January 5, 2015
Give President Obama credit for keeping his promise. "This is going to be a year of action," the president pledged last January. And indeed, with a series of unilateral executive actions in the last few months of the year, he made it so. READ MORE

January 5, 2015
Republican Rep. Steve King and the conservative activist group Citizens United are holding the Iowa Freedom Summit January 24 in Des Moines. It promises to be a big deal. A good part of the 2016 GOP presidential field -- Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, and Ben Carson -- is scheduled to attend. But Jeb Bush, who last month announced he is "actively exploring" a White House run and has lately freed himself from corporate connections in anticipation of a run, won't be there. READ MORE

January 1, 2015
Democrats have tried to rev up the outrage machine over news that Rep. Steve Scalise, the number-three ranking House Republican, may or may not have given a speech to a white supremacist group in Louisiana 12 years ago. READ MORE

December 28, 2014
CNN breathlessly touted a new poll Sunday with the headline "Bush surges to 2016 GOP frontrunner." The network's Twitter feed was even more breathless: "BREAKING: Jeb zooms to top of GOP field." The poll in question found former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush leading the Republican presidential field with 23 percent, in front of Chris Christie, with 13 percent, and Ben Carson, with 10 percent. READ MORE

December 22, 2014
President Obama has long advocated closing the U.S. terrorist prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He likely would have done it long ago, had Congress not stopped him. READ MORE

December 21, 2014
Barack Obama has long believed United States Cuba policy should change; he so when he first ran for president in 2008. Back then, though, Sen. Obama stressed that the U.S. should hold Cuba to a number of stringent conditions before even beginning to normalize relations. The first of those conditions was freedom for Cuba's political prisoners. READ MORE

December 18, 2014
It can be hard to take the idea of a Mitt Romney 2016 presidential run seriously. After all, this is the man who said of losing general election candidates, "They become a loser for life." At least in presidential terms, he had that mostly right. READ MORE

December 17, 2014
There's no doubt that many Republican senators, and plenty of conservative commentators, were angry at GOP Sen. Ted Cruz for raising a time-consuming objection to passage of the "Cromnibus" spending bill in an effort to oppose President Obama's unilateral executive action on immigration. It's not that fellow Republicans don't oppose the president's move; they do. It's just that 1) Cruz's gambit had no hope of succeeding, and 2) the maneuver set off a series of parliamentary events that allowed Majority Leader Harry Reid to get a head start on his other remaining business, which was the confirmation of a number of President Obama's nominees. READ MORE

December 17, 2014
Jeb Bush, who on Tuesday announced that he has "decided to actively explore the possibility of running for president," last ran for political office in 2002. (The race was for a second term as governor of Florida, and Bush won.) If Bush runs in 2016, that will be a 14-year gap between his last run for office and his attempt to win the White House. READ MORE

December 15, 2014
Think Congress can't stop President Obama's unilateral executive action on immigration? It can. READ MORE

December 11, 2014
President Obama's unilateral executive action on immigration will make hundreds of thousands, perhaps more than a million, illegal immigrants eligible for federal transfer payments. That will be done primarily through two widely used programs - the Earned Income Tax Credit, or EITC, and the Additional Child Tax Credit, or ACTC. READ MORE

December 10, 2014
Jonathan Gruber is 49 years old, in apparent good health, and by all accounts possessed of a brilliant mind for the economics of healthcare. But for all his mental powers, Gruber suffered extensive and repeated failures of memory Tuesday, when he testified before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Complicating the picture, Gruber's was a specialized type of memory loss: the more difficult and challenging the question about his notorious descriptions of Obamacare's birth, the more tenuous Gruber's memory became. READ MORE

December 11, 2014
Anyone who followed this year's Senate race in Kansas - the one longtime GOP incumbent Pat Roberts appeared to be losing to Greg Orman, the businessman running as an independent - knows Orman and his supporters vigorously denied Roberts' allegation that Orman was really a Democrat running to further the Democratic agenda. READ MORE

December 6, 2014
If federal dollars could buy a Senate seat, Louisiana's Mary Landrieu would have been celebrating re-election rather than conceding defeat Saturday night. READ MORE

December 5, 2014
There is one all-important fact that has inexplicably gotten lost in much of the arguing over how Republicans should respond to President Obama's unilateral edict on immigration: The GOP doesn't control the Senate yet. READ MORE

December 2, 2014
Now that the 2014 elections are over and national politics is all about 2016, Democrats have good reason to worry that, for all his success at the polls, President Obama will leave his party with a toxic legacy. READ MORE

November 27, 2014
Remember Thanksgivukkah? In 2013, Hanukkah began on November 27, with Thanksgiving following on the 28th. For the Obama White House, the rare convergence of the two holidays offered an opportunity for the administration to promote Obamacare, then off to an extremely rocky start. READ MORE

November 26, 2014
Did President Obama change the law or not when he unilaterally decided that millions of illegal immigrants in the U.S. would be protected against deportation? READ MORE

November 25, 2014
A new Quinnipiac poll shows broad public dissatisfaction with President Obama and his legacy achievements. Just 39 percent of those surveyed approve of Obama's performance in office, while 54 percent disapprove. Just 40 percent approve of the Affordable Care Act, while 54 percent disapprove. And just 45 percent approve of the president's recent executive action on immigration, while 48 percent disapprove. READ MORE

November 25, 2014
When the Affordable Care Act was being written and debated, President Obama took care to emphasize that no illegal immigrants would be eligible for its benefits. Obama and the Democrats who passed the bill were sensitive to public concerns that those who entered the United States illegally should not receive assistance intended for those here legally. READ MORE

November 23, 2014
President Obama set off ripples in the political world Sunday morning when he said voters in the 2016 presidential race will want "that new car smell." Speaking with ABC's George Stephanopoulos, Obama said in picking a new leader, Americans will "want to drive something off the lot that doesn't have as much mileage as me." READ MORE

November 22, 2014
As things stand now, President Obama will leave the White House with two legacies. The first legacy is historic; Obama will always be the nation's first black president. The second is policy; he is the creator of Obamacare, the national healthcare system Democrats had tried to enact for decades. READ MORE

November 22, 2014
The Department of Homeland Security has just released new "Policies for the Apprehension, Detention, and Removal of Undocumented Immigrants." Designed to fill in the details after President Obama's announcement that at least four million currently illegal immigrants will be given work permits, Social Security numbers and protection from deportation, the DHS guidelines are instructions for the nation's immigration and border security officers as they administer the president's directive. READ MORE

November 20, 2014
The Obama White House is counting on strong Latino support as the president rolls out his executive edict legalizing millions of currently illegal immigrants. But a new poll suggests Latino approval of unilateral presidential action isn't all that strong. READ MORE

