Political Flashback: The Gasoline Tax

If the back and forth between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama over her proposal for a gas-tax holiday has a vaguely familiar ring to it, there’s a reason. In 1992, her husband made Paul Tsongas’ proposed gas tax increase a major issue in their Democratic primary fight:

“It is frustrating for me to be told the only morally appropriate

Request for Urgent Business Relationship

Obama supporters are giggling over this:

We are SENATOR HILLARY CLINTON, the wife of the former United States head of state, PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON, and also SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN, friend and associate of current head of state PRESIDENT GEORGE W BUSH. We got your contact through business inquiries as we were searching for contacts of a

Jeremiah Wright, Brain Surgeon

Key West, FL

So, I thought that a panel on the persistence of religious beliefs wouldn’t have a ton of relevance to contemporary politics. Spoke to soon!

The presenter was Andy Newberg, a professor radiology and religious studies and the author of “Why We Believe What We Believe,” a book that gained some notoriety a few years ago for …

In the Arena In the Arena

Today in Iraq

When Michael Yon–who has spent as much or more time on the ground in Iraq as anyone–speaks, I listen, even when I disagree. And while it is undoubtedly true, as Yon argues, that elements of the Sadrist militia have devolved into criminality, it is also true that Sadrism is, arguably, the most popular trend among the Shi’ite majority in …

Unfortunate Comment of the Day

From “This Week,” George S. asking Hillary Clinton about her gas tax holiday idea:

STEPHANOPOULOS: But can you name an economist who thinks this makes sense?

CLINTON: Well, I’ll tell you what, I’m not going to put my lot in with economists, because I know if we get it right, if we actually did it right, if we had a president who used

In the Arena In the Arena

Welcome Back, Tom

Commenter Kathy R writes that there are two very strong op-eds in the New York Times today, by Tom Friedman and Frank Rich.

Friedman is back from a book leave–and he is excellent on something that most Americans sense, but don’t fully realize: that we are falling behind Asia and Europe in terms of research, development, education and …

In the Arena In the Arena

This Ain’t ’88

I remember 1988 well–a dismal campaign, which Robin Toner recounts well here. But there is an essential difference between this year and that one–there are huge issues at stake this year. In 1988, Reagan was coming off a period of low poll ratings because of the Iran-Contra scandal, but he was, essentially, a popular President, …

If He Does Say So Himself…

NBC’s First Read has this little sound bite yesterday from Bill Clinton, at a campaign stop in Lebanon, Indiana:

“Folks, it’s always a mistake to bet against America. It was tough in 1968, and we came back. It was tough in 1992 and we wound up with the eight best years we’ve had in modern history.”

Reporter Carrie Dann noted the crowd …

“Bless their hearts…”

I’m here at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds in Raleigh, waiting for Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama to talk at a Democratic dinner. A few minutes ago, I talked to Caroline Valand, the executive director of the North Carolina Democratic Party:

She got a sense that something important might be happening here in the state last …

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