US Opinion and Commentary

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Many Democrats Want to Face Trump in November. They’re Wrong.

Posted April 17th, 2016 at 5:06 pm (UTC-4)
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Cruz is often dishonest, and he takes extreme and sometimes appalling positions. But he has shown an inclination to play by the rules — and that’s a safeguard Trump doesn’t offer.

Why I’m Supporting Bernie Sanders

Posted April 17th, 2016 at 4:57 pm (UTC-4)
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Hillary Clinton has a remarkable record. She would be a strong and capable president. But Bernie Sanders is boldly and fiercely addressing the biggest challenges facing our country.

Judging Obama’s Record

Posted April 10th, 2016 at 8:25 am (UTC-4)
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Readers appraise his successes and failures, and muse about what could have been.

New York, New York!

Posted April 8th, 2016 at 1:16 pm (UTC-4)
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After the Wisconsin primary upset of both Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, there is a feeling that real race has finally begun. And what better place to hold the next nominating contest than in New York, where the delegate count is high, the voters diverse and the political landscape notoriously tough? Trump, a New York native, and his Republican rival Texas Sen. Ted Cruz are vying for 95 delegates. 291 Democratic delegates are up for grabs for Brooklyn native Bernie Sanders and Clinton (who made the state her home and became its senator after serving two-terms as First Lady). For both parties, winning or losing the April 19 primary could make or break a candidacy, either mathematically or invincibility. And political experts agree: New York is not a slam-dunk for any of them.

Reality Check for Trump and Clinton

Posted April 6th, 2016 at 2:27 pm (UTC-4)
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Republican party front-runner Donald Trump’s Twitter feed went uncharacteristically quiet in the immediate aftermath of his double-digit loss in the Wisconsin primary to Sen. Ted Cruz. Later in the night, the Trump campaign reverted back to status quo by insulting, not congratulating, the winner. “Ted Cruz is worse than a puppet— he is a Trojan horse, being used by the party bosses attempting to steal the nomination from Mr. Trump,” according to a statement from his campaign. As Trump pouted defiantly, pundits were dissecting Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders sixth straight win against Democrat Hillary Clinton, who is far ahead in the delegate count. As one newspaper editorial put it:

“For a guy who can’t win, Bernie Sanders is certainly defeating Hillary Clinton a whole lot…. ”

Next primary stop is in New York, where we may learn if Cruz and Sanders’ campaign ‘mojo’ will continue.

America, We Could Be Looking at a Trump, Clinton Contest

Posted February 22nd, 2016 at 2:20 pm (UTC-4)
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We must consider how astounding it is that Ted Cruz couldn’t win in a state like South Carolina with such a large born-again Christian voter base. And that of the entire field of GOP candidates – including Cruz and Carson, two devout Christians – that Jerry Falwell, Jr. endorsed Trump.

Scalia Remembered as Wise, Witty & Acerbic

Posted February 15th, 2016 at 10:30 am (UTC-4)
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To say Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s intellectual power left an indelible mark the nation’s highest court doesn’t quite capture his reach. Just note the words used to describe his 29 year career shortly after news of his death on Saturday: “remarkable legacy, colossal consequence, an extraordinary jurist…” He was an unapologetic court conservative, famed for “biting dissents,” as one long-time court watcher put it. Scalia was a “textualist,” interpreting the exact words of the U.S. Constitution, not its inferred intent. Along with his many notable court decisions, Scalia has now been pulled into the current presidential campaign: his death has prompted a partisan debate over which president – the incumbent or the winner of the November vote – should appoint his successor.

Candidates Offer Deficit of Ideas on Debt

Posted February 1st, 2016 at 10:56 am (UTC-4)
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Sure, you may have heard candidates talk about this in bold terms. You may have heard warnings of a “mountain of debt” that will “shackle future generations” unless “we deal with this crisis.” So far, however, it’s been mostly empty rhetoric. Actual proposals have been incomplete, unrealistic or irresponsible.

President Bloomberg?

Posted January 27th, 2016 at 9:51 am (UTC-4)
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The former New York mayor is considering a run as an independent. His thinking reportedly is that if the two major parties shun experienced and relatively centrist contenders, there will be a big gap in the middle of the political spectrum that he could fill.

Trump is the Teflon Donald

Posted January 15th, 2016 at 2:08 pm (UTC-4)
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He also is Teflon-coated because he doesn’t have a Washington record to defend, and no one is willing to challenge his business record, which politely put, is complicated.

Cruz Vs. Trump: It’s On

Posted January 14th, 2016 at 3:18 pm (UTC-4)
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“Hold your friends close and your enemies closer.” That adage is playing out on the Republican side of the presidential race. For months, Ted Cruz has been loathe to criticize front-runner Donald Trump, unlike the rest of the GOP candidates. Trump accepted Cruz’s invitation to join him in a Tea Party rally against the Iran nuclear deal on Capitol Hill in August. They shared a laugh during the last debate when Cruz suggested he’d build a wall on the Mexico border “and have Donald Trump pay for it.”

Now, the bloom is off the rose. Trump is now questioning whether Cruz constitutionally qualifies for president since he was born in Canada, albeit to American parents. Cruz shot back, saying Trump has “New York values” in the hopes that plays well with audiences in mostly rural Iowa, where the first votes of the campaign will be cast February 1. What may not play well in Iowa is a New York Times report that Cruz failed to report a large loan from New York-based bank Goldman Sachs, where his wife works. The loan appears to belie the narrative Cruz has woven that he and his wife liquidated their entire personal net worth to finance his campaign for Senate in 2012. Although Cruz has won enough support in Iowa to close in on Trump, he’s made many political enemies along the way. This act of political theater will be playing out tonight as the Republicans take the stage for yet another debate.

How Donald Trump Destroyed the Republican Party in 2015

Posted December 29th, 2015 at 9:00 am (UTC-4)
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The party might nominate Trump, in which case the establishment will have lost all control. Or party leaders might somehow find a way to defeat him, in which case they will have lost the allegiance of much of the base. In either event, the GOP we once knew is irredeemably a thing of the past.

Ted Cruz Taps Into Disaffected Conservatives’ Anger In a Bold Play That Just Might Work

Posted December 13th, 2015 at 9:59 am (UTC-4)
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At this point, Cruz is the most conservative major candidate in the race — more conservative, certainly, than the ideologically squishy Trump.

Trump Further Damages U.S. Image in the Muslim World

Posted December 9th, 2015 at 2:19 pm (UTC-4)
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By Barbara Slavin At a time when American leadership is already doubted by traditional U.S. allies in the Middle East, Donald Trump’s remark that he would bar all foreign Muslims from entering this country did serious new damage to U.S. national interests. It is tempting to dismiss Trump as a narcissistic buffoon whose policy “ideas” […]

Carson Fails to Impress on Foreign Policy

Posted December 4th, 2015 at 2:16 pm (UTC-4)
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…As foreign policy experience has taken on new significance in the campaign, the good doctor’s prescriptions have seemed, under sharper scrutiny, to lack much depth, inviting the view that he has little familiarity with world affairs generally.