Frank James http://wesa.fm en The GOP Now Likes Community Organizing (If It Wins Elections) http://wesa.fm/post/gop-now-likes-community-organizing-if-it-wins-elections Both parties are sounding confident right now about their midterm election prospects, but only one can be right. Thu, 17 Jul 2014 11:09:00 +0000 Frank James 32754 at http://wesa.fm The GOP Now Likes Community Organizing (If It Wins Elections) Temporary Fix For Highway Money Is Well-Traveled Road http://wesa.fm/post/temporary-fix-highway-money-well-traveled-road If <a href="http://grammarist.com/usage/kick-the-can-down-the-road/">kicking the can down the road</a> were a competitive sport, the championship trophy would never leave Washington.<p>When the need to make a difficult choice collides with an unyielding deadline, the tendency in a city where partisan gridlock is the norm is to put the tough decisions off for another day.<p>That has happened once again with the short-term highway spending bill that Congress and <a href="http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/legislative/sap/113/saphr5021r_20140714.pdf">President Obama</a> have lined Tue, 15 Jul 2014 22:54:00 +0000 Frank James 32684 at http://wesa.fm Temporary Fix For Highway Money Is Well-Traveled Road Florida Ruling Is A Primer On Redistricting Chicanery http://wesa.fm/post/florida-ruling-primer-redistricting-chicanery If you have some time over the weekend or need a break from the endless LeBron James coverage, you could peruse <a href="http://www.campaignlegalcenter.org/images/Romo_v_Detzner_Final_Judgment_7-10-14.pdf">the highly readable opinion</a> by a Florida judge who invalidated some of the redistricting efforts by the state's Republican Legislature.<p>Leon County Circuit Judge Terry Lewis found compelling evidence of chicanery in how the lines of two Florida congressional districts were redrawn — the 5th District, represented by Democratic Rep. Corrine Brown, and the 10th District, held by Rep. Fri, 11 Jul 2014 21:55:00 +0000 Frank James 32489 at http://wesa.fm Florida Ruling Is A Primer On Redistricting Chicanery Should President Obama Visit The Texas Border? http://wesa.fm/post/should-president-obama-visit-texas-border Much of President Obama's presidency currently falls into the category of damned if he does, damned if he doesn't.<p>That certainly is true on the question of whether he should visit the U.S.-Mexico border during his two-day visit to Texas.<p>Some have even taken <a href="http://onpolitics.usatoday.com/2014/07/07/cuellar-obama-immigration-border-katrina/">to asking</a> if this isn't Obama's "Katrina moment," an allusion to President George W. Bush's 2005 failure to immediately visit the hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast once the storm had passed. Wed, 09 Jul 2014 21:59:00 +0000 Frank James 32350 at http://wesa.fm Should President Obama Visit The Texas Border? A Senator Turns His Bible Into A Political Tool http://wesa.fm/post/senator-turns-his-bible-political-tool <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dpGPymn9fsI</p> Tue, 08 Jul 2014 22:28:00 +0000 Frank James 32286 at http://wesa.fm A Senator Turns His Bible Into A Political Tool Red State Democrats Tread Lightly On Hobby Lobby Ruling http://wesa.fm/post/red-state-democrats-tread-lightly-hobby-lobby-ruling For the typical Democrat running in 2014, frequent condemnation of the Supreme Court's recent <em>Hobby Lobby</em> decision is a no-brainer as a rallying cry to raise money and energize voters — especially women.<p>Monday's ruling allows family-owned and other closely held companies <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/06/30/326926331/companies-can-refuse-to-cover-contraception-supreme-court-says">to opt out of the federal health law's contraception mandate</a> if they have religious objections.<p>But some Democrats have to be more constrained than others in their objection to the Thu, 03 Jul 2014 20:48:00 +0000 Frank James 32054 at http://wesa.fm Red State Democrats Tread Lightly On Hobby Lobby Ruling Another Day, Another Reason For Voters To Loathe Congress http://wesa.fm/post/another-day-another-reason-voters-loathe-congress Congressional approval ratings are at rock bottom. Tue, 01 Jul 2014 23:02:00 +0000 Frank James 31921 at http://wesa.fm Another Day, Another Reason For Voters To Loathe Congress Obama's No-Win Immigration Predicament http://wesa.fm/post/obamas-no-win-immigration-predicament President Obama's tough predicament on immigration is only getting worse.<p>He certainly didn't want to be dealing with an influx of unaccompanied minors illegally entering the U.S. across the Southern border, overwhelming the Homeland Security Department's ability to deal with them during a critical midterm election year.