November 17, 2014
There's no doubt where Mitch McConnell stands on the question of shutting down the government. "There will be no government shutdowns," the incoming Senate Majority Leader vowed the day after the midterms. READ MORE

November 16, 2014
Remember when Nancy Pelosi declared that Obamacare was a jobs bill? "It's about jobs," Pelosi said in 2011, during a news conference to mark the first anniversary of passage of the Affordable Care Act. "Does it create jobs? Health insurance reform creates 4 million jobs." READ MORE

November 15, 2014
This weekend, dozens of former top Clinton White House officials will gather in Little Rock to mark the tenth anniversary of the Clinton Presidential Library. READ MORE

November 11, 2014
There are several reasons why Republican leaders don't want President Obama to use unilateral executive action to legalize millions of illegal immigrants. First, House and Senate GOP leaders oppose bypassing Congress on principle. Second, they disagree with the policy. And third - perhaps most importantly - they know voters want lawmakers to focus on the economy. READ MORE

November 10, 2014
For months, Louisiana Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu's re-election campaign was based on one simple pitch: Elect me to a fourth term, and I'll chair the Senate Energy Committee, and that means money, money, money for Louisiana. Landrieu's case for re-election was all about clout. READ MORE

November 6, 2014
President Obama did something extraordinary, perhaps unprecedented, in his post-election news conference Wednesday: He claimed a mandate on behalf of voters who didn't vote. READ MORE

November 5, 2014
As Democratic losses mounted in Senate races across the country on election night, some liberal commentators clung to the idea that dissatisfied voters were sending a generally anti-incumbent message, and not specifically repudiating Democratic officeholders. But the facts of the election just don't support that story. READ MORE

November 4, 2014
Going into this midterm campaign, Republicans were haunted by memories of Christine O'Donnell, Todd Akin, Sharron Angle and Richard Mourdock. The Republican candidates who ran for the Senate from Delaware, Missouri, Nevada and Indiana in 2010 and 2012 proved famously not up to the job, and their gaffe-ridden campaigns motivated the GOP to focus on recruiting better candidates. READ MORE

November 4, 2014
In the Kentucky Senate race, Mitch McConnell's re-election campaign boiled the issues down to three words in what is destined to become a classic bumper sticker: "Coal. Guns. Freedom." READ MORE

November 4, 2014
Vice President Joe Biden tried to call Republican Sen. Pat Roberts on Election Day in an effort to discuss Biden's statement that Roberts' opponent Greg Orman, who has campaigned as an independent, will join Senate Democrats if elected. READ MORE

November 2, 2014
For a brief time in mid-October, some Democrats believed Michelle Nunn, the party's Senate candidate in Georgia, could be the firewall that prevents a Republican takeover of the Senate. If Nunn could win the seat opened by retiring GOP Sen. Saxby Chambliss, then Republicans would need to pick up seven, not six, seats to take control. READ MORE

November 1, 2014
Did Greg Orman, the wealthy businessman running as an independent in the Kansas Senate race, really call Bob Dole, the 91-year-old Kansas Republican political legend, a "clown"? Orman's remarks, just days before the midterm election, have set off a new round of sparring in his contentious race against incumbent Republican Sen. Pat Roberts. READ MORE

October 31, 2014
Ben Bradlee, the legendary Washington Post editor whose funeral was held Wednesday, has been widely praised for his work building up the Washington Post and bringing down Richard Nixon. His guidance of the paper's Watergate coverage thrilled a generation, and maybe two generations, of aspiring journalists. READ MORE

October 29, 2014
The state of Colorado has embarked on a far-reaching experiment this campaign season: Its 2014 election, featuring a high-profile contest between incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Udall and Republican challenger Rep. Cory Gardner, is being conducted exclusively with mail-in ballots. Every voter in the state has received a ballot; if a person wants to vote on Election Day, he or she will have to take that ballot to what is called a voter service center, present it to officials and then vote. READ MORE

October 28, 2014
To many Republicans, the Democratic "war on women" campaign against GOP Senate candidate Cory Gardner is an outrage. But for Gardner himself, it is also a test. READ MORE

October 27, 2014
Nobody expects Republican Rep. Cory Gardner to win the Hispanic vote in the Colorado Senate race against incumbent Democrat Mark Udall. Yes, there was a Denver Post poll that showed Gardner ahead among Latinos, but it has been widely dismissed, including within the Gardner camp. But Republicans have done so badly with Hispanic voters in recent years that if Gardner could simply do better - not win, just do better - overall victory could be within reach. Gardner appears poised to do just that. READ MORE

October 26, 2014
There is a gender gap in the Senate race here in Colorado, and, contrary to popular perception, it is Mark Udall's problem. READ MORE

October 24, 2014
Some Democrats and their advocates in the press believe Obamacare, a year into implementation, is no longer much of a factor in the midterm elections. But no one has told Republican candidates, who are still pounding away at the Affordable Care Act on the stump. And no one has told voters, especially those in states with closely contested Senate races, who regularly place it among the top issues of the campaign. READ MORE

October 24, 2014
Maybe Democratic Sen. Mark Udall was a little nervous introducing first lady Michelle Obama. Udall, trailing Republican challenger Rep. Cory Gardner with less than two weeks before Election Day, was glad to have the more popular of the Obamas visit Colorado to campaign for him. And the almost unanimously Democratic crowd at the Lory Student Center on the campus of Colorado State University was glad to see them both. READ MORE

October 22, 2014
With the midterms less than two weeks away, liberal commentators have put a lot of heat on Republican candidates who advocate repealing Obamacare but don't have a fully-formed plan to replace it. There's been less attention to Democrats who pledge to "fix" the president's troubled healthcare overhaul. What, specifically, would they fix? Tuesday's Senate debate in New Hampshire, between incumbent Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and GOP challenger Scott Brown, was a textbook case of a Democrat promising to fix Obamacare without offering much in the way of actual fixes. READ MORE

October 21, 2014
Some of President Obama's most ardent supporters have accused Republicans of "politicizing" the Ebola crisis. It's not a terribly serious accusation; a public health emergency requires the response of many government agencies, so how could politics not be involved? There's nothing wrong with that. READ MORE

October 17, 2014
President Obama's choice of veteran Democratic politico Ron Klain to serve as Ebola czar stunned many Republicans. Their first objection is that Klain has no experience in public health or infectious diseases. But in a larger sense, GOP critics see Klain, a former chief of staff for Vice Presidents Al Gore and Joe Biden, more as a political operative than a potential leader of the fight against Ebola. READ MORE

October 17, 2014
Rick Perry picked a bad week to burnish his foreign policy credentials. The Texas governor and 2016 Republican presidential hopeful left on a long-scheduled trip to Europe on Sunday, which turned out to be just the moment the Ebola crisis was intensifying at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas. READ MORE

