From the Left



Clinton's Hard Choice On the TPP

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Hillary Clinton is facing one of the most fateful decisions of the presidential primary season: what to say about the Trans-Pacific Partnership and when to say it.

Politically, Clinton's choice is a true Sophie's Choice. Whatever she does is guaranteed to generate criticism and anger key constituencies. The best case scenario for ...Read more

Shame on Our Routine Response

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- A confession: When the news of Thursday's mass shooting in Oregon broke, it did not occur to me to write about it.

I was thinking about Planned Parenthood and Benghazi; about Bernie Sanders' fundraising and Hillary Clinton's emails; about Putin and Syria. Another shooting is tragic and enraging, but what is left to say? What is ...Read more

Mr. Boehner, Clean Up This Barn

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- "I don't want to leave my successor a dirty barn," John Boehner, the soon-to-depart Speaker of the House, told CBS News' John Dickerson. "I want to clean the barn up a little bit before the next person gets there."

Heaven knows, there's lots of shoveling to do. Boehner's resignation, and the month until it takes effect, offers the...Read more

Pope Francis' Implicit Rebuke of the GOP

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Pope Francis did not come to Washington to side with one political party -- and, predictably, there was something in what the pope had to say for both Republicans and Democrats to dislike. Yet taken as a whole, Francis' remarks amounted to an unmistakable rebuke -- implicit and perhaps unintended, but nonetheless stinging -- of the...Read more

Fiorina's Dishonesty Eclipsed by Trump's Sexism

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- One part of me wants to bash Carly Fiorina for her persistent dishonesty. The other part wants to defend her against Donald Trump's persistent sexism. So here's both.

Fiorina's dishonesty is flagrant and unapologetic. Called on her misstatements, Fiorina doesn't cede ground, she attacks critics. Exhibit A is her evocative ...Read more

No Celebration of Constitutional Principles

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- It was a coincidence, but a jarring one, that the second Republican presidential debate took place the day before Constitution Day. The GOP candidates' remarks betrayed the need for a remedial course -- or maybe any course at all -- in constitutional law, judicial independence and the rule of law.

That the presidential candidates,...Read more

Bush Would Revisit 'Voodoo Economics'

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- His father had a term that could be applied to Jeb Bush's tax plan: "voodoo economics," the unproven notion that massive tax cuts for the rich will spur enough economic growth to justify the budgetary hit.

But there's an even-more fundamental question underlying Jeb Bush's proposal to cut taxes by -- depending on how much voodoo ...Read more

Can We Finally Delete Clinton's Email Issue?

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Conducting government business via private email was a mistake, Hillary Clinton has conceded. She's sorry, albeit belatedly, grudgingly, and rather unspecifically. The FBI will continue to investigate whether, and how badly, national security was compromised by transmitting classified information on the private server; the emails, ...Read more

The Donald's Dangerous Brew

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump's boastful ignorance in his interview with radio host Hugh Hewitt reminded me of a story that my late colleague David Broder told about former Sen. Bill Bradley.

The two were talking about whether Bradley would run for president. Bradley demurred. He wasn't ready to run, he told Broder, because he didn't feel that he ...Read more

One-Term Biden Could Prove Unbeatable

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Could Joe Biden be the man for this season?

The vice president has been running for president since Hillary Clinton was first lady of Arkansas. His first campaign, in 1988, fizzled over allegations of plagiarism.

His second, in 2008, limped to a humiliating close with Biden winning less than 1 percent of voters in the Iowa ...Read more

Stop Digging the Hole, Secretary Clinton

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Dear Secretary Clinton:

Your email problem has mushroomed from a self-inflicted nuisance to a self-inflicted wound. The reason is simple: At every decision point, you and your staff have made the wrong choice about how to proceed, erring on the side of secrecy and self-righteousness.

The damage can't be entirely undone. But some ...Read more

Trump Flunks Immigration

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump's immigration proposal rests on three assumptions: that immigration hurts American workers; that illegal immigration, in particular, is linked to violent crime; and that illegal immigrants drain government resources. Each of these beliefs is belied by the available academic evidence.

(1) "The influx of foreign ...Read more

Fiorina's Flip-Flop on Clinton

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Carly Fiorina says some, well, interesting things while waiting to go on camera.

In 2010, the then-GOP Senate nominee went all middle-school-cafeteria on her Democratic opponent's hairdo. "God, what is that hair? Sooo yesterday," Fiorina, already miked up, commented, quoting an aide's assessment. Two years earlier, in the makeup ...Read more

Just Make Your Case, Mr. President

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- President Obama says those who oppose the Iran nuclear deal are either ideological or illogical. I support the deal, yet I think this assessment is incorrect and unfair. It diminishes the president's case for congressional approval.

That case is strong but not overwhelming; it is not, to use a loaded phrase, a slam dunk. ...Read more

Trump Doubles Down on Boorishness

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Everything that is wrong with Donald Trump -- that makes him such a danger to the Republican Party and to the country -- emerged in the opening minutes of Thursday's debate in his response to Megyn Kelly' question about misogyny.

"You've called women you don't like 'fat pigs,' 'dogs,' 'slobs' and 'disgusting animals,'" Kelly noted...Read more

Biden Can't Defeat Clinton--She Can Do That Herself

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Maybe Joe Biden can help Hillary Clinton get her groove back.

Or, get her groove at all. It's been sorely missing this campaign.

Clinton is at her best, or at least does best with voters, when she's down. See the misty-eyed moment in New Hampshire 2008. Clinton challenged and vulnerable is more appealing to voters than Clinton ...Read more

Defunding Planned Parenthood Would Increase Abortions

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- I have to admit that my first reaction to the Planned Parenthood videos was to cringe and try to avoid the topic.

Even for those who support abortion rights, there is a stomach-churning aspect to the surreptitiously taped conversations with Planned Parenthood officials -- the coldblooded discussion, between bites of salad and sips...Read more

Clinton's New Email Fuss is No Scandal

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- The latest controversy over Hillary Clinton's emails -- the allegation that classified information was improperly transmitted on her private email server -- is, or should be, a non-scandal.

Clinton has only herself to blame for a lot of the email mess. She should have behaved like other government officials and used an official ...Read more

Trump's Anger Appeal

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- Do not worry about Donald Trump becoming president. Worry, instead, about what his current -- emphasis on current -- stratospheric standing in the polls says about two things: the Republican Party and the other GOP candidates.

Granted, the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll has Trump at 24 percent among Republican and Republican...Read more

Another Civil Rights Struggle in the Carolinas

From the Left / Ruth Marcus /

WASHINGTON -- For all the understandable attention devoted to removing the Confederate flag from the South Carolina State House, a civil rights struggle with far more practical consequences is playing out one state away.

In a trial that just began in a federal courthouse in North Carolina last week, lawyers for the Justice Department and civil ...Read more

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