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Local columns

Moderate, centrist: What do these mean?

WASHINGTON — “For all the thunder on the Bernie Sanders left, the most interesting trend in the Democratic campaign this year may be the re-emergence of the moderate wing of the party, led by charismatic new voices: former South Bend, Ind., mayor Pete Buttigieg and Minnesota Sen. Amy ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, Feb. 19, the 50th day of 2020. There are 316 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 19, 1945, Operation Detachment began during World War II as some 30,000 U.S. Marines began landing on Iwo Jima, where ...

An establishment in panic

WASHINGTON — From the day he entered the race, Joe Biden was the great hope of the Democratic establishment to spare them from the horrifying prospect of a 2020 race between The Donald and Bernie Sanders. Today, that same establishment wants Joe out of the race. Why has Biden suddenly ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Tuesday, Feb. 18, the 49th day of 2020. There are 317 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 18, 1970, the “Chicago Seven” defendants were found not guilty of conspiring to incite riots at the 1968 Democratic ...

How They Voted

Senate Resolution A, Senate Resolution A, Oppose Heartwell’s NRC nomination by defeating Mitterling’s: Passed 20 to 16 in the Senate To disapprove the appointment by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of Anna Mitterling to the Michigan Natural Resources Commission. Reportedly the real target of this ...

DeVos doubles down on education reforms

WASHINGTON — I recently interviewed Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos who claimed the president’s proposed $4.8 trillion budget includes “a significant step toward returning flexibility to the states through a proposal to block grant all of the elementary and secondary education funds ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Monday, Feb. 17, the 48th day of 2020. There are 318 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 17, 1801, the U.S. House of Representatives broke an electoral tie between Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr, electing ...

Trump: Good, bad, ugly

NEW YORK — President Donald Trump “saved the United States,” says former Trump adviser Steve Bannon. He’s one of the “smartest, most clever, and successful” presidents, says Fox’s Jeanine Pirro. No, he’s “dumb and racist,” says comedian Seth Meyers, and guilty of ...

A primer on domestic spying

WASHNGTON — “The Framers ... conferred, as against the Government, the right to be let alone — the most comprehensive of rights, and the right most valued by civilized men.” — Justice Louis Brandeis (1856-1941) While we were all consumed by impeachment, a pernicious piece of ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Saturday, Feb. 15, the 46th day of 2020. There are 320 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 15, 1898, the U.S. battleship Maine mysteriously blew up in Havana Harbor, killing more than 260 crew members and ...

We’re all tough people

TRAVERSE CITY — I heard a sportscaster the other day describe a pro athlete as “tough.” He didn’t define what he meant but I assume he meant the guy plays through pain, rises above adversity etc. - the usual jock stuff. Cynical Andy thought, “Well, of course he does, he’s paid ...

Winning means coming in first

WASHINGTON — In my more than half a century of hanging around the clubhouses and campaign halls of American politics, I have never once met a candidate with the first name or family name “Expected.” Yet the enduring one-size-fits-all excuse/explanation for every presidential candidate who ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Friday, Feb. 14, the 45th day of 2020. There are 321 days left in the year. This is Valentine’s Day. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 14, 2018, a gunman identified as a former student opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle at ...

Bloomberg is trying to buy the presidency

BERKELEY — Bad enough that a tyrant is testing American democracy. Now an oligarch is trying to buy the presidency. Michael Bloomberg’s net worth is over $60 billion. The yearly return on $60 billion is at least $2 billion — which is what Bloomberg says he’ll pour into buying the ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, Feb. 13, the 44th day of 2020. There are 322 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 13, 1945, during World War II, Allied planes began bombing the German city of Dresden. The Soviets captured Budapest, ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, Feb. 12, the 43rd day of 2020. There are 323 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 12, 1809, Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States, was born in a log cabin in Hardin (now LaRue) ...

How They Voted

House Bill 5160, Ban marijuana with vitamin E acetate added: Passed 102 to 2 in the House To ban the sale or processing of marijuana that contains or has been combined with vitamin E acetate, which has been implicated in a number of serious lung ailments in reports from around the nation. ...

Are the bells tolling for Amy, Liz & Joe?

WASHINGTON — By the end of February, the race for the Democratic nomination may have come down to a choice of one of three white men. Two are well into their 70s, and either would be the oldest president ever inaugurated. The third is a 38-year-old gay in a same-sex marriage who would be ...

A missed opportunity

WASHINGTON — For 68 years the National Prayer Breakfast has been a political oasis, a chance for Republicans, Democrats, national and world leaders to assemble and pray for each other and the nation. Not this year. One could tell where things were headed when President Trump arrived later ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Tuesday, Feb. 11, the 42nd day of 2020. There are 324 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Feb. 11, 1979, followers of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (hoh-MAY’-nee) seized power in Iran. On this date: In 1531, the ...