• Obama and early childhood education: a rhetorical leap of faith

    President Obama on Thursday unveiled a proposal to greatly expand pre-K and other early childhood education programs. As a White House statement put it, Obama believes that “high-quality early education provides the foundation for all children’s success in school and helps to reduce achievement gaps.”

  • The best choice for pope? A nun.

    In giving up the papacy, Pope Benedict XVI was brave and bold. He did the unexpected for the good of the Catholic Church. And when it selects a new pope next month, the College of Cardinals should be equally brave and bold. It is time to elect a nun as the next pontiff.

  • Can Obama Sell Universal Preschool to the GOP?

    In a speech to promote his State of the Union education plan, President Obama framed it in a way to appeal to Republicans: It saves money. But the question is not whether it's a good idea so much as whether it can pass the Republican-controlled House.

  • Hey Congress: Pre-K is a better investment than the stock market

    William Gormley, a professor at Georgetown, has extensively evaluated Oklahoma’s pre-K program and found that participants are much better off than Head Start participants in terms of cognitive development. He also has found that the programs makes students more prepared for school, with participants doing 52 percent better on tests of their ability to recognize words.

  • Obama embraces the audacity of freedom

    President Obama is a freer man than he has been at any point in his presidency. He is free from the need to save an economy close to collapse, from illusions that Republicans in Congress would work with him readily, from the threat of a rising tea party movement and from the need to win reelection.

  • The urgency of growth

    If you care about deficits, you should want our economy to grow faster. If you care about lifting up the poor and reducing unemployment, you should want our economy to grow faster. And if you are a committed capitalist and hope to make more money, you should want our economy to grow faster.

  • Hardball with Chris Matthews (video)

    The Washington Post's Melina Henneberger and E.J. Dionne join Hardball to discuss Pope Benedict XVI's abdication, and the politics of picking the next pope.

  • Nothing self-made about me

    I disagreed with former president George W. Bush on many things. But on one issue, I admired him greatly: He was wise enough to marry a teacher and a librarian. I’m unabashedly biased about this, since my late mom was also a teacher and a librarian.

  • Pope Benedict's legacy is one of paradox

    Pope Benedict XVI’s resignation is in character in several ways. As an institutionalist who believes in the Roman Catholic Church as the carrier of truth in a sinful world, he would worry a great deal about the impact of his own infirmities on the institution’s capacity to thrive.

  • Three More Members Named to Long-Term Care Commission

    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi announced Wednesday that she’s appointed three members to a long-term care commission established as part of the fiscal cliff deal hatched in December.