Jamelle Bouie

Jamelle Bouie is a staff writer at The American Prospect.

Recent Articles

Blame Game.

While we're on the subject, it's obviously true that if there's anyone on whom to blame today's outcome -- with regards to tax cuts -- it's congressional Democrats. No one forced congressional Democrats to postpone the tax cut fight until after the midterms; that was a choice borne of fear, i.e., "don't make us argue about taxes before an election." It was entirely possible for congressional Democrats to follow the president's advice, and tackle tax cuts before the lame duck, while they still held the high ground. Liberals are justifiably frustrated with the president, but they should probably direct most of their ire to congressional Democrats. Indeed, this holds true for many of Obama 's big disappointments. No one forced Blue Dog Democrats to slash funding from the stimulus, and Senate Democrats weren't required to block Obama's plan for closing Gitmo, Max Baucus didn't have to hold out on the "Gang of Six," Ben Nelson could have held back on the "Cornhusker Kickback," and Russ...

I am Writing Fellow and So Can You!

If you follow TAP 's Twitter account , you may have learned that we are now accepting applications for the Writing Fellows program! Here is a quick description : The American Prospect 's Writing Fellows Program offers journalists at the beginning of their career the opportunity to spend two full years at the magazine in Washington, D.C., actively developing their journalistic skills. Each fellow will write a minimum of three to four full-length feature articles. Fellows will also regularly write shorter, online pieces and blog daily for TAPPED. We are seeking candidates who are opinionated and comfortable generating article ideas rather than relying on assignments. A passion for blogging is appreciated. As the current Writing Fellow, I'll just say that working at TAP has been an absolute pleasure, and if you have any interest in policy and journalism, TAP is a great place to begin. The deadline for applications is Feb. 15, so if you're interested, you should probably get started. --...

Black Unemployment: Still Depression-Level.

As has been the case since the recession began, African American joblessness is at a higher rate than any other demographic group in the country. For November , the black unemployment rate was 16 percent, lower than September's rate of 16.1, but a good bit higher than October's rate of 15.7. For those hoping a recovery will bring those numbers down, despair; even in decent economic times -- the halcyon days of 2006 -- the African American unemployment rate averaged out at 8.9 percent. Even with a good recovery, the odds of steep decline are low, and the black unemployment rate will probably average out at a disastrous 13 percent to 15 percent for the foreseeable future. Not that many would notice; this country's astoundingly high rate of residential segregation -- seen here , in chart form -- ensures low interaction with the growing number of black poor. For instance, here is Washington, D.C., and its surrounding areas: The red dots represent whites, the blue dots blacks, and the...

Two (Disastrous) Scenarios for a 2012 Democratic Primary.

This is delusional : But there is a real way to save the Obama presidency: by challenging him in the 2012 presidential primaries with a candidate who would unambiguously commit to a well-defined progressive agenda and contrast it with the Obama administration's policies. [...] Far from weakening his chances for reelection, this kind of progressive primary challenge could save Obama if he moves in the desired direction. And if he holds firm to his current track, he's a goner anyway. Progressives who look at a primary challenge against Obama and think, " Why not ?" should really think twice about the idea; Obama isn't perfect, but a primary challenge would sharply divide the Democratic Party and destroy any chance Democrats have at holding the presidency in 2012. Here's why: Within the party, Barack Obama draws his strongest support from African Americans and liberal whites, while his weakest support comes from the white moderates and conservatives that are the party's majority. This...

Slavery and the Confederacy, Cont.

As a quick addendum to last week's post on the Confederacy and slavery, I wanted to highlight a few passages from the Constitution of the Confederacy, which is mostly like the United States Constitution, with a few important differences. Namely, slavery. Here is Article I, Section 9: No bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law denying or impairing the right of property in negro slaves shall be passed. Article IV, Section 2, clause 1: The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several States; and shall have the right of transit and sojourn in any State of this Confederacy, with their slaves and other property; and the right of property in said slaves shall not be thereby impaired. Article IV, Section 2, clause 3, which makes the Dred Scott decision a foundational part of Confederate law: No slave or other person held to service or labor in any State or Territory of the Confederate States, under the laws thereof, escaping or...

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