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Eugene Robinson

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ROBINSON: We should thank Edward Snowden

The order that Snowden leaked — compelling a Verizon unit to cough up data on the phone calls it handled — was one of only a few to come to light in the court’s three decades of existence. Now there are voices calling for all the court’s rulings to be released. We’re talking about these issues. You can wish Edward Snowden well or wish him a lifetime in prison. Either way, you should thank him.

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ROBINSON: Hang up on phone tracking

WASHINGTON -- From the evidence so far, there's no good reason to let the National Security Agency continue its massively intrusive practice of logging our private phone calls. Congress should pull the plug.. I'm not ignoring all the officials, including President Obama, who swear that the NSA's electronic snooping has

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ROBINSON: The end of the right of privacy?

Someday, a young girl will look up into her father's eyes and ask, "Daddy, what was privacy?". The father probably won't recall. I fear we've already forgotten that there was a time when a U.S. citizen's telephone calls were nobody else's business

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ROBINSON: Maximum mayhem on his mind

WASHINGTON -- The gunman in the Newtown massacre fired 154 bullets from his Bushmaster military-style rifle in less than five minutes, killing 20 first-graders and six adults. He brought with him 10 large-capacity magazines, each holding up to 30 rounds, which

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ROBINSON: No winners in this game

WASHINGTON -- The standoff over the package of budget cuts known as "the sequester" is the dumbest, most self-defeating fight between President Barack Obama and Republicans in Congress since ... let's see, since the last dumb, self-defeating fight less than two months

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ROBINSON: Obama following Thatcher's footsteps

WASHINGTON -- In his bid to be remembered as a transformational leader, President Barack Obama is following the playbook of an ideological opposite, Margaret Thatcher. First you win the argument, she used to say, then you win the vote.. Obama is gradually winning the argument about what government can and

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ROBINSON: Biden to the rescue

DANVILLE, Ky. -- If the question is who did more to help his ticket, Joe Biden won the vice presidential debate by a mile.. Republican Paul Ryan performed pretty well. He made no major mistakes, and a CNN instant poll of viewers actually had him winning narrowly, 48 percent to

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ROBINSON: Global warming is here to stay

WASHINGTON -- Excuse me, folks, but the weather is trying to tell us something. Listen carefully, and you can almost hear a parched, raspy voice whispering, "What part of 'hottest month ever' do you people not understand?"

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ROBINSON: The bigger picture

WASHINGTON -- The political impact of Thursday's stunning Supreme Court decision on health care reform is clear -- good for President Obama and the Democrats, bad for Mitt Romney and the Republicans -- but fleeting, and thus secondary. Much more important is what the ruling means in the long term.

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ROBINSON: Fast and Furious -- the witch hunt

WASHINGTON -- In 2006, when George W. Bush was president, federal law enforcement officials came up with a spectacularly dumb idea: Allow powerful firearms purchased in the United States to "walk" across the Mexico border, where authorities would trace the weapons and eventually nab the big-time criminals.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: Romney plays his Trump card

WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump has said he would be "open" to accepting a Cabinet post if Mitt Romney becomes president. Don't laugh. OK, go ahead and laugh.

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ROBINSON: Why Bain questions matter

WASHINGTON -- Who are the dastardly enemies of free enterprise who decided to make an issue of Mitt Romney's tenure at the private-equity firm Bain Capital? Er, those would be his fellow Republicans.

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ROBINSON: Disco Queen and Go-Go King

WASHINGTON -- The soundtrack of my youth is fading. That's hardly an original observation, I realize, but self-indulgence is a columnist's inalienable right and music has unique power to summon unbidden waves of nostalgia. I'll spend the rest of the day listening to the "Queen of Disco" and the

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ROBINSON: A whiff of 'hope and change'

WASHINGTON -- President Obama's evolutionary leap on same-sex marriage is a historic advance in the nation's long march toward equality and justice. It is also a bold political gambit that sacrifices some votes in exchange for potentially renewing his image as a leader of vision and hope.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: What immigration 'crisis'?

WASHINGTON -- Now that the immigration "crisis" has solved itself, this is the perfect time for Congress and the president to agree on a package of sensible, real-world reforms. Yeah, right, and it's also the perfect time for pigs to grow wings and take flight.

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ROBINSON: The right-wing bully machine

WASHINGTON -- Not all overheated political rhetoric is alike. Delusional right-wing crazy talk -- the kind of ranting we've heard recently from washed-up rock star Ted Nugent and tea party-backed Rep. Allen West -- is a special kind of poison that cannot be safely ignored.

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ROBINSON: Handicapping the veep stakes

WASHINGTON -- Playing second fiddle to Mitt Romney won't be easy, but somebody has to be his running mate. Let's handicap the field.

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ROBINSON: The price if health care is overturned

WASHINGTON -- In arguments before the Supreme Court this week, the Obama administration might have done just enough to keep the Affordable Care Act from being ruled unconstitutional. Those who believe in limited government had better hope so, at least.

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ROBINSON: To be black in America ...

For every black man in America, from the millionaire in the corner office to the mechanic in the local garage, the Trayvon Martin tragedy is personal. It could have been me or one of my sons. It could have been any of us.

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ROBINSON: Santorum needs Gingrich in the race

f Rick Santorum wants to keep Mitt Romney from wrapping up the Republican nomination before the convention, he should encourage Newt Gingrich to stay in the race.

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ROBINSON: A field of hawks

Unless Ron Paul somehow wins the nomination, it looks as if a vote for the Republican presidential candidate this fall will be a vote for war with Iran.

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ROBINSON: Santorum goes to the extreme

For all his supposed authenticity, Rick Santorum is not what he seems.

