Should political candidates appeal to particular racial, ethnic or gender groups? Or should they broaden their message to appeal to all groups?
Such are the questions that presidential campaigns ask themselves in the circular firing squad of blame and finger-pointing that follow a big loss.
Four years ago, the big word for Republicans after ...Read more
Maybe now when I tell you that we're not in a post-racial society, you'll pay attention, OK?
The latest evidence includes an intriguing debate over how to identify the loosely organized but increasingly prominent alt-right movement.
Should we call them by their chosen label, "alt-right," which is short for "alternative right?" Or should we ...Read more
Much has been said about how we Americans, particularly we Americans in the mainstream media, should not "normalize" Donald Trump. I think it's way too late for that.
Look around. Most Republicans already have normalized Trump. So have the independent swing voters and even disgruntled Democrats who helped to get him elected. Either he was ...Read more
"Why," a reader recent asked after president-elect Donald Trump's stunning upset victory, "don't you liberal mainstream media columnists get over it and write something positive to unify the country?"
Why, I wondered, must it be left up to liberals to repair the divisions ripped open by conservatives like Trump?
Maybe Trump supporters have a ...Read more
Like other friends and fans of Gwen Ifill, I did not expect to be talking about her in the past tense. Not this soon.
The groundbreaking, award-winning "PBS NewsHour" co-anchor died Nov. 14 in hospice care in Washington. The cause was endometrial cancer, according to her brother Roberto Ifill.
She was 61. That surprised me. With...Read more
Want to get attention in the Big Apple? Try carrying a big Donald Trump campaign sign through Times Square.
A network news producer and friend of mine happened to do just that on her way home from the Republican president-elect's victory speech.
The people whom she passed on the street didn't know that she was bringing the sign to give to a ...Read more
President-elect Trump? Well, whaddaya know. There really was a "hidden Trump vote" after all.
For months almost every opinion poll had Democrat Hillary Clinton firmly holding onto her No. 1 position in the presidential race. No problem, said Republican Donald Trump's team, which claimed a "hidden vote": Trump voters who didn't want to admit ...Read more
Donald Trump's big PeeWee Herman moment came during a clash in his final debate with his opponent Hillary Clinton over Russia.
The moment came during a question about one of her speeches released by WikiLeaks. Trump said Russian leader Vladimir Putin has no respect for Clinton.
"That's because he'd rather have a puppet as president," Clinton ...Read more
If ever there was a presidential contest that did not need an extra week, this is it.
In case you haven't heard, an unusual quirk in the calendar and election laws has resulted in America's latest election since 1988.
The nation votes on the first Tuesday after a Monday in November. Because Nov. 1 falls on a Tuesday this year, ...Read more
Conditions for the news workers who cover Donald Trump's campaign have become so bad that some reporters are requesting transfers to Aleppo.
Yes, that's a joke, but not by much. Almost every politician in my experience sooner or later blames the media messengers for an unwelcome message. As the polls and various embarrassments such as the "...Read more
Sometimes satire can expose truths in ways that straight journalists can only envy. This is particularly when you are dealing with hard-to-believe developments like the rise of Donald Trump as a hero of the poor and oppressed.
"Saturday Night Live," whose skits can be hit-or-miss in terms of provoking laughs, hit a bull's eye with Alec Baldwin ...Read more
One of my favorite tunes in the super-hit musical "Hamilton" is a little ditty sung by King George III. He raises a very appropriate question for his former colonies today: What comes next?
What comes next?
You've been freed.
Do you know how hard it is to lead?
That question has come to many minds ever since King George's day, every time a ...Read more
When Donald Trump gloated that "the shackles have been taken off me," I immediately wondered, how was he shackled?
Was that the shackled Trump, for example, who obsessively attacked Judge Gonzalo Curiel in May, Khizr Khan and his family in July and Alicia Machado in September?
No, Trump actually was putting a defiant face on a stunning event ...Read more
Can this presidential campaign get any weirder?
Sensing nothing left to lose, according to reports, Republican hopeful Donald Trump's campaign is going for broke with a scorched earth strategy, intended to make a "Bill Cosby" out of Bill Clinton.
Just as Cosby went from national hero to national pariah after a parade of women charged him with ...Read more
British politician Nigel Farage is a big fan of Donald Trump, although he chose an odd way to express it while chatting with reporters backstage after Sunday's presidential debate.
A leader in Britain's "Brexit" movement to leave the European Union, Farage praised Trump's performance against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton to "a silverback ...Read more
In case you missed the vice presidential debate -- and who didn't? -- the most memorable moment in my view came when Indiana Gov. Mike Pence sounded shocked, shocked, at the very idea that a black police officer could be biased against black people.
I've got news for you, governor. A lot of black people don't like black people all that much.
I grabbed my ear lobe and jiggled it in disbelief of the words I was hearing from former New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani's mouth.
Giuliani, a surrogate for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, was responding to a very good question from NBC's "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd on Sunday morning.
Todd wanted to know whether Giuliani's ...Read more
As with many topics, Donald Trump doesn't know much about the policing policy widely known as "stop and frisk," but that doesn't deter him one bit from Trump-splaining it to us with unbridled self-confidence.
The policy, which involves warrantless stops of people who are suspected of criminal activity to search them for weapons, became a ...Read more
Like countless other viewers, I wondered which Donald Trump would show up to debate Hillary Clinton: hyper Donald or sedate Donald.
Hyper Donald is the one we usually see on the campaign trail screaming himself hoarse or delighting crowds with his ad-libbed speeches like a stand-up comedian. Hyper Donald is the one we usually read in snarky ...Read more
Days before the opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture near the Washington Monument, a couple of bizarre political developments illustrated why we Americans need it.
And I do mean all Americans. "Even if you think this isn't your story," as the museum's director Lonnie G. Bunch III recently told the politics/fromtheleft/clarencepage/s-1876383">Read more