Obama Is on a Pro-Labor Roll

If you’ve been following President Obama’s burst of enthusiasm for executive orders—I know it’s August, but hey, you’re reading this—you may have heard that he’s been flexing his muscle on behalf of labor. Last month, Obama banned federal contractors from discriminating against gay workers. For that one, he won liberal kudos and conservative scolding for refusing to exempt employers that object on religious grounds. Obama got similar attention for his order in January raising the minimum wage for new federal contractors to $10.10 an hour.


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You Can Still Get an Abortion in Alabama

It’s been a good week in court for access to abortion—a sentence I don’t often get to write. Last week three Appeals Court judges ruled that Mississippi can’t put into effect a law that would close the state’s lone clinic, saying that each state has to independently fulfill its constitutional obligation to provide access to the procedure. On Monday, Judge Myron Thompson of federal District Court in Alabama blocked a similar restriction, keeping the state’s number of clinics at five.


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The “Joe Biden’s White Teeth” Edition

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Obamacare Is Safe

Feh. Two Republican appointees to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit just grabbed headlines by striking down a key part of Obamacare. Over a stalwart dissent from Judge Harry Edwards (Carter appointee), Judge Thomas B. Griffith (George W. Bush) and Judge Arthur Randolph (George H.W. Bush) have ruled that the federal government may not subsidize health insurance for Americans in states with federally run health insurance exchanges—only Americans in states with their own exchanges.


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Blue-State Disgrace

Immigration is a complex problem. So is the long-term question of how the United States should handle the influx of tens of thousands of children from Central America. Beyond the legal mandates, we owe them basic human decency. On the other hand, to say that they should all simply stay here for good begs big questions about encouraging more children to make this journey, and the rights of all the people abroad who are waiting their turn in line. Unless you believe in open borders, it’s all thorny. What seems right for an individual child can seem wrong systemwide.


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