Friday news dump: GOP-led panel debunks Benghazi conspiracy theories

Political cynics in Washington have a term for the convenient timing of news releases from embarrassed politicians and agencies that don’t want them to gain any more attention than is absolutely unavoidable. They’re called “Friday night news dumps.” But there’s a risk, of course, that such sneakiness will only heighten public attention in the long run, especially when the news at issue contradicts the rhetoric peddled for months by political demagogues. HERE‘s a perfect example: A two-year investigation by...

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It’s absurd to argue that Obama’s immigration plan is lawless

If the bogus right-wing claims made against President Obama’s immigration-reform initiative came in the form of snowplows, the streets of Buffalo could be cleared by nightfall. Most of the complaints come from ordinary folks who are completely unaware of certain facts regarding Obama’s record concerning illegal immigrants. They don’t know, for example, that deportations of illegals have increased under Obama, as have expenditures on border security. They also don’t know the number of people trying to cross our border...

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Guess which party did more fear-mongering during the so-called Ebola crisis

The U.S. news media haven’t been pushing the panic button over Ebola very much now that the midterm congressional elections are behind us. But perhaps you remember way back in October, at the height of the campaign season, when widespread hysteria over Ebola fostered the sense among certain elements of the American public that everything was coming apart. None of this, of course, redounded to the benefit of President Obama or candidates of his party. Indeed, more than a few right-wing extremists directly blamed Obama for what they saw...

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Every president in the past 60 years has taken executive action on immigration policy

Republicans who are warning President Obama that he risks impeachment if he dares to change U.S. immigration policy by executive order are conveniently ignoring American history. THIS EDITORIAL in The Boston Globe explains the matter: Every president since Eisenhower has taken executive action on immigration in one form or another. President Reagan, for instance, deferred deportation of 200,000 Nicaraguans. The White House’s plan reportedly includes allowing parents of children who are citizens or legal residents to get work permits and...

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Republicans who say they’re not scientists are creating an escape hatch on global warming

You’ve probably noticed that Republican politicians increasingly have been prefacing their remarks on global warming lately with the disclaimer that they’re not scientists. What you may not have noticed is that this stratagem is a way of mapping a path these pols can take if and when they have to backtrack on the issue of climate change. Extremists like Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma have denied themselves any such path. Inhofe has long since declared that global warming is a “hoax” and that God will save us all from any...

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