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Debt Committee Dems Propose First Plan for Cuts

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Democrats on the the Congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, also known as the Super Committee, gave their first proposal to the committee Republicans on Wednesday. The committee is charged with reducing the nation's debt by cutting $1.2 trillion.

Congressional officials, speaking to the Associated Press said the proposed ...

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Opinion: So What? Herman Cain's 'Smoking' Ad is His Beatles Moment

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Herman Cain's polling numbers are out of this world for a candidate with no money, little organization and no previous political experience. It seems like his campaign team decided to see how weird they could get, perhaps to get earned media, perhaps just for the fun of it, perhaps to see just if Herman Cain was made of Beatles-level-teflon.

-Karol Markowicz, It's A Free Country blogger.

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Frank Rich on Occupy Wall Street, the Tea Party, and Class Warfare

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Let's call a spade a spade here. We do have a class war. It involves the right and the left. It involves...a large group of Americans who feel disenfranchised, dissed, getting the short end of the stick and the only question, it seems to me, between the right and left is who they blame for it.

Frank Rich, New York Magazine columnist, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

Comments [36]

Watch Live: Obama Address College Affordability

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

President Barack Obama delivers remarks in Denver, CO., about the administration's actions on managing debts from student loan. The speech is part of a series the administration is holding on steps it is taking to strengthen the economy called "We Can't Wait."

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Herman Cain's Bizarre 'Smoking' Campaign Ad Spawns Parodies

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Republican presidential contender and (sometime frontrunner), Herman Cain is out with a new ad that features his campaign chief of staff, Mark Block raving about the campaign while taking a drag on a cigarette. The bizzare ad has gone viral, and has even spawned a few parodies - notably one in which Cain "Chief of Staff, Jay Smooth' is charged with "keep Herman Cain in the news for another three, four months" so he can get a gig on cable TV.

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The Process is Political: Voting on Changing Voting Laws

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Changes to voting laws are up to voters in Mississippi, Washington, and Maine on November 8. Big Democratic donors appear to be snubbing Super PACs so far. And John Edwards argues the criminal charges against him will cause campaign finance chaos.

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Vicious Foreclosure Cycle Threatens as Home Prices Fall

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

We could be in a vicious cycle where more foreclosures means prices go down, more prices going down means more people are underwater and if they can't get jobs, if they can't make their mortgage payments, then they become foreclosures and the cycle feeds on itself.

Nick Timiraos, Wall Street Journal real estate reporter, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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CBO Shows Income Gap Widens Further

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Seemingly tailor-made for protesters, new statistics from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office show after-tax income grew more for the top 1 percent than it has for anyone else since 1979.

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Video Club: Are Secret Committees as Good as they Sound on The West Wing?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Sometimes political truth is stranger than political fiction, but the fiction is always more fun.

For that reason, It's A Free Country brings you Video Club with Brian Lehrer, in which our veteran analysts looks at the fun-house mirrors of our government's (in)action: television and the silver screen. What did the writers get right, and where did they flop? Why were the fictional characters more sympathetic, or more detestable? How did the political theater play out in real life? More often than not, it's the reality that looks funny.

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Is There an Obama Doctrine on Foreign Policy?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Libya was the test case for the un-Iraq. This was an effort to make the commitment at the beginning that there would be no American ground troops.

David Sanger, chief Washington correspondent for the New York Times, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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The Process is Political: A PAC's Home Address

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A campaign finance 'mill' in Florida, where four Super PACS and 19 PACs have registered their address, Palo Alto Online breaks down the various ways the president's reelection campaign is trying to pull in some Bay Area dollars, and the Bloomberg trial brings up a sordid campaign finance debacle. Here's our look at the details that can change everything.

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Herman Cain’s Surge: Race and Relatability in South Carolina

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Rick Perry is back today in South Carolina, the state where he launched his presidential campaign just over ten weeks ago. Perry immediately spiked in the polls, but after his series of debate fumbles, it’s been Herman Cain who’s captured the momentum.

Cain led two polls of likely Republican primary voters in South Carolina last week, and Romney hasn’t led polls in the first-in-the-south primary since June, well before Perry entered the race.

But it’s more style than substance that they’re responding to. While Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 refrain helped introduce him to early primary voters, Republican voters in South Carolina praised his relatability — and anti-Romney-ness — more than any specific proposals.

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Fresh Endorsements: Sununu Supports Romney, Forbes Favors Perry

Monday, October 24, 2011

Former New Hampshire Governor and White House Chief of Staff John H. Sununu announced today that he would endorse Mitt Romney for the GOP presidential nomination, while business mogul Steve Forbes came out in support of Rick Perry over the weekend.

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Why We're Withdrawing From Iraq

Monday, October 24, 2011

About 95 percent of American troops there are waiting to leave. They're twiddling their thumbs; there isn't much to do. Right now we have the lowest number of U.S. and Iraqi civilian fatalities and of armed attacks in Iraq—all three of those statistics—since the war began.

Fred Kaplan, writer of the War Stories column for Slate and author of 1959: the Year Everything Changed, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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Opinion: Justice Thomas' 20 Years on Bench - Still Unqualified After All These Years

Monday, October 24, 2011

Political pundits who continue to focus on Thomas’s lack of questioning prowess, activists who file disbarment petitions about Clarence and Virginia Thomas’ financial disclosure forms, and ex-girlfriends who rehash the old sexual harassment complaint that failed to undermine his credibility the first time around, all continue to miss the critical point: The nature and quality of the justice’s jurisprudence.

-Jami Floyd, It's A Free Country blogger.

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What do Iraq and Wall St. Mean for 2012?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Republicans just sort of rolled [the Iraq withdrawal] into the way they've been talking about Obama: That he's been campaigning rather than governing, suggesting that this was political as opposed to on the advice of military leaders.

—It's A Free Country political peporter Anna Sale on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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Opinion: Iraq Troop Withdrawal Can't be Claimed as Obama Win

Monday, October 24, 2011

To be an Obama supporter, you have to cheer him when he finally says that troops will be out of Iraq completely by December 2011 and pretend the president has kept his promises.

-Karol Markowicz, It's A Free Country blogger.

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A Year of Stucknation: More Stuck than Ever, a Movement is Born

Sunday, October 23, 2011

What President Obama and the Republicans can't address is actually what's happening that keeps us stuck. In our era of global speculation there's no countervailing force that acts in the public interest on a worldwide scale as a check on corporate power and reach.

-Bob Hennelly, Stucknation columnist

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Participatory Budgeting Comes to New York

Friday, October 21, 2011

This really sounds like a great idea in principle but in my experience in these so-called community projects is, usually better educated, more fluent, better organized people who in effect, take these things over. I would like to know if you're going to do anything to ensure that people who are less privileged and less well connected and less well organized are really brought into this process.

—  John from the Bronx, a caller on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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Opinion: For Real Stimulus, Government Has to Stop Bailing Out the States

Friday, October 21, 2011

Reid and the Democrats are spinning this as a magic pill that will save tens of thousands of jobs for teachers, fire fighters and police. What they aren't saying is how the states that they want to bail out with this money are in far better shape fiscally than the federal government

-Solomon Kleinsmith, It's A Free Country blogger.

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