US Opinion and Commentary

“VOA will present the policies of the United States clearly and effectively, and will also present responsible discussion and opinion on these policies.” — VOA Charter

Showing Archived Posts

Recounting the Election

Posted November 30th, 2016 at 5:55 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

Recounts of votes cast three weeks ago in the U.S. election are set to begin. Green Party candidate Dr. Jill Stein has raised more than six million dollars to fund the effort in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.

While most experts believe the recount will not change the bottom-line result of the election, Stein says the recount effort is to show “how untrustworthy the U.S. election system is.”

While they are examining the election results, Hillary Clinton’s campaign decided against calling for a recount on its own. But it is participating in the Green Party’s effort “to ensure the process proceeds in a manner that is fair to all sides.”

On Twitter, President-elect Donald Trump called the Green Party’s recount effort a “scam” in order to raise money. And he also claimed that millions of people voted illegally — an allegation that no one has been able to prove.

How all this impacts the American public’s confidence in the election process is yet to be seen.

Posted in Uncategorized

Trump Triumphant

Posted November 9th, 2016 at 5:08 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

At 6:21 am Eastern Standard Time on November 9, 2016, the sun cast its first light on the United States atop Maine’s Cadillac Mountain, and a new day began in America with Donald Trump as it’s next president.

Pollsters, pundits and political junkies are left trying to explain how they so badly missed seeing the strength of Trump’s support. So far, Hillary Clinton has a slight lead in the overall popular vote, but she was unable to attract enough votes in the usually reliable Democratic strongholds of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin to win the Electoral College.

Americans spoke loudly Tuesday in favor of change. They gave Republicans control of the White House, Congress and the opportunity to stack the Supreme Court with like-minded justices. Expectations are high. Can Trump and his political party meet those expectations? And what kind of change will we see?

Posted in Uncategorized

A Leap into the Void with Trump

Posted November 9th, 2016 at 3:23 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

By Barbara Slavin President Donald Trump. The words, I must admit, stick in my throat and prospect of him as commander in chief for the next four years is frightening. The people of the United States have narrowly voted for a man who campaigned on a platform of xenophobia and isolationism, who says he will […]

Posted in Uncategorized

Hillary Clinton: Pro & Con

Posted November 7th, 2016 at 4:12 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

Hillary Clinton has been called the most qualified person to be president of the United States by the current president, Barack Obama, the Libertarian vice presidential candidate, William Weld, among others.

Clinton promises to make the “biggest investment” in jobs since World War II, propose immigration reform with a pathway for citizenship and establish a no-fly zone in Syria to “save lives and hasten the end of the conflict.”

Donald Trump, among others, calls her “the most corrupt candidate” to ever run for president.

She has been cleared, again, by the FBI Director regarding her private email server while secretary of state. Can Clinton dispel the doubts about her trustworthiness to become the first woman president of the United States?

Posted in Uncategorized

The Coming Clash with China over North Korea

Posted November 7th, 2016 at 9:42 am (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

Top Clinton foreign policy advisers have been open about their intention to apply to North Korea a version of the playbook the Obama administration used with Iran….drastically increase sanctions on Pyongyang…considering secondary sanctions on foreign firms…punishing Chinese companies keeping Kim’s nuclear and missile industries afloat.

Posted in Uncategorized

Donald Trump: Pro & Con

Posted November 4th, 2016 at 3:38 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

Donald Trump and his supporters say he is the only candidate able to change a broken political system in Washington and make it work for the American people.

He promises to cut taxes across the board; renegotiate trade deals to make them more favorable for the United States; create 25-million new jobs over the next 10 years; and grow the U.S. economy by an average of 3.5 percent per year.

Trump vows to abolish Obamacare and replace it with health savings accounts; increase the size of the U.S. military; end the strategy of nation-building and regime change and militarily crush the Islamic State.

And then there’s the “impenetrable” wall along the U.S. southern border Trump says he will build, and make Mexico pay for it to stem the tide of illegal immigration.

Critics say Trump is a narcissistic, misogynist demagogue whose admiration of Vladimir Putin is disquieting, if not disqualifying.

With fewer than 100 hours to go before polls open on Tuesday, can Donald Trump pull off one of the most improbable victories in American political history?

Posted in Uncategorized

You’re Probably Tired of the Presidential Race, but Long Campaigns Are a Good Thing

Posted November 2nd, 2016 at 3:04 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

This year’s nominees, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, have been making national headlines for decades — but there was plenty of new information voters needed to learn about them, too.

Posted in Uncategorized

Voting Rights vs Voter Fraud

Posted November 2nd, 2016 at 2:53 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

Donald Trump’s claims of a rigged election has put a spotlight on the intricacies of the process of voting in the United States.

