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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 10, 2006 / 19 Mar-Cheshvan, 5767

The political marketplace does its work

By Michael Barone


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Apocryphal story: the late Morris Udall, standing up at the podium on election night after finishing second in the fifth presidential primary in a row.


"The people have spoken," he said solemnly. "The bastards."


Thoughts like that may be going through Donald Rumsfeld's mind. Yesterday the Republicans lost their majorities in the House and (provided recounts go the way they seem likely to) the Senate. Today Rumsfeld lost his job. Robert Gates, who served as deputy CIA director during the Carter administration and CIA director in the Bush 41 administration, will be the new defense secretary. Gates is a member of the commission headed by James Baker and Lee Hamilton tasked with coming up with new alternatives on Iraq.


I am tempted to say that the Democrats didn't offer much in the way of alternatives during the campaign.


Actually, they offered many alternatives, many of them mutually inconsistent. But that is often the way with opposition parties whose members don't have the responsibility of setting public policy. The voters in any case signaled that they wanted change. The signals were received in the White House. The speed with which George W. Bush responded suggests that he was thinking about and planning for a possible Republican loss all along.


At his press conference Bush also invited Democrats to offer their ideas on "entitlements," i.e., Social Security-the issue on which they refused to deal with him at all in 2005.


Bush seems to be making the same moves as Arnold Schwarzenegger made after the four referendum proposals he supported were defeated in November 2005. Those measures, if enacted, would have struck hard at the power base of the Democratic legislators, who had large majorities. But having lost, Schwarzenegger decided to make deals with the Democrats and to get them to share the responsibility for governance. He hired a top Gray Davis staffer as his chief of staff. He worked with Senate President Don Perata and Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez on the budget and on getting support for big bond issues. During much of the fall campaign, they campaigned with him for the bond issues and avoided the company of Democratic nominee Phil Angelides. The result: Schwarzenegger's job rating rose sharply, and he won big.


Bush, of course, is not running again. But I take him at his word when he says that he still wants to accomplish important things. A deal on entitlements would be one such accomplishment. An immigration bill with legalization and guest-worker provisions would be another. Bush backed that, but it was blocked by House Republicans. A Democratic House might well pass it. And, of course, there will be budget negotiations and perhaps budget deals with major policy implications, like the budget-Medicare deal negotiated by Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich in 1997.


Political implications?


Bill Clinton tried to create a natural Democratic majority. He came close-Al Gore and John Kerry got 48 percent of the vote and Democrats never dropped below 200 seats in the House-but fell short. George W. Bush tried to create a natural Republican majority. He seemed to have laid a good foundation for that in the 2004 election. But he, too, has fallen short. Republicans can argue, plausibly, that a crucial number of the Democrats elected won only because they campaigned as conservatives. And it can be said that both parties' caucuses in Congress have been moved to the right. But that doesn't necessarily work to the benefit of the Republicans.


Over the next two years, Bush seems most likely to attend to policy, while the two parties' presidential nominees will set out their agendas and try to amass constituencies for them. The country is still close to evenly divided along partisan lines, and both sides have an incentive to set agendas that can get the support of majorities larger than those that either Clinton or Bush managed to attract.

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JWR contributor Michael Barone is a columnist at U.S. News & World Report. Comment by clicking here.




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