New survey examines why women don’t run for office, but misses looking at women of color

More than half of the population in the United States is female (and, let’s face it, this number probably doesn’t account for transgender women) but women are woefully underrepresented in public life. In fact, women account for less than 25 percent of elected leaders at all levels of office—despite research that shows that when they do run, they win at the same rates as men in comparable races. A new study finds that even though Trump’s election has mobilized more women than ever before to consider running for office, women are still significantly less likely to run than men. So what’s stopping them? 

Two keys to cultivating girls’ interest in running for office later in life are parental encouragement and sports. Political scientists Jennifer Lawless and Richard Fox have found that college students who played varsity or junior varsity sports were much more likely to have considered running than

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Trumpites bully congressional Republicans, Politico helps

Aw, the poor babies! Congressional Republicans have run to Politico to complain about how mean the Trumpites are to them. The big bullies.

It’s little wonder that Capitol Hill Republicans have papered over their not-insignificant policy differences with Trump, shying away from any statement about the president-elect that might possibly be construed as critical. They’re terrified of arousing the ire of their tempestuous new leader — or being labeled a turncoat by his army of followers. […]

Since the election, numerous congressional Republicans have refused to publicly weigh in on any Trump proposal at odds with Republican orthodoxy, from his border wall to his massive infrastructure package. The most common reason, stated repeatedly but always privately: They’re afraid of being attacked by Breitbart or other big-name Trump supporters. […]

An editor at Breitbart, formerly run by senior Trump adviser Steve Bannon, said that fear is well-founded.

“If any politician

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Politico publishes silliest ‘both-sides’ article of the 2016 presidential cycle. Good god, why?

This Politico effort may be the most egregious ode to both sides-ism to yet be produced this election cycle. Subtitled “Trump and Clinton feed the rigged-election charge to their peril,” it provides next to no justification for the and Clinton premise. It directly compares Donald Trump’s campaign website assertions that “Crooked Hillary” is “Rigging This Election,” his own suppositions of the same, and Alex Jones/Roger Stone-peddled lunacies not to equivalent Clinton theories, but to the American government’s own intelligence suspicions of Russian hacking.

And the maddening thing is, it’s by and large a good, well-written story. It reads exactly as if the reporter turned in a piece on the Trump-peddled notion that our entire election system might be too crooked to trust come November, only to have some mewling editor refuse to run it unless and until he wedged in some comparable claim about Hillary Clinton—no matter how silly

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Media damns Hillary Clinton if she does, damns her if she doesn’t

Which is it, Politico? Two headlines, just hours apart, give rather different pictures of Hillary Clinton’s campaign strategy. According to “Hillary Clinton’s run-out-the-clock strategy,” Clinton doesn’t plan much of a response to the media’s efforts to turn Republican attacks on her email or the Clinton Foundation into real news. According to “Clinton mounts full-court press against media,” the campaign is aggressively responding to the latest Clinton Foundation attack.

Give the BS edge to the first story, which is replete with quotes from unnamed “allies” and “insiders” and “confidants” and “sources close to the campaign.” By contrast, the story about the campaign’s response to a remarkably bad AP story has quotes from people actually in the campaign, so, you know, there’s that. But it’s fascinating to see the response to one AP story turn into a “full-court press against media.”

The Clinton campaign points out that the story, which claims

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Marco Rubio wants to declare third place a victory, and CNN is happy to go along

Something about Marco Rubio really does excite the traditional media to no end. Because we just keep seeing stories like this one from CNN, in which third place means “victory.” Seriously, the headline says Another 3rd place victory.

Just like Iowa, Rubio wants a third place finish in South Carolina to be perceived as a big win.
The logic is that once Rubio can knock the other establishment candidates out of the GOP primary by putting enough distance between them, their support will coalesce behind him and finally push him ahead of front-runner Donald Trump and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz — as long as he can stay close enough to them in the delegate count.

The campaign is exuding a quiet confidence amid standing-room-only crowds across the Palmetto State, especially after snagging arguably the highest-profile endorsements up for grabs in the state, Haley, Scott and Gowdy.

He

Continue reading “Marco Rubio wants to declare third place a victory, and CNN is happy to go along”

Marco Rubio wants to declare third place a victory, and CNN is happy to go along

Something about Marco Rubio really does excite the traditional media to no end. Because we just keep seeing stories like this one from CNN, in which third place means “victory.” Seriously, the headline says Another 3rd place victory.

