From the Left



At Thanksgiving, Democracy on the Table

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

Thanksgiving is all about saving the Union from forces that almost destroyed it. President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed it a national holiday in 1863, midway through the benighted Civil War.

November defines turning points in the most tragic hours of history.

Lincoln gave the Gettysburg Address on the battlefield of that great war on Nov. 19, ...Read more

Katie Couric: Now I Needed To Be the Girlfriend Next Door

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

Katie Couric's new bestselling memoir, "Going There," proves critics right. Shedding her skin as a sweet, smiling -- if shallow -- public figure, now she's the second coming of Katie Scarlett O'Hara, with threads, leather and beaux to boot.

Parallels dazzle, even if Couric led a conga line, not the Virginia reel, to mark her first time ...Read more

Biden: You've Come a Long Way, Joe

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

I like living in a small Southern town. It's called Washington, D.C. You can study character here.

President Joe Biden is not the man he was 30 years ago, and that's a good thing.

Remember when Biden presided over Senate hearings that rocked and roiled the nation? They opened the way not for truth nor justice, but for Clarence Thomas's climb ...Read more

Senator Sinema: The Outsider Is In

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

I spied a woman in a purple and silver wig, walking around the Senate floor with astronaut Mark Kelly, who was newly sworn in as a Democratic senator from Arizona.

Bewildered by her get-up, unsure what she was doing, I asked the woman by the elevator, "Sorry, but who are you?"

"I'm Senator Sinema," she replied cheerfully.

And that still is ...Read more

Note to Biden: Love the Senate Less

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

Two senators should not be pushing a president around on a signature package -- legacy legislation called Build Back Better -- as time ticks by.

It does not play well. It feels weak when President Joe Biden jokes at a CNN town hall that all senators are presidents.

No, there's only one, Joe; you're it. Know your power, the way House Speaker ...Read more

The Tragedy of Joe Manchin in Three Acts

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Joe Manchin gives new meaning to the old saying, "One man, one vote."

The West Virginia Democrat is in the center of three major bills his president and party desperately need to pass for a big story to tell voters in 2022. Or any story at all.

Tall, dark and outgoing, Manchin has displaced Majority Leader Chuck Schumer as ...Read more

Biden Needs to Keep Away Skunks and Mobs

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

WASHINGTON -- The Biden presidency hangs not upon the House, but two Democratic senators, skunks at the political garden party. As skies darken, the Jan. 6 Capitol mob comes closer. These ominous signs are related.

I heard shrieks and howls while in the House chamber. It was an armed, bloodthirsty bunch. Footsteps and broken glass on pristine ...Read more

Don't Count 'Em Out: The Democratic State of Play

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

"Biden goes to church and walks through a graveyard in Wilmington as his legislative agenda is dying in Washington." -- Tweeted by a Washington Post reporter

Nineteen words shows what ails the press covering politics at the top rung. Jaded, in a word. The cold-blooded sneer as the president visited family graves shocked even the Twitterverse.

...Read more

Nancy the Fifth Faces Her Agincourt

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

WASHINGTON -- The House is a mess, a visitor might say, with a government shutdown looming at midnight Friday and two Democratic bills worth trillions in infrastructure up in the air. It's a monumental moment in time.

Senate Republicans are also seriously threatening the first Treasury default on the nation's "full faith and credit." Something ...Read more

Biden Faces a Long Fall With Chill Winds

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

WASHINGTON -- Summer's light fades into fall now. Cicadas are singing, but they won't be for long. Zinnias and cosmos show colors past the autumnal equinox, but black-eyed Susans have only their black eyes left.

We think nothing can surprise us anymore. But a popular president who suddenly "falls" to the brink is quite a sight. President Joe ...Read more

Diary Notes: Washington Puts a Dark Past To Rest

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

WASHINGTON -- The city starts a new season, after Sept. 11 remembrances. Congress returns from summer recess. In the Capitol press gallery, you hear a bubbly chatter as if we're going back to school, a new beginning.

Could we be turning a corner from a mob storming the Capitol, an impeachment trial and the pandemic? As a witness to all three ...Read more

A Very Different Take on September 11: And the Tragedy Goes On

From the Left / Jamie Stiehm /

WASHINGTON -- Out of the clearest blue sky, a thousand Tuesdays ago, four doomed planes came roaring into New York, Pennsylvania and across the river to the brick fortress with five sides.

The hijacked airships smashed so many lives -- and so much steel -- into smithereens, in moments that turned to years.

Nineteen guys -- 15 Saudis, zero ...Read more



Taylor Jones Phil Hands Kirk Walters Michael Ramirez Steve Kelley Andy Marlette