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Eugene Robinson

Stories by Eugene

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ROBINSON: Bush and his open heart

WASHINGTON -- This is a moment for all Americans to be proud of the single best thing George W. Bush did as president: launching an initiative to combat AIDS in Africa that has saved millions of lives.

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ROBINSON: A brave and intrepid pioneer

WASHINGTON -- Bill Raspberry wore his eminence well. In a city full of preening, self-centered journalistic royalty, he was a warm and generous prince who never deluded himself into thinking he knew all the answers. He is desperately missed.

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ROBINSON: Joe Pa's shame

WASHINGTON -- Outside the Penn State football stadium stands a statue of legendary coach Joe Paterno, his arm raised in victory. Right next to it, university officials should erect another figure in bronze: A young boy crying out in anguish and being coldly ignored.

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EUGENE ROBINSON: The money manager

WASHINGTON -- You can conduct byzantine transactions through opaque investment accounts and private corporations in offshore tax havens such as Bermuda and the Cayman Islands. Or you can credibly run for president at a time of great economic distress. I don't think you can do both.

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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: 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

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.

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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

ROBINSON: Republicans at a loss for a world view

Republicans. at a loss for a world view. This advice is aimed most urgently at Herman Cain, who wears his ignorance of international affairs as a badge of honor. "When they ask me who is the president of Uzbeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan, I'm going to say, you know

ROBINSON: Republicans at a loss for a world view

WASHINGTON — The demise of Moammar Gadhafi is big news around the world. Note to the Republican presidential candidates: This will come as a shock, but there are lots of other countries out there, and what happens in some of them is really important. Anyone who wants to serve as commander-in-chief should be paying attention.

ROBINSON: Cain's ascent merely the latest shift in weird GOP race

Cain's ascent latest of many weird shifts in 2012 GOP race. WASHINGTONJust be patient and you, too, can lead the polls for the Republican presidential nomination. Witness the ascent of Herman Cain.Don't laugh. "There's a difference between the flavor of the week and Haagen-Dazs Black Walnut, because it tastes

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ROBINSON: Cain's ascent merely the latest shift in weird GOP race

WASHINGTON — Just be patient and you, too, can lead the polls for the Republican presidential nomination. Witness the ascent of Herman Cain.Don't laugh. "There's a difference between the flavor of the week and Haagen-Dazs Black Walnut, because it tastes good all the time," Cain told reporters this week. "Call me Haagen-Dazs Black Walnut."

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

WASHINGTON — 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.

ROBINSON: The GOP's tunnel vision

WASHINGTON --Don't fall for it. There's no "new tone" coming from the Republican-controlled House. It's just a remix of the same old song.Anyone who watched President Obama's speech to a joint session of Congress last week could have guessed that the GOP reaction would be muted. You could scan

Robinson: The Gop's Tunnel Vision

WASHINGTON --Don't fall for it. There's no "new tone" coming from the Republican-controlled House. It's just a remix of the same old song.Anyone who watched President Obama's speech to a joint session of Congress last week could have guessed that the GOP reaction would be muted. You could scan the chamber and read the contrasting facial expressions: Democrats tended to have wide eyes and broad smiles, while many Republicans winced as if suffering indigestion.

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ROBINSON: Always someone there to remind us

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

ROBINSON: MLK's vision of justice economic as well as social

WASHINGTON --As the nation honors the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. with a stirring new memorial on the National Mall, let's not obscure one of his most important messages in a fog of sentiment. Justice, he told us, is not just a legal or moral question but a matter of

ROBINSON: Where is the Syria plan?

It's hard to argue with President Obama's call for Bashar al-Assad, the bloodthirsty Syrian dictator, to step down. But it's also hard to discern any logic or consistency in the administration's handling of the ongoing tumult in the Arab world.. It is obvious that Assad, like Libyan strongman Moammar

ROBINSON: Washington disconnect at its worst

It's sobering that three-fourths of Americans, according to a new Washington Post poll, have little or no confidence in our elected leaders to solve the nation's economic problems. At this point, though, it's hardly surprising.

ROBINSON: Debt downgrade the direct result of GOP's default bluff -- and nothing else

The so-called analysts at Standard & Poor's may not be the most reliable bunch, but there was one very good reason for them to downgrade U.S. debt: Republicans in Congress made a credible threat to force a default on our obligations.

ROBINSON: The wrong problem 'solved'

The debt-ceiling fight generated enough hyperventilation and heartburn to replace a coal-fired power plant. The resulting product? It's starting to look kind of puny and irrelevant.

ROBINSON: Herman Cain's major misplaced priorities

It is time to stop giving Herman Cain's unapologetic bigotry a free pass. The man and his poison need to be seen clearly and taken seriously.