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Missing: Clear, strong foreign policy message

GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump has adopted President Ronald Reagan’s slogan: “Make America Great Again.” He exploits the sense that America’s world leadership has waned and caters to the sentiment of people wanting to feel good about their country. This appeal is based on American “exceptionalism” – the belief that the U.S. is a special […]

Not “politically correct” cuts two ways

Candidates seem increasingly to give themselves the right to say something not “politically correct.” “So what,” they say in effect, “I call them as I see them and I don’t care if that meets the standards of the current political debate.” It’s a way of appearing bold, appealing to some supporters without worrying about the […]

Clean Elections vote: doubtful campaign finance fix

Big money is transforming the American political system. It obviously affects the 2016 presidential race. But, this year, what started at the U.S. Supreme Court has reached Maine. The Court blocked the Maine system, which paid matching funds to campaigns so they could compete with spending by candidates not relying on the Clean Elections payments. […]

GOP split could lead to third party

Controversies within the Republican Party in Washington and Augusta could foreshadow an historic political change, perhaps resulting in the creation of a major third party. The possibility arises because the most strictly conservative Republicans are willing to confront members of their own party who are more willing to compromise. While both sides are conservative, the […]

Critic tells wealthy “giving back” is not enough

“Speaking truth to power” sounds good, because it suggests the speaker’s courage in facing strong opponents. Often, though, the speaker and the powerful are not in the same room. However, in July, a New York Times columnist gave an in-your-face speech before the elite and powerful at their annual gathering in swank Aspen, Colorado. His […]