October 17, 2014
Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn, who has been pressing the Obama administration to take more active measures to contain the Ebola crisis, says the president's appointment of longtime Democratic political operative Ron Klain as the nation's Ebola czar is "incredibly disappointing." READ MORE

October 15, 2014
A number of Democrats and liberal commentators have attacked Republicans lately for declining to state flatly that human activity is causing climate change. The accusation is that GOP lawmakers are denying science because they are in the pocket of the coal industry, or the oil and gas industry, or the Koch brothers, or in some other way in thrall to energy billionaires. READ MORE

October 14, 2014
The image some conservatives have of Greg Orman, the wealthy businessman running as an independent against veteran Republican Sen. Pat Roberts here in Kansas, is that Orman is, in the words of a recent Weekly Standard story, a "vacuous cipher." READ MORE

October 13, 2014
Mitt Romney appeared at a rally for Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst Sunday night. Amid all the speculation that Romney might run for president yet again in 2016, he gave one small indication that he won't: He told a joke. "Now when you run for office, people tell you you shouldn't tell jokes," Romney told the crowd. "But I'm not running for office, so I can tell one." The joke was about President Obama. READ MORE

October 13, 2014
For the last 30 years, Iowa has sent one very liberal Democrat, Tom Harkin, to the U.S. Senate, while it has also sent one conservative Republican, Chuck Grassley. Some Iowans have come to view that situation as the state's own version of balanced government. READ MORE

October 12, 2014
The old conventional wisdom among Republicans in the Iowa Senate race is that Rep. Bruce Braley, the Democrat running against Republican Joni Ernst, had a serious doofus problem -- he couldn't stop putting his foot in his mouth and, despite four terms in the House of Representatives, had trouble presenting himself as a plausible contender for the United States Senate. READ MORE

October 10, 2014
Pat Roberts doesn't have a tricked-out campaign bus. There's no couch, table, coffee station, bedroom in the back or neat graphic design on the outside. Instead, when the incumbent Republican senator started a four-day tour of Kansas on Thursday, his staff rented a plain old bus, stuck a PAT ROBERTS FOR SENATE banner on the side and hit the road. READ MORE

October 9, 2014
It's hard to overstate how worried national Republican operatives have been about the Senate race here in Kansas. "I think Pat Roberts is in real trouble," a GOP strategist who is deeply involved in the midterm effort said of the Republican incumbent Tuesday morning. "If the election were today, he would clearly lose." READ MORE

October 7, 2014
Arkansas Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor ran for re-election unopposed in 2008. At that time, as far as the Senate was concerned, Arkansas was a one-party Democratic state; there had been exactly one Republican in the U.S. Senate from Arkansas since Reconstruction. Pryor, son of Arkansas senator and governor David Pryor, seemed set to spend decades in Washington. READ MORE

October 6, 2014
In what is likely to become a theme of the last weeks of campaigning before the midterm elections, former President Bill Clinton all but begged voters here in Arkansas not to use their vote as an expression of disapproval for Barack Obama. READ MORE

October 5, 2014
Bill Clinton is coming to Arkansas to appear at four rallies for the campaign of endangered Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor. Democrats hope Clinton's visit will change the dynamics of a race in which Pryor has trailed Republican challenger Rep. Tom Cotton in eight of the last ten polls, going back to the summer. After all, Clinton remains a huge presence here in Arkansas; even though he lives on the global stage, he's never really left this state, not just with his visits, but the Clinton Library, the 2012 re-naming of Little Rock National Airport to Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport, and evidence everywhere of his 12 years as governor and eight as president. Clinton put Arkansas on the map, and everybody knows that. READ MORE

October 5, 2014
Go to the campaign website of struggling Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor, and you'll be greeted with a photo of Pryor's Republican opponent, Republican Rep. Tom Cotton, gazing down at you, with the headline 'Superior Tom: After climbing the ladder of opportunity, Tom Cotton looks down on Arkansans." READ MORE

October 3, 2014
A few months ago, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal traveled to Washington to introduce a new national health care proposal. While there, he arranged to meet privately with a small group of conservative journalists and policy experts at the offices of the Ethics and Public Policy Center think tank. READ MORE

October 2, 2014
On Sept. 16, President Obama visited the headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. The agency is the lead organization in the federal government's efforts to prevent the introduction and spread of the Ebola virus into the United States, and Obama used his remarks there to update Americans on those efforts. READ MORE

September 29, 2014
President Obama has a pretty obvious deadline for nominating a successor to departing Attorney General Eric Holder. If Democrats lose control of the Senate in November, they'll still run things until newly-elected members arrive in January. So just to be safe, if the president wants guaranteed confirmation of a new attorney general, he'll need to pick one soon. That way, even if Republicans win the Senate, and even if Obama's choice is unpopular with the GOP, lame-duck Democrats will still be able to steamroll the opposition and confirm a new Attorney General. READ MORE

September 24, 2014
President Obama has written five letters to Congress informing lawmakers of American military actions against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. The first four relied entirely on the president's constitutional authority to conduct foreign policy and command U.S. military forces. In his latest letter Tuesday, however, Obama cited two additional authorities: the authorizations Congress gave George W. Bush to use military force, first after the September 11 attacks and later for the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Obama, of course, was a fierce critic of the Iraq war and has actually advocated repeal of the Iraq authorization - before he decided to use it for his present purposes. READ MORE

September 24, 2014
Is Mitt Romney, who ran for the Republican presidential nomination and lost in 2008, ran again and won the nomination but lost the general election in 2012, really thinking about running yet again for president in 2016? Many Republicans have simply assumed not. Romney has seemed to discourage such talk in media appearances, and there has been a general belief that after losing as the party's nominee, the 67-year-old Romney would return to private life for good. READ MORE

September 22, 2014
It's hard to make a really big protest march about just one thing. Back in the days of giant rallies against the Iraq war, all sorts of groups wanted in on the action. There were communists. Anarchists. Protesters mad about the Florida recount. Katrina justice groups. Civil rights organizations. And more. The crazy quilt of aggrieved demonstrators made it hard to keep the focus on protesting the war. READ MORE

September 22, 2014
President Obama is supporting the Secret Service in the wake of a deeply troubling incident in which a disturbed man jumped the White House fence, sprinted across the North Lawn, and actually entered the White House Friday evening. READ MORE

September 19, 2014
The question of whether Kansas Democratic Senate candidate Chad Taylor can legally withdraw from the race - as he attempted to do on Sept. 3, the last day such a withdrawal was allowed - has been decided by the state Supreme Court. And the answer is yes, Taylor can withdraw, and his name will be taken off the ballot. But the court ruled that by doing so, Taylor effectively stated that he is incapable of serving in the office for which he was running. READ MORE

