Tag: The Soapbox

There Are Worse Things to Fear Than an Electoral College Tie

On Thursday, Quinnipiac University released a series of polls on presidential head-to-head match-ups in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. President Donald Trump narrowly won all three of those states in 2016, and with them, the White House itself. Quinnipiac’s polls showed the current Democratic candidates ahead in the first two states by varying margins, as well […]

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Trump’s Ego Is Causing a National Security Nightmare

It can be difficult to discern what passes for thought in Donald Trump’s mind, but on the matter of Russian election interference he is refreshingly clear. He sees Russia’s attempts to help him win the presidency and keep him in power not as a threat to the United States but as a threat to his […]

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The GOP’s Silly Attempt to Boost a Liberal Candidate

Politico readers learned two interesting things this week. One: A prominent political scientist is making a novel argument that elections are won not by persuading swing-voting independents but by turning out the greatest number of people already inclined to support your side. This new reality, she argues, should prompt parties to back candidates who generate […]

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Bernie Sanders Is No Donald Trump

As a general rule, people do not compare other people to Donald Trump as a compliment. It is plainly rude to tell another person that you see even trace amounts of Trump in them, but more to the point it is also almost always wrong. For all the try-hards on Twitter aiming to approximate his […]

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The Troubling Obsession With Political “Tribalism”

Since Donald Trump’s election, political commentators have bemoaned how polarized American politics has become—how angry, how uncivil, how tribal. A few years ago, NYU business professor Jonathan Haidt began seeing a sort of hardwired clannishness in college students. “A funny thing happens when you take young human beings … and you fill those minds full […]

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At the Democrats’ Debate, the Knives Come Out at Last

There have been several points over the course of this primary at which some pundits have taken issue with the tone of the discourse between the candidates. In the early debates, criticism of the Obama administration drew jaundiced critiques, as did Julian Castro’s pointed defense of the virtues of loud disagreement. More recently, a newscycle […]

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Democrats Are Finally Brawling Over the Party’s Future

There have been several points over the course of this primary at which some pundits have taken issue with the tone of the discourse between the candidates. In the early debates, criticism of the Obama administration drew jaundiced critiques, as did Julian Castro’s pointed defense of the virtues of loud disagreement. More recently, a news […]

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The Democrats Are Finally Brawling Over the Party’s Future

There have been several points over the course of this primary at which some pundits have taken issue with the tone of the discourse between the candidates. In the early debates, criticism of the Obama administration drew jaundiced critiques, as did Julián Castro’s pointed defense of the virtues of loud disagreement. More recently, a news […]

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The Mischiefs of Michael Bloomberg

At Wednesday night’s Democratic debate, five of the candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination spent the evening taking pointed shots at one another. But all five reserved a particular ire for the wealthy former Republican who became the debate’s sixth participant after transmuting nearly half a billion dollars of his personal wealth into high […]

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America’s Founders Did Not Worry About Politicians Like Michael Bloomberg

At Wednesday night’s Democratic debate, five of the candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination spent the evening taking pointed shots at one another. But all five reserved a particular ire for the wealthy former Republican who became the debate’s sixth participant after transmuting nearly half a billion dollars of his personal wealth into high […]

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How Michael Bloomberg Owned New York Media

Not long after he began contemplating running for an unconstitutional third term as mayor of New York City in 2008, Michael Bloomberg made a strategic decision: He wouldn’t move forward without first wooing the owners of New York City’s biggest newspapers. Those very papers had helped block Rudy Giuliani’s quest for a three-month extension of […]

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How Powerful Is This Right-Wing Shadow Network?

In 2016, Americans who hoped to make sense of Donald Trump’s election could have done worse than turn to a book released earlier that year: Dark Money by Jane Mayer. In this extraordinary—and extraordinarily disturbing—work of nonfiction, Mayer, a veteran investigative journalist, laid bare the tremendous political influence of a handful of far-right billionaires: banking […]

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The Real Message of Trump’s Latest Clemency Binge

Throughout the Ukraine scandal, President Donald Trump’s defenders argued that his freeze on military aid sprang from a “legitimate interest” in anti-corruption efforts in that country. It was a disingenuous claim on its face all along, not only because Trump’s stated goal was to undermine a political rival’s candidacy, but also because no president in […]

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Criticizing Michael Bloomberg in an Age of Anti-Semitism

In October 2018, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy took to Twitter to denounce Michael Bloomberg, the New York billionaire who had poured $80 million into the Democratic fight to retake the House of Representatives. “We cannot allow … Bloomberg to BUY this election!” he wrote. Democrats quickly denounced the tweet as anti-Semitic. The Anti-Defamation League […]

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Bookerism and the Black Elite

On September 18, 1895, Booker T. Washington gave his famous address to the Atlanta Cotton States and International Exposition. Washington declared before this regional business gathering his acquiescence in the name of the black Southern population to the new regime of almost total black disfranchisement and the abrogation of civil rights within a social, political, […]

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Conservative Supreme Court Justices Take Aim at Scalia

Justice Antonin Scalia, who died four years ago last week, is among the most celebrated figures in the conservative legal movement. George Mason University’s law school now bears his name. His former colleagues on the Supreme Court frequently cite his writings, particularly when it comes to interpreting statutes. President Donald Trump, who often vowed to […]

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Finding Neverland

If you wanted to boil down conservatism to a single anodyne formula, it might be “reverence for the past.” But reverence, as opposed to respect or understanding, often requires a selective memory: Inspect an image too closely, and flaws that seemed accidental might appear pervasive, even essential. While we usually think of writers and intellectuals […]

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Trump Conscripts the DOJ Into His Re-Election Campaign

Four federal prosecutors quit the case against President Donald Trump’s dirty-trickster ally Roger Stone on Tuesday afternoon after the Justice Department intervened in Stone’s favor by recommending a reduced sentence per the president’s wishes. The seismic blow to the department’s tradition of independence was somewhat overshadowed that night by the results of the Democratic primary […]

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Trump Conscripts the DOJ Into His Reelection Campaign

Four federal prosecutors quit the case against President Donald Trump’s dirty-trickster ally Roger Stone on Tuesday afternoon, after the Justice Department intervened in Stone’s favor by recommending a reduced sentence, per the president’s wishes. The seismic blow to the department’s tradition of independence was somewhat overshadowed that night by the results of the Democratic primary […]

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Can Corporate America Get Behind Medicare for All?

A few days before Christmas in 2007, Wendell Potter was in his office at the health insurer Cigna’s building in Philadelphia, watching CNN. A protest was being held outside Cigna’s Glendale, California, office—not, as one might expect, to demand health care reform, but to force the company to save the life of a young woman […]

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The Hardest Decision Bernie Sanders Will Make This Year

As has been the case for some time now, Bernie Sanders is the front-runner in the Democratic primary, a position Tuesday night’s victory in New Hampshire only confirmed. While the race has just begun, the plausibility of his eventual nomination has already put a critical choice into view for his supporters. If victorious, Sanders will […]

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