While the ultimate shape and fate of the bill is still uncertain, it is clear that Republicans now recognize the importance of immigration reform.
By today's standards my political views are considered liberal, perhaps even far to the left of center. Yet just a few decades ago I would have been (and was) labeled a moderate or even slightly right of center for holding the same positions I hold today.
The claim from the right is that President Obama is attempting to use these appointments to advance his policy agenda. This gets it exactly backwards. It is conservatives who have, successfully, used appointments to the D.C. Circuit to advance their policy agenda in recent years.
Our national politics increasingly resembles a party in which your crazy uncle got hold of the karaoke microphone and won't give it back until he finishes a paranoid rant. Maybe if you pour him another Manhattan, he'll pass out before all your guests leave.
Imagine a Washington, D.C. where Republicans came to work each day fired up with renewed passion and zeal. A Congress where energized Republicans legislated in bi-partisan fashion on behalf of the American people.
Greenpeace is offering to testify about being the target of politically motivated audits in 2004, because regardless of which party holds power, these abuses are egregious and must stop.
While support for legalizing hemp's distant cousin, marijuana, remains controversial, hemp is not marijuana. Legalized industrial hemp production could emerge as a prolific cash crop and a clean-burning alternative fuel.
It's not difficult to imagine a few years from now a political landscape controlled by a Democratic dynasty, where the only Republicans left in office come from states and districts where the small minority of folks who voted for them share their ignorant, intolerant 1950's ideals.
Even a minimal "vision" of an America that can still accomplish something would appear to be far more uplifting than the austerity snake oil the current crop of Republican politicians keep pushing.
The Republicans have exercised so many spin control muscles that those muscles have started to act involuntarily and instantaneously. Like the heart at the core of any wild animal, the GOP has developed an instant if not repetitive spin for everything.
Why is it that store-bought penny candy never gives you the same high when you're reintroduced to it as an adult? Is it because corporations keep finding cheaper ways to produce it, using lesser ingredients than they did back then? If so, how come it's still so darn expensive?
If you want to see why the public approval rating of Congress is down in the sub-arctic range all you have to do is take a quick look at how the House and Senate pay worship at the altar of corporations, banks and other special interests at the expense of public need.
The April 17 Senate debate was a public embarrassment in which a minority employed insults to logic to thwart the will of a vast majority of the nation.
Each of us, if we have smartphones, can record and transmit video with more independence and greater reach than the top-tier broadcasters of a generation ago. We have the power to expose wrongdoing, and we also have the power to hasten the destruction of privacy.