September 19, 2014
Of course it's important which party controls the House and Senate. But for Republicans concerned about the party's 2016 presidential prospects, one key race this November isn't for control of Capitol Hill. It is, somewhat improbably, the fight for governor of Wisconsin. READ MORE

September 16, 2014
Everybody knows there is no real leader in the race for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination. But ask voters an open-ended question - who do you want to be the nominee? - and the range of answers can be breathtaking. READ MORE

September 15, 2014
Mike Huckabee is leading the Republican presidential race in Iowa. And not by just a point or two: in a new CNN survey, the former Arkansas governor, winner of the 2008 Iowa caucuses, is at 21 percent, with his closest GOP pursuer, Rep. Paul Ryan, nine points behind. Rand Paul is 14 points back, Chris Christie and Jeb Bush 15 behind. READ MORE

September 14, 2014
Remember when Mark Sanford was a serious possibility for the Republican vice presidential nomination? "I think [John McCain's] veep candidate should be, has to be and probably will be either Jim DeMint or Mark Sanford, and Mark's my guy," Ohio's Ken Blackwell told the Washington Post in February 2008. That's no embarrassment to Blackwell; a lot of people agreed with him back then. READ MORE

September 12, 2014
President Obama has said many times that there will be no American combat troops on the ground to wage war against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. Most Republicans say they don't want to send ground troops, either, although many urge the president to leave the option open. READ MORE

September 10, 2014
If there's one thing America's misadventure in Iraq from 2003 to 2011 taught everyone, it is that things can go terribly wrong when the U.S. intervenes in a foreign environment with deep sectarian divisions, an ineffectual government, armed factions, and the general complexities of the Middle East. READ MORE

September 9, 2014
In light of President Obama's decision to delay his much-anticipated edict on immigration until after November's elections, some critics are asking why the president and Democrats in Congress didn't pass immigration reform back when they had overwhelming majorities in both House and Senate. It's a good question - and a good reason to revisit 2009 and 2010, when immigration reform could have become a reality. READ MORE

September 9, 2014
Attorney General Eric Holder is one of President Obama's best-known and longest-serving cabinet members. Most recently, he led the administration's response to the racial unrest in Ferguson, Missouri following the Michael Brown killing, launching multiple Justice Department investigations into the police department there. READ MORE

September 9, 2014
President Obama is set to address the nation Wednesday night to outline his steps to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. He's expected to announce a plan that includes bombing Islamic State fighters and installations, training Kurdish and Iraqi forces to take up the fight on their own and providing humanitarian assistance to groups targeted by the Islamic State. READ MORE

September 7, 2014
Remember the 2012 Republican presidential debate in which ABC's George Stephanopoulos, seemingly out of nowhere, pressed Mitt Romney repeatedly for his views on contraception? After a contentious back-and-forth, a frustrated Romney declared, "Contraception, it's working just fine, just leave it alone." READ MORE

September 4, 2014
During Harry Reid's tenure as majority leader, there has been no dirtier word in the Senate than "filibuster." On perhaps a million occasions, Reid and his Democratic colleagues have accused Republicans of using the 60-vote requirement to obstruct the Senate and prevent lawmakers from doing the country's business. READ MORE

September 3, 2014
Colorado Republican Senate candidate Cory Gardner has a problem. His campaign has focused on energy, jobs, Obamacare, environmental regulation - on a whole range of issues important in Colorado and the nation right now. But Gardner has become another GOP candidate snagged on social issues as his opponent, Democratic incumbent Sen. Mark Udall, slams him relentlessly on the subject of contraception, claiming Gardner would "make birth control illegal." READ MORE

September 1, 2014
If you're sick of cynicism in politics, you might want to avert your eyes from the Senate for the next few weeks. READ MORE

June 12, 2014
It's only natural that a who's-up-and-who's-down leadership struggle would consume House Republicans after the stunning primary defeat of Majority Leader Eric Cantor. There's a big hole in the party's top echelon, and it's got to be filled. READ MORE

June 11, 2014
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is not a lawyer. He's not famous for lawyerly evasions. But when it came to a few of the most critical issues discussed at the House Armed Services Committee's hearing on the Bowe Bergdahl case Wednesday, Hagel was full of wiggle words. Actually, just one wiggle word -- "direct" -- but Hagel used it repeatedly to sow confusion about some key questions. READ MORE

June 10, 2014
"Earthquake. The members are completely shocked," was the reaction of one House Republican lawmaker after Majority Leader Eric Cantor's out-of-the-blue loss to challenger Dave Brat Tuesday night. Trying to grasp the import of what happened, Republicans settled into two schools of thought. READ MORE

June 9, 2014
A few days ago Majority Leader Eric Cantor released the House Republican legislative agenda for this summer. Lawmakers will work on job creation, energy, Veterans Affairs, taxes and more - but not on immigration reform. READ MORE

June 5, 2014
We've all heard that the law requires the administration to give Congress 30 days notice before releasing prisoners from the U.S. terrorist detention facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba -- a provision the White House willfully ignored in the recent release of five Taliban commandos in exchange for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. READ MORE

June 4, 2014
Bill Clinton's critics in Arkansas used to say that he would rather climb a tree and tell a lie than stand on the ground and tell the truth. In other words, Clinton would lie when the truth would do -- and when telling the truth would be easier. READ MORE

June 2, 2014
Next week Hillary Clinton will release "Hard Choices," a memoir of her years as secretary of state. The book is Clinton's first since Living History, a memoir of her childhood, Ivy League education, marriage to Bill Clinton and time as first lady. READ MORE

June 1, 2014
Last February, before the Veterans Affairs health care scandal broke, Sen. Bernard Sanders, chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, joined with 28 Democratic co-sponsors to offer a bill increasing funding for the VA by $20 billion -- even though the agency had failed to use all the money Congress had given it in the form of big budget increases in recent years. READ MORE

May 29, 2014
Valerie Plame doesn't deny that blowing the cover of the CIA station chief in Afghanistan is a serious matter. It's just that, discussing the issue at a Wednesday evening forum sponsored by The Atlantic, Plame seemed to view the outing of the CIA's top spy on the front lines in the Afghan war as more of an embarrassment than an outrage. READ MORE

May 29, 2014
The midterm elections are less than six months away, and Republicans still can't agree among themselves on what it will take to win. READ MORE

May 27, 2014
One feature of political debate in the Obama years is that it is common for the president's defenders to ascribe racial motives to his critics. It's so common, in fact, that it's usually not newsworthy. But sometimes the case for such accusations is so flimsy that it's worth noting. READ MORE

May 26, 2014
Former Sen. John Edwards came within a few electoral votes of being vice president of the United States. But now, after a loss in the 2004 election, a brief run in 2008 ended by spectacular adultery and love-child scandal, a hung jury in a multiple-felony campaign-finance case, and the death of wife Elizabeth, Edwards has returned to the occupation in which he first made his name: the practice of personal injury law. READ MORE