<p>Obama also presumably didn't want an immigration bill passed by the Senate a year ago to sit, forsaken, in the House. Mon, 30 Jun 2014 23:07:00 +0000 Frank James 31855 at http://wesa.fm Obama's No-Win Immigration Predicament Will Mississippi's Black Democrats Save A Republican? http://wesa.fm/post/will-mississippis-black-democrats-save-republican It's a rich irony that on the 50th anniversary of the Freedom Riders risking life and limb in Mississippi to help African-Americans register to vote, black Democrats may decide which Republican wins Tuesday's runoff for the GOP Senate nomination.<p>Then again, maybe they won't. A big unknown on the morning of the election is just how many African-American Democrats might actually visit polling places across party lines to vote for Sen. Tue, 24 Jun 2014 12:30:00 +0000 Frank James 31469 at http://wesa.fm Will Mississippi's Black Democrats Save A Republican? Hillary Clinton, The Inevitable? Sure Seems Like It http://wesa.fm/post/hillary-clinton-inevitable-sure-seems-it The jockeying for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination is already shaping up to be nothing like the 2008 contest. Indeed, it doesn't even resemble a contest. Sun, 22 Jun 2014 08:57:00 +0000 Frank James 31349 at http://wesa.fm Hillary Clinton, The Inevitable? Sure Seems Like It House Republicans' Top Leadership Gets A Red-State Member http://wesa.fm/post/house-republicans-top-leadership-gets-red-state-member House Republicans, whose voter strength can be disproportionately found in the red states of the South and Mountain West, have once again elected a majority leader from a state that voted twice for President Obama. But the race for majority whip was won by a red-state representative who made the case for regional diversity in Republican leadership.<p>Hailing from California, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy replaces Virginia Rep. Thu, 19 Jun 2014 21:54:00 +0000 Frank James 31253 at http://wesa.fm House Republicans' Top Leadership Gets A Red-State Member Iraq's Meltdown Troubles U.S. Political Waters http://wesa.fm/post/iraqs-meltdown-troubles-us-political-waters Iraq has a long history of roiling American politics. Wed, 18 Jun 2014 22:44:00 +0000 Frank James 31182 at http://wesa.fm Iraq's Meltdown Troubles U.S. Political Waters Suspect's Capture Doesn't Arrest Benghazi Suspicions http://wesa.fm/post/suspects-capture-doesnt-arrest-benghazi-suspicions Does the capture of Ahmed Abu Khatallah, a key suspect in the deadly 2012 Benghazi attacks, alter the political polarity of the episode?<p>If so, the change wasn't immediately apparent.<p>While Republicans said Tuesday they welcomed the news, they also made clear that their suspicions toward President Obama on all things Benghazi were far from assuaged.<p>Indeed, what appeared to happen was that Khatallah's apprehension added to — rather than subtracted from — the GOP points of contention with the Obama administration.<p>Khatallah's capture rekindled a dispute over the handling of terrorist su Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:33:00 +0000 Frank James 31107 at http://wesa.fm Suspect's Capture Doesn't Arrest Benghazi Suspicions 4 Takeaways From Hillary Clinton's 'Fresh Air' Interview http://wesa.fm/post/4-takeaways-hillary-clintons-fresh-air-interview So when exactly did Hillary Clinton change her mind on same-sex marriage? That question was left unanswered in the former secretary of state's <a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/06/12/321313477/hillary-clinton-the-fresh-air-interview">lively exchange</a> with <em>Fresh Air </em>host Terry Gross.<p>The same-sex marriage portion of the interview made for compelling listening because of how much Clinton bridled at Terry's suggestion that she privately supported it long before she publicly endorsed it, and how much Terry kept asking the question. Fri, 13 Jun 2014 20:58:00 +0000 Frank James 30897 at http://wesa.fm 4 Takeaways From Hillary Clinton's 'Fresh Air' Interview Meet David Brat, The Giant-Killer Who Knocked Off Eric Cantor http://wesa.fm/post/meet-david-brat-giant-killer-who-knocked-eric-cantor Who is <a href="http://davebratforcongress.com/about-dave/">David Brat</a>, the slayer of a goliath of congressional politics, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor?<p>The man who <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpolitics/2014/06/11/320871655/eric-cantors-collapse-what-happened">rocked the political world Tuesday</a> is a 52-year-old, passionate, self-described "free-market, Milton Friedman economist" and a <a href="http://faculty.rmc.edu/dbrat/">professor</a> at Randolph-Macon College in Virginia. Wed, 11 Jun 2014 09:05:00 +0000 Frank James 30703 at http://wesa.fm Meet David Brat, The Giant-Killer Who Knocked Off Eric Cantor Hillary Clinton Refines Her Benghazi Response http://wesa.fm/post/hillary-clinton-refines-her-benghazi-response As Hillary Clinton contemplates a 2016 presidential run, it's clear she'll need to answer Benghazi questions in a way that neutralizes conservative attacks and avoids politicizing the issue.