Columns

President Barack Obama addresses the crowd after meeting with community leaders about the executive actions he is taking to fix the immigration system Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Column: Immigration Order Isn’t Obviously Illegal, and That’s Scary

Friday, November 28, 2014

President Obama claims that his decision to defer deportations for millions of immigrants is within his legal authority. The scary thing about this wide-ranging suspension of the law is that his view isn’t obviously wrong. While Obama’s action represents a brazen expansion in the size and scope of executive authority, Congress shares in the blame for acquiescing to decades of presidential power grabs. In order to maintain the separation of powers, Congress must reassert its constitutional mandate to legislate and appropriate, rather than lazily passing a blank check to the White House. Under the Constitution, Congress passes laws, the president enforces them, and the courts …

Column: We Can Have Change Without Prosecution

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Seattle Officer Darren Wilson will not face criminal charges for shooting and killing Michael Brown, according to the decision by a grand jury. It’s a controversial ruling, one that seems certain to fracture that community and the country. I know firsthand how difficult it is to prosecute police officers. In 2010, I was …

Column: Serving in Congress May Seem Thankless, But Here’s a Little

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Washington It’s a mistake to be nostalgic for some golden age in politics when everyone was nice to each other. Such a time never existed. Still, this is a particularly rotten moment to be an elected official, and especially a member of Congress, a body whose ratings are even lower than those of journalists. If you run for office these days, all your …

Column: Immigration Action Might Open Other Doors

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Washington Every Democrat should be nervous about President Obama’s plan for unilateral action on immigration reform. Not because of the impact on an already gridlocked Congress, or because it risks inflaming an increasingly hostile public. Democrats should be nervous about the implications for presidential power, and the ability …

Column: Cynical Origins of Obamacare Revealed

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Washington It’s not exactly the Ems Dispatch (the diplomatic cable Bismarck doctored to provoke the 1870 Franco-Prussian War). But what the just-resurfaced Gruber Confession lacks in world-historical consequence, it makes up for in world-class cynicism. This October 2013 video shows MIT professor Jonathan Gruber, a principal architect of …

Column: Are Electric Cars Greener? That Depends

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Long thought a thing of the future, electric cars are becoming mainstream. Sales in the United States of plug-in, electric vehicles nearly doubled last year. Credible forecasts see the number rising within a decade to half a million vehicles per year, which would easily exceed sales of the …

Willem Lange: Back at Camp, as an Observer

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Hell Gate, N.H. Hell Gate seems like a strange name for a shrine, doesn’t it? But a shrine is what it is, for several of us here this week. Not quite on the order of the Ka’aba in Mecca, the Western Wall, Canterbury Cathedral or Santiago de Compostela. …

Column: Time for U.S. to Upgrade Thinking on Nukes

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The publicized mishaps — they shouldn’t be called scandals — in recent years by Air Force and Navy personnel in charge of nuclear weapons give the White House and Congress a chance to rethink the U.S. deterrence mission …

Column: Joseph Kennedy’s Lesson for Pot Investors

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Big-time investors hoping to profit from America’s emerging business in legalized marijuana might see a bit of themselves in the historic example of Joseph P. Kennedy, the father of President John F. Kennedy. Back in 1933, the Kennedy patriarch made sure his liquor firm would be the first …

In Defeat, Nancy Pelosi Stays the Course

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

There are five 2014 House races still to be decided before we can answer a question of historical interest: Was this the worst election for House Democrats since 1928? Or merely their worst since 1946? Either way, the results do not reflect well on the House Democratic leader, …

Birthrate Is Just About Right in America

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The new demographic reality for the United States, Europe and many countries in Asia and Latin America is an aging population. Governments will face increasing financial pressure as the number of taxpayers shrinks and baby boomers retire. Many see a broad threat to their economies; some countries have …

Column: Mia Love — Black, Mormon and Republican — Courts Controversy

Monday, November 17, 2014

Mia Love is already getting more attention than most of her newly elected congressional colleagues. She is Haitian American, a woman, daughter of immigrants, Mormon, Republican and from Utah, all things that she seems eager to boast about, except when she isn’t, as those who contrasted her post-election …

To Rebound, Obama Should Give Up Golf

Monday, November 17, 2014

I have figured out what’s wrong with President Obama. He gave up basketball and started playing more golf. As a man of roughly the president’s age who still plays both sports, I have some insights to offer. Basketball demands all of the qualities that make a good leader. …