One Democrat in the race seems serious about governing, and it’s not Bernie Sanders

Whatever you think of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), the frumpy Vermont senator deserves credit for expanding the substantive ambition of the Democratic presidential field. Sanders’ unexpectedly strong 2016 primary campaign proved that there is a hunger for big ideas like Medicare for All within the Democratic electorate, and it’s now likely that whoever the 2020 Democratic nominee is, they will support some form of universal single-payer health care.

Yet, for all of Sander...

Trump said he’d cut the national debt ‘very quickly.’ It just hit a record $22 trillion.

The Treasury Department released a report Tuesday evening confirming that the national debt had hit a record $22 trillion — nearly four years after then-candidate Donald Trump promised his supporters he would reduce the national debt from $18 trillion, if elected president.

In its fiscal statement, the department noted the total public debt had reached $22.012 trillion, the first time it has surpassed $21 trillion in history. On the day Trump took office, it was $19.947 trilli...

Gazillionaire senators push to make it harder for non-rich people to serve in Congress

Let’s start this column off with a bold assertion. Paying lawmakers good salaries is one of our country’s most important progressive reforms because it means that they don’t have to be wealthy to serve. High congressional pay is a safeguard against corruption, not a sign of it.

Bear this assertion in mind as you consider this proposal.

This morning I co-sponsored a bill to end congressional pensions with @SenatorBraun.

Americans shouldn't...

Trump praises communist North Korea as future ‘great Economic Powerhouse’

President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Friday to extol the virtues and the future economic promise of North Korea, which has long been a brutal communist dictatorship and shows no sign of changing its ways.

“North Korea, under the leadership of Kim Jong Un, will become a great Economic Powerhouse,” the president of the United States said. “He may surprise some but he won’t surprise me, because I have gotten to know him & fully understand how capable he is. N...

Howard Schultz says we can balance the budget if we only believe hard enough in the leadership fairy

Tens of people watched a “major policy address” by billionaire oligarch Howard Schultz on Thursday, in which the coffee mogul claimed he could fix the country with platitudes, vague ideas, and impressive-sounding adjectives.

Yet, while Schultz’s speech was heavy on words like “leadership,” “opportunity,” and attacks on the “far left” and the “far right,” the major policy address contained virtually no policy ideas wha...

Trump’s plan to ‘defeat AIDS’ lacks ambition

As teased earlier in the week, President Donald Trump pledged in his State of the Union address Tuesday to “eliminate the HIV epidemic in the United States within ten years.”

Noting incredibly scientific strides, Trump promised, “Together, we will defeat AIDS in America and beyond.”

Following the speech, Health & Human Services Secretary Alex Azar released additional detail about the strategy, which for the most part, contains core components that...

Trump talks unity but offers no olive branch

President Donald Trump paid lip service to unity and bipartisanship during his second State of the Union address Tuesday night. But he put forth no solution to the divisive problem facing the country later this month: another potential government shutdown.

Trump used the bulk of his address to mislead the country about immigration and border security, economic development and criminal justice, abortion and foreign policy. He inexplicably claimed credit for preventing a war with Nort...

Idaho Republicans seek to limit Medicaid expansion against the will of voters

Idaho Republicans are looking into several proposals aimed at hobbling a successful ballot initiative to expand Medicaid in the state, joining a growing list of red states trying to limit health care coverage against the will of voters.

Republican lawmakers have considered plans to apply work requirements, co-pays, and lifetime limits. They also plan to ask the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to grant the waivers before the ballot initiative goes into effect on Jan....

Utah Senate passes bill limiting Medicaid expansion in favor of costly alternative

The Utah Senate voted Monday to partially repeal a ballot measure that would have expanded Medicaid to nearly 150,000 low-income residents in the state, weeks after voters overwhelmingly cast their ballots in favor of the initiative.

The legislation now moves to the state House, where it is also expected to pass. Gov. Gary Herbert (R) is also expected to sign the measure.

Senators voted 22-7 largely along party lines to pass GOP-sponsored legislation that would cap the pool o...