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ROBINSON: The danger of Mitt being Mitt

Political consultants tell candidates to be authentic -- to "be yourself." In Mitt Romney's case, that might not be such good advice.

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ROBINSON: Gulf War III isn't an option

We've heard this quickening drumbeat before. Last time, it led to the tragic invasion and occupation of Iraq. This time, if we let the drummers provoke us into war with Iran, the consequences will likely be far worse.

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ROBINSON: Pay close attention to China

WASHINGTON -- China, for better or worse, is a serious country. The United States had better start acting like one.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: Romney's indifference to the poor

I wish Mitt Romney's cavalier dismissal of poverty in America could be chalked up as just another gaffe, but it's much worse than that.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: An argument Obama can win

If you heard a loud "gulp" Tuesday night after President Obama's State of the Union address, it probably came from Republican political strategists as they realized their party's odds of capturing the White House this fall are getting longer.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: Change they don't believe in

For Republicans, beating Obama is the most important issue. That's weird to me.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: The dream that came true

King would be an elder statesman now, a lion in winter, an American hero perhaps impatient with the fuss being made over his birthday. At 83, he'd likely still have his wits and his voice.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: Romney's two-for-two and game on

It's going to be mean and dispiriting, this campaign. We'll be assailed with talk of "European socialism" and "vulture capitalism" -- not "hope" and "change" -- and the months between now and November will seem an eternity.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: Grand Old Party, fit to a 't'

WASHINGTON — Finally. After a year of artful camouflage and concealment, Republicans let us glimpse the rift between establishment pragmatists and tea party ideologues. There may be hope for the republic after all.Forty Republican senators, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, joined Democrats in voting

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EUGENE ROBINSON: Been there, thought that

Newt's mind? Been there, thought that. WASHINGTONCan we please bury the notion that Newt Gingrich is some kind of deep thinker? His intellect may be as broad as the sea, but it's about as deep as a birdbath.I'm not saying the Republican presidential front-runner is unacquainted with ideas. Quite

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ROBINSON: Politics as reality TV

WASHINGTON — I guess I was wrong. I thought Republicans surely would have come to their senses by now. Instead, they seem to be rushing deeper into madness.With less than a month to go before the Iowa caucuses, Mitt Romney, the candidate shown by

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ROBINSON: The two faces of China

BEIJING — Don't hold your breath waiting for any kind of Occupy Beijing movement to set up camp.

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ROBINSON: Waiting for the GOP's love

WASHINGTON — Moderator Wolf Blitzer opened Tuesday's Republican debate by introducing himself and adding, for some reason, "Yes, that's my real name." A few moments later, the party's most plausible nominee for president said the following: "I'm Mitt Romney, and yes, Wolf

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ROBINSON: Still occupied

NEW YORK -- Occupy Wall Street may not occupy Zuccotti Park anymore, but it refuses to surrender its place in the national discourse. Up close, you get the sense that the movement may have only just begun.Demonstrators staged a "day of action" Thursday, following

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ROBINSON: The nonsense debate

No winners in this GOP debate but Obama. WASHINGTONDon't laugh too hard at Rick Perry for his mortifying episode of brain-lock at Wednesday's GOP presidential candidates' debate. His opponents managed to remember their lines, but didn't do any better at making sense.OK, I understand, the Perry Meltdown is hard

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ROBINSON: The Mitt might not fit

WASHINGTON -- The Republican Party's inevitable decision to nominate Mitt Romney for president is starting to look evitable after all.. That's certainly not a consensus view among the Washington cognoscenti, who tend to see the yet-to-come primaries and caucuses as mere formalities. Romney, they say, is the GOP's

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ROBINSON: Nothing but dogs in this hunt

Nothing but dogs in this 2012 hunt. Here's my question for the Republican Party: How's that Rick Perry stuff workin' out for ya? You'll recall that Sarah Palin asked a similar question last year about President Obama's "hopey-changey stuff." Indeed, hopey-changey has been through a bad patch

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ROBINSON: "Probably" isn't good enough for death penalty

The death penalty is a barbaric anachronism, a crude instrument not of justice but of revenge. Most countries banished it long ago. This country should banish it now.

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ROBINSON: Always someone there to remind us

The mess we're in didn't happen by accident, we're reminded.

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ROBINSON: Go ahead, make my day

"Eric, don't call my bluff."Those words suggest President Obama has had it up to here with the preening and posturing of Republican "negotiators" who won't negotiate. Who could blame him?

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ROBINSON: Even Beck can't mar King's legacy

The majestic grounds of the Lincoln Memorial belong to all Americans -- even to egomaniacal talk-show hosts who profit handsomely from stoking fear, resentment and anger. So let me state clearly that Glenn Beck has every right to hold his absurdly titled "Restoring Honor" rally on Saturday.

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ROBINSON: In just 19 months, change has been accomplished

This is a radical break from journalistic convention, I realize, but today I'd like to give credit where it's due -- specifically, to President Barack Obama. Quiet as it's kept, he's on a genuine winning streak.

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Talking to a first-hand source on the oil spill

Flying back to Washington from Pensacola, Fla., on June 15, President Barack Obama and the man he put in charge of handling the gulf oil spill, retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, had a come-to-Jesus talk. The administration was getting hammered for a slow and disorganized response to the environmental disaster, and the president wanted to know, then and there, what resources Allen needed to get the job done. Obama made clear, in Allen's words, that "there would be no do-overs."

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ROBINSON: A mighty argument for marriage equality

The 14th Amendment is a mighty sword, and U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker used it Wednesday to slice and shred all the specious arguments -- and I mean all of them -- that are used to deny full marriage rights to gay and lesbian Americans. Bigotry has suffered a grievous blow.

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