Douglas Turner, The Buffalo News
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Douglas Turner


WASHINGTON – In September 2000, a brash Long Island congressman named Rick Lazio aggressively invaded Hillary Clinton’s space during a debate in Buffalo for the U.S. Senate and sent her on her way politically. Or so it seemed. Supported by an immense back shop, unlimited money and a strong sense of entitlement, Clinton was unstoppable. Her destiny was to become the …

WASHINGTON – “Phenomenon” is a big word. Too big probably. What else can capture the radical transition from the presidency of Barack Obama to Donald Trump and the emergence, right in the open, of the alt-right, Nazis and what is known as antifa? Antifa is like mercury, like quicksilver. It stands for anti-fascist. It has no headquarters, it has no agreed national…

WASHINGTON – “Sacred heart of Jefferson Davis!” the Southern matriarch of the fictitious Burnside family exclaimed in the 1950s hit film, “Auntie Mame.” That line about the president of the Confederacy was sort of funny then, when Jim Crow was firmly in place in the Democratic Party and the statues of the generals of the traitorous Confederate States sat defiantl…

WASHINGTON – North Korea is not Switzerland, or Belgium. Over the course of several generations, North Korea has become a hereditary, disciplined aggressor culture – meaning its people. It is led by an increasingly warlike leader, who has solidified his power by murdering his rivals, including his relatives, in cold blood. From 1950 onward, and even before, the r…

WASHINGTON – One byproduct of the late unlamented Republican attempt to repeal Obamacare is a strong Democratic push for universal health care in the 2018 House and Senate races for control of Congress. Fueling this new interest are the astonishing support Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., scored in his seeming solo campaign for president, and the botched GOP attempt to rep…

WASHINGTON – Two words lately lost on many Republicans in Congress are disinterest and generosity, particularly in the way their behavior impacts health care policy. “Disinterest” is an old-fashioned word, meaning impartiality. It can also mean “stewardship,” a 19th century Revivalist term, meaning the responsibility of the more fortunate to provide for the le…

WASHINGTON – To paraphrase English author Charles Dickens, we are on the brink of “the worst of times” in our national government. Dickens wrote about France’s Reign of Terror in the 18th century when the regime was beheading its supposed enemies at will. The FBI and the federal prosecution team in Manhattan – once headed by James Comey and Preet Bharara, r…

WASHINGTON – Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo was on point when he rebuked President Trump’s fishing expedition for seeking detailed information on 50 states’ voting records. Cuomo said it is nothing more than an effort to validate the president’s lurid claim that millions voted illegally in last year’s presidential election. Trump has repeatedly claimed that the alleged …

WASHINGTON – When delegates were feverishly searching for compromise on a Declaration of Independence 231 years ago, economics – business – was their main concern. The document was primarily about taxes and trade restrictions imposed by Britain’s mad King George III. It was chiefly about how to lawfully get money and keep it. However, the declaration is larded w…

WASHINGTON – Many thoughtful observers say this is not the time to become ensnared in the politics of gun control while the life of one of the top leaders of the House Republican majority hangs in the balance. Everyone’s prayers should be with House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and his family, and all victims of the horrendous near-massacre at a baseball field in Ale…

WASHINGTON – How long will this go on? House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., offered some bad news on this score immediately after the long-awaited appearance of former FBI Director James Comey before a Senate Committee last week. Indicating that the House Republican majority is solidly behind President Trump, Ryan said the clumsy things the president said to Comey, which …

WASHINGTON – This holiday is now by custom preserved for family gatherings. And sport; and for those lucky enough to live near glorious Lakes Erie and Ontario, all kinds of water sports. But for a shrinking number of Americans, it is still a day for mourning this nation’s hundreds of thousands of war dead. Memorial Day could be a day for us to persistently demand an…

WASHINGTON – It will be like this. Just as in 1974 when GOP leaders shambled into President Richard Nixon’s office, a squad of Republican sachems will settle into soft chairs in the Oval Office and tell President Donald J. Trump that it’s over. The main difference between the 1974 visitors and today’s is that the earlier Republicans, who were in the minority, kn…

WASHINGTON – Will they glow in the dark? That is, Republican Congressmen Chris Collins of Clarence and Tom Reed of Corning? Their two votes put across a health care bill that might well have been written by insurance industry lobbyists at the Trump University School of Medicine. At the close of Thursday’s razor-thin vote, Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pe…

WASHINGTON – To paraphrase a line from an old debate, “I knew Jack Kemp. Jack was a friend of mine. And Donald Trump, you’re no Jack Kemp.” Partisans of President Trump’s tax cut plan – they call it the biggest tax cut plan in the history of the whole world – are comparing it with the 1981 tax bill co-sponsored by the late, revered Rep. Jack Kemp, a Republ…