocated for it in a 2006 article, and advisers expected to do it. Then one of them had a talk with chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, who comes across in this scene as every inch of his cynical, profane caricature:
With so much business-casual packed into the Gaylord International Hotel for the annual family values bash CPAC, there's bound to be a few hookups. But because attendees may be a bit out of touch, apps like Grindr and Tinder, while certainly buzzing, have not completely overtaken good old-fashioned Craigslist.
The Washington, D.C., "Casual Encounters" section, while not quite overflowing, is active as we head into the weekend, and although some (most?) may be jokes — the one seeking "Boys who look like Sally Kohn or Chris Hayes who need to be tied up," for instance — you never can be sure how speeches from Chris Christie and Donald Trump will affect a person's libido.
One of the most seismic changes in American politics over the last decade has been the emergence of a sharp generational split among the electorate. The Democratic Party owes its success in the last two presidential elections almost entirely to overwhelming support among the very young, which has overcome continued conservatism among older voters. The Pew Research Institute has dominated the field of exploring the ideological cleavages among different generations. And its latest survey shows again how the liberalism of the youngest voting cohort, millennials, remains firm, and likely to continue to recast the electorate.
“Mistah Metro,” a Brooklyn tattoo artist, has become the enemy of all animal-rights activists this week after he posted a photo on Instagram of his dog’s new ink. “One of the many reasons my dog is cooler than yours! She had her spleen removed today and the vet let me tattoo her while she was under,” he captioned the since-deleted picture. (Seriously, bro?) “Had to delete my account and make another, some people just don't appreciate anything! It's an ANIMAL with a TATTOO!” he added on a new account, which is now private. In a matter of days, the controversy has reached all the way to the state legislature.
William F. Boyland Jr. was found guilty on Thursday of 21 counts of bribery, mail fraud, and extortion. The conviction comes after beating similar corruption charges in 2011. Ironically, he also took bribes, including a request for $250,000, to help pay for legal fees from that first trial. Boyland's attorney tried to argue that the assemblyman simply was "playing the players," but for some reason, the jury didn't buy it. The Brownsville politician could face up to 30 years in prison, where he can perhaps muse over why he didn't cut his losses after the first go-round.
Two months into year one, the love affair between New Yorkers and Bill de Blasio is officially out of its PDA phase. A new poll from The Wall Street Journal and NYC New York put the mayor's approval rating at 39 percent, with 37 percent calling his performance so far "fair," 29 percent "good," and 20 percent "poor." Just 10 percent say he's doing excellent, and 5 percent somehow still don't know who the guy is.
Last September, Senator Mike Lee unveiled a proposal to reform the tax code. Conservative reformers swooned — here, finally, yet again, was the policy seriousness the party had been waiting for. Reihan Salam praised the plan as "genuinely new thinking." Ross Douthat called it a "noteworthy breakthrough" and hailed it in two other columns. Even the more skeptical Josh Barro, in a post headlined "FINALLY, A Republican tax plan that doesn't suck," concluded, "Unusually for Republican tax plans, his new plan cuts taxes for the middle class and finances that with a tax increase on the wealthy."
Well, no. The Tax Policy Center has run the numbers, and it turns out Lee's plan cuts taxes for the middle class and pays for it by cutting taxes even more for the rich. It's basically just a big tax cut for everybody.
In his vacuous, sloganeering speech today at CPAC, Paul Ryan argued that "the left" — the term he used to describe not the actual left, but the Obama administration — offers Americans "a full stomach — and an empty soul." What soul-emptying ways is "the left" filling people's stomachs? Ryan has a story from his fellow Republican, Eloise Anderson:
She once met a young boy from a poor family. And every day at school, he would get a free lunch from a government program. But he told Eloise he didn’t want a free lunch. He wanted his own lunch — one in a brown-paper bag just like the other kids’. He wanted one, he said, because he knew a kid with a brown-paper bag had someone who cared for him.
It's that time of the year again. All of the country's important Republicans have gathered in Washington for the Conservative Political Action Conference, better known as CPAC, to stock up on talking points and bumper stickers for 2014. Kicking things off right this morning was Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who gifted outgoing Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn with a rifle onstage.
Deep behind a tangle of denial and rebranding initiatives, a GOP resuscitation plan emerges.By Frank Rich
When Mark Sanford decided to run for office again, he asked his ex-wife, Jenny, for her blessing. Whether he has her vote is another matter.By Jason Zengerle
Jon Favreau’s most enduring riffs.
Wonkblog Jan. 21, 2013
For all the sound and fury, Washington’s actually making real progress on debt.By Ezra Klein
Mother Jones Jan. 15, 2013
Our debt dysfunction began with the Constitution, funded Manifest Destiny, and makes the trillion dollar coin look tame.By Tim Murphy
Salon Jan. 15, 2012
Harry Reid and other pro-gun Democrats leave Obama in need of unlikely allies.By Steve Kornacki
New York Magazine / Nov. 5, 2010
After November's glitch, Boehner, McConnell and Congress strike familiar poses.By John Heilemann
New York Magazine / Jan. 25, 2009
Obama drew progressive ire from day one.By John Heilemann
New York Magazine / Nov. 30, 2008
How one undocumented family lives in our sanctuary city.By Jeff Coplon