<p>In her interview with NPR <em>Morning Edition</em> co-host Renee Montagne, the former secretary of state unveiled a Benghazi answer that might be a road test of a message to parry GOP accusations.<p>Speaking of the four Americans killed in the 2012 attack, Clinton said:<p><blockquote><p>"I regret their loss ... Tue, 10 Jun 2014 23:39:00 +0000 Frank James 30696 at http://wesa.fm Hillary Clinton Refines Her Benghazi Response Clinton Position On Cuba Signals New Political Era http://wesa.fm/post/clinton-position-cuba-signals-new-political-era One of the few revelations in <em>Hard Choices, </em>former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's new book about her time in the Obama administration, is that she urged President Obama to end the U.S. embargo against Cuba.<p>"Since 1960, the United States had maintained an embargo against the island in hopes of squeezing Castro from power, but it only succeeded in giving him a foil to blame for Cuba's economic woes," Clinton writes. Tue, 10 Jun 2014 19:54:00 +0000 Frank James 30670 at http://wesa.fm Clinton Position On Cuba Signals New Political Era Hillary Clinton: I Helped Restore U.S. Leadership In The World http://wesa.fm/post/hillary-clinton-i-helped-restore-us-leadership-world To hear Hillary Clinton, the former secretary of state and once and maybe future Democratic presidential candidate tell it, her new book, <em>Hard Choices,</em> isn't the kickoff to a 2016 campaign.<p>She still hasn't made up her mind about another run for the presidency, <a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/06/10/320386798/clinton-sought-tougher-deal-but-wont-second-guess-bergdahl-swap">she told Renee Montagne</a>, co-host of NPR's <em>Morning Edition</em>. Tue, 10 Jun 2014 09:53:00 +0000 Frank James 30646 at http://wesa.fm Hillary Clinton: I Helped Restore U.S. Leadership In The World State Senator's Resignation Roils Virginia Politics http://wesa.fm/post/state-senators-resignation-roils-virginia-politics A single legislator in Virginia's statehouse normally doesn't rate much attention beyond, say, his or her district or Richmond, the state capital.<p>But then again, the resignation of a single Democratic state senator doesn't normally shift control of Virginia's Senate from Democrats to Republicans — a move that possibly stops dead in its tracks Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe's plans to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.<p>There's more than a simple resignation at work in the case of state <a href="http://apps.lis.virginia.gov/sfb1/Senate/senatorwebprofile.aspx?id=362">Sen. Mon, 09 Jun 2014 22:58:00 +0000 Frank James 30632 at http://wesa.fm State Senator's Resignation Roils Virginia Politics Is Clinton Distancing Herself From Obama? Maybe Not http://wesa.fm/post/clinton-distancing-herself-obama-maybe-not Is Hillary Clinton distancing herself from the Obama administration in preparation for a 2016 presidential run?<p>Some observers suspect that's exactly what's happening via pieces <a href="http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/06/03/hillary-clinton-was-skeptical-of-taliban-bergdahl-swap.html">like one in The Daily Beast</a> based on ex-Obama administration officials telling a journalist that the former secretary of state wanted to drive a tougher bargain in the prisoner exchange that freed <a href="http://www.npr.org/tags/125938957/bowe-bergdahl">Army Sgt. Wed, 04 Jun 2014 22:56:00 +0000 Frank James 30402 at http://wesa.fm Is Clinton Distancing Herself From Obama? Maybe Not Move Over Benghazi; Here Comes Bergdahl http://wesa.fm/post/move-over-benghazi-here-comes-bergdahl Just when it seemed like the outrage on the political right over Benghazi had subsided to the point where only the announcement of House hearings put it back in the headlines, the exchange of captive U.S. Tue, 03 Jun 2014 23:13:00 +0000 Frank James 30337 at http://wesa.fm Move Over Benghazi; Here Comes Bergdahl New EPA Rules Burn Red State Democrats http://wesa.fm/post/new-epa-rules-burn-red-state-democrats While many on the left embraced the Environmental Protection Agency's new rules to reduce coal-burning power plant carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030, some red state Democrats couldn't put enough distance between themselves and the Obama administration.<p>You would have had a tough time, for instance, distinguishing the reaction of Kentucky Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes from that of the man she hopes to replace, Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Senate's top Republican.