There is no centralized governance of American elections, except the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which enforces the 15th Amendment, affirming the right to vote no matter “race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” And the 26th Amendment sets 18 as the minimum voting age.

Otherwise, it’s left up to individual states to establish its own rules for such things as registering to vote, methods of voting, and challenging voter credentials.

Republicans and Democrats will have official poll watchers deployed across the country to look for voting irregularities. But Trump has urged supporters to do so on their own to ensure the election “is not stolen” from him. Democrats are concerned that will cause voter harassment and suppression.

The rhetoric about rigging the election and suppressing the vote is adding stress to an already emotionally-chargbed campaign.

Posted in Uncategorized

Rise of the Bullies: Trump, Erdogan and Putin

Posted November 1st, 2016 at 4:35 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

By Barbara Slavin In these nail-biting days until U.S. presidential elections next week, it is easy to fall into despair about the state of American democracy. Following disclosure that the FBI is taking a renewed look at emails possibly connected to Democrat Hillary Clinton’s private server, polls have narrowed, suggesting a still-plausible path to victory […]

Posted in Uncategorized

Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump & the Gender Gap

Posted November 1st, 2016 at 4:02 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

Once Hillary Clinton announced her intention to seek the Democratic presidential nomination, gender was going to be a central issue in the 2016 presidential campaign. During the primaries, one story line was why is Clinton losing the women’s vote to Bernie Sanders, especially young women. Once the match-up with Donald Trump was set, the gender gap became […]

Posted in Uncategorized

Another Trove of Hillary Clinton Emails

Posted October 31st, 2016 at 3:16 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

Hillary Clinton’s email issues will apparently haunt her well beyond Election Day. FBI Director James Comey told Congress Friday that new emails have surfaced that need investigating. It’s unlikely the investigation will be completed by next Tuesday.

The emails in question were on a computer owned by disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner, estranged husband of Clinton aide Huma Abedin. They surfaced during an investigation of Weiner sending explicit messages to a 15-year old girl.

In July, Comey publicly recommended closing the probe of Clinton’s use of a private email server while Secretary of State, without bringing charges. At the time, he said Clinton and her aides were “extremely careless” handling classified information, but no prosecutor would recommend charging her.

Now, the FBI director is accused of violating Justice Department policy and precedent by commenting on an investigation, especially a politically-charged one so close to the election.

And Clinton has eight days to conduct whatever damage control she can before most Americans cast their vote for president.

Posted in Uncategorized

Irreverent Political Art Is a Sign of the U.S.’s Health

Posted October 26th, 2016 at 10:36 am (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

The U.S. is better than this race, many people I’ve met in my travels have told me, and I agree with them. One reason is Americans’ anarchic, irreverent creativity, which rises up to fight the indignities of a political process gone badly wrong.

Posted in Uncategorized

Two More Weeks

Posted October 25th, 2016 at 4:42 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

14 days and counting before most Americans vote in the 2016 presidential election. While most polls have Hillary Clinton ahead of Donald Trump, predictability is among the casualties in this election.

And there is still time for events to make an impact. Such as Monday’s word that Obamacare premiums will rise by an average of 25 percent. Republicans jumped on the news with a chorus of “I told you so.” Trump promised to replace Obamacare “with something much less expensive.”

Clinton is spending the campaign’s final two weeks encouraging supporters to get to the polls, and if possible, cast their ballots early as a way to rebut Trump’s assertions that the election is rigged.

Listen for familiar story lines from both candidates as they make their closing arguments for votes. Trump and Clinton will concentrate their efforts on handful of competitive states: Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, Nevada and Iowa. Traditionally Republican Texas, Georgia and Arizona are now considered toss-up states, opening the electoral map for Clinton and the possibility of a third party candidate picking up momentum.

Posted in Uncategorized

Will Clinton Resist Her Inner Hawk?

Posted October 25th, 2016 at 3:14 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

By Barbara Slavin The Washington foreign policy establishment is salivating at the thought of a Hillary Clinton presidency, which promises to be more interventionist than Barack Obama’s administration and more open to elite views than a Donald Trump White House would be. Think tanks are churning out papers on a variety of topics and pushing them […]

Posted in Uncategorized

WikiLeaks Is Exposing Clinton’s Duplicity, but It’s No Hero

Posted October 24th, 2016 at 3:14 pm (UTC-5)
Comments are closed

These conservatives seem to have forgotten that before Assange was revealing Clinton campaign emails, he was serially leaking stolen, classified national security information that has endangered the United States and its allies across the world.

Posted in Uncategorized