Catholic bishops are pressuring the Obama administration to retreat on issues of women’s reproductive rights – and with the election year looming, they appear to be making progress, as NOW President Terry O’Neill described in an interview with Dennis Bernstein.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich epitomizes the licentious lifestyle and lucrative cronyism that American conservatives claim to hate, yet he is the latest Republican presidential hopeful to soar into frontrunner status, as Michael Winship notes.
In the Republican race, the hottest “religious issue” is the Mormonism of Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman, which many commentators have ruled out of bounds. But there are broader issues of religion and politics that should be part of the presidential debate, says Rev. Howard Bess.
Exclusive: The appointment of federal judges is a key power of the U.S. president. It can reward partisan allies for past services and ensure favorable rulings in the future. Both factors were in play for District Judge Richard Leon who just struck down new cigarette warnings, writes Robert Parry.
The response to Occupy Wall Street is personal for many participants and visitors alike. For historian William Loren Katz, the iconic protest in Lower Manhattan was a reminder of Depression-era “Hoovervilles” — but with a youthful optimism.
Exclusive: Backed by a powerful right-wing media and aggressive Tea Party activists, Republicans appear unafraid of any political risks from their out-of-hand rejection of President Barack Obama’s jobs bill. The GOP senses its anti-government message remains potent, writes Robert Parry.
The “99 Percent” movement – arising across the United States – represents the first major public manifestation of disgust and fury at the rampant greed that has concentrated the nation’s wealth with the top “One Percent.” Economic journalist Mark Provost reports on his experience at one front in Boston.
Exclusive: President Barack Obama’s health care law is heading to the rightist-dominated U.S. Supreme Court which may render a decision during the heat of Campaign 2012. Some Republican jurists are sure to claim that the law violates the “originalist” thinking of the Founders, but Robert Parry offers a differing view.
Brad Pitt’s new movie, Moneyball, may be about baseball but it also raises larger questions about the importance of applying facts and rationality to achieve a successful outcome, a lesson that the American people might apply to their political judgments, writes Lisa Pease.
President George W. Bush’s response to the 9/11 attacks by launching two open-ended wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, plus the sustained Republican assault on government domestic spending, have contributed to a decline in safety and health at home and abroad, reports Michael Winship.