From the Left



Will Trump and the Supreme Court tear our democracy apart?

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Our nation faces a constitutional conflagration, and President Trump is not the only actor willing to put personal and partisan interests above the preservation of our system of self-rule.

Five conservative justices on the United States Supreme Court signaled clearly on Tuesday that they are willing to allow the administration to ...Read more

After Mueller, the path for House Democrats

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- It may not have been his intention, but special counsel Robert Mueller has forced a momentous choice on the Democrats who control the House of Representatives. How they navigate the next several months will matter not only to politics but, more importantly, to whether the rule of law prevails.

If we lived in a normal time with a ...Read more

The cathedral and the path to renewal

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

EDITORS: Note spelling of "Alleluia" in final graf. In the interest of accuracy, the spelling is taken directly from the Catholic Easter liturgy.

WASHINGTON -- The burning of Notre Dame Cathedral, a monument to human creativity and divine inspiration, invites first a mournful silence and then a search for meaning. This often involves efforts to...Read more

Our parties need to learn the opposite lessons

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- It would save pixels, ink and talking time if we all agreed on the obvious: Democrats are more divided than Republicans and will remain so for the foreseeable future. What matters is everything else you say once this reality is acknowledged.

First, the facts: Democrats are more diverse than Republicans in almost every imaginable ...Read more

Netanyahu's ominous victory not the brand of politics Israel expected

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- The last decade has been trying for liberals who support the existence of a democratic Jewish state and believe that Palestinians have a right to self-determination within a state of their own. Tuesday's election in Israel made the liberal path even rockier, both inside the country and in the United States.

Prime Minister Benjamin...Read more

Despite it all, Joe Biden should run

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- It will be good for the country and the Democratic Party for Joe Biden to run for president. But it could be hell on him.

If Biden backed off from running, he would be cast as a martyr to "political correctness" and "the new multiculturalism" by many of the same conservatives who would do everything they could to defeat him if he ...Read more

This is a time for Constitutional boldness

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- As a country, we have become Constitutionally lazy. And timid.

Note the capitalization of "Constitutionally."

At various points in our history, we have been willing to reexamine flawed or out of date provisions in our founding document. Six constitutional amendments -- guaranteeing the right to vote for African Americans, having ...Read more

It's Trump who's obsessed with Russia

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Overreach and overkill are two of the most common errors in politics. A week after the release of Attorney General William gloss on Robert Mueller's report, it's clear that President Trump's characteristic response -- to lash out at enemies and entangle his party in his obsessions -- has prevented Republicans from using the end of ...Read more

Memo to Trump's foes: Buck up!

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Fortunately for the republic, President Trump and his minions can't even do an end-zone dance right. And their celebration, by the way, is wildly premature.

You would think that in light of Attorney General William Barr's letter -- which reduced special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into four pages of pro-Trump messaging ...Read more

Mayor Pete's case for community

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Pete Buttigieg has broken through the noise of a cacophonous Democratic presidential field by raising issues that usually fall by the wayside in an era when politics feels prepackaged and defined by short-term obsessions.

The South Bend mayor frequently talks about matters that are not strictly political, do not necessarily lend ...Read more

Beto-mania: the reality and the limits

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Whatever anyone says about Beto O'Rourke in the coming months, no one will ever accuse him of lacking enthusiasm.

Here's how the always-energetic, always-sunny presidential candidate in shirtsleeves and a ball cap began his speech to a packed hall at the Penn State student union on Tuesday:

"It's so great to come in late ...Read more

The autocratic Trump and 'constitutional conservatives'

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- President Trump's opponents typically treat him as a clown, a fool and a garden-variety bigot. They only occasionally pay enough attention -- usually when he praises some foreign dictator -- to the side of him that relishes autocracy and undercurrents of violence.

He really doesn't seem to believe in democracy very much. For him, ...Read more

Nov. 3, 2020: The ideal date for Judgment Day

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- Please, Tom Steyer, stop spending all that money on impeachment ads. If you want to run spots against President Trump, target his shameful 2020 budget.

In the meantime, the rest of us should quit pretending there is a big debate among Democrats about impeachment. There isn't. There is actually consensus, which is why House Speaker...Read more

Let's stay united against bigotry

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- The polling is imperfect, but it's fair to say that more than 70 percent of American Jews and Muslims vote Democratic.

They do so, in part, because Democrats have spoken out strongly against both anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. And now, both groups are horrified by Trumpism's embrace of discrimination against Muslims and its ...Read more

Democrats are the party of the left -- and liberal Republicans

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- The core political challenges facing Democrats are not the rise of those who proudly call themselves democratic socialists and the danger that Republicans will succeed in red-baiting the entire party.

Instead, Democrats face formidable coalition management problems because they now provide a home to millions of voters (and scores ...Read more

Michael Cohen breaches Trump's wall of protection

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

Normally, presidents who are in trouble exploit historic foreign policy moments to associate themselves with the majesty of their office and demonstrate their seriousness of purpose.

Only President Trump could use his encounter with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un to reinforce some of the worst things his former lawyer Michael Cohen said ...Read more

The GOP's time for choosing

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- In 1964, Nelson Rockefeller, then the governor of New York, rose before the Republican National Convention to condemn "extremists" who had "no plan and no program to keep the peace and bring freedom to the world."

Amidst the boos and catcalls from right-wingers on the floor, Rockefeller denounced those who "spread distrust," "...Read more

A very British lesson for the American left

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

Does the bolt of eight members of Parliament from the British Labour Party out of frustration with its left-wing leader, Jeremy Corbyn, have anything to teach Democrats in the United States?

There's a case for saying no, since Corbyn is well to the left of anyone bidding to lead the Democratic Party. That would include Sen. Bernie Sanders, the ...Read more

The real national emergency: the triviality of our politics

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- When House Speaker Nancy Pelosi learned that President Trump would declare a national emergency to shift around money to finance his border wall, her denunciation was predictable. But her way of expressing outrage was not. The issue she used to make her point was important on many levels.

Observing the "unease" even among many ...Read more

Don't make it easy for Trump to hide his failure

From the Left / E.J. Dionne Jr. /

WASHINGTON -- President Trump's regular threats to close down parts of the government to vindicate an applause line make you almost nostalgic for the shutdowns of the past.

When Sen Ted Cruz, R-Texas, pushed the government to a 16-day halt in 2013 in an effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act, at least he was fighting over something that ...Read more


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