Yes, apparently that's a new word now: "cromnibus." Now, some, editorially-speaking, have been insisting on "CRomnibus" or "Cromnibus," but for the time being here, we've decided that it doesn't qualify for proper-name status in any way.
Archive of Articles for November, 2014
It was fashionable, immediately after the election of Barack Obama, for some (mostly white) commentators to proclaim that America had entered a "post-racial" era. What they meant by this, loosely translated, was: "A black man has been elected president, so all our racial problems must be over now, right?"
All of the Benghazi conspiracy theories have now been completely debunked. Again. The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence just publicly released its report, which systematically knocks down pretty much every paranoid theory over the tragedy which happened in Benghazi, Libya and what happened immediately afterwards. For those of you who are counting, this is the seventh such report that has come to exactly the same conclusions. The House committee was led by a Republican, but the report itself was a bipartisan effort.
When Congress wouldn't pass a bill, the president had to act on immigration and deportation policy, to keep families intact -- a measure that affected 40 percent of the undocumented immigrants in the United States. The president in question was George H. W. Bush, and the year was 1990. Congress, at the time, was run by the opposition party. What did they do in response? They passed a bill, which Bush later signed.
President Obama just gave one of the shortest and most succinct speeches of his political career, laying out his new immigration and deportation policy. The speech seemed heartfelt and personal. There were few digressions into side issues or personal stories. It clocked in at somewhere near 15 minutes, which is notably short for not just any Obama speech but for any modern politician's speech.
The Republican leadership in Congress is reportedly considering a brilliant idea. Now, normally when I start a column off with a line like that, my intent is to be as snarky and caustic as possible (especially when I use the word "brilliant"). Not this time, though -- this time I am offering nothing but praise for what could indeed be a great way for Republicans to solve their internal struggle about how to respond to President Obama's upcoming new policy on immigration. I say this because while the idea of rescission would certainly allow the Tea Partiers to stage a big political drama, it would also allow the adults in the Republican Party to move the possibility of shutting down the government completely off the table for almost a year into the future. At this point, that seems like a win-win proposition for all, and about the best of all the possible scenarios.
"President Obama is an illegal!"
No matter what the president soon announces on the subject of immigration reform, you probably won't hear that line being used against him. There's no real reason why it shouldn't, though, if you follow the logic of those opposed to what they call "amnesty." Instead of: "President Obama is acting illegally," or: "President Obama's actions are illegal," there's no reason -- again, using their logic -- why they shouldn't also be saying: "President Obama is an illegal!" And the reason has nothing to do with his birth certificate.
I don't want to deceive anyone by that headline, so allow me to explain its meaning up front. President Obama has the whole political universe holding its collective breath on when he's going to make his announcement of a change in immigration and deportation policy. News reports last week guessed that the announcement could come "as early as next week." Now that next week has become this week, everyone in Washington is expecting an announcement any moment.
What walks like a duck and quacks like a duck but seems to have serious mobility problems?
Senator Elizabeth Warren is about to become more influential in the Democratic Party. It was announced today that she will be joining the ranks of the Democrats' Senate leadership, albeit in a newly-created position that might be best called "Progressive Liaison." The position is seen as forming a new bridge between progressives and the party leadership, who have mostly been much more timid when it comes to issues with real populist appeal. Depending on what sort of leadership role Warren carves out for herself, this could be very good news.