Only on the issue of the climate is the claim of ignorance considered a free pass to do nothing. For an incumbent lawmaker, "I'm not a scientist" should be seen for what it is: a contemptible evasion of responsibility.
The emerging dynamic between John Boehner and Mitch McConnell is one to watch, because it is heading for a showdown in the next few weeks. Sooner or later, one of them is going to have to cave in to the hard, cold reality that Republicans just do not have the votes to impose their will on a Democratic president.
Instead of staying laser-focused on the very real, very complex and very dangerous consequences of the outcome of the negotiations with Iran, the public discourse is now being hijacked by politics.
Barack Obama is the second Honorable Mention recipient this week, for his impressive public opinion polling on job approval in January. He had his best month (measured by month-to-month improvement) of his entire second term, and the fourth-best month he's ever had as president.
In other words, after the mass deportation bill crashed and burned in the Senate, the House has no other plan, no other path forward to fund America's shield from terrorism, Homeland Security.
Since Speaker of the House Boehner's January 22 announcement of his invitation to Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu to address a joint session of Congress, an ugly unprecedented partisan divide has ensued up and down Pennsylvania Avenue.
If any doubt remains that Speaker Boehner's invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to address Congress on March 3 represents a coordinated attack on President Obama by the right-wing noise machine, let Israel's consul general in Philadelphia, Yaron Sideman, put it to rest.
Republicans in Congress have, once again, successfully painted themselves into a corner. Even though they've done exactly this previously (in exactly the same way), they now have absolutely no idea how to get out of this dilemma (which they created for themselves).
The Israelis must deny Netanyahu another term in office because should he win, his victory will demonstrate that they are following a blind shepherd who is systematically destroying Israel's vital relations with the U.S. at a time when Israel is in dire need of America's unmitigated backing.
The way that Mr. Boteach has jumped on my willingness to say "I'm sorry" is political gamesmanship at its finest - and I accept that from a partisan political hatchet-man. I find it far harder to accept such behavior from someone who self-identifies primarily as a spiritual leader of the Jewish community.
Conason and Clarke debate "Iowa Freedom Summit" and Mitt's failure to launch. Will Walker be the JimmyWho or Bachmann of 2016? With 20 contenders, this contest can't be clown car -- at worst a clown bus. Then: will the Kochs inspire a backlash that helps overturn Citizens United?
Today, the nation finally gets to stop talking about deflated balls and finally gets around to... watching some very expensive TV commercials. Of course, the Super Bowl is much bigger than touchdowns, field goals or celebratory crotch grabs; it's about the joy of a frequently divided country sharing a common experience -- deciding whether you prefer beer ads with or without cute animals. Meanwhile, that new reality show Desperate Leaders of the Western Hemisphere took a dramatic turn with Speaker Boehner claiming he told Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer not to tell President Obama about Prime Minister Netanhayu's planned speech to Congress. It's like high school -- if the stakes were, instead of a ruined prom, nuclear war. And on Friday, Mitt Romney let some of the air out of the 2016 GOP race with his announcement that he wouldn't be assembling the old team one last time after all. It was Deflategate for the top one percent. Go Seahawks... or Patriots!
President Barack Obama made some progress on his agenda in his passage to India. But events in the Middle East and Washington demonstrated again how hamstrung his administration continues to be.
Short of flying giraffes in the chamber of the House, nothing should surprise Americans about their Congress. The latest chapter in the GOP's high dysfunction as the "governing" party is the suggestion by some Republicans not to fund the Department of Homeland Security so as to stick a knife in President Obama's immigration actions.
We have a world-historical opportunity right now to help change the game in Washington on how people speak and think about the U.S. relationship to Israel.
We have to marvel at what Boehner did. No matter his personal feelings about Obama, he could only undermine his own president in foreign policy if he simply had no respect for the office of the president. Compare this with the GOP position during the Bush administration, when any criticism or effort to oppose Bush was tantamount to treason.