5 Best Sunday Columns

Blocking New START, owning the lame-duck, defending Pelosi

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  • GOP Gambling Big on Blocking Russian Nukes Treaty  The New York Times' Maureen Dowd warns, "If the president calls the Republicans’ bluff and makes them vote against ratification, they look petty. Is it worth risking the obliteration of the world to obliterate Obama’s second term? ... The Republicans may help Obama if they act so vindictive, entitled and puffed up that they turn off the voters who just anointed them."

  • Why GOP Is Owning the Lame-Duck Session  The L.A. Times' Doyle McManus says that "last week in Washington, it felt as if [incoming Republicans] had already taken control of all of Capitol Hill." He explains, "In this lame-duck session, Republicans have all the advantages: the momentum of a majority and the uncomplicated 'hell no' message of a minority. And they are staying on that message with steely discipline so far."
  • Dems Should Champion National Security  The Washington Post's Dana Milbank points out that whenever Bush-era Democrats pushed back on national security, Bush and the GOP charged them with being uninterested in Americans' safety and made the issue into a political winner. Yet now the GOP is pushing against Obama's airport security and the New START treaty. "For Democrats, the opposition's gamesmanship with the security should present an opportunity. Republicans seem to have entered a post-post-9/11 era, in which national security is no longer a higher priority than their interest in undermining President Obama. There's no need to resort to the demagoguery once used against Democrats, but neither would it hurt the White House and congressional Democrats to point out that their opponents are trying to weaken Americans' security."
  • Why The Establishment Hates Pelosi  Think Progress' Matthew Yglesias evaluates why since 2004, "Basically no matter what the question the answer is 'dump Nancy Pelosi.'" He says, "That’s because, basically, she’s a [dirty fucking hippie]. Of really powerful politicians in America, she’s the most left-wing. And of real liberals in American politics, she’s the most powerful. ... One of the informal rules of Washington is that real liberals aren’t supposed to get real power. Pelosi is an affront to that rule. So she’s had a target on her back from the get-go."
  • Why U.S. Cares More About MidEast Peace Than Israel or Palestine  The New York Times' Ethan Bronner explores why "in many ways, the United States feels a greater urgency and drive for the peace talks than do the Palestinians and Israelis themselves. Here, neither side believes the other is serious about real compromise and each actively cultivates a sense of historic victimhood. Washington, by contrast, deeply believes that ending this conflict is the key to unlocking its own regional strategic dilemmas."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.