May 26, 2014
Give Barack Obama credit. He never claimed he had the executive experience many Americans feel is essential for a president. READ MORE

May 22, 2014
Haley Barbour, former governor of Mississippi, former head of the Republican National Committee, now a political fixer and influential voice in GOP circles, says he first became seriously interested in immigration policy after Hurricane Katrina. READ MORE

May 21, 2014
Some Washington insiders expected President Obama to announce the resignation of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki after the two men met in the Oval Office this morning. Yet even with the VA hospitals scandal gathering momentum each day, Obama chose to keep Shinseki in place. Why? READ MORE

May 19, 2014
It's common for Republicans to say there are "unanswered questions" about the September 11, 2012 terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya. In some cases, though, it might be more accurate to say that questions have been answered, but Republicans don't believe the answers. READ MORE

May 18, 2014
San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro is widely referred to as a "rising star" in Democratic politics. There's even talk the Mexican-American Castro could earn the vice-presidential spot on the 2016 Democratic ticket in an effort to further strengthen the party's bonds with Hispanic voters. And now, it appears Castro's national profile is about to rise with word that President Obama plans to nominate him to be Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. READ MORE

May 16, 2014
In a speech in Washington on Friday, Hillary Clinton repeatedly criticized economic and social conditions under President Obama, barely mentioning the accomplishments of the man who appointed her secretary of State. Clinton's address, at the New America Foundation, was a broad indictment of the country's current leadership, with exactly one -- one -- note of praise for the Democratic president Clinton has called her partner and friend. READ MORE

May 16, 2014
It's no longer news when Majority Leader Harry Reid takes to the floor of the Senate to denounce the Koch brothers. But most Americans probably don't know that Reid and many of his Democratic colleagues now want to amend the U.S. Constitution in far-reaching ways to put an end to the conservative billionaires' political influence. READ MORE

May 15, 2014
The New Yorker's Ken Auletta was first to report that the abruptly-fired New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson had been paid less than her male predecessor in the job, Bill Keller. There was also a disparity in the pay Abramson and Keller received when both were in the No. 2 position at the paper. Citing a friend of Abramson's, Auletta wrote that "the pay gap with Keller was only closed after [Abramson] complained." The dispute reportedly left both Abramson and the paper's management "unhappy." READ MORE

May 13, 2014
The Treasury Department has released its latest report on the fight against widespread fraud in the Earned Income Tax Credit program. The problem is, fraud is still winning. And there's not even much of a fight. READ MORE

May 8, 2014
Many Democrats have a hard time understanding why Republicans want to keep investigating the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya. READ MORE

May 6, 2014
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is complaining that the new select committee on Benghazi will have more Republican members than Democrats. "If this review is to be fair, it must be truly bipartisan," Pelosi said in a just-released statement. "The panel should be equally divided between Democrats and Republicans, as is done on the House Ethics Committee." READ MORE

May 5, 2014
This time three years ago, the country was celebrating the killing of Osama bin Laden. "The death of bin Laden marks the most significant achievement to date in our nation's effort to defeat al Qaeda," President Obama said in a May 2, 2011, address to the nation. READ MORE

May 1, 2014
Republicans, as well as a few Democrats, have long been frustrated by the Obama administration's refusal to approve the Keystone XL pipeline. But the president's decision to delay the project once again has pushed the issue toward a tipping point. In the Senate, more Democrats have joined pro-pipeline forces, and it's entirely possible Congress will soon -- perhaps as early as next week -- take the matter into its own hands and force approval of the project. READ MORE

April 28, 2014
The fight over the minimum wage, which President Obama and Democrats hope to make a centerpiece of this year's midterm elections, comes down to two simple arguments. Obama says low-income working Americans deserve a raise, while Republicans say raising the minimum wage would cost jobs. READ MORE

April 27, 2014
Some journalists are pushing back against the suggestion that Hillary Clinton's age -- nearly 70 on Inauguration Day 2017 -- could be a factor in the next presidential race. "How is this Hillary age question even an issue?" NBC's Chuck Todd tweeted on Friday. "She'll be same age in 2016 as Reagan was in 1980; oh, and we live longer and healthier now." Discussion of Clinton's age, Todd concluded, is "one of those classic made-up topics" that politicos discuss when there's nothing more important to talk about. READ MORE

April 26, 2014
The Laborers International Union of North America, with about 570,000 members, wants the Obama administration to approve construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. The union has a lot of clout in Democratic circles; according to the Center for Responsive Politics, it has contributed $38,089,860 to political candidates since 1989, with just seven percent of it going to Republicans. READ MORE

April 24, 2014
On Tuesday, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki appeared flustered when she was asked a question concerning one of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's main legacies at Foggy Bottom. It was something called the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, known around the Department by the clunky acronym QDDR, and it was created by Secretary Clinton in 2010 to "provide a sweeping assessment of how the Department of State... can become more efficient, accountable, and effective." READ MORE

April 24, 2014
Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren is starting a publicity tour for her new campaign-style book, A Fighting Chance. As she talks to the press, Warren is repeating previous statements that she will not run for president in 2016. But her denials aren't really denials, and her party's unique presidential circumstances give Warren plenty of room to run. Judging by what she has said publicly, there's no reason to rule out a Warren candidacy. READ MORE

April 22, 2014
"What the climate justice movement is demanding is the ultimate abolition of fossil fuels," writes MSNBC's Chris Hayes in a lengthy new call for action against global warming. To drive home the point, Hayes' piece, published in The Nation, is titled "The New Abolitionism," and its message is that a way must be found to "convince or coerce" the world's energy companies and energy-producing nations to give up the multi-trillion dollar business of powering the planet. Once the fossil fuels regime has been destroyed, it will be replaced with -- well, that is the subject for another article. READ MORE

April 21, 2014
When it comes to immigration, many Republican members of the House have long distrusted their leader, Speaker John Boehner. Now, things have gotten even worse. READ MORE

April 19, 2014
There's a new edition of the WMUR/University of New Hampshire Granite State poll of the nation's first primary state. There's no surprise in who is leading the Republican presidential pack: Sen. Rand Paul has led or been tied for the lead in four of the five Granite State polls since April of last year. This time, he's in front with 15 percent of likely New Hampshire Republican primary voters saying they support him. READ MORE

April 18, 2014
Why would Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook billionaire born and raised in New York, educated in Massachusetts, and now based in California, have any particular interest in the politics of Iowa's rural 4th Congressional District? Because the area is home to Republican Rep. Steve King, one of the most vocal, and certainly controversial, opponents of the immigration reform bill Zuckerberg and fellow Silicon Valley moguls want to pass. READ MORE

