Editorial: Rep. Elijah Cummings was a skilled politician and staunch defender of Baltimore

No public official ever wanted to be the one to speak after Rep. Elijah Cummings. He would talk about the most esoteric issues of the day with such eloquent prose that it was easy to forget you were at a press conference about health reform or taxes. When he finished, it wasn’t unusual for the next speaker to preface what they were about to say with the caveat that they would not match up to the statesman’s words. Cummings spoke like he was at the pulpit — likely the influence of his highly religious upbringing and daily family testimonials — and nobody was trying to compete. Ironic, given the fact that a counselor once told him he would never become an attorney because he wasn’t smart enough and didn’t speak well. (Balt. Sun)

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Perez: Elijah Cummings leaves us with a broken heart but a better world

Thursday, I woke up to the tragic news that my friend and mentor Elijah Cummings is no longer with us. I have been fearing this moment for some time, and I hoped that Elijah would follow in the footsteps of his namesake: Elijah, the prophet of the Old Testament, was a miracle worker, and I prayed that a miracle would restore my friend to good health. But now my heart is broken. Elijah Cummings was the moral compass of Maryland politics. He was the conscience of Congress. And he reminded us regularly that the test of a man is not how much he helps himself, but how much he helps those less fortunate. (Balt. Sun)

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Hodges: How Street Protests Have Changed the Climate Debate

From Swedish teens skipping school to picket their parliament, to protesters dousing Wall Street’s iconic “Charging Bull” sculpture with fake blood, citizens are putting themselves at the forefront of the fight to limit climate change. A wave of student-led Climate Strikes has spread to more than 200 countries, while support for activist group Extinction Rebellion has grown worldwide, with crowds of non-violent demonstrators disrupting cities from Chicago to Tokyo to make their point. The protesters are demanding drastic action, in a campaign grounded in civil disobedience. (Wash. Post)

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Alternative Fact of the Week: The abandonment of an ally

President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. forces from northern Syria, abandoning the Kurds who fought shoulder-to-shoulder with American soldiers against ISIS was a disgrace that no amount of “alternative facts” can hide. There are any number of terrible consequences for this sudden and ill-considered move: a rising death toll for Kurdish forces, a strengthening of despot Syrian President Bashar Assad, another victory for Russia President Vladimir Putin and a loss of U.S. standing in the Middle East and the rest of the world as allies must wonder where else will President Trump decide to cut and run. (Balt. Sun)

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What Elizabeth Warren should have said about Medicare-for-all

Tuesday night’s Democratic debate featured a vociferous attack on Elizabeth Warren over one specific aspect of health care, coming from a debate moderator, Joe Biden, Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg. They all accused her of being evasive about the cost of Medicare-for-all, and they all did it in a way that could have been scripted by Grover Norquist and the rest of the Republican Party’s anti-tax activists. (Wash. Post)

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Kurtz: What’s Next for Senate Democrats?

This much is certain: Anyone who says they know what’s going to go down when the Senate Democratic Caucus meets next Thursday is lying – or deluding themselves. At this point, it’s entirely likely that Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert) himself doesn’t know. That hasn’t stopped a whole lot of breathless speculation since we learned Tuesday afternoon that Democratic senators are being summoned to a caucus meeting in Annapolis next week, agenda unknown. (Md. Matters)

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Joy in Mudville: How the Nats won D.C.’s heart — and what that tells America about Washington

Charlie Fliegel was at a bar in Los Angeles, watching the Nats clinch the pennant and communing on Twitter with people he would never have come to know if baseball hadn’t returned to Washington. Anthony Williams was at the game, but the former mayor couldn’t walk into the stadium without dozens of people interrupting to thank him for getting the city its team. Tony Kornheiser was on national TV wearing a Nats jacket, a sign of solidarity for a team that didn’t exist when he moved to a city very different from the one he grew up in. (Wash. Post)

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EDITORIAL: Trump foes are writing their own impeachment rules

Politics is a mean competition, one that makes pro football look like two-hand touch by comparison. The game on the gridiron, at least, has rules meant to ensure a level playing field. Not so with the contest currently underway in Washington in which Democrats are using every trick at their disposal to knock out the opposing party’s star player. Americans are witnessing the savaging of their president, and the quiet voice of conscience says it’s fundamentally unfair. (Wash. Times)

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