Just like Iowa, Rubio wants a third place finish in South Carolina to be perceived as a big win.
The logic is that once Rubio can knock the other establishment candidates out of the GOP primary by putting enough distance between them, their support will coalesce behind him and finally push him ahead of front-runner Donald Trump and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz — as long as he can stay close enough to them in the delegate count.

The campaign is exuding a quiet confidence amid standing-room-only crowds across the Palmetto State, especially after snagging arguably the highest-profile endorsements up for grabs in the state, Haley, Scott and Gowdy.

He

Continue reading “Marco Rubio wants to declare third place a victory, and CNN is happy to go along”

Politico previews how it intends to help Republicans attack Hillary Clinton if she’s the nominee

Politico is at it again, deciding that Hillary Clinton will be “haunted” in the general election, should she get the nomination, by six “choice remarks and positions” she’s taken in 2015. Because you know, unlike Clinton, the eventual Republican nominee will have never said anything controversial.

They start out by making sure that Third Way gets their say: 

“Hillary has kept her powder dry,” said Jonathan Cowan, a former Clinton administration official who is the president of the moderate think tank Third Way, “refusing to embrace the most liberal ideas, like more Social Security benefits for all and raising taxes on the middle class. She is wisely avoiding [Mitt] Romney’s fatal error of tacking so far towards the base that you win the nomination but lose the general election.”

Never mind that raising the payroll tax to do things like the guarantee of paid time off for family leave,

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Politico really wants you to believe Obama called Iran deal opponents ‘crazies’

U.S. President Barack Obama (R), flanked by Secretary of State John Kerry, delivers remarks to reporters at the top of a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington May 21, 2015.  REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst - RTX1E0KN

Politico had quite the bombshell Monday night … until it turned out to be total BS, anyway. According to the Politico headline on Edward-Isaac Dovere’s story, “Barack Obama calls opponents of Iran deal ‘the crazies.'”
Wow, I mean, opponents of the Iran deal include not just Ted Cruz and Scott Walker but likely future Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer. Harsh words from the president! Except the reality, as summed up by Erik Wemple, is this:

Consistent with his increasingly edgy tone of recent months, President Obama on Monday evening in remarks from Henderson, Nev., used a flourish to describe his political enemies: “Harry and I drove over here together and we were doing a little reminiscing, and then figuring out how we’re going to deal with the crazies in terms of managing some problems,” said the president, referring to Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). “And then

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Hillary Clinton answers all the email questions, but Politico is miffed that she got ‘testy’

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks to the media during a news conference in Las Vegas, Nevada August 18, 2015. REUTERS/David Becker - RTX1OPKW

After an appearance Tuesday in Las Vegas, Hillary Clinton had a session with reporters in which she spoke extensively and—as far as all evidence points thus far—truthfully about the only thing the press cares about: email.

This time, in an empty and quiet gymnasium, Clinton grew testy as the back-and-forth with reporters became more heated and focused pointedly on her emails and her use of a private server while she served as secretary of state.
“What was supposed to be convenient has turned out to be anything but convenient,” she said, reiterating that she “wants Americans to understand” that when it comes to whether or not she sent or received any classified emails, the process would be the same whether or not she had used a government account. “It has nothing to do with me and it has nothing to do with the fact that my account was personal,” she

Continue reading “Hillary Clinton answers all the email questions, but Politico is miffed that she got ‘testy’”

John Kerry broke his leg, which proves he’s rich (and possibly French)

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (L) cycles past the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, March 16, 2015. Kerry and Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif held four hours of nuclear talks on Monday in the Swiss city of Lausanne before the Iranian delegation he

Kerry, looking suspiciously like a cheese-eating surrender monkey

As you’ve probably already heard, Secretary of State John Kerry broke his leg in a biking accident on Sunday and is reportedly doing well following surgery on Tuesday morning. So beyond updates here and there on his recovery, end of story, right? Not so fast! Because Politico explored the seedy underbelly of this accident and realized that it was a metaphor for political mishaps during the course of Kerry’s career. Or something like that. Plus, he’s rich. And perhaps a little too French. Here are a few excerpts to give you a flavor of this exercise in “are you freaking kidding me?” (A soupçon, as it were.)

Have you ever wondered why politicians are willing to blatantly lie?