April 17, 2014
On Wednesday, Mother Jones -- the publication that first revealed the secretly recorded Mitt Romney "47 percent" video -- published a piece attacking New Mexico Republican Gov. Susana Martinez. Like the Romney story, the article was based in part on recordings "obtained by Mother Jones." It described Martinez, a rising GOP star who some believe could end up on a future presidential ticket, as "nasty" and "petty" and "juvenile" and "vindictive," as well as "ignorant about basic policy issues," and -- perhaps worst of all in Mother Jones World -- the "next Sarah Palin." READ MORE

April 17, 2014
When it comes to the politics of Obamacare, there's really only one question that matters: How many Americans are benefiting from the new health care system, and how many are hurting? Problem is, we know more about the first part of the question than the second. READ MORE

April 15, 2014
Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., in a neck-and-neck race for re-election, is taking a lot of criticism over a new ad -- her first this season -- depicting herself taking on "Washington" to protect the interests of Louisiana's oil and gas industries. What Landrieu did to invite the ridicule was to re-create for her ad producers her own performance in a Senate hearing -- complete with set, supporting cast, fake nameplate and even phony news chyrons -- to show her standing up for her state. READ MORE

April 16, 2014
President Obama released a statement on Wednesday urging the House to pass comprehensive immigration reform. Given that the House is nowhere near even considering such action, Obama's message seemed a bit out of the blue. But it makes plenty of sense considered in light of reports the president is planning a series of unilateral executive actions on immigration. READ MORE

April 15, 2014
Republicans are famously divided on immigration reform, but Democrats pretty much unanimously support it. There's a reason for that. READ MORE

April 12, 2014
House Republicans want a true measurement of Obamacare's performance. How many Americans have genuinely enrolled? How many were previously uninsured? What about Medicaid? But it turns out that even though lawmakers have demanded information from the administration and passed legislation to get it -- the Exchange Information Disclosure Act being one such bill, passed by the House in January -- it turns out House Republicans know little more than the public about how Obamacare is doing, more than six months into its implementation. READ MORE

April 7, 2014
"It's only 800 bucks to qualify," says Rep. Bill Cassidy, the leading Republican challenger to Louisiana incumbent Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu, of his state's Senate race. "So if it's on your bucket list to run for Senate, you move to Louisiana, pay your 800 bucks and run for Senate." READ MORE

April 8, 2014
Does Jeb Bush sound like a man who wants to run for president? In an extended interview with Fox News' Shannon Bream, the former Florida governor gave the impression of someone who would like to be president but has been out of the game for a while and isn't particularly eager to jump in the trenches and fight for it. The only problem is, whoever wins the 2016 Republican nomination -- and there will be a field full of candidates in top form -- will have to jump in the trenches and fight for it. READ MORE

April 6, 2014
A new Gallup survey shows a stark partisan divide in Americans' beliefs on global warming. About one-third of the public -- mostly Democrats -- say they worry "a great deal" about global warming, while a much larger number, mostly Republicans and independents, say they worry about warming "only a little" or "not at all" or "a fair amount." READ MORE

April 3, 2014
Immigration reform advocates are fond of citing broad support for their cause. But in fact the coalition behind the Senate Gang of Eight comprehensive reform bill is fragile and loosely cobbled together. How could Big Labor and the Chamber of Commerce and the tech world and Big Agriculture all unite behind one bill? Very tentatively. READ MORE

April 2, 2014
The conventional wisdom is that the Senate race between three-term Democrat Mary Landrieu and Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy will be about Obamacare. Will Landrieu's vote for the president's national health care scheme -- the decisive vote, as Republicans often point out -- finally end a storied Louisiana political career? READ MORE

March 31, 2014
Some conservative political groups have run into trouble making ads that criticize Obamacare. The ads were intended to showcase "horror stories" from the Democrats' national health care overhaul, but instead attracted zealous fact-checking and ferocious pushback from media outlets and liberal activists. READ MORE

March 31, 2014
The Los Angeles Times, citing studies and information the Obama administration most certainly knows about but won't release, reports that 9.5 million previously uninsured people now have health coverage because of Obamacare. Look for that 9.5 million, or perhaps a rounded-up 10 million, to be come the talking point for Obamacare supporters in coming days. READ MORE

March 30, 2014
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who won eight primaries and caucuses in the 2008 Republican presidential race, says a new poll showing him tied for the lead of the 2016 GOP primary race is "encouraging." READ MORE

March 27, 2014
In 2008, both Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain supported defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. In 2012, only Republican Mitt Romney supported traditional marriage, Obama having announced a change of heart six months before the election. READ MORE

March 24, 2014
Republicans are still determined to repeal Obamacare, even though they have famously failed to unite behind an alternative. Now, it is dawning on some in the GOP that even if they succeed in repealing the Affordable Care Act, and even if they pass an alternative, they will still have to come up with a plan to get from here to there. Right now, they don't have one. READ MORE

March 20, 2014
I came to Louisiana to do some reporting on Sen. Mary Landrieu's bid to win a fourth term in a tough political year. But before heading to the key parishes that will determine Landrieu's fate this November, I stopped by the Lower Ninth Ward to see how rebuilding efforts are faring nearly nine years after Hurricane Katrina READ MORE

March 17, 2014
In the past few days, Democrats have experienced something close to a mass freakout regarding their chances in this November's midterm elections. An anonymous Democratic lawmaker told the New York Times that President Obama, weakened by low approval ratings, is "poisonous" to Democratic candidates. ABC reported that some Democrats are "increasingly worried the health care law is political poison." Columnist Maureen Dowd concluded that "Democratic panic has set in." When "poison" and "panic" are the words used to describe a campaign, there's likely to be trouble ahead. READ MORE

March 15, 2014
It has become a truism that House Republicans have voted dozens and dozens of times -- at least 50 in all -- to repeal Obamacare. "They have been obsessed with repealing the Affordable Care Act," President Obama told a Democratic National Committee meeting in Washington last month. "You know what they say: 50th time is the charm. Maybe when you hit your 50th repeal vote, you will win a prize. Maybe if you buy 50 repeal votes, you get one free. We get it." READ MORE

March 13, 2014
When it comes to Obamacare, many Democrats take comfort in polls showing a small majority of voters, or at least a plurality, oppose repealing the Affordable Care Act. To them, that proves the Republicans' do-away-with-it position is out of sync with voters as this November's midterm elections approach. READ MORE

March 1, 2014
The widely respected Florida political analyst Adam Smith sees big problems for Democrats in the loss of Alex Sink to Republican David Jolly in the special election to fill the House seat from Florida's 13th Congressional District. "Democrats had a better-funded, well-known nominee who ran a strong campaign against a little-known, second- or third-tier Republican who ran an often wobbly race in a district Barack Obama won twice," Smith wrote Tuesday night. "Outside Republican groups -- much more so than the under-funded Jolly campaign -- hung the Affordable Care Act and President Obama on Sink. It worked." READ MORE

