Deldric Henderson

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Obama's 'extremism' language irks both sides

His carefully selected words on ISIL have frustrated both the left and the right.<p>Barack Obama’s summit on violent extremism has come under fire from conservatives who are bashing his reluctance to use the words “Islam” and “Muslim” to describe the threat from terror groups like Al Qaeda and the …

National Security

Judiciary to Lynch: Expect a grilling

Though likely to win confirmation, the attorney general nominee will face questions on issues like immigration, war and the IRS.<p>Loretta Lynch will set off the first major confirmation battle of the new GOP-led Senate when she goes before the Judiciary Committee this week. But the attorney general …

Obama Administration

Obama Was Right to Skip Paris

By lionizing Charlie Hebdo, Europe is empowering Al Qaeda.<p>President Obama has run into harsh criticism, both at home and abroad, for not attending this week’s Paris protest march or sending a high-level substitute in his place. French and European leaders, meanwhile, have won widespread praise for …

Al-Qaeda

Obama nears limit of executive powers

The list of actions he can take without Congress dwindles.<p>President Barack Obama can crank out all the executive actions he wants, but they’re not going to solve the biggest problems on his agenda.<p>That’s the reality the president faces as he prepares for his State of the Union address next week, …

Obama Administration

The Democrats’ Donkey in the Room

Their biggest headache in 2015? How to talk about Obama.<p>Democrats are beginning 2015 in an uneasy state, but it’s not as bad as it could be. Rather than the bloody circular firing squad that the party resembles all too often, the Democratic agenda looks more like a nerdy scatter plot graph. Public …

Middle-class

Obama dials up executive power

Obama's plans will set up more confrontation with the GOP Congress.<p>What do you do when you don’t have Congress? Keep the regulations coming.<p>The Obama administration is preparing another active year of executive action in 2015, pumping out new rules and enforcing others for the first time — setting …

Obama Administration

GOP searches for Obamacare fix

Republicans are looking for a way to roll back the ACA.<p>Republicans have been vowing to repeal Obamacare for nearly five years. But 2015 could be the year that Republicans finally define how they would replace it.<p>In March, the Supreme Court will hear another case that threatens subsidies that form a …

Health Care

Should the Government Rate Our Colleges?

Should the federal government be in the business of rating colleges? And can it do them right?<p>That’s been a question ever since the summer of 2013, when President Obama announced the Department of Education’s new plan to score American colleges—a source of intense controversy in the world of higher …

North Korea’s Finest Hour

After 60 years of trying to be taken seriously, the strangest regime on earth finally succeeds.<p>This is a glorious week indeed for Kim Jong Un’s dwindling little family business in Pyongyang. Finally, <i>finally</i>—to be taken seriously. To get people to pay attention and not laugh at the same time (not …

Obama's big Clinton moment

Shunning the left, he revives politics of the ’90s.<p>It’s practically a truism that the only way for a president without big majorities in Congress to get anything big passed is to anger his own party’s base. And history suggests that the short-term partisan pain usually produces more lasting …

The president, the panic and the cromnibus

How the spending deal got done.<p>At about 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer came bounding off the floor with news he had been waiting for all week: President Barack Obama, a minor player thus far in the government funding debate, would finally weigh in against House Minority …

The world's most powerful chef hangs up his apron

Will Sam Kass’ departure imperil Michelle Obama’s food agenda?<p>When Sam Kass leaves Washington after six years as a high-energy — and, at times, divisive — White House chef, his successor probably won’t inherit three titles, two offices and an extraordinary bond with the first family. But his …

Obama calls for persistence in confronting 'deeply rooted' racism

President Obama, responding to the wave of protests and racial tensions across the country in recent weeks, appealed for patience and persistence in solving what he described as an issue "that is deeply rooted in our society ... our history."<p>"When you're dealing with something as deeply rooted as …

Will and Kate Visit the US: In Pictures

Will Prince William at least get playable DVDs?

Have the U.S. and U.K. lost that ‘special’ feeling?<p>Santa Claus might be coming to town at the end of the month, but Prince William gets here first. And when the second-in-line for the British throne arrives at the White House on Monday, President Barack Obama will have an opportunity to improve his …

Executive reaction

White House hones immigration defense while GOP plans attack.<p>In his immigration speech last Thursday, President Barack Obama challenged Republican critics of his executive action to just “pass a bill.”<p>Now, the president’s allies have been holding urgent private sessions to make sure that any GOP …

'Emboldened' Obama faces promising odds on ozone

President Barack Obama’s ambitious proposal to crack down on smog-creating ozone pollution has every imaginable prospect for succeeding: He has the law and ample court precedent on his side, Congress has limited weapons to stop him, and no elections stand in his way.<p>Perhaps most of all, the …

Middle Man

Was Chuck Hagel the wrong man for the job—or on the wrong team?<p>Late on the afternoon of July 28, 1965, Gen. Harold K. Johnson, the then-Army chief of staff, arrived outside the White House in a limousine reserved for the use of members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. According to an account that he …

Dysfunction Washington can agree on

Firing Hagel won’t fix Obama’s foreign policy team.<p>It isn’t often that left, right and center agree about the Obama White House. But the firing of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel this week produced a near-unanimous reaction: President Obama’s foreign policy team is dysfunctional and in need of a …

America’s Oldest Political Insult

Presidents have always been ‘kings’ to their enemies.<p>Of course President Barack Obama is “ an unaccountable monarch.” Of course he's “ an emperor.” It’s not that Ted Cruz and John Boehner, respectively, are right about the president’s immigration order—it’s that the presidency itself is built to …

Obama's big gamble

The president is betting immigration actions can re-energize a gloomy White House.<p>President Barack Obama’s going all-in in Las Vegas.<p>There are the political bets: that Republicans aren’t going to do anything for two years and their failure to address immigration will be a political killer in the …

Clinton critiques Obama

No action on immigration may have hurt in the midterms, the former president also said.<p>LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Former President Bill Clinton said he was surprised by the Democrats’ lopsided losses in Senate races in this year’s midterm elections, and he suggested that President Barack Obama’s decision …

Obama makes legacy play on trade

BRISBANE, Australia — After years of populist rhetoric against banks and Wall Street, repeated calls for raising the minimum wage and withering campaign-trail criticism of corporate America for shipping jobs overseas and dodging taxes, President Barack Obama could leave office with a foreign policy …

Obama’s JFK Problem

How the battle between the president and his joint chiefs chairman over Iraq recalls the early days of Vietnam.<p>President Obama and his Joint Chiefs chairman, Gen. Martin Dempsey, seem to be engaged in a policy tug of war over troops on the ground in Iraq. After telling Congress last week that he …

How the Democrats lost the Senate

At a late October lunch, President Barack Obama looked across the table at Sen. Chuck Schumer. Wasn’t there anywhere else he could go to campaign?<p>Obama and his aides had felt for months that he wasn’t being used enough in the closely contested Senate races that would determine control of the …