Hard Out Here for a Bennet(t)

It's a tough year for senators named Bennet(t) from the Rocky Mountain West. First, Republican stalwart Bob Bennett of Utah was ousted by party activists at their state convention; now Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado lost at his party's nominating convention to former state House speaker Andrew Romanoff.

Rand Paul Comes out Against Repealing the Civil Rights Act

Kentucky Republican senatorial candidate Rand Paul has issued a statement clarifying his comments on the Civil Rights Act. In it, he says, "I support the Civil Rights Act because I overwhelmingly agree with the intent of the legislation." Although he curiously pivots later from his support for civil rights to his standard talking points about the federal government being out of control through this phrase: "This much is clear: The federal government has far overreached in its power grabs." The...

Everything is OK, Just Don't Lie About it

The scandal surrounding Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal's apparent misrepresentation of his military record has me feeling nostalgic for the Good Old Days in politics. Everything was so simple back in that innocent time of the early 1990s. Back then, politicians got in trouble for getting caught doing bad things, like dodging the draft, smoking pot when they were in college, or cheating on their spouses.

Is Pennsylvania an Outlier, or are Things Looking up for Democrats?

Pennsylvania is supposed to be a swing state, one of the Big Three along with Ohio and Florida that dominates election nights. It has been leaning bluer in recent years: It went Democratic in 2000 and 2004, sent conservative Republican Senator Rick Santorum packing in 2006, and 2008 saw a massive switch to the Democrats in party registration, partly to participate in the party's exciting presidential primary. 2009 saw another blow to the state GOP: fearing an intra-party challenge from the...

Who is Jack Tough? Meet Jack Conway, Democrat from Kentucky

Viewers of Rachel Maddow on MSNBC last night might have been confused when Doug Heye, the communications director of the RNC, referred to Jack Conway, the Democratic nominee for Senate from Kentucky, as "Jack Tough." Maddow, being hip to everything, knew though: someone posted a video on YouTube mocking Conway's self-description as "one tough son of a bitch." It contrasts "tough," such as conservative hero Chuck Norris, with "Jack Tough," which is John Edwards' getting his hair styled, or...

The Existential Threats to Israel

In response to Peter Beinart's essay heard round the Internet, which argues that young American Jews are being forced to choose their liberalism or their Zionism and that they are choosing the former, Spencer Ackerman writes that, taking Beinart's insight as a premise, the next question is what Israel should actually do.

Weekend Reading

In Congress, life imitates art, in a bad way. A hater out of Irvine, Calif., disses New Yorkers for boasting too much. Democrats dare Republicans to side with Big Oil.

New Conservative Groups Focus on Messaging, but What Message?

Politico has a fascinating, informative piece about "Bush's Brain," Karl Rove, and former RNC chair Ed Gillespie, who are putting together a series of activist organizations to rival the galvanizing effect that they believe the Democracy Alliance has had on Democrats.

Out-Extreming the Extremists

The conservative standard-bearers at National Review are fulfilling their historical role of drawing a line and declaring the conspiracy-theorist right wing beyond the pale.

Could Drilling Be an Issue for Democrats?

"Drill, Baby, Drill!" Republicans have been on offense for the last few years. The public was generally supportive of their calls to drill during the election, and President Obama's recent decision to open up Atlantic waters to oil drilling was widely viewed as a concession to them and their Blue Dog Democrat allies.

What Rush Limbaugh Doesn't Understand About Liberals

If "Know Thy Enemy," is a principle of warfare, then Rush Limbaugh is failing the conservative movement as a general. On Friday we flagged the following quote from Limbaugh, with regard to the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico: "What better way to head off more oil drilling, nuclear plants, than by blowing up a rig?

Times Square Bomb Scare

Craig Ruttle / AP Police found a bomb smoking in a Nissan Pathfinder near Times Square on West 45th Street between Seventh and Eighth avenues in the heart of midtown Manhattan, on a balmy spring Saturday evening.

Today in 'Be Careful What You Wish For': McCain's Message Is Heard

John McCain insisted to us that he is not a maverick, and never claimed to be one. Being in a tough primary fight in his conservative home state of Arizona, McCain wanted to be sure that his constituents back home get the message that he is a loyal Republican, uninterested in working with Democrats to solve the nation's problems that he once professed to care about, such as immigration and climate change.

Et Tu, Lindsey?

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid confirmed on Tuesday what our own Howard Fineman had here first: he is not going to push immigration reform to the top of the Senate's agenda.

Stupid Idea of the day: Tax the Homeless

Don't complain about your taxes today, they are surely less than the 44 percent of one's income that homeless New Yorkers are about to start paying. New York City, whose mayor, Michael Bloomberg, is worth an estimated $17.5 billion, has announced that it is going to charge homeless people for staying in city housing shelters.

The Real Problem With TV Experts

This morning I posted a response to Greg Sargent's complaint that Rudy Giuliani gets invited onto cable-news talk shows to criticize Obama's nuclear-posture review when Giuliani appears to know nothing about it.

If Standing at Ground Zero Doesn't Make You a Foreign-Policy Expert, What Does?

Greg Sargent complains that CNN and MSNBC invited former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani onto their channels this week to discuss President Obama's new nuclear posture, writing:  Someone needs to tell the bookers at the networks that the fact that Rudy Giuliani happened to get photographed walking through the smoke and dust on 9/11 does not give him any authority or credibility on foreign policy and national security issues.

Representative Pothole

Remember those Hillary Clinton ads with the Batphone ringing that demanded to know who you want answering a call in the White House at 3 a.m.? (The answer you were supposed to come up with is "Someone who lived there for eight years already.") Well, we don't have a complaint line to President Obama's bedroom, but Scott Rigell, a candidate for the Republican nomination in Virginia's Second Congressional District has posted his home phone number on his campaign Web site (it's 757-496-4113, just...

Dems Losing Grip on Crucial Suburbs

After the media overhyped Democratic losses in the New Jersey and Virginia gubernatorial elections in November, I argued that the real warning sign for Democrats wasn't the statewide executive races, which are often driven by voters' feelings on the candidates themselves, but by results in the New York suburbs in Westchester County and Connecticut.