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Guest Commentary

Mar 15, 2019

N.Y. prosecutors are coming for Trump’s associates

The indictment of Paul Manafort by New York state prosecutors on Wednesday is a shot across the bow of the presidency.

Oct 3, 2018

Commentary: Sources of surprise in the coming elections

What will shape the outcome of the 2018 elections nationally and in Minnesota?

Sep 19, 2018

Commentary: Key Minnesota races highly competitive

Democrats lead in races for both Senate seats and the governorship, but only in one case — Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s 53-38 percent lead over Jim Newberger — does the race appear to be noncompetitive.

Aug 22, 2018

Commentary: Blue wave or Trump trend in Minnesota?

Let’s consider several aspects of the primary and post-primary situations to parse the big question.

Jun 15, 2018

Commentary: A blizzard of candidates for Minnesota in 2018

The confusion at the DFL convention suggested the renewed timeliness of the Will Rogers’ crack from 1935: “I am not a member of any organized party — I am a Democrat.”

Apr 11, 2018

Law says troops can’t be cops; history disagrees

Trump’s plan for sending troops to the border raised alarm bells about possible violations of the 19th-century Posse Comitatus Act, which forbids the military from active involvement in civilian law enforcement.

Jan 3, 2018

Commentary: The fallout from Franken’s Senate resignation

How has the state and national political world changed?

May 11, 2017

Assessing Trump’s ‘political capital’ after 100 days

Now that he has occupied the White House for a bit more than 100 days, how is Donald Trump faring politically?

Feb 1, 2017

Five challenges for national, state Republicans

The Republican Party now has total control of our national legislature and executive and is newly empowered with control of Minnesota’s state Legislature. That brings with it a series of risks and problems. Let’s consider then in turn. First, there’s the challenge of “issue ownership.” That involves responsibility for the outcome of public problems during a party’s time of dominance[...]

Jan 25, 2017

Constitutional suit against Trump faces hurdles

The headline issue in the first lawsuit against President Donald Trump is whether it is a violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution for his hotels and properties to be paid by foreign governments. But if a court actually decides this tough question, that will already be an accomplishment for the watchdog organization that brought the suit and the distinguished lawyers and academics re[...]

Jan 18, 2017

Anti-abortion Republicans stronger than ever

John Ashcroft stood in the place of Jeff Sessions the last time a new Republican administration came to power. Like Sessions, Ashcroft was a conservative senator who had been nominated to be attorney general. Also like Sessions, Ashcroft became a top target of Senate Democrats. Although he was confirmed, Ashcroft drew more opposing votes than any other George W. Bush nominee in 2001. Some of th[...]

Jan 4, 2017

How ‘unpresidented’ is Donald Trump?

In mid-December, Donald Trump tweeted the following: “China steals United States Navy research drone in international waters — rips it out of the water in an unpresidented act.” This hasty composition with the humorous misspelling actually suggests a crucial question: How unpresidented will Trump’s service in the White House turn out to be? The question actually has two meanings. In [...]

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