“Machinations, hollowness, treachery, and all ruinous disorders, follow us disquietly to our graves”

The title of this post is taken from King Lear because the sudden withdrawal of Boris Johnson yesterday from the campaign to become the leader of the Conservative Party, following the victory of his Leave side in the Brexit referendum and the subsequent decision by David Cameron that he would resign shortly, took most observers by surprise and has revealed a web of political intrigue that truly deserves the title of Shakespearean, only with less blood.
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Abortion foes pushed their luck too far

It has been no secret that supporters of abortion rights have been on the defensive for the last two decades as opponents passed one legislative action after another in Republican controlled states that