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Doug Badger
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So ... to properly interpret Senator Paul's bill, it is not enough to read the text; we must also read his mind. The authors of this piece suggest that as we read the bill, we are to imagine an alternative universe in which Obamacare already has been partially repealed and that it is replaced -- the very same day -- by the Paul bill, evidently with enough support among Democrats to quash a filibuster. We are asked to channel Chief Justice Roberts as we read, not confining ourselves to what it says, but divining what its sponsor must have meant for it to say.

As we wrote in our original post, we believe Senator Paul is entitled to a do-over. Mistakes were made. We all make them. The Senator should correct his errors by introducing a new bill. That bill should spell out exactly which portions of Obamacare he intends to repeal and which he intends to leave in place. He evidently doesn't want to repeal all of it, since he retains some federal mandates on health insurance, including the "slacker mandate." He also leaves the Medicare cuts undisturbed, along with IPAB, which conservatives have decried as "death panels."

Again, perhaps we are supposed to imagine into existence yet another bill that would eliminate the remaining federal mandates on insurance markets, repeal IPAB and remove other vestiges of Obamacare. The better path would be for him to write a bill that spells out his exact intentions.

Doug Badger
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"Even if the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq is destroyed, its capacity for terrorism will surely metastasize into a more extensive, more potent, harder to hit transnational terrorist network." So if achieving the military objective will strengthen the IS's "transnational terrorist network," why are we pursuing that objective?  It seems that the President and his would-be successors have gotten themselves jacked up about "destroying ISIS" as an end in itself.  ISIS has lost ground in Iraq (while gaining ground in Syria) largely to Iranian-backed Shiite fanatics and Kurds.  It's not clear how their gains serve our interests.  To the extent that regional stability serves those interests, the Islamic State's losses might actually contribute to instability in the region and foment further ethnic and sectarian strife.  All of which suggests that if the author's optimistic forecast is realized, we end up with more warfare in the region and less security at home.  Which begs the question of why the President, having gotten us out of Iraq, now has us back there (and in Syria, as well).
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There are two potential sources of Hillary's ruin: legal and political. To imagine that her legal woes will lead to a federal indictment, one has to assume that the Obama Justice Department will proceed aggressively with its investigation and that Hillary has been sloppy.  Ross Douthat has, I believe, the better of the argument on how aggressive DOJ will be; which is to say, not very aggressive at all.  But even if they use all of their forensic skills, they will not be able to acquire any evidence, unless Hillary has been sloppy in covering her tracks.  The evidence so far suggests that she has destroyed tens of thousands of emails and wiped her server clean before turning it over to federal authorities. I cannot believe that she failed to destroy all incriminating evidence.  So her legal woes will pass.
As to her political peril, much depends on how the Democratic base will respond to another Clinton scandal.  For decades, most Democrats have swallowed hard and excused the Clintons' mendacity and criminality.  That won't change in our lifetime.
Mr. Wehner is right to ask whether Hillary is finished.  The answer, however, is clear enough: not by a long shot.
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