Ready for a new round of ‘hire a judge?’

By Nathaniel Smith, Columnist, The Times Every U.S. Supreme Court session offers fresh evidence of confirmation bias, the human tendency to process information in a way that conforms to our prior beliefs. The Justices know why they are there: it’s not for their great legal minds, but because their legal backgrounds served as cover for getting them confirmed by the Senate. Upton Sinclair said:...

Beyond ‘Trump, bad’

By Nathaniel Smith, Columnist, The Times The June 16 editorial “For GOP candidates the question is: To Trump or not to Trump?” http://chescotimes.com/?p=25893/ makes a lot of good points about this year’s enthusiasm gap between the two major parties (see also the recent Pew poll http://www.people- press.org/2018/06/20/voters-more-focused-on-control-of-congress-and-the-president-than-in-past-midterms/)...

For GOP candidates the question is: To Trump or not to Trump?

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times With summer bearing down on us (finally!), it seemed like a good idea to take one quick snap shot of the local political scene before moving into our summer hiatus (and yes, we already skipped an edition of Politics as Unusual (PAU), sensing something of a politics overload for you, the reader). As this could well be the final edition of PAU until — gasp — August,...

Comey’s bombshells, redistricting gutted and the GOP’s internal fighting

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times Gosh, another boring two weeks where nothing happened in politics. Well, except for former FBI Director James Comey apparently referring to President Donald Trump as a “Mob Boss,” Speaker of the U.S. House Paul Ryan announcing that he won’t be running for reelection to the House, the head of the Republican Congressional Campaign ripping into a local Republican...

PA18 will tell a lot about this fall’s elections

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times The nation’s political junkies have their eyes focused on Western Pennsylvania and it may give us a hint about November, 2018 will look like. Money, media and focus have centered on the 18th District race, up Tuesday in a special election, outside of Pittsburgh, where Democrat Conor Lamb is at least within striking distance of Republican Rick Saccone. This matters...

New Congressional map puts all of Chesco in 6th; GOP to file suit

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times The new Sixth Congressional District. It seems like almost everyone has an opinion about the new Congressional map issued Monday by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court — predictably, Democrats generally lauded it as fair, while Republicans, including President Donald Trump blasted the new plan and pledged to fight it in Federal Court. The state court issued the new map...

Happy New Year! Surf’s up, baby!

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times Happy 2018! Who’s got their surfboards ready? Because, yeah, it is becoming increasingly likely that our friends in the Republican Party might not just be facing a wave, but rather a tsunami. But before you rush out and scream “that dirty so-and-so Trump” (as apparently so many West Wing staffers seem to do daily, per Michael Wolff’s controversial new book),...

Letter: A troubled and troubling tax reform bill

To the Editor, I don’t know how we have found ourselves in a situation where the President of the United States who is promoting the most quickly thrown together and noxious tax reform policy in U.S. history without our citizen input, can, himself, never have publicly revealed his own taxes so that we can judge just how partially or impartially this bill is geared to the Greater Good vs. his...

Costello, Smucker appear to buck Trump, back bipartisan healthcare plan

By Mike McGann, Editor, The Times Two local congressman — Lloyd Smucker and Ryan Costello — say a moderate, bipartisan group of House members they belong to, the Problem Solvers Caucus, have reached an agreement on a package of fixes for the Affordable Care Act, a package that could provide a framework for a true bipartisan fix for the healthcare marketplace. After the U.S. Senate rejected a series...

After 156 years, I’m no longer the worst

By James Buchanan, The 15th President of The United States Whew. It’s been a really long 156 years, but I have to say, but finally it feels pretty darn good. Although there have been so many enjoyable experiences in my post-life times — wherever you’d call where I am, I don’t know, but the Cosmopolitans are to die for, so to speak — I’m no longer stuck with the title “Worst President...