Paul Brandus
Paul Brandus
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Donald Trump is not America's first racist president, but hopefully he'll be our last

Donald Trump is not America's first racist president, but hopefully he'll be our last

Why does Trump hate the things that make our country great? And how do the rest of us get beyond this hatred and ignorance? It was amusing at the start of the great racist tweet controversy to hear the media asking, “Is President Donald Trump a racist?” We are well beyond such questions. “I am the least racist person you have ever met,” he has said on numerous occasions. If you were living solo on a deserted island and he showed up, that might be true, but for everyone else, it’s just another one of his delusional claims. In fact, I have met the president myself, and he’s off by one...

July 17, 2019
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Opinion: Political gerrymandering is bad news for the economy

Opinion: Political gerrymandering is bad news for the economy

Joe Biden won the election by seven million votes, a margin of 4.5 percentage points over Donald Trump. That you know. Now consider this: of the 155.5 million votes cast, if only 0.276% of those votes (42,918 to be exact) changed hands in Georgia, Arizona and Wisconsin, Trump would still be president. That’s how close it was.  Republicans, who were already a minority in the House, lost the Senate and the White House. And yet they control something too: the power, in most states, to redraw congressional districts based on the 2020 census. This is a big deal for several reasons, including one...

March 2, 2021
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Opinion: Biden starts the electric-vehicle race with big plans to replace the federal fleet

Opinion: Biden starts the electric-vehicle race with big plans to replace the federal fleet

The vast spending power of the federal government is unmatched. So when it decides to do something, it can move markets and shape the economy. The best — and by far biggest — example of this was the decision in 1961 to send a man to the moon by the end of the 1960s; the resulting flood of spending spawned waves of innovation and technological breakthroughs. It literally rocketed America’s post-World War II economy into the space age.Now, President Joe Biden wants to make a big move of his own, witness his announcement that the entire gasoline-powered fleet of government vehicles will switch...

January 26, 2021
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Have senior citizens abandoned Trump?

Have senior citizens abandoned Trump?

One of the groups that powered Donald Trump’s surprise White House win in 2016 was seniors. He won 52% of that group, to Hillary Clinton’s 45%. But the president appears to be in deep trouble with them now. A Wall Street Journal/NBC News survey last month , 62% to 35%, while a : 60% for Biden 39% for Trump—a 21-point gap.Those are national polls, but even in swing states that will decide the election, Trump looks to be in trouble. Eleven surveys conducted over the past few weeks : 18 points in Michigan, 17 in Wisconsin, 9 in Pennsylvania—the three states that put Trump over the top in 2016....

October 27, 2020
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Biden will win, polls say. But the stock market is sending a different signal

Biden will win, polls say. But the stock market is sending a different signal

With three weeks to go, President Trump’s re-election bid is in trouble. At least that’s what the polls show. But it’s not what the stock market is signaling. Based on nearly a century’s worth of election-year data, Trump may yet win.“A rising stock market tends to be a ratification of the present policies being satisfying to the investing public.”Here’s the research, and it is compelling: Since 1928, whenever the S&P 500 Index of the largest U.S. stocks has risen in the three months prior to a presidential election, the party that controlled the White House won 90% of the time. “If you...

October 13, 2020
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New blow to workers: Some companies are cutting 401(k) contributions

New blow to workers: Some companies are cutting 401(k) contributions

As if a savage market hasn’t inflicted enough damage on retirement accounts held by millions of American workers, many are suffering from an additional body blow: companies hammered by the coronavirus are cutting contributions to employees’ 401(k) plans in a desperate bid to save cash.Hotel giant Marriottwhich began the year with some 174,000 workers, started delaying matching contributions earlier this year, saying it would put off payments until September. Now, other companies are announcing similar moves. The reports that Amtrak, travel tech firm Sabre Corp.and at least two national...

August 6, 2020
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Opinion: The U.S. government, until Reagan, used to do big things. Biden thinks it still can

Opinion: The U.S. government, until Reagan, used to do big things. Biden thinks it still can

President Biden said something revealing in his recent news conference, something with broad and potentially long-lasting implications.  “I want to change the paradigm,” he said. “We start to reward work, not just wealth. I want to change the paradigm.” He said it three times.  What does that mean?Here’s what it means. Biden, the product of a less-than-gilded upbringing in Pennsylvania and Delaware, is quick to remind everyone that there are more people on the middle and lower rungs of the ladder than the hard-to-obtain upper rungs.Average Joes By virtue of his younger, leaner years —...

April 7, 2021
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Trump is odd man out as approval ratings soar for world leaders’ handling of the coronavirus pandemic

Trump is odd man out as approval ratings soar for world leaders’ handling of the coronavirus pandemic

History reveals patterns. During a crisis, Americans typically rally around the flag — and their president. During the Persian Gulf War in 1991, George H.W. Bush’s approval soared 30 percentage points in six weeks to 89%. His son’s rocketed 40 points — in 10 days to 90% — following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.Numbers like these — clearly bipartisan and nearly unanimous — tell us that while Americans are always hungry for leadership, that hunger is never so great as when it counts most: When lives are on the line, when there has been a shock to the system, when we are scared and...

April 14, 2020
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