J-Street's Impact

James Traub has a fair piece in the NYT magazine. This caught my eye:

Robust debate has not, in fact, broken out on Capitol Hill. When I asked a senior Congressional staff member whether she felt that legislators were now prepared to say what they think on the Middle East, she replied, “I don’t think we’re there yet.” But, she added, “There are changes in the playground.”

What kind of democracy is it when legislators cannot say what they think on an issue? And why can they not say it?