Douglas Bloomfield's blog

Catch 22, Palestinian Style

Fatah and Hamas keep talking about reconciliation but, despite having signed several agreements, have made little if any progress in more than half a dozen years of trying.

Palestinian reconciliation has broad support on the streets of the West Bank, which is ruled by the secular Fatah, and the Gaza Strip, which is controlled by Hamas, a spinoff of the Muslim Brotherhood and considered a terrorist organization by the United States, Israel and many Western countries.

Fatah-Hamas reconciliation is the Catch 22 of Middle East peace making. 

Do Governors Make Better Presidents?

With Chris Christie's presidential prospects sinking faster than a jumper off the George Washington Bridge and Mitt Romney rebuffing suggestions he make a third run for the White House, many Republicans are looking to other past and present governors for 2016.

The GOP team has a strong statehouse bench, especially since it intends to make this year's congressional races and the presidential contest two years later a referendum on Barack Obama's eight years in the White House.

Israel #1 Free Congressional Destination

When Members of Congress and their staffs take free trips abroad – something they're doing in record numbers these days – their preferred destination is Israel.  And picking up the tab to the tune of $1.7 million last year, was a charitable tax-exempt arm of AIPAC called the America Israel Education Foundation.

For Success In Politics: The Right Opponent

Sometimes a Member of Congress is blessed with an opponent who becomes an asset to his or her reelection.

The Unkindest Cuts Of All: Self-Inflicted Wounds

The evidence keeps piling up that the worst wounds in politics are self-inflicted.  The latest cases come from Washington and Jerusalem this week.  There's the congressman who preferred cocaine over Congress, another who threatened to toss a reporter off a balcony and an Israeli cabinet minister whose mouth runs faster than his brain.

State Of The Union Observations

First Responders -- As a sign of how deeply divided Republicans are, they had four separate responses, two of which came from the Tea Party wing.

The GOP leadership's designated responder, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington state, was clearly the most personable and effective. Her presentation seemed like an extended biography (ala Chris Christie's keynote speech at last summer's Republican convention), and when she got around to the issues the big question was Where's the beef?"

Bridgegate: Another Self-Inflicted Wound

The worst wounds in politics are self-inflicted.  Nixon and Watergate.  Clinton and Monica.  Reagan and Iran-Contra.  Bush 41 and Read-my-lips, Romney and 47 percent, Anthony Weiner and Twitter. 

Gov. Chris Christie may not have directly ordered the fiasco at the George Washington Bridge, but he is responsible for the atmosphere that made it possible. 

Bread & Circuses & de Blasio

NY Mayor Bill de Blasio was slammed by the media for giving a closed-door speech to an AIPAC dinner in his town last week and barring the media. He said the secrecy was at AIPAC’s request. Of course it was; otherwise who’d have noticed?   

The unannounced speech included all the usual pandering, and by all accounts he said nothing particularly interesting and nothing he hadn’t said many times before.

Retirement: Glad To See Some Go

Among the many Members of the 113th Congress who’ve announced plans to retire this year, some will be sorely missed, like Sen. Carl Levin (D-Michigan), chairman of the Armed Service Committee, a leading supporter of Israel and Jewish causes and one of the most respected members on either side of the aisle.  But some won't be.  Two who top my list are Michele Bachmann (R-Wisconsin) and Jim Moran (D-Virginia).

Adelson Wants GOP Convention In His Town

Billionaire casino mogul and one of the GOP’s biggest contributors, Sheldon Adelson, wants the 2016 Republican convention to be held in his town, Las Vegas. 

The self-proclaimed richest Jew in the world is a prominent player in a group of Las Vegas civil leaders and Republican donors campaigning hard this week in Washington to convince the Republican National Committee’s winter meeting to pick their city’s famed Strip as its next convention site.  Sin City has never hosted a national convention of either party.

Syndicate content