U.S. Representative Mike Pence (R-IN) looks at his notes before a news conference about the goal of permanently extending Bush-era tax rates at the U.S. Capitol in Washington December 2, 2010. Pence told reporters on Thursday his view on stripping the Fed

“Nah, they’ll never call me out on this one …”

Have you ever wondered why politicians are so willing to lie? The answer is easy: Because they can. Look no further than Indiana Gov. Mike Pence’s Sunday appearance on This Week with George Stephanopoulos, where he repeatedly refused to say if his state’s “religious freedom” bill was a license to discriminate against gays, and repeatedly claimed that the bill was the same as the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) signed into law nearly 20 years ago. At this point one might think, wow, the media will chew Pence up and spit him out for that pathetic performance. Cue Politico:

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence on Sunday sternly defended his state’s new religious freedom law from what he called “reckless” and “shameless” media coverage, claiming Indiana has been hit with “an avalanche of intolerance.”

And by “sternly,” we can only assume that Politico meant Pence managed to keep a straight face while peddling his lies and avoiding answering yes or no questions. But what about the six or seven times Pence refused to answer the simple question, does Indiana’s new law allow businesses to discriminate against gays and lesbians? Surely Politico got around to mentioning that? Nope. Instead they went with rewriting history (well, the transcript anyway):

He also insisted the new law wouldn’t allow bakers or florists to refuse to serve gay couples, something supporters of the legislation have claimed it would allow.

No, he did not. When asked that question directly, over and over again, Pence responded with (in order):

  • “Well, let—let me explain to you, the purpose of this bill is to empower …” and
  • “George, this is—this is where this debate has gone, with—with misinformation,” and
  • “Well—well, this—there’s been shameless rhetoric about my state,” and
  • “George, look, the issue here is, you know, is tolerance a two way street or not,” and
  • “George, the—the question here is if the—if there is a government action or a law that an individual believes impinges on their religious liberty,” and
  • “Come on. Hoosiers don’t believe in discrimination.”

So, can you name even one time Pence “insisted the new law wouldn’t allow bakers or florists to refuse to serve gay couples”? Nope. But that was Politico’s take on it.

Why do politicians lie? Because they can. And they get a lot of help from their friends.

Iowa straw poll might draw only B-listers

Iowa straw poll may draw only b-listers

Obama education legacy: Pomp and fizzle?

His ambitions for big, legacy-defining initiatives run smack into a buzzsaw of opposition from across the political spectrum.

114th Congress commences; Steve Israel’s novel

Glenn Thrush talks with John Bresnahan about the first week of the 114th Congress, a tumultuous vote for Speaker of the House, John Boehner’s and Mitch McConnell’s establishment bona fides, Also, excerpts from a chat with novelist, Rep. Steve Israel.

House GOP’s immigration push faces split with Senate

Moderate Senate Democrats and a handful of GOP senators are balking at the House plan.

Court, not Congress, raises Keystone pressure on Obama

The White House reiterated its veto threat on Friday after the Nebraska court ruling.

Politico asks economists whether Mitch is right about the sky being green

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) speaks to reporters at the U.S. Capitol in Washington September 24, 2013. Washington faces two looming deadlines, with the Democrats and Republicans far apart on a solution. The U.S. government runs out o

For the record, I do not necessarily consider Politico to be the blight on humanity that many others consider them to be. If a news outlet ostensibly seeking to be informational spends their time wallowing in the morass of What A Politician Said, as opposed to the plain reality of the world, that is indeed extremely blight-ish, but the Politico defense is right there in the name and the concept; a one-stop shop for all the pointless bullshit that political figures demand they be allowed to say, neatly cordoned off into a section of internet that you can go to if and only if you have the possibly-unhealthy need to hear contrafactual bullshit from the nation’s most highly paid bullshit artists. It would be even better if the name of the site was professional political whores spouting unsubstantiated bullshit dot com, but that is what the word politico has meant since it was invented, and the shorter version is easier to type.
That may sound like damning with faint praise, but the notion of creating a specific place where all the professional crooks and charlatans can dutifully get quoted saying the phrases some think tank is writing them big checks to say? That has potential. That even has value. All we have to do is put a fence and a moat between that zoo exhibit and all the rest of the actual news, i.e. the actual damn facts, and we’d be getting somewhere. Maybe there will someday be a world in which you will receive the actual facts of a news story from, say, CNN (again, this is purely hypothetical; I realize putting “the actual facts” and “CNN” in such close proximity makes the premise seem particularly far-fetched or nonsensical, as if I had said “in the future perhaps the Ebola virus will cook your breakfast”, or “in the future monorail Don Lemon flapjack”), but consumers would be required shuffle off to separate purely politically-minded place like Politico to hear Heritage Institute fellow George P. Syphilis angrily shout that regardless of what you or I or several generations of scientific research might conclude, the sky is in fact green if he and his personal financial backers damn well say it is. There is value in allowing politicians and their associated hangers-on to spout whatever they might feel like spouting, because it is only then that we can do the democratically necessary thing, which is to hold it against them.

