Local columns

More self-inflicted presidential legal woes

WASHINGTON — Last week, the investigative arm of BuzzFeed sparked a media frenzy with a report claiming that two federal law enforcement sources had informed its reporters that Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former lawyer and confidant, had told special counsel Robert Mueller that ...

Democrats have their Thatcher in Warren

WASHINGTON — Margaret Thatcher’s description of herself as a “conviction politician” alarmed some Britons but delighted others because her convictions were incompatible with the flaccid centrist consensus that had produced their nation’s 1970s stagnation. In 1979, voters rolled the ...

Going gaga over the ladies

WASHINGTON — The major media have gone gaga over the number of women newly elected to Congress and those announcing their run for the White House in 2020, with more female candidates likely to follow suit. But media’s bias — one of many — is revealed in their focus on mostly liberal ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Monday, Jan. 28, the 28th day of 2019. There are 337 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 28, 1986, the space shuttle Challenger exploded 73 seconds after liftoff from Cape Canaveral, killing all seven crew ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Tuesday, Jan. 29, the 29th day of 2019. There are 336 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 29, 1936, the first inductees of baseball’s Hall of Fame, including Ty Cobb and Babe Ruth, were named in Cooperstown, ...

School Choice

NEW YORK — It’s School Choice Week. School choice is a noble cause. In much of America, parents have little or no control over where their kids attend school. Local governments assign schools by ZIP code. Having choice is better. Whether it’s vouchers, scholarships, charters, ...

How They Voted

The new legislature is still getting organized, with House committee assignments announced just this week. Rather than votes this report contains some interesting or noteworthy new bill introductions. Senate Bill 14: Establish PFAs water standard Introduced by Sen. Winnie Brinks (D), to ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Saturday, Jan. 26, the 26th day of 2019. There are 339 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 26, 1998, President Bill Clinton forcefully denied having an affair with a former White House intern, telling reporters, ...

Traffic circles, Engler and Roku

TRAVERSE CITY — One true thing: If you want to start a heated debate, tell people you like or hate traffic circles. They’re all over Michigan now and there’s no middle ground on them. Personally, I like them. That’s your cue to write me an angry email. - John Engler resigned from MSU ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, Jan. 24, the 24th day of 2019. There are 341 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 24, 2013, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced the lifting of a ban on women serving in combat. On this date: In ...

When Democracy fails to deliver

WASHINGTON — “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible ... make violent revolution inevitable,” said John F. Kennedy. In 2016, the U.S. and Britain were both witness to peaceful revolutions. The British voted 52-48 to sever ties to the European Union, restore their full ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, Jan. 23, the 23rd day of 2019. There are 342 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 23, 1845, Congress decided all national elections would be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in ...

On democracy and dictatorship

BERKELEY — The wonderful thing about Donald Trump’s presidency (I never thought I’d begin a column this way), is that he brings us back to basics. The basic difference between a democracy and a dictatorship comes down to means and ends. Democracy is about means, not ends. If we all ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Tuesday, Jan. 22, the 22nd day of 2019. There are 343 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 22, 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court, in its Roe v. Wade decision, legalized abortions using a trimester approach. Former ...

Shutdown ‘Crisis’

NEW YORK — This government shutdown is now longer than any in history. The media keep using the word “crisis.” “Shutdown sows chaos, confusion and anxiety!” says The Washington Post. “Pain spreads widely.” The New York Times headlined, it’s all “just too much!” But ...

Now playing in Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON — “He who excuses himself, accuses himself.” — Puerto Rican proverb More than 109 lobbyists and 39 Democrat Members of Congress attended a “winter retreat” last weekend in Puerto Rico, ostensibly to help raise funds for damage caused by hurricane Maria in 2017, reports ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Saturday, Jan. 19, the 19th day of 2019. There are 346 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 19, 1955, a presidential news conference was filmed for television and newsreels for the first time, with the permission ...

Donald Trump is no Earl Long

WASHINGTON — Shortly after the cooling of the earth, I was privileged to be given a firsthand look at a Louisiana statewide campaign. It was then that I learned about former Louisiana Gov. Earl Long, who was portrayed by Paul Newman in the movie “Blaze,” which allegedly told the story of ...

Does Trump have to give State of Union speech? No.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Constitution spells it out clearly in Article II, Section 3: The president “shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.” But ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Friday, Jan. 18, the 18th day of 2019. There are 347 days left in the year. Today’s Highlights in History: On Jan. 18, 1957, a trio of B-52’s completed the first non-stop, round-the-world flight by jet planes, landing at March Air ...