Political Animal

The Colleges That Can Spur America’s COVID-19 Recovery – Politics Article

iStock In Washington, D.C., debates around higher education tend to focus on the Harvards and Yales of the world, forgetting that elite schools don’t represent the kind of institutions that most students attend. Too often absent from these conversations are higher education’s true workhorses: so-called “regional” public universities. While the Department of Education offers no official definition of these institutions, they basically occupy the middle space between community colleges and flagship major research universities. One analysis by Inside Higher Education tallies…

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How Would a Competent President Respond to Russia Right Now? – Politics Article

Hiding in a bunker and blaming “fake news” isn’t leadership. It’s a temper tantrum. The White House/Flickr Since the New York Times published their article on Friday about Russia offering Afghan militants bounties for killing U.S. troops, I have been trying to follow the Trump administration’s response. Initially, it was to claim that the president hadn’t been briefed about the “alleged intelligence.” “The White House statement addressing this issue earlier today, which denied such a briefing occurred, was accurate. The…

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What Tom Cotton’s Racist Speech Against D.C. Statehood Says About the GOP – Politics Article

They know the only way they can sustain power is to give up on democracy. Gage Skidmore/Flickr Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas has made it abundantly clear that he wants to be the Republican presidential nominee in 2024. Recently, he managed to get his name in the news when his call to use the 101st Airborne Division against protesters turned into an op-ed in the New York Times. In response to the House vote on granting statehood to Washington, D.C.,…

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What Was Behind Barr’s Friday Night Massacre? – Politics Article

Rudy Giuliani might have just explained it. Gage Skidmore/Flickr The last time Rudy Giuliani’s co-conspirator Lev Parnas spoke publicly was January 16, 2020, when he sat for interviews with both Rachel Maddow and Anderson Cooper. Along with providing details about Trump’s extortion efforts with the Ukrainian president, he made this rather explosive claim about the role of Attorney General William Barr in the Trump administration. Lev Parnas tells Rachel Maddow that Trump is “like a cult leader” and that what…

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Spike Lee Tells a Different Vietnam War History – Politics Article

Netflix Thirty-one years ago, Spike Lee made a tragically prescient film. In Do the Right Thing (1989), a white police officer kills a boom-box-wielding black man named Radio Raheem by choking him with a nightstick. Riots quickly erupt, and a neighborhood pizzeria owned by Italian Americans—where the confrontation started—is burned to the ground. When the film came out, it was enormously controversial. Critics predicted that it would spark race riots across the country. (It didn’t.) Instead, the groundbreaking look at New…

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The Dubious DOJ Investigation Barr Is Already Pre-Spinning – Politics Article

How much lower does the attorney general’s credibility need to go before the press stops taking the bait? Office of Public Affairs/Flickr When the Department of Justice announced that, after Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, it would drop the case before sentencing, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan asked a retired colleague, John Gleeson, to write an amicus brief in opposition to their decision. Gleeson filed that brief on Wednesday, using words like “preposterous” and referring to arguments…

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Giuliani’s Extortion Team Plotted Against the Security of a U.S. Ambassador – Politics Article

Felix Josephat/Flickr Donald Trump and his enablers don’t just lie, they turn truth on its head. Such is the case with the claim that, when the president requested “favors” from the Ukrainian president and blocked aid to that country, he was attempting to fight corruption in Ukraine. No one captured what was at the heart of the Trump-Giuliani extortion scheme better than Representative Jim Himes, who said, “President Trump wasn’t trying to end corruption in Ukraine, I think he was trying…

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NYC Bar Association Asks Congress to Investigate the Attorney General – Politics Article

January 10, 2020 | 6:00 AM White House/Wikimedia Commons This is the stated mission of the New York City Bar Association. To equip and mobilize the legal profession to practice with excellence, promote reform of the law, and uphold the rule of law and access to justice in support of a fair society and the public interest in our community, our nation, and throughout the world. In support of their efforts to “uphold the rule of law,” the association recently…

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The Democrats Need Forward Thinking on Iran – Politics Article

Mark Nozell, Gage Skidmore/Flickr It’s true that Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden have different things they like to emphasize when they talk about foreign policy on the campaign trail, but they have substantive differences, too. It seems like only the former distinction was of any interest to Sydney Ember and Katie Glueck when they wrote this piece for the New York Times. The article goes into a lot of detail about Biden’s pitch that he’s best prepared to serve as…

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Trump is Now Guilty of Reckless Endangerment – Politics Article

The White House/Flickr I read Dexter Filkins’s opus on Qassem Suleimani when it was published in The New Yorker in September 2013. I believe that was the point when I first understood the breadth of Suleimani’s accomplishment. I had known of him before that, and I was aware that he was extraordinarily dangerous and powerful. But it was only after reading Filkins that I realized that Suleimani probably had more responsibility for Iran’s geo-strategic reach than Iran’s Supreme Leader or…

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Anatomy of a Disinformation Campaign – Politics Article

An example of how lies about the Bidens are spreading on right wing media. December 30, 2019 | 2:02 PM Marc Nozell/Flickr While Democrats continue to wring their hands over the 2020 presidential primary, Donald Trump and his enablers decided a long time ago that the eventual nominee would be Joe Biden. That explains the pressure the president put on Ukraine to announce an investigation into the Bidens, a move that led to his impeachment. But just as we saw…

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Republicans Are Fiscally Reckless and Irresponsible – Politics Article

Their priorities are all about more money for the wealthy elite and an obvious power grab for those in office. December 27, 2019 | 2:04 PM Gage Skidmore/flickr One of the ways that Republicans demonstrate that they are the “post-truth” party is that, when Democrats are in office, they prioritize federal deficit reduction, but when they’re in charge, the deficit soars. Right on cue, the Wall Street Journal reported back in October that the federal deficit was about to reach…

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The Questions That Will Ultimately Define Who We Are – Politics Article

Can our pluralistic democracy survive an attack by those who view themselves as engaged in a holy war? December 24, 2019 | 6:00 AM Gage Skidmore/Flickr In his article calling for the removal of Donald Trump from office, Mark Galli of Christianity Today noted the unambiguous evidence that the president has abused his power. But then he added this. The reason many are not shocked about this is that this president has dumbed down the idea of morality in his…

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A Crack in Trump’s White Evangelical Base of Support – Politics Article

Christianity Today has called for the president’s removal from office. December 20, 2019 | 1:36 PM The White House/Flickr On Thursday, the editor in chief of Christianity Today, Mark Galli, wrote a piece calling for Donald Trump to be removed from office. Here is the crux of his argument. [T]he facts in this instance are unambiguous: The president of the United States attempted to use his political power to coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit one of the…

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The Magnitude of Trump’s Lies – Politics Article

According to fact-checkers, he makes an average of 32 false or misleading statements a day. December 17, 2019 | 6:00 AM The White House/Flickr The Washington Post fact-checkers have produced an update that truly shocking. In 2017, President Trump made nearly 1,999 false or misleading claims. In 2018, he added another 5,689, for a total of 7,688. Now, with a few weeks still left in 2019, the president already has more than doubled the total number of false or misleading…

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A Note to Republicans and the Media: Hunter Biden Is Not Running for President – Politics Article

Michael Stokes/Flickr During Thursday’s debate about the impeachment articles against Donald Trump, Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee wanted to talk about anything but the evidence against the president. Dartunorro Clark reports on one of the things they did want to talk about. Republicans dragged Hunter Biden’s name through the mud Thursday at the House Judiciary Committee meeting on two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump… During the committee meeting, Gaetz introduced an amendment to strike a reference of…

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