Jamelle Bouie

Jamelle Bouie is a staff writer at The American Prospect.

Recent Articles

Concerned Rich Kids of America.

Writing at Matthew Yglesias ' place, Ryan McNeely flags this CNN interview with Y oni Gruskin , founder and executive director of " Concerned Youth of America " (CYA). As McNeely writes, CYA bills itself as a "nonpartisan group dedicated to promoting fiscal responsibility" that "purports to represent young people concerned with the budget deficit." Here's Gruskin in his own words: I find it completely bizarre to fixate on the vagaries of future budgeting when young people have the most to lose from high unemployment and a prolonged recession. Not only does unemployment add to the pressure of paying back student loans -- which average about $22,700 per student -- but the consequences of post-graduate unemployment extend for a lifetime; according to a Center for American Progress report on youth unemployment "lifetime earnings are diminished with each year of missed work equating to 2 percent to 3 percent less earnings each year thereafter." What's more, even if you aren't unemployed,...

Where Are the Judicial Nominations?

At the Center for American Progress, Ian Millhiser has produced a good memo on President Obama 's abysmal confirmation rate for his judicial nominees. In short, compared to the previous five presidents, Obama has had dramatically fewer nominees confirmed to the federal bench: Similarly, the Alliance for Justice found that in Obama's first year in office, the Senate confirmed a mere 23 percent of his judicial nominees. By contrast, Presidents Carter and Reagan had 91 percent of their nominees confirmed in their first year. That number dropped to 65 percent for George H.W. Bush , 57 percent for Bill Clinton , and 44 percent for George W. Bush . As I wrote last month, you can attribute the massive change in confirmation rates to the GOP's strategy of hyper-obstruction through abuse of Senate rules; through routine filibusters and holds, Republican senators have kept dozens of judicial nominees from leaving committee or coming to a vote. And while it's true that Democrats aren't always...

Greetings from Michigan: The Great Lakes State.

Today is a Super Tuesday, of sorts. Both Michigan and Kansas are holding gubernatorial primaries, in addition to a slew of open House seat races. Of particular interest are the Republican and Democratic primaries for Michigan governor. With Gov. Jennifer Granholm limited to two terms by the state constitution, and Lt. Gov. John Cherry unwilling to run, Democrats have had a hard time finding someone to carry the standard. At present, Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero and House Speaker Andy Dillon are vying for the Democratic nomination, with Bernero leading by 8 points. The Republican primary is a little more complicated. Struggling for the nomination are Rep. Pete Hoekstra , Ann Arbor businessman Rick Snyder , and Attorney General Mike Cox . Statewide polls released last week by pollster EPIC-MRA show Snyder in the lead with 26 percent of the vote, followed closely by Cox and Hoestrka, with 24 percent and 23 percent, respectively. Snyder trails his competitors among self-described...

Republicans Should Welcome Paul Ryan's Budget Reform.

I don't see why Republican leaders are " wincing " over Rep. Paul Ryan 's "Roadmap for America's Future." Yes, it would force them to sign on to massive cuts in Medicare and Social Security, and yes, to actually specify where they want to make cuts in the federal budget. But there are plenty of goodies for the mass of GOP lawmakers committed to reducing the tax burden on the wealthiest Americans. Under the Ryan plan, taxes for the richest 1 percent of Americans would fall by half, on top of making the Bush tax cuts permanent. The Ryan plan would reduce the top marginal tax rate from 35 percent (where it is under Bush policies) to a historically low 25 percent. In concrete terms, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, households with incomes of more than $1 million would receive an average annual tax cut of $502,000, and the richest one-tenth of 1 percent of Americans would receive an average tax cut of $1.7 million a year. To offset these tax cuts, the Ryan plan...

The Problem With Incumbency.

On some level, New York Congressman Charlie Rangel is unfairly maligned. Yes, he's a fairly corrupt member of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), but he's not the only corrupt member of the Congressional Black Caucus. Rep. Maxine Waters is also under investigation for violation of House ethics rules (she is alleged to have helped a bank with ties to her husband receive federal funds), and as Politico reports , "At one point this year, all eight lawmakers under formal investigation by the House ethics committee, including Rangel and Waters, were black Democrats." It's worth noting that each of those eight black Democrats come from safe seats, which they've held for six terms or more. Together, the CBC members currently or formerly under investigation -- Reps. Rangel, Waters, Carolyn Kilpatrick , Donald Payne , Gregory Meeks , Bennie Thompson , Mel Watt , and Jesse Jackson Jr. -- have served 80 terms in Congress, an average of 10 terms per person. They represent districts with an...

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