The Fix: Master Archives
2. Jason Horowitz writes about Hillary Clinton and her history with Israel.
3. Todd C. Frankel investigates the questions surrounding the death of a young black man in North Carolina.
4. President Obama hasn't been able to campaign for himself the past two years. So, Glenn Thrush writes, he starting running an imaginary one.
5. Tim Mak explains the politics of ... Cuban rum.
6. Poynter rounds up the most hilarious -- and messy -- media corrections and errors of 2014.
7. New York Magazine interviews Eric Holder as his time as U.S. Attorney General comes to an end.
8. And now for something completely different: The woman who has written an insanely large number of Amazon reviews.
In his end-of-the-year press conference, President Obama started out by doing a sort of good-news-from-2014 recap. He highlighted successes on the policy and economic front, and catastrophes avoided internationally -- and domestically, on Ebola. He also made three easily check-able claims about the economy, which we decided to check.
President Obama delivered a tour-de-force press conference on Friday, ending an extremely difficult year for his administration and his party on a strong note and giving his supporters hope that the final two years of his term in office won't be spent in lame duckery.
Obama took questions on topics as far ranging as the North Korea hacking of Sony (he said the company had made a mistake in canceling its plan to release "The Interview" on Christmas Day), the recently-announced move to normalize relations with Cuba and race in America. He even snuck in an Ebola mention.
President Obama did something remarkable on Friday. He held his last press conference of the year, and the only people in the entire press corps who were called on to ask questions were women. Yes, this was on purpose; it had to be.
TV reporters were advised in advance that @PressSec wanted other reporters not regularly called on to get to question the Pres.
During Friday's year-end White House press conference, President Obama discussed the cancellation of The Interview's planned December 25th release because of threats of violence from North Korea. He said Sony's move to cancel the release was "a mistake," and that he wished the studio had asked him about it first.
As Philip Bump noted earlier Friday, the 113th Congress did manage to get some stuff done. Elected officials named a lot of post offices, and passed some other bills, too (!).
Another way to look back at what happened during the past two years on Capitol Hill is to look all all the things the House and Senate denounced, disapproved or condemned -- or at least tried to -- since the beginning of 2013.
“The 50-year embargo just hasn't worked,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) told a radio show Thursday. Later in the interview, he said, “In the end, I think, probably, opening up Cuba is probably a good idea."
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) does not agree with him. “I don’t care if the polls say that 99 percent of people believe we should normalize relations in Cuba," he told Fox News on Wednesday. "I don’t care if 99 percent of people in polls disagree with my position. This is my position, and I feel passionately about it."
Reading polls isn't easy. The data can only be so accurate, and it can often be tempting to draw too broad of conclusions.
Witness this new poll.
Surveys tend to break down religious groups by Protestants, Evangelicals, Catholics, Muslims, Jews, etc. People who don't fit into any of those categories are labeled "unaffiliated."
A core tenet of modern Republicanism is that government is too big. It's the drown-it-in-the-bathtub argument: smaller is better. But since President Obama took office, states that voted more heavily Republican have actually added jobs on net -- while more Democratic states have lost them.
This isn't a function of politics, though. It's mostly a function of size.
A lesson you should only need to learn once in writing online is to only say that something will absolutely not happen if there is actually no chance it will happen. When I wrote on Monday that there was "zero chance" that the Congress which just ended would not be the least productive Congress in history, I broke that rule. There was a greater-than-zero percent chance that the 113th would not be the least productive because, it appears, it won't be. Barely! And with some caveats!