A Bump on the Road to Green

Fisker Automotive may be kaput. But my friend Dave insisted that before I joined the parade of writers comparing the failed electric-car company to Solyndra, the other California–based manufacturer that went bust after landing a federal clean-energy loan, I had to borrow his curvaceous Fisker Karma. It’s been described as the most beautiful sedan ever built, and I must say […]

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The Lingering Questions About the Benghazi Controversy

The cover-up is often worse than the crime, they say. And that’s true. But these days there is also a corollary in Washington: the partisan outrage over a potential scandal is often more confusing than the alleged cover-up. So it is with the unfolding Benghazi controversy, which Republicans are eagerly comparing to Watergate and Iran-Contra. Last week, Senator Jim Inhofe, […]

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Immigration Bill Faces First Major Test

The Senate’s landmark effort to overhaul U.S. immigration laws faces its first pivotal challenge beginning Thursday, when it begins to consider a raft of amendments that could threaten the fragile compromise struck by a bipartisan group of negotiators. When the Senate Judiciary Committee kicks off what is expected to be a lengthy process of debating and amending the legislation, its […]

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How the Republicans Can Take Back the Senate in 2014

On paper, the 2014 Senate cycle could hardly be going better for Republicans. The Democrats are on defense, holding 21 of the 35 seats up for grabs next year. Several stalwart Democrats have announced their retirement, including Montana Senator Max Baucus, who announced Tuesday he would follow Iowa’s Tom Harkin and Michigan’s Carl Levin in not seeking re-election. Those veterans […]

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The Post Office’s Biggest Problem Isn’t Saturday Delivery — It’s Congress

It may seem like the United States Postal Service is unwilling to adapt to a world of declining mail volume and increased digital communication. But the real obstacle in the way of true reform aren’t the folks running the postal service itself. It’s their bosses in the U.S. Congress.   Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe is like a man waiting for […]

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Obama Sends Congress $3.77 Trillion Spending Plan

President Barack Obama is sending Congress a $3.77 trillion spending blueprint Wednesday that seeks to achieve an elusive “grand bargain” to tame runaway deficits by raising taxes further on the wealthy and trimming popular benefit programs such as Social Security. The president’s proposal includes an additional $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade, bringing total deficit savings to […]

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Obama, Give In to the Irrational GOP

In a rational world, Republicans would get the blame for the budget mess in Washington. In the George W. Bush era, they frittered impressive surpluses into unprecedented deficits. In 2011 they threatened to force the U.S. government into default if President Obama didn’t accept massive spending cuts, essentially taking the global economy hostage; the current sequester was part of their […]

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Despite Talk of Cuts, Members of Congress Push More Spending

Like many House Republicans, Rep. Mike Simpson of Idaho supports “drastically reducing discretionary spending” and warns that further growth in national debt could be “disastrous for the economy.” But as chairman of a powerful appropriations subcommittee in the House, Simpson takes a different tack, especially when it comes to programs that impact his home district. “Simpson Secures Wildfire Funding in […]

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