Ezra Klein
Ezra Klein
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The crisis isn’t too much polarization. It’s too little democracy.

The crisis isn’t too much polarization. It’s too little democracy.

If Republicans couldn’t win so much power while losing votes, the US wouldn’t be in the current crisis.Imagine that, four years ago, Donald Trump lost the presidential election by 2.9 million votes, but there was no Electoral College to weight the results in his favor. In January 2017, Hillary Clinton was inaugurated as president, and the Trumpist faction of the GOP was blamed for blowing an election Republicans could have won.The GOP would have been locked out of presidential power for three straight terms, after winning the crucial popular vote only once since 1988. It might have lost the...

November 12, 2020
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Trump is attempting a coup in plain sight

Trump is attempting a coup in plain sight

How do we cover it when it’s happening here?Vox answers your biggest questions about the , which could be one of the most consequential of our lifetimes.A few years ago, there was a boom of articles called “If it happened there,” imagining how the American press would cover this or that story if it happened in another country. How would we cover if it happened in another country? The ? The ? ? ?popularized the form, but other outlets, including , have deployed it. The intent was to use the tropes of foreign coverage to create a sense of what the literary critic Darko Suvin called “cognitive...

November 7, 2020
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Stacey Abrams on minority rule, voting rights, and the future of democracy

Stacey Abrams on minority rule, voting rights, and the future of democracy

In 2020, democracy is on the ballot.We’re one day away from the election, though who-knows-how-many days from finding out who won it. But there’s more at stake than whether Donald Trump or Joe Biden will be our next president. Democracy itself is on the ballot.Democracy has, in particular, become Stacey Abrams’s animating mission. In 2018, Abrams lost the Georgia gubernatorial race by a razor-thin margin amid rampant voter suppression. Since then, as the founder of Fair Fight, she’s turned her attention to the deeper fight, the one that sets the rules under which elections like hers play...

November 2, 2020
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The fight is for democracy

The fight is for democracy

I recently asked Melissa Schwartzberg, a professor of politics at NYU who specializes in democratic theory, why democracy survives in some countries and crumbles in others.Why was I thinking about it? Oh, . But her answer has been ringing in my head since. It explains much of what makes this moment in politics so distinct, so desperate.“The really important question is when do electoral losers think that it’s in their interest to go along with their defeat, and when do they think they’re better off resisting and revolting?” Schwartzberg replied. “It has to be that they think they have some...

October 22, 2020
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It’s the most important election in our lifetime, and it always will be

It’s the most important election in our lifetime, and it always will be

We never know how important an election really is until long after it’s over.“There’s just one month left before the most important election of our lifetime,” Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in early October.Two days later, Sen. Bernie Sanders backed him up. “This is the most important election, not only in our lifetime but in the modern history of our country,” he in Michigan.In 2016, it was Donald Trump deploying the cliché. “This is by far the most important vote you’ve ever cast for anyone at any time,” he said.I won’t be coy with my view: I think the most important election...

October 19, 2020
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Joe Biden’s most surprising, and possibly important, answer of the debate

Joe Biden’s most surprising, and possibly important, answer of the debate

Biden disavowed a lot of ambitious progressive policies on Tuesday. But there were two he refused to reject.President performance at was , , and at times . For all those reasons, it probably had the net effect of making it likelier that Joe Biden wins the presidency — that’s certainly what the betting markets and what the suggest — and Democrats take back the Senate. So it’s worth noting a particularly surprising and consequential answer gave early on Tuesday night, one that may shape the course of his presidency.Throughout the debate, Trump demanded Biden decry things he has already...

September 30, 2020
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How Mitch McConnell is changing the Democratic Party

How Mitch McConnell is changing the Democratic Party

Mitch McConnell was elected to the US Senate in 1985. He was named Senate minority leader in 2007, and Senate majority leader in 2015. It was, for McConnell, the culmination of decades of planning, labor, and, when necessary, self-abasement. “The ultimate goal of many of my colleagues was to one day sit at the desk in the Oval Office,” McConnell writes in his memoir, The Long Game. “That wasn’t my goal. When it came to what I most desired, and the place from which I thought I could make the greatest difference, I knew deep down it was the majority leader’s desk I hoped to occupy one...

September 24, 2020
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The price for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat can’t be democracy itself

The price for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat can’t be democracy itself

The price for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat can’t be democracy itself.In his Sunday newsletter, Axios’s Mike Allen “the Democrats’ armageddon option” in the fight over a new Supreme Court justice. Here it is (emphasis in the original):Furious Democrats are considering total war — profound changes to two branches of government, and even adding stars to the flag — if Republicans jam through a Supreme Court nominee, then lose control of the Senate.On the table: Adding Supreme Court justices ... eliminating the Senate’s 60-vote threshold to end filibusters ... and statehood for D.C. and Puerto...

September 21, 2020
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There are no good choices

There are no good choices

In shifting so much responsibility to individual people, America’s government has revealed the limits of individualism.Where I live, the sky is choking. Wednesday was the worst. The day was a dark, burnt haze; red as the end of the world. My dogs paced and barked. The animal in me panicked, too. If the sky couldn’t breathe in the light, how were we to breathe in the air? My son is too young to wear a mask, too energetic to trap inside. How could I protect him? We wanted to flee, all of us. But where were we to go? We couldn’t shelter indoors, taking refuge with friends or family, because of...

September 14, 2020
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Opinion | Elon Musk Got Twitter Because He Gets Twitter

Opinion | Elon Musk Got Twitter Because He Gets Twitter

Can Elon Musk break Twitter? I hope so. I’m not accusing Musk of being a sleeper agent. The man loves Twitter. He tweets as if he had been raised by the blue bird and the fail whale. Three days before locking in his purchase of the platform, Musk blasted out an unflattering photograph of Bill Gates and, next to it, an illustration of a pregnant man. “In case u need to lose a boner fast,” Musk, Time’s 2021 person of the year, told his more than 80 million followers. He believed Gates was shorting Tesla’s stock, and this was his response. It got over 165,000 retweets and 1.3 million likes....

Apr 27
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