March 10, 2014
On Monday night into Tuesday morning, two dozen Senate Democrats -- members of the party's newly-formed Climate Action Task Force -- plan to hold an all-night, filibuster-like talkathon on the issue of global warming. "Congress must act," Hawaii Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz, a leader of the group, said in a statement. "On Monday night we're going to show the growing number of senators who are committed to working together to confront climate change." READ MORE

March 10, 2014
Some Democrats hope to minimize the importance of Obamacare as a political issue by focusing on other topics in this November's midterm elections. Some hope to win by promising to fix the flawed national health care plan they passed in 2010. And others hope to turn the issue on Republicans by appealing to voters who have been helped by the law. READ MORE

March 6, 2014
Chris Christie began his remarks at the Conservative Political Action Conference Thursday with an anecdote that seemed to portend some tough talk for his fellow Republicans. READ MORE

March 5, 2014
Senate Democrats killed the filibuster for nominations because they wanted to be able to confirm the president's choices for top administration positions even if Republicans were united in opposition. From now on, Democrats ruled, nominations would be confirmed by a simple majority vote. With 55 Democrats in the Senate, and as few as 51 required for confirmation, the change virtually guaranteed success for the president's nominees. READ MORE

March 3, 2014
The Senate will soon vote on President Obama's nomination of former NAACP Legal Defense Fund official Debo Adegbile to head the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division. There are a number of reasons many Republicans oppose the nomination, most prominent among them Adegbile's passionate and continued advocacy on behalf of Philadelphia cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal. But one objection to the nomination has received little public notice, and it involves a quiet but growing controversy over the issue of criminal background checks. READ MORE

March 1, 2014
The Federal Communications Commission now says it has killed a plan to question journalists around the country to assess whether those journalists are meeting government-defined "critical information needs." The FCC had come under heavy criticism -- almost all of it from conservatives -- over the plan since Republican FCC commissioner Ajit Pai outlined its details in a Feb. 10 Wall Street Journal op-ed. READ MORE

February 27, 2014
Most Americans think the economy is still bad and that President Obama is doing a poor job handling it. READ MORE

February 26, 2014
Attorney General Eric Holder stunned and disappointed many conservative lawyers with his decree that state attorneys general have no obligation to defend state laws, or even state Constitutions, that define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Many attorneys general, and certainly most Republicans, believe it is precisely their duty to defend their state's laws and constitution, whatever their personal feelings about a particular issue. READ MORE

February 24, 2014
Democrats on the Federal Communications Commission say they have absolutely no plans to censor the press. READ MORE

February 24, 2014
When controversy erupted over the FCC's media-study/article/2544410">now-suspended plan to question journalists in newsrooms around the country, some conservative critics saw a grossly unconstitutional attempt to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine. Others saw a grossly unconstitutional attempt to press the Obama administration agenda on a broad range of issues. But the FCC's action may have, in fact, been something different: an attempt -- still grossly unconstitutional in its method -- to lay a foundation for a new government push to increase minority ownership of the nation's media outlets. READ MORE

February 21, 2014
Facing growing criticism over a plan to question journalists in newsrooms around the country to assess whether those journalists are meeting government-defined "critical needs," the FCC on Friday announced that it is suspending a pilot program until the entire project can be redesigned. The pilot study was to have taken place in Columbia, S.C., in the district of powerful Democratic Rep. James Clyburn, whose daughter Mignon Clyburn is an FCC commissioner and an advocate of the project. READ MORE

February 21, 2014
Four Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee have sent a letter to FBI Director James Comey asking the bureau to explain the practices that led to the indictment on campaign finance charges of conservative intellectual and filmmaker Dinesh D'Souza. The lawmakers, Charles Grassley, Jeff Sessions, Mike Lee, and Ted Cruz, are apparently concerned that D'Souza might have been the victim of a selective prosecution. READ MORE

February 20, 2014
The First Amendment says "Congress shall make no law... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press..." But under the Obama administration, the Federal Communications Commission is planning to send government contractors into the nation's newsrooms to determine whether journalists are producing articles, television reports, Internet content, and commentary that meets the public's "critical information needs." Those "needs" will be defined by the administration, and news outlets that do not comply with the government's standards could face an uncertain future. It's hard to imagine a project more at odds with the First Amendment. READ MORE

February 17, 2014
There's a debate going on about Hillary Clinton's past. If she runs for president in 2016, should Republicans reach back to the scandals of her years as First Lady? Or should they focus on more recent times, especially her tenure as Secretary of State, to build a case against her? READ MORE

February 15, 2014
A Washington Post news account called it "forceful and sometimes grandiose." A Virginia conservative group called it an "emotional outburst." It's true: U.S. District Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen's timed-for-Valentine's-Day decision throwing out Virginia's laws and constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman is filled with the sort of lofty, impassioned rhetoric heard on the campaign trail and fundraising dinners for liberal activist groups. READ MORE

February 13, 2014
Republicans have a good chance to win control of the Senate this November. Democrats are on the defensive over Obamacare, the president is unpopular, and history suggests second-term mid-terms are nearly always unlucky for the White House. READ MORE

February 12, 2014
On Tuesday, the Senate Conservatives Fund called for the ouster of House Speaker John Boehner. Now the SCF, originally founded by Sen. Jim DeMint and run by a close DeMint associate, has launched the harshest attack yet on its No. 1 target, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. In a new ad based in part on supposition, misleading reporting, questionable assertions and a single (erroneously cited) poll, the SCF likens McConnell's leadership of the Senate to Internal Revenue Service harassment of conservatives. READ MORE

February 10, 2014
There's no doubt the vast majority of Republicans in Congress would repeal Obamacare if they could. Most GOP "alternative" bills begin with a clause to repeal the Affordable Care Act before proceeding to outline new policies to put in its place. Of course, GOP lawmakers don't have any hope of actually repealing the law as long as Barack Obama, and his veto pen, are in the White House. READ MORE

February 6, 2014
Democrats from President Obama on down have been touting Obamacare's sign-up numbers. Even after the system's disastrous rollout, they like to point out, roughly three million people have signed up for private insurance, while 6.3 million have signed up for Medicaid. READ MORE

February 5, 2014
When Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Elmendorf appeared before the House Budget Committee on Wednesday, there were plenty of lawmakers, Republican and Democrat, who wanted to make points about Obamacare. Republicans stressed the CBO's finding that Obamacare will create such a sharp disincentive to work that Americans will stop working to the tune of 2.5 million full-time jobs. Democrats tried to cast doubt on the number or, alternately, to suggest that Americans leaving the work force because they no longer need a job to secure health coverage would be a good thing. READ MORE

