Category Archives: National

Four things Paul LePage and Donald Trump have in common

Donald Trump’s rise in the Republican presidential nomination polls has been swift and possibly short-lived. Then again, comments on my Republican friends’ Facebook pages suggest Trump has a real constituency in the GOP. Those commenters suggest that Trump is not afraid of the media or the Establishment. They like his intensity. Sure, those remarks are […]

One waitress and the coming pitched battle for women’s votes

When candidates speak and elected officials craft policies, they should remember Judy, a waitress and housekeeper who played a bit role in a Washington, D.C., drama. In September 2013, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, took to the Senate floor to rail against the Affordable Care Act. Republicans later shut down the federal government, although Cruz did […]

Three stark, politically critical dynastic differences between Jeb and Hillary

Data from CBS/New York Times Poll, April 30-March 3, 2015

The 2016 Clinton and Bush presidential candidates have families in the business, but that background helps one and hurts the other. Some complain a possible Hillary Clinton-Jeb Bush match-up would repeat two families too much, even calling this a clash of dynasties. Others see this background positively, in that the 2016 would have a greater […]

Poliquin’s eye-popping haul and policy priorities

U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin has started filling his campaign coffers while voting to loosen controls on Wall Street, redistribute taxpayers’ money to the very wealthiest Americans, and undermine Medicare and other popular programs. When Poliquin announced raising $700,000 in the first three months of his first term, the Maine Republican Party was certainly correct in […]

People don’t want Obamacare’s repeal. Republicans start to get the message.

Since the Affordable Care Act was adopted, the tectonic plates of health care politics look like they’re shifting. Rep. Bruce Poliquin hasn’t even been in office five months, and already his positions on the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) have moved enough to make several flip-flop-themed campaign ads. Poliquin attacked primary opponent Kevin Raye for being […]

Obama, patriotism and inspiration for grownups

Watching politics, today’s gamesmanship and polarization can suppress patriotism and generate cynicism. And, as we go about our lives, we often get pulled into our routines. But recently real inspiration came to me politically and personally through the words of our president and the death from cancer of a woman I never met. Last weekend […]

Supreme Court agrees about what nixing Obamacare subsidies would do

Screen Shot 2013-12-19 at 9.57.41 PM

Yesterday’s oral arguments at the Supreme Court uncovered some rare unity about the Affordable Care Act. No, it’s not about the key question, whether the law allows subsidies to be available for insurance policies purchased through the federal exchange. Instead, it’s about what nixing Obamacare subsidies for millions of Americans would do. Those who spoke […]

What does Pelosi’s “You have to pass the bill” comment have to do with Obamacare suit?

Rep. Nancy Pelosi

Obamacare is increasingly lowering the number of Americans without health insurance, but it faces a threat by a lawsuit before the Supreme Court today. This case (King v Burwell) would take away subsidies from millions who purchased their insurance through a federally run exchange. It’s based on the absurd argument that the Congress didn’t mean […]

As economic and snowstorms hit us, how do we dig out?

This big storm put me in mind of what a friend, the photographer Jeff Kirlin, said the other day: “I love the sound of the Socialist snowplows scraping up my Socialist streets.” We pay taxes for government services that serve the public good — in this case, the ability to get places safely and not […]

Since King’s “Dream” speech, where are black representatives in the House?

Martin Luther King l Photo credit: Dick DeMarsico, World Telegram staff photographer - Library of Congress. New York World-Telegram & Sun Collection.  "No copyright restriction known. Staff photographer reproduction rights transferred to Library of Congress through Instrument of Gift.

On this day commemorating the work of Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., it’s worth looking at one political metric — representation in the U.S. House of Representatives. According to Eric Ostermeir, in the 51 years since the “I have a dream” speech, 26 states have elected black people to Congress. Thus 24 (including Maine), […]