<p>"President Obama's new EPA rule is more proof that Washington isn't working for Kentucky. Mon, 02 Jun 2014 22:32:00 +0000 Frank James 30280 at http://wesa.fm New EPA Rules Burn Red State Democrats Shinseki Couldn't Outflank Election Year Politics http://wesa.fm/post/shinseki-couldnt-outflank-election-year-politics <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SDUYIFknJoA</p> Fri, 30 May 2014 21:54:00 +0000 Frank James 30148 at http://wesa.fm Shinseki Couldn't Outflank Election Year Politics Democrats Plan Ad Buys In Some Rather Blue Places http://wesa.fm/post/democrats-plan-ad-buys-some-rather-blue-places A list of <a href="http://bigstory.ap.org/article/house-democrats-campaign-arm-reserves-44m-ads">the House races</a> for which Democrats have asked broadcasters and cable companies <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/house-democrats-spending-campaign-cash-23908037">to reserve $44 million in ad time</a> provides a revealing look at the shape of the midterm election landscape this fall.<p><ul><p><li>The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee plans to spend money in some of the bluest states on the map — places like Massachusetts, Illinois and California.</li><p></ul><p><blockq Fri, 30 May 2014 16:03:00 +0000 Frank James 30111 at http://wesa.fm Democrats Plan Ad Buys In Some Rather Blue Places Texas Tea Party Gives GOP Establishment The Blues http://wesa.fm/post/texas-tea-party-gives-gop-establishment-blues This was starting to look like a bad year for the Tea Party, with primary election losses to Republican establishment candidates beginning to pile up. Then came Texas.<p>In yet another example of the distinctiveness of Lone Star State politics, Tea Party candidates had a field day Tuesday in primary runoff elections, knocking off several Republican incumbents.<p>In the highest-profile race, state senator and conservative radio host Dan Patrick, with energetic Tea Party backing, defeated Republican Lt. Gov. Wed, 28 May 2014 20:26:00 +0000 Frank James 30010 at http://wesa.fm Texas Tea Party Gives GOP Establishment The Blues Court Orders Conyers Back On Ballot http://wesa.fm/post/court-orders-conyers-back-ballot A federal court threw Rep. Fri, 23 May 2014 22:59:00 +0000 Frank James 29780 at http://wesa.fm Court Orders Conyers Back On Ballot Senate To NFL: Change The Redskins' Name http://wesa.fm/post/senate-nfl-change-redskins-name The United States Senate ratcheted up the pressure on owner Daniel Snyder on Thursday after a <a href="http://www.cantwell.senate.gov/public/_cache/files/7be140a9-f75a-4d62-bdeb-d1c75908ff36/letter%20to%20commissioner%20goodell%20on%20washington%20sports%20team.pdf">letter</a> — signed by half the Senate — was sent to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, asking him to use his authority to get the Washington Redskins to change a team name that many consider racist.<p>Snyder has vowed to never change the name of one of the NFL's most historic franchises. Thu, 22 May 2014 22:30:00 +0000 Frank James 29711 at http://wesa.fm Senate To NFL: Change The Redskins' Name Pelosi Picks Democratic Team For Benghazi Panel http://wesa.fm/post/pelosi-picks-democratic-team-benghazi-panel House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's decision to have Democrats participate on the House Benghazi select committee? A defensive move.<p>Some of her Democrats had urged Pelosi to boycott the committee. In their view, to take part would be to play into the hands of House Republicans who want to use the ninth investigation of the September 2012 attack in Libya, which left four Americans dead, to rally conservatives for the midterm elections.<p>But Pelosi ultimately determined it would be riskier for Democrats if they didn't participate than if they did. Wed, 21 May 2014 23:33:00 +0000 Frank James 29647 at http://wesa.fm Pelosi Picks Democratic Team For Benghazi Panel In Kentucky, An Epic Senate Race Takes Shape http://wesa.fm/post/kentucky-epic-senate-race-takes-shape It says something about Kentucky's Republican Senate primary that its most memorable aspect wasn't some fiery debate exchange between Sen. Mitch McConnell and challenger Matt Bevin, or any kind of clash like that. There was no debate.<p>Instead, it was a weird <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrdTX8m5G98">viral Web video</a> from the Senate minority leader's campaign that featured him smiling in different contexts. Wed, 21 May 2014 21:25:00 +0000 Frank James 29639 at http://wesa.fm In Kentucky, An Epic Senate Race Takes Shape A Role Reversal In Pennsylvania's Race For Governor http://wesa.fm/post/role-reversal-pennsylvanias-race-governor If the polls are correct, the Pennsylvania governor's race is poised to see the usual political script flipped.<p>The Republican incumbent, Gov. Fri, 16 May 2014 19:39:00 +0000 Frank James 29365 at http://wesa.fm A Role Reversal In Pennsylvania's Race For Governor