The return of ‘compassionate conservatism’

Rep. Paul Ryan visits a heroin clinic in San Antonio.

Republicans who hope to one day lead the party, and perhaps the country, are embarking on a push to rechristen the GOP as kinder, more connected to the daily economic anxieties of poor Americans – and better able to win national elections.

Latest Politics News

2014: The election about nothing?

2014: The election about nothing?

A new poll shows Americans don’t think any issue is particularly important right now.

Lame ducks can still fly...to Lake Como

Lame ducks can still fly...to Lake Como

Before he leaves the Senate, Sen. Saxby Chambliss is taking one last taxpayer-funded codel to a few enviable countries.

Will the White House accept this Issa deposition offer?

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) offered the top White House political adviser an opportunity to avoid testifying before his committee.

Incorrect citations or plagiarism?

Incorrect citations or plagiarism?

Sen. John Walsh (D-Mont.) has been exposed as a plagiarist. But his campaign claims it was a simple “mistake.“

Video

Guatemalan president: Immigration crisis 'was not expected'

Guatemalan president: Immigration crisis 'was not expected'

Otto Perez Molina, president of Guatemala, says his government is prepared to accept citizens sent home and suggests that more funding for U.S.-Mexico border security may be shortsighted.

Obama’s uphill struggle against economic inequality

Obama’s uphill struggle against economic inequality

Yes, he’s reduced it. And yes, it’s still increasing.

Central American leaders meet with U.S. lawmakers

Central American leaders meet with U.S. lawmakers

Officials press their case for additional aid a day before they were set to meet with President Obama.

Scandal overshadows Mont. senator’s moment to shine

Scandal overshadows Mont. senator’s moment to shine

A plagiarism scandal complicates Democrat John Walsh’s uphill battle to win a full term in the Senate.

After execution gone awry, unclear if changes could follow

After execution gone awry, unclear if changes could follow

The execution of Joseph R. Wood III lasted for nearly two hours in Arizona, prompting outrage and questions

Column

Readers speak out about IRS, VA and senior executives

Readers react to previous Federal Diary columns, speaking their minds on IRS,VA and senior executives.

Column

In the Loop: Saxby Chambliss is retiring in style

In the Loop: Saxby Chambliss is retiring in style

The senator may be a lame duck, but he can still fly to Europe.

Rep. Harris leaves staff hanging, makes no friends with his D.C. ‘constituents’

Rep. Harris leaves staff hanging, makes no friends with his D.C. ‘constituents’

The Maryland Eastern Shore Congressman had a chance to face the people he claims to look out for. He passed.

Video

Honduras president: Migrants come home with 'broken hearts'

Honduras president: Migrants come home with 'broken hearts'

President of Honduras Juan Orlando Hernández discusses the conditions immigrants experience as they make the illegal trek across the U.S.-Mexican border, and the plights they face upon returning home.

Debra Harrell back on her job at McDonald’s, lawyer says

A South Carolina woman who faces charges of child neglect, is back at work, as her plight has sparked debates about wages, poverty and childcare.

Rep. Ryan talks about repairing the safety net

Rep. Ryan talks about repairing the safety net

His new anti-poverty plan reveals changes in tone and rhetoric.

Sen. John Walsh, and how not to respond to a political scandal

Sen. John Walsh, and how not to respond to a political scandal

His campaign still says this was an “unintentional mistake.” That’s really hard to believe.

Investors worry over looming Puerto Rico debt

Investors worry over looming Puerto Rico debt

A new law would allow public corporations to go into default. That has investors worried about the territory’s $73 billion in debt.

Study: Western water levels lower than thought

Study: Western water levels lower than thought

A team of researchers has highlighted the surprising amount of groundwater used by western residents.

Video

Late night laughs: ‘Vladmir Putin, you are a jerk, sir’

Late night laughs: ‘Vladmir Putin, you are a jerk, sir’

The late night hosts spent the week piling on Russian President Vladmir Putin. Stephen Colbert went the name-calling route while the only defense Jon Stewart said Putin could use was "the Shaggy defense."

The eternal and irresistible appeal of Obama campaign experience

The eternal and irresistible appeal of Obama campaign experience

For $5,000, you too can be an unpaid campaign staffer blessed with the Obama magic.

The VA’s 2-page justification for a $17 billion funding request

The VA’s 2-page justification for a $17 billion funding request

Republicans have expressed reservations about providing the money without a better explanation for how the funds would be used.

Who knew Afghans don’t like soybeans?

Who knew Afghans don’t like soybeans?

The inspector general hits the Agriculture Department over a $34.4 million program to grow and process soybeans in Afghanistan

No, this isn’t the most transparent Administration ever. And the next one will be even worse.

No, this isn’t the most transparent Administration ever. And the next one will be even worse.

Access to the president continues to constrict. This is a very bad thing.

The return of ‘compassionate conservatism’

The return of ‘compassionate conservatism’

Republicans who hope to one day lead the party, and perhaps the country, are embarking on a push to rechristen the GOP as kinder, more connected to the daily economic anxieties of poor Americans – and better able to win national elections.

What President Obama gets wrong about ‘acting white’

What President Obama gets wrong about ‘acting white’

President Obama often brings up the idea that black students face an “acting white” stigma. But, it’s much more complicated than he allows.

Video

Campaign 2014: Lamar Alexander 'No National School Board'

Campaign 2014: Lamar Alexander 'No National School Board'

Incumbent Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) pushes back against federal involvement in education in this ad.

State Department glitch creating major passport, visa delays

State Department glitch creating major passport, visa delays

A technical problem is causing a major delays in processing passports and visas worldwide.

Report: Abortions down 13 percent in Texas after strict limits went into effect in November

Report: Abortions down 13 percent in Texas after strict limits went into effect in November

Given the dramatic decline in the number of providers, researchers were surprised legal abortions hadn’t decreased more.

Obama has been the key in moving DNC from red to black

Obama has been the key in moving DNC from red to black

The Democratic Party has cut its debt by 80 percent since the beginning of the year.

Republicans and Democrats agree: Their own member of Congress isn’t part of the problem

Republicans and Democrats agree: Their own member of Congress isn’t part of the problem

Americans say they hate Congress. They won’t change it, though.

Two Calif. cities will vote on soda taxes

Two Calif. cities will vote on soda taxes

San Francisco and Berkeley would use the money to pay for health and nutrition programs.

Barely half of Americans know the political party of their representative

Barely half of Americans know the political party of their representative

Though they did slightly better than random guessing. U-S-A!

It’s still not easy being Muslim in Europe, particularly in France

It’s still not easy being Muslim in Europe, particularly in France

A broader view of the contours of Muslim integration in Europe following yesterday’s post, “Some good news about Muslims in Europe.“

Need food? Maine’s governor wants you to work for it

Need food? Maine’s governor wants you to work for it

A number of states have received waivers due to high levels of unemployment.

A look at death penalty sentences and executions, by state

A look at death penalty sentences and executions, by state

Arizona’s drawn-out execution on Wednesday reinforces how widely the process varies across the country.

Here’s why President Obama’s dismal approval ratings matter this November

Here’s why President Obama’s dismal approval ratings matter this November

More than half of people who plan to vote Republican say it is a vote against the president.

Former Sens. Gregg and Conrad land same job

Former Sens. Gregg and Conrad land same job

Former Senate budget wonks Kent Conrad and Judd Gregg will be working together at a major DC-based PR firm.

A brief history of illicit drug use at the White House

A brief history of illicit drug use at the White House

Snoop Dogg’s pot-smoking claim puts him in the company of Willie Nelson, Grace Slick and others.