FROM Lee Bandy
South Carolina Governor Turns up in Argentina South Carolina's Republican Governor made national headlines when he refused to accept federal stimulus money. Now Mark Sanford is famous for being absent without leave. Last Thursday, he disappeared without telling anyone where he was going — not Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer, not his staff, not even his wife. Today he had an explanation. Lee Bandy, who's covered South Carolina politics for 40 years, is now retired from The State newspaper.
Comebacks in New Hampshire and the Road Ahead You don't have to be a political junkie to know that Hillary Clinton and John McCain are the comeback kids of yesterday's New Hampshire primaries —even though Mc Cain points out that he's hardly a kid. Barack Obama said Iowa proved white Americans would vote for a black man. Gloria Steinem said it proved gender is harder to overcome than race. Yesterday's results in New Hampshire have prevented a lot of story lines from becoming conventional wisdom. Is Hillary Clinton the front-runner after all? Can John McCain compete against major money in big states? Will religion emerge as an underlying issue? What's up between now and Tsunami Tuesday?
Will YouTube and Web 2.0 Change American Politics? CNN hyped last night's Democratic presidential debate at The Citadel in South Carolina as "revolutionary" because real people got to ask questions on video. Some students of politics and the media said the event would do for interactive Web 2.0 what the Kennedy-Nixon debates did for TV. Others called it just a tiny step forward, because CNN got to decide which questions the candidates had to respond to. Some 3000 thousand people submitted amateur videos that tackled everything from serious policy questions to sophomoric humor, including a question on global warming that came from an animated snowman. Did the format make for entertaining TV? Were the candidates more authentic? Did it finally come down to politics as usual?
Democratic Presidential Candidates Debate in South Carolina Last night, on the campus of a historically black institution, South Carolina State University , all the Democratic candidates met for the first time. Results of the debate in this very Republican state, whose primary will be held fourth in next year's election process, could be a bell weather, especially for the voting patterns of African American Democrats. Each of the eight candidates got 11 minutes in total during an hour and a half of one-minute answers to questions on complex issues. For the most part, they were nice to each other, tough on President Bush and really angry about the war in Iraq. Are Clinton , Obama and Edwards still the top three? Did any "second tier" candidates distinguish themselves? We hear from across the Democratic political spectrum.
Trump's travel ban and the long-term agenda The Trump Administration's revised travel ban may be good news for some visa holders and others, but it's still being challenged as unconstitutional. Some reporters call it the beginning of a long-term effort to change the demographic make-up of the United States.
CBO: Under GOP plan, millions will lose coverage Republicans are divided and Democrats are saying, "we told you so," when it comes to official estimates of what it will cost to repeal and replace Obamacare. The Trump White House says the Congressional Budget Office is just wrong.
East Asia: President Trump's first foreign policy test Starting with North Korea's latest test of nuclear missiles, a chain of events is causing instability in Asia. Could it turn into the first real foreign policy crisis of the Trump Administration?
Cover-up or witch hunt?: The latest on the WH ties to Russia Less than two months into his Presidency, Donald Trump is struggling to get his agenda under way, making it harder himself with tweets that dominate public attention. Meanwhile, important questions are going unanswered: why have staff members and the Attorney General lied about contacts with Russian officials?