Jamelle Bouie

Jamelle Bouie is a staff writer at The American Prospect.

Recent Articles

Do You Remember the Time?

If this interview with Talking Points Memo's Brian Beutler is any indication, Jeffrey Lord 's historical ignorance extends far beyond lynching; he even has a hard time grasping the basics of American political history: "I have felt for a long time that my friends on the American left, in the Democratic party have just had this atrocious history with racial issue," Lord said. "I mean it just can't possibly be any worse. I've gone back and read all the platforms for the Democratic party starting in 1840 which was the first one." […] "I understand that people on the other side are going to go poopoopoo and the Nixon Southern Strategy and all that kind of thing," Lord said. "To think that this was just, all these people just switched their party and made the Republican party segregationist is just nuts. I was there." No, it really isn't. I'm not going to rehash the history of the conservative movement, but it suffices to say that the Republican Party owes much of its electoral success to...

None Shall Pass.

By a vote of 57-41 (or should that be 41-57), Senate Republicans have blocked a motion to proceed with debate on the DISCLOSE Act. As I wrote earlier today, this isn't much of a surprise. But given the quality of the legislation, it's still disappointing. The most galling "no" votes came from the Republican Party's self-described "moderates": Scott Brown , Susan Collins , and Olympia Snowe . Both Collins and Snowe voted for the significantly more restrictive McCain-Feingold in 2001, which makes today's vote a little strange. Indeed, Democrats purposefully limited the bill's scope to transparency, in an effort to gain support from the Maine senators. But even that concession wasn't enough for Collins and Snowe to support debate , much less the bill itself. As for Sen. Brown, his vote stands in opposition to his campaign pledge to end "backroom deals" and restore some measure of transparency to Washington. Particularly when you consider that the DISCLOSE Act would require senatorial...

The Consequences of Intervention.

Riffing off of the WikiLeaks story, Bret Stephens is mystified by liberal calls for withdrawal from Afghanistan. For a group of people who "protest every drone strike as a violation of the laws of war, or trumpet every inflated claim of Taliban civilian casualties," he comments, they seem blind to the "human consequences of American withdrawal." To Stephens, liberals ought to see more good in occupying an unstable, war-torn nation, as the likely alternative is chaos. Indeed, to make this point even more explicit, he looks to Vietnam and Cambodia, which in his telling, suffered hellish violence following American withdrawal in the 1970s: All in all, America's withdrawal from Southeast Asia resulted in the killing of an estimated 165,000 South Vietnamese in so-called re-education camps; the mass exodus of one million boat people, a quarter of whom died at sea; the mass murder, estimated at 100,000, of Laos's Hmong people; and the killing of somewhere between one million and two million...

Movin' on Up?

Last week, Gallup raised a few eyebrows -- mine included -- when its tracking poll showed Democrats with a six-point advantage on the generic ballot. The generic ballot doesn't tell us much about the outcome of individual races, but it gives you a sense of the national mood. For most of the year, Democrats were either tied or trailing Republicans on the generic ballot, and it was something of a shock to see Democrats with a sudden six-point advantage. This week's tracking poll still shows Democrats with advantage, but at four points, it's more in line with previous trends: For more context, here is the Pollster average for the generic ballot: Democratic performance on the generic ballot has improved, but with the added context of other polls, it's clear that it is still quite weak. And while it may improve in the coming weeks -- as partisans return to the fold and voter preferences solidify -- it's unlikely to get much better. For my part, these results add more fuel to my view that...

Show 'Em Whatcha Got.

Today, the Senate is expected to vote on the DISCLOSE Act , a bill aimed at countering the Supreme Court's ruling in Citizens United . To address the new problem of direct corporate spending in elections, the DISCLOSE Act would institute a mixture of disclosure measures and restrictions on certain kind of independent expenditures. Corporations would be required to disclose their involvement in independent campaign spending, and would ban spending by federal contractors, domestic subsidiaries of foreign corporations, and federal bailout recipients that haven't repaid the government. Moreover, the bill would require corporations to file electronic spending reports to the FEC, as well as provide a public searchable database for those reports. The bill does have its problematic elements; most notably, its exemptions for massive organizations like the NRA. On the whole though, the DISCLOSE Act is a good bill, and it has earned strong support from reform-minded organizations like the...

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