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Archive of Articles in the "Ukraine" Category

Friday Talking Points -- A Busy Week

[ Posted Friday, January 21st, 2022 – 17:37 UTC ]

It was an eventful week in Washington, with a holiday and an anniversary thrown in for good measure, so we're going to try to be a little more succinct in this week's rundown. Well... try to, at any rate.

The week began with Martin Luther King Junior Day, saw a historic (but failed) vote in the Senate on voting rights, contained a marathon of a presidential press conference, and marked the first year President Joe Biden has spent in office. Plus a whole lot of other notable developments along the way.

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Biden's Marathon Presser

[ Posted Wednesday, January 19th, 2022 – 17:41 UTC ]

I am writing this after watching a rather extraordinary press conference with President Joe Biden. It was extraordinary for two reasons, really -- it was only the second such press conference he's given on U.S. soil since becoming president, and it was monumentally long, clocking in at just under two hours. It was a true marathon of a presser, as Biden seemed almost reluctant to end it -- and at several times even kidded with the reporters that he could go for another two or three hours if they were up for it. Perhaps he was making up for the lack of regular press conferences in his first year by giving what amounted to a double press conference to begin his second?

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Friday Talking Points -- America Is Back

[ Posted Friday, June 18th, 2021 – 17:57 UTC ]

President Joe Biden had a pretty good week all around. He began the week in Europe, where he met with the leaders of NATO, the European Union, the G7, a few royals (just to mix things up), and Vladimir Putin. That's a pretty packed schedule, but Biden seemed to manage just fine. The Europeans were both visibly thrilled and massively relieved to be visited by a United States president who was, once again, a sane adult (and not a petulant little child-man). They heaped praise upon Biden -- mostly just for being "President Not-Trump." You may laugh, but please recall President Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize solely for being "President Not-Dubya," years earlier. But more seriously, Europe announced some deals with Biden (including, notably, a truce being called on the subsidy war over Boeing and Airbus airplanes). Not only were personal relationships either reaffirmed or begun, tangible diplomatic progress was made. Europe stood as one with the United States over the contentious issues of Russia and China, which only strengthened Biden's position for his meeting with Putin. The Putin summit didn't produce a whole lot in the way of tangible deliverables, but then again it didn't produce an American president willing to believe Russia's ex-K.G.B. leader over his own intelligence services either, so it has to be chalked up as a major improvement. Throughout it all, Biden stuck to one very simple slogan that summed up what his trip was supposed to be showcasing to the world: "America is back."

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A Reminder For Republicans -- "Precedent Trump"

[ Posted Monday, December 14th, 2020 – 16:41 UTC ]

I just spent a few hours watching the Electoral College vote. Now, admittedly I am a pretty wonky political guy, but I have never before paid even the slightest attention to the formality of each state's electors meeting to cast their official ballots to elect the next president. It was always an afterthought, a mere formality. Something you'd hear about maybe a day or so after it happened, because it was of no real consequence. Even in the midst of the 2000 Bush v. Gore fight, nobody really paid much attention to the Electoral College, because it simply wasn't all that relevant to the legal fight.

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Friday Talking Points -- Plotting A Coup In Plain Sight

[ Posted Friday, September 25th, 2020 – 16:55 UTC ]

American democracy is on fire. Or on its deathbed, at the very least. Choose any dire metaphor you wish, but the red flags and warning signals are everywhere you look. The president of the United States of America made news this week when he refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power, should he lose the upcoming election. Later, watching the reaction on the news, President Donald Trump reportedly laughed about all the fuss he had caused:

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Friday Talking Points -- Anarcho-Syndicalists Unite!

[ Posted Friday, June 19th, 2020 – 18:14 UTC ]

As time goes by, it is looking more and more like the television show Trump: The Reality-Show President is just not going to be renewed for a fifth season. After all, Fox News just released a poll showing Donald Trump a whopping 12 points behind Joe Biden. That's tough news from your sponsoring network, obviously. When CNN released an earlier poll showing Trump down 14 points, he had his lawyer try to intimidate the network into retracting the poll. It didn't work, of course. So what will Trump's lawyer now have to say to Fox?

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Friday Talking Points -- A Momentous Week

[ Posted Friday, February 7th, 2020 – 16:46 UTC ]

Throughout the presidency of Donald Trump there have been many weeks that have left everyone completely exhausted, because so many momentous events have happened with such blinding speed. Each time, it's been tempting to say: "Trump can never top that week" at the end of it. We've all but given up doing so, because no matter how intense things get, there always seems to be a way to ratchet things up the very next week. However, that temptation was almost overwhelming this particular week.

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Friday Talking Points -- The End Of The Impeachment Road

[ Posted Friday, January 31st, 2020 – 17:34 UTC ]

As of this writing, nothing has been officially decided yet in the Senate impeachment trial. However, one thing seems almost certain at this point: there will only be 49 votes, maximum, in favor of calling witnesses. Both Lisa Murkowski and Lamar Alexander have announced that they will not be voting for witnesses, which leaves all 47 Democrats together with only Mitt Romney and Susan Collins. Murkowski may have been persuaded to vote no because if she had voted yes it would have set up an uncomfortable situation for Chief Justice Roberts, who would have to decide whether to break a 50-50 tie or not (with the safe money being on "not"). In any case, that's how things stand as I begin writing this.

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Friday Talking Points -- My Impeachment Reactions So Far

[ Posted Friday, January 24th, 2020 – 18:19 UTC ]

Since there's really only one story this week, we're going to totally forgo our usual format here and instead share our thoughts on the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump in the United States Senate. Other things happened in the world of politics this week, but they all pale in comparison to the constitutional theater playing out live on television for seemingly-unending hours. We're even going to forgo our much-beloved editorial "we" this week, to better focus on our personal reaction to the third-ever presidential impeachment trial in our history.

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Friday Talking Points -- Republican Senators Prepare To Violate A Sworn Oath

[ Posted Friday, January 17th, 2020 – 17:46 UTC ]

This doublethink continued this week, as every sitting senator (except the one who was absent due to a family medical emergency) swore a solemn oath to be an impartial juror -- an oath that several Republicans have already publicly promised to utterly disregard. Because, you know, all that business about being for law and order and all that tut-tutting over the sins of "moral relativism" is so 1990s.

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