On other days I despair of even this small amount of optimism, because our little plan of sequestration and demarcation here relies entirely on being able to separate out the bullshit artists and not treat them as respectable or particularly knowledgable members of society, or at least not as people whose thoughts on sky coloration should be taken seriously or met with chin-stroking contemplation. That in turn would require the societal ability to make note of when certain people were Always Goddamn Wrong—there would have to be a public unit of wrongness, and it would have to be named after Bill Kristol for very obvious reasons, and the people who continually top that scale would have to lose the “expert” label dutifully appended to their self-advertising chyrons and instead be more properly labeled “advocate” or “paid propaganda-peddler” or “unsuccessful psychic” or “sad clown painting come to life and with chip on shoulder, entry seven in a series” or what have you.

And that, below the fold, leads to our current problem.

Politico asks economists whether Mitch is right about the sky being green

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) speaks to reporters at the U.S. Capitol in Washington September 24, 2013. Washington faces two looming deadlines, with the Democrats and Republicans far apart on a solution. The U.S. government runs out o

For the record, I do not necessarily consider Politico to be the blight on humanity that many others consider them to be. If a news outlet ostensibly seeking to be informational spends their time wallowing in the morass of What A Politician Said, as opposed to the plain reality of the world, that is indeed extremely blight-ish, but the Politico defense is right there in the name and the concept; a one-stop shop for all the pointless bullshit that political figures demand they be allowed to say, neatly cordoned off into a section of internet that you can go to if and only if you have the possibly-unhealthy need to hear contrafactual bullshit from the nation’s most highly paid bullshit artists. It would be even better if the name of the site was professional political whores spouting unsubstantiated bullshit dot com, but that is what the word politico has meant since it was invented, and the shorter version is easier to type.
That may sound like damning with faint praise, but the notion of creating a specific place where all the professional crooks and charlatans can dutifully get quoted saying the phrases some think tank is writing them big checks to say? That has potential. That even has value. All we have to do is put a fence and a moat between that zoo exhibit and all the rest of the actual news, i.e. the actual damn facts, and we’d be getting somewhere. Maybe there will someday be a world in which you will receive the actual facts of a news story from, say, CNN (again, this is purely hypothetical; I realize putting “the actual facts” and “CNN” in such close proximity makes the premise seem particularly far-fetched or nonsensical, as if I had said “in the future perhaps the Ebola virus will cook your breakfast”, or “in the future monorail Don Lemon flapjack”), but consumers would be required shuffle off to separate purely politically-minded place like Politico to hear Heritage Institute fellow George P. Syphilis angrily shout that regardless of what you or I or several generations of scientific research might conclude, the sky is in fact green if he and his personal financial backers damn well say it is. There is value in allowing politicians and their associated hangers-on to spout whatever they might feel like spouting, because it is only then that we can do the democratically necessary thing, which is to hold it against them.

On other days I despair of even this small amount of optimism, because our little plan of sequestration and demarcation here relies entirely on being able to separate out the bullshit artists and not treat them as respectable or particularly knowledgable members of society, or at least not as people whose thoughts on sky coloration should be taken seriously or met with chin-stroking contemplation. That in turn would require the societal ability to make note of when certain people were Always Goddamn Wrong—there would have to be a public unit of wrongness, and it would have to be named after Bill Kristol for very obvious reasons, and the people who continually top that scale would have to lose the “expert” label dutifully appended to their self-advertising chyrons and instead be more properly labeled “advocate” or “paid propaganda-peddler” or “unsuccessful psychic” or “sad clown painting come to life and with chip on shoulder, entry seven in a series” or what have you.

And that, below the fold, leads to our current problem.

Eric Garner prosecutor declares for Grimm seat

He has previously indicated interest in the seat.

It’s on: Christie heading to Green Bay for Cowboys’ game

The New Jersey Governor has come under fire for his support of the Dallas team.