Political Insider

A look behind the scenes in the political world

Scott Walker Surrounds The Issues

In ancient times, namely the pre-Internet Vietnam War era, Members of Congress routinely had two form letters for responding to constituents writing about the war.  Each version agreed with the letter writer, pro or con.  Eventually they were outed and had to adopt a single position, much to the consternation of politicians who devote endless energy to avoiding the tough decisions that might offend constituents and contributors. 

Why Do They Run?

When JFK was asked why he was running for president in 1960 he answered, “Because that’s where the power is.” When kid brother Ted was asked the same question 20 years later he couldn't think of an answer and his presidential ambitions went downhill from there.

President of the United States is the most powerful and prestigious job in the world, so why, once again, is the crowd of candidates not the finest America has to offer?

Mighty Mouth

Here he comes to save the day, Mighty Mouth. 

Donald Trump has deigned to run for president, convinced that the nation's future is in peril unless he takes over.  "If I get elected president, I will bring (the United States) back bigger and better and stronger than ever before," he modestly promised.

Oren's Factual Deficit

Michael Oren's anti-Obama screed won't get him invited back to the White House but it could get him into Bibi's cabinet.

By his account all of Obama's mistakes have been intentional and Bibi's lone mistake innocent and that was really Obama's fault.

Where a scholarly analysis is called for, he provides readers with the literary equivalent of a drive-by shooting.

And The Flag For Which It Stands

The Confederate flag was the symbol of insurrection and treason and the banner under which a war was fought to preserve slavery. Apparently that's OK with those running for the Republican nomination for president of the United States.

Every Republican presidential wannabe who's been asked about it has refused to join calls for removing the stars and bars from the South Carolina Statehouse grounds.  Can't offend those good ole boys in the Klan, especially if they might be voting in the South Carolina GOP primary, I guess.

Shape Shifters

Three of the Democrats running for president in 2016 started their political lives as Republicans.  That says more about the GOP than it does about the candidates, writes Catherine Rampell in the Washington Post,

Don't Misread SCOTUS Jerusalem Decision

Today's U.S. Supreme Court decision in Zivotofsky v. Kerry had little to do with Jerusalem and everything to do with separation of powers.  

At issue was the President's preeminence in foreign policy, not whether the United States considers Jerusalem Israel's capital but who makes that decision, the Congress or the executive.

Who Really Wants Palestinian Statehood?

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been trying to assure the Americans and Europeans that he still supports the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict despite a mountain of evidence that it is a case "that may be what I said but it's not what I meant."

He says he supports it in principle, but in practice there's a lot of contradictory evidence:

Bernie

Don’t look for Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), the only Jewish presidential candidate in the 2016 sweepstakes and only one who actually lived in Israel, to join the panderfest of candidates trying to out-Israel each other.  I doubt he’ll even make a photo-op pilgrimage to the Holy Land as so many, especially Republicans, are.

Jeb & Jerusalem

For a guy who boasted, "I am my own man," Jeb sounds an awful lot like he’s channeling his big brother George.

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