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Pundits & Editorials

Rove says Obama made a 'classic mistake' on Sunday. Plus: Tom DeLay and the dance of distraction.

• In President Obama's recent Sunday interview series, Karl Rove finds "a classic mistake of politicians on a downward-bending arc.... He jumps out in front of the cameras without having something fresh to offer."

E.J. Dionne Jr. defends "a perfectly reasonable way of raising some money to extend health coverage to those who don't have it" -- "a proposal by a number of senators, including Jay Rockefeller and John Kerry, to cap tax deductions taken by the well-to-do."


• "For liberals, ObamaCare is the Gunfight at the OK Corral," writes Daniel Henninger. But "after 70 years and the Obama media blitz, the public once and for all either wants this, or doesn't. If it doesn't, the Baucus bill will be crammed down via reconciliation. If so, the post-partisan president may make worse, if that's imaginable, one of the most partisan periods in our history."

• The New York Times complains about the lack of attention Obama gave to Afghanistan in his speech during the U.N. General Assembly: "We all need to hear a clear statement from Mr. Obama about his goals for Afghanistan and his strategy for getting there."

David Ignatius says it's "worth listening to British experts" because, "when it comes to Afghanistan, the British have a special perspective: Every mistake the United States has made recently, they made 150 years ago."


• Writing for the Boston Globe, Israel's U.S. ambassador, Michael Oren, labels "a UN report on Israeli military actions against Hamas in Gaza last January" as "an unparalleled victory for terror."

• The Wall Street Journal agrees with Oren that the "Goldstone report," as it's called, is "a new low, employing logic and arguments that will be felt wherever the West confronts terrorism."

• "Europe's most powerful nation is electing its leader Sunday -- and nobody really cares." That realization is what Roger Cohen calls "the miracle of German dullness. It is cause for hope, a commodity the commodity-rich Middle East does not trade in."

• Although "some of the country's largest banks are revising usurious overdraft policies aimed at catching debit card users unaware and wringing as much money out of them as possible," the New York Times warns that those moves "are no substitute for federal legislation that would make fair overdraft fees a permanent part of the regulatory landscape."


• In Massachusetts, Joan Vennochi argues that "pushing" Paul G. Kirk Jr. "as the temporary bearer of the" Ted Kennedy "torch is typical backroom politics. And, it's being done with typically sharp Kennedy elbows."

• The Washington Post praises Virginia's Democratic candidate for governor, Creigh Deeds, for admitting raising taxes is the best way to pay for transportation improvements. That proclamation "showed political guts, which is more than one can say for the smoke-and-mirrors, wing-and-a-prayer approach to transportation endorsed by his opponent, Republican nominee Robert F. McDonnell."

Eugene Robinson admits he used to like John Edwards, but now "his caddishness, it appears, has no redeeming social or political value. He's just a bad cad."

• "You have to admit," Gail Collins writes, Tom DeLay's "decision to make a spectacle of himself on national television was a terrific game-changer.... I bet not a single person watching DeLay slide across the floor on his rhinestone-encrusted knees with that manic grin on his face was thinking: 'Gee, I wonder how that money-laundering indictment is working out for him?'"

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