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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 9, 2010 / 29 Menachem-Av, 5770

McConnell's Senate defense

By David Broder



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It was an odd but intriguing experience to sit at a press breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor last week and listen as Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell strongly rebutted one of my recent columns, implicitly endorsed the message of another and sent a disquieting signal about the prospects that might follow a Republican victory in the midterm elections.

The opening question to the Kentucky senator from one of my colleagues was about the criticisms of the Senate's performance detailed in the latest issue of the New Yorker and summarized in my Thursday column.

McConnell, admirably candid, made it clear that he did not agree with any of it. The Senate, far from failing the country, is "operating very much as the Founders intended," he said.

The procedural delays that kept the Senate preoccupied for 18 months on two big bills, health care and financial reform, and delayed until next year -- or later -- a dozen others passed by the House are nothing to lament, he said. The delays simply reflect the philosophical divisions in the country provoked by President Obama's ambitious agenda. And the complaints about the decline of civility, voiced by many of the senators interviewed by George Packer, the author of the New Yorker article, and echoed in my own experience, are not a cause for alarm.

"I don't think we have a collegiality problem," McConnell said, citing his own warm feelings toward Majority Leader Harry Reid and retiring Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd, another Democrat.

McConnell ascribed much of the distress both Packer and I had recorded to the natural impatience of new members. The Senate, he said, "takes a bit of getting used to." But if they stick it out, these newcomers will learn to love the old rules, he said, and abandon their foolish impulse to change them.

To say that McConnell left me skeptical is no surprise, because I know that while he's right about what is bothering many newcomers, frustration is also the force that is sending Evan Bayh of Indiana, a two-term, 12-year veteran and the son of a former senator, into early retirement.

Much as I differed with McConnell's defense of the status-quo Senate, I have to agree with several of the other points he made at the breakfast. He is right when he says that the Senate tends to be at its best when the party ratios are relatively close -- say 55 to 45 -- rather than as lopsided as they have been during Obama's first two years.

A more-even split encourages dealing between the parties in the center of the political spectrum, and it may very well return if Republicans make the gains now widely forecast for November.

McConnell confirmed at the breakfast that one day earlier, he had had his first ever one-on-one private meeting with Obama at the White House. And he fleshed out what I had gathered from my own earlier visit to the White House and reported in another column, namely, an active interest developing on the part of the president in reaching out to congressional Republicans for help on the 2011-12 agenda.

McConnell said he could foresee alliances with Obama on trade issues, on development of nuclear power and electric vehicles, and, most important, on disciplining the federal budget.

But then he threw a curve by endorsing the idea that the 14th Amendment guarantee of U.S. citizenship to every child born in this country, whatever the child's parentage, should be examined in congressional hearings. That is a radical change, freighted with emotional baggage, and if this is an example of what it would mean to have more Republicans on Capitol Hill, watch out.

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