Extreme Partisanship Leaves Voters with a Dilemma

senator lugar

Steve Hochstadt: One of the facts of small town American life, which is often held up as the American ideal, is that nasty partisan politics are tempered by the bonds of friendship and the need to get along with your neighbors.

Obama and Romney Can’t Fence Sit on Marriage Equality

birth to gays

Rev. Irene Monroe: In the last presidential election, it would have been political suicide to support marriage equality. This November it may be a risk not to.

How The South Can Rise Again: Immigrants

immigrant farmworkers

Tina Dupuy: Despite the conservative bona fides, the South isn’t pulling herself up by her bootstraps … mainly because she can’t see her toes she’s about to lose to diabetes.

Why Santorum Won’t Fade

rick santorum

John Peeler: The Republican primary electorate is predominantly reactionary, far-right-wing, on both economic and social issues, so it should not be so surprising that they are warming to Santorum.

Iowans: Don’t Just Be First, Be Leaders

Steve Hochstadt: Find someone who can embody the best in America, who can lead by persuasion, whose vision of the ideal American includes all of us. When you pull that lever, pull it for all of us. Be more than first. Be leaders.

A Patch of Pumpkin Heads

trick or treat

Walter and Rosemary Brasch: Mitt Romney, once standing straight, is now leaning so far right that he is likely to be kissing the floor soon. Perhaps he could dress as the Cowardly Lion and hope to find some courage.

Why Romney Would Defeat Obama in 2012

Mitt Romney

Randy Shaw: Romney’s problem getting the presidential nomination goes beyond his stuffed shirt image, fabled car trip with a dog strapped to the roof, or the many other reported stories that bolster depictions of him as “weird.” He’s not trusted by movement conservatives, and even the moderate Republican pundit class is down on him.

The Republican Death Wish

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Robert Reich: Instead of talking about Medicare as a problem to be fixed, Democrats should start talking about it as a potential solution to the challenge of rising health-care costs — as well as to our long-term budget problem.

GOP Overreach

michele bachman

David Love: Republican overreach is in the air. You can see it, smell it, taste it everywhere, as you have in years past. And the only surprise is that it happened so quickly this time around.

Why People Hate Politics

gautam dutta

Gautam Dutta: Rather than engage in discussion and debate, many politicians find it easier to demonize their opponents, rather than debate the issues.

Tough on Crime Rhetoric Fails at the Polls

Kamala Harris, Joyce Dudley, Steve Cooley, Jill Ravitch, Paul Zellerbach (clockwise from left)

Natasha Minsker: For years, presenting oneself as a hammer battering crime was a requirement. This time around, a hard-line stance alone without a plan for effective and budget-conscious enforcement is the new electoral kiss of death. Californians are weary of budget cuts to valued social services and cautious about wasteful spending on ineffective or lower priority criminal justice policies, like the $1 billion over the next five years that will be poured into death penalty spending.

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