February 3, 2014
There's no doubt the Affordable Care Act will redistribute wealth in America. People at the top of the income ladder will pay more; people at the bottom will benefit. But how, exactly, will that work? READ MORE

February 1, 2014
Supporters of immigration reform have carefully poll-tested the words they use to advocate an overhaul of the nation's immigration system. "The language on this stuff is really important," says one expert who's been intimately involved in the work. READ MORE

January 30, 2014
The House Republican leadership, meeting here at the party's winter retreat, kept its new immigration reform "principles" as secret as nuclear codes. Old immigration hands on the Hill, who might have been expected to play a big part in producing the document, were barely consulted. When Speaker John Boehner's office wanted a knowledgeable Hill staffer to take a look at the work in progress, the person was invited into a room to examine a draft -- no copying or note-taking allowed. And the paper remained a mystery to almost all GOP lawmakers until Boehner unveiled it at a members-only meeting at the freezing Hyatt resort on Maryland's Eastern Shore late Thursday afternoon. READ MORE

January 31, 2014
At the House Republican retreat in Cambridge, Md., Thursday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor called on GOP lawmakers to take a new approach to the nation's economic anxieties. Dividing his remarks into four categories -- Obamacare, jobs and economic growth, the middle-class squeeze, and opportunity -- Cantor's goal was to try to identify specific problems middle-class families are facing and spark discussion on conservative solutions that might help those families. READ MORE

January 29, 2014
Much of Washington seemed to have a problem with President Obama's State of the Union speech. Republicans didn't like much about it, focusing their criticisms on the still-terrible economy and the burdens of Obamacare. Democrats, of course, supported the president, but some wouldn't even say whether they would like the increasingly-unpopular president to help them campaign this November. Some liberals wanted to hear a more far-reaching, assertive progressive agenda. And much of the media was bored by the whole thing. READ MORE

January 27, 2014
Just a few weeks ago, a State of the Union call for immigration reform would have seemed an exercise in futility. But now, President Obama, who Tuesday night will urge the House to pass new legislation, might have at least an outside chance of getting what he wants. READ MORE

January 27, 2014
In the House of Representatives, immigration reform is not only not dead, it's actually the subject of a lot of working and talking as Republicans prepare for their annual retreat this weekend. That much has been clear at least since Speaker John Boehner announced the GOP will come up with a statement of "principles" on immigration reform that might -- or might not -- lead to legislation. READ MORE

January 21, 2014
If the prosecutors' case in United States v. Robert F. McDonnell and Maureen G. McDonnell is correct, the corrupt acts of the 71st governor of Virginia and his wife had their beginning even before Bob McDonnell took the oath of office. Virginia's new First Couple allegedly hoped to start cashing in before they officially became the First Couple. READ MORE

January 20, 2014
There was a party in the East Room of the White House Saturday night, an affair attended by a reported 500 people, a lavish celebration with celebrities galore, appearances by some of the world's most popular performers, lots of dancing and powerful government officials, including, of course, the most powerful official of all, the President of the United States. And the White House wants to make sure you know as little as possible about it. READ MORE

January 20, 2014
Facing investigations, subpoenas, and political attacks stemming from the George Washington Bridge scandal, there's no doubt New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is in for a tough time in coming months. What many Democrats are mulling at the moment is how they can help make that time as tough as possible -- without overplaying their hand. READ MORE

January 19, 2014
A new documentary about Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney premiered Friday night at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah. The film, "Mitt," is an extraordinarily intimate look at the former Massachusetts governor as he ran for president twice, in 2008 and 2012. Director Greg Whiteley had impressed Romney with his 2005 documentary "New York Doll," which brilliantly chronicled a broken-down rock musician's conversion to Mormonism, and for the new film, Romney gave Whiteley unprecedented freedom to record behind-the-scenes moments as the candidate and his family endured the trials of two presidential campaigns. READ MORE

January 16, 2014
For years, Republicans have marveled at President Obama's success in blaming former President George W. Bush for the nation's problems, particularly its economic problems. Now, as Obama begins his sixth year in office, that success may finally be coming to an end. READ MORE

January 12, 2014
The Obama administration is trying to persuade millions of uninterested, or perhaps reluctant, Americans to purchase health insurance through the Obamacare exchanges. But the heart of Obamacare is coercion. If Americans fail do what the law's Democratic authors believe is -, the federal government will punish them, through the progressively higher penalties of the individual mandate, until it hurts more not to buy coverage than it does to give up and purchase it. READ MORE

January 9, 2014
Two of the most pressing concerns on Capitol Hill are 1) finding a way to restore cuts in veterans' pensions that were included in the budget deal brokered by Sen. Patty Murray and Rep. Paul Ryan; and 2) figuring out a plan to pay for extended emergency unemployment insurance for 1.3 million Americans whose benefits have run out. READ MORE

January 9, 2014
There was a lot to talk about when House Speaker John Boehner appeared before reporters this week for the first time since the holiday break. There are continuing fights over Obamacare. Immigration reform. Appropriations bills. The debt ceiling. The Democratic push for the president's "inequality agenda." READ MORE

January 8, 2014
This week many prominent Republicans are taking part in a new campaign to emphasize GOP solutions for poverty. Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Reince Priebus and others are marking the 50th anniversary of Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty by outlining conservative ideas for improving the lot of the poorest Americans. And the effort is not just to commemorate an occasion; these leaders and others want the Republican Party to give anti-poverty policy a newly prominent place among GOP priorities. READ MORE

January 6, 2014
Many leading Democrats say they want to "fix" the Affordable Care Act. "I think what most Americans want us to do is not repeal Obamacare, which is what our Republican colleagues are focused on, but fix it," said Sen. Charles Schumer on "Meet the Press" on Dec. 22. "The president is working to fix it; we are working in the Senate to fix it; we urge our Republican colleagues to join us in fixing it." READ MORE

January 5, 2014
In coming weeks President Obama and Hill Democrats will launch a new campaign to raise the minimum wage. Working with labor unions and activist groups, Democrats hope to increase the federal minimum wage from its current $7.25 to $10.10. "It's well past the time to raise a minimum wage that in real terms right now is below where it was when Harry Truman was in office," the president declared in his Dec. 4 speech on inequality. READ MORE

January 3, 2014
There's growing optimism among Obamacare advocates that the Affordable Care Act could reach seven million sign-ups by the end of March. The administration at first embraced the number -- which originally came from the Congressional Budget Office -- only to back away from it when the problems of the federal Obamacare website became apparent. Now, with word that 2.1 million have so far signed up for private insurance, some of that pre-rollout confidence is coming back. READ MORE