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[6 Oct 2015 | 2 Comments | ]

The angry revolt in the Republican presidential primary contest, pitting unelected “outsiders” against “establishment” candidates such as Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Chris Christie, Mike Huckabee and Marco Rubio–all current or former elected officials– is made doubly unpredictable by the bizarre, complex GOP delegate selection process.
The “outsiders,” Donald Trump, Carly Fiorina and Ben Carson, cumulatively are leading with half the vote.
Despite rumors–or hopes–to the contrary, Trump can still win the 1235 delegates needed for nomination, but so too can Rubio, the only “establishment” official polling in double digits–or Bush, Kasich and …

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[28 Sep 2015 | 2 Comments | ]

I’ve been watching presidential races since 1948 and am coming to the conclusion that none has been as confounding as this one–on both sides.  It was so simple for so long: Hillary Clinton would be the Democratic nominee and Jeb Bush the Republican. I’ll bet even Donald Trump thought so. It still might wind up that way but with the conventions a year away it might be neither.
Let’s look at the Democrats first.
Everyone expected an all-out assault on Clinton even before we learned of her private e-mail server, which was …

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[22 Sep 2015 | One Comment | ]

It will never happen, but what both parties’ presidential debates need more than anything is some kind of umpire to call out the candidates’ most atrocious misrepresentations. This is something that might be left to the moderators, but how many of them know all the facts or dare ask the hard questions?

The closest moderator to an umpire I recall was four years ago when Mitt Romney accused Barack Obama of never denouncing the Benghazi attack as an act of terror. Obama knew Romney was going to take that tack and …

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[15 Sep 2015 | No Comment | ]

If the Democrats are to retake the U.S. Senate in 2016 they must win four current GOP seats if a Dem is elected president–five if the GOP wins. On paper the Democrats have a fighting chance, since 24 Republican seats and only 10 Dems are up. The most endangered Republican by most estimates is Mark Kirk of Illinois–so this state Ground Zero.

Illinois is a blue state, especially during presidential years, making Kirk highly vulnerable. He owns a number of gaffes including vaguely racist comments. Not to be crass, but the …

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[9 Sep 2015 | No Comment | ]

The hottest Washington rumor in the Washington punditocracy–which simply may represent wish fulfillment for a lot of Democrats–is that Veep Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D,MA) have been discussing running as a slate in the 2016 race. It may get knocked down soon, but it’s delicious to contemplate for a moment anyway.

As we all know, Biden has been considering a run but acknowledges publicly he just may not be up to it following the death of his beloved son Beau. (Years ago he also absorbed the tragic death …

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[31 Aug 2015 | No Comment | ]

Now that the so-called “summer of Trump” is ending and the campaigns move into high gear after Labor Day, no matter which side you’re on you must share my absolute boredom with the clichés of the season–mouthed again and again by anchors, reporters and “expert” commentators alike.

First and foremost, I would like to give a good swift kick in the vulnerable parts to the next talking head from Washington, Springfield, Chicago, New York or any other point on the political map who tells me that someone has “kicked the can …

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[25 Aug 2015 | No Comment | ]

A few months ago it was all so simple: the 2016 presidential candidates would be Hillary Clinton for the Democrats and Jeb Bush for the GOP. Now there is cause for wonder–and perhaps some revisionist thinking.
First, I have always warned against early polling, as any glance back at the 2012 Republican “frontrunners” shows: first Michelle Bachman, then Herman Cain, then Rick Santorum, on and on until the inevitable Mitt Romney grabbed the lead and held it through the nomination. Within days of Donald Trump’s announcement he started rising and looked …

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[18 Aug 2015 | One Comment | ]

You may recall only a few months ago Chicago police officer Dante Servin was charged with “reckless” involuntary manslaughter because he fired five shots over his shoulder from inside his car, pointing toward four youths in a dark alley. He was purportedly aiming at a specific young man because the officer feared for his life–the usual excuse–but instead killed a totally innocent young woman accused of no misbehavior.

The judge immediately threw the case out because State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez had dramatically undercharged the officer. The cop’s action was beyond reckless–pointing …

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[12 Aug 2015 | One Comment | ]

While spending a long weekend in Seattle with my son and grandchildren, the older of the two boys and I were going to take in a downtown rally for Sen. Bernie Sanders on Saturday. Turned out grandson Asa wasn’t feeling well so we didn’t go–and missed the now notorious interruption of Sanders’s speech by the group called “Black Lives Matter.” The same group prevented his speaking more than a few words several weeks ago at the NetRoots Nation convention. (Later Saturday evening Sanders did address a massive rally, uninterrupted.)

You may …

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[4 Aug 2015 | No Comment | ]

A couple of months ago this column proposed, “ What we need across the country, in major counties or districts, is a special prosecutor’s office dedicated solely to grand juries hearing cases of police killings, brutality or serious misconduct.… [the prosecutor] protected from political reprisals.”

The idea is that county prosecutors must work hand in glove with the local police to solve and prosecute crimes. This makes it almost impossible for those state’s attorneys to indict and prosecute police shootings and killings to the fullest extent of the law–as we …