The Bible possesses a kind of iconic power in American culture that has little to do with its contents. Indeed, sometimes its contents and its iconicity clash.
A campaign that had been locked at even for many months has changed to advantage-Obama. Democratic Senate candidates have begun to surge. The odds of Democrats gaining more seats in the House have risen and Democratic control of the House is increasingly plausible. Why?
"As a citizen, I feel so strongly about the essential goodness and capability of President Obama that I'm really willing to make pretty much any kind of effort and sacrifice they ask of me in trying to keep him in office. That's what it comes down to."
How many people can say they spent time at both the Republican and Democratic convention and came away feeling calm and recharged? Well, anyone who spent time at the Huffington Post Oasis, which was a world away from the crowds and chaos.
At the Democratic National Convention, Cristina Saralegui spoke about the need for Cuban Americans to have "other choices." Her words were about much more than President Obama and the Democrats -- they were about our community.
What caused this optimistic shift in the American mood is open to interpretation, as always. Pollsters don't ask things like, "Why are you more optimistic now than you were two weeks ago?"
At the DNC, Bill Clinton restated his successful ideological hybrid of social progressivism, cultural moderation and fiscal responsibility. Barack Obama affirmed these same center-left themes. Let's compare the two speeches.
Whose side is God on in the presidential election? The Republicans -- both at and subsequent to their convention -- have actively laid claim to God's mantle and given the Almighty credit for most things American.
Sooner or later, voting will be as easy as going online and clicking for your candidate, like everything else. But in the meantime, maybe sheer convenience isn't such a necessary factor in voting.
Presidential campaigns aren't decided on the last day of a race. They're decided in all the days and moments leading up to Election Day. Let's look at five moments already conducted, then the five moments still on the horizon.
D'Amour's intentions might be accepted, and even applauded, if she supported her characters with three-dimensional grounding. But here's where she allows herself to believe that presenting a gloomy prediction of national spoilage is all she needs to do. (Or is she just being lazy?)
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Mitt Romney's tour of awkwardness continues. A video of Romney speaking to a group of donors at a $50,000-a-person fundraiser, where he described 47...
Lincoln is back (Spielberg's Lincoln opens in November), and with him urgent questions: Are we locked in a new form of Civil War in our time? If so, why and what is it about? And where is our own Father Abraham? President Obama, an Illinoisan and Lincoln devotee who launched his own candidacy at the Old State House in Springfield, invoked his hero at the Democratic Convention in Charlotte, saying that he, like Lincoln, had learned from his own failings. Of course we are not in a fratricidal war, but much of our politics is eerily reminiscent of Lincoln's time, when the country split in two. Now, as then, the party system is broken and achingly in need of upheaval. As the Civil War approached, the two parties of the era were powerless to resolve the fundamental issue of slavery. Only the rise of a new Republican Party broke the gridlock. We may be reaching a similar point again.
... and I don't mean the sultry, breathy, whiskey-and-cigs, sex-goddess reverberations that generated seismic body heat, romanced the stone and enamor...
Which vision and version of citizenship is correct? The answer should be both. Early in this 21st century, however, where partisanship has been elevated to the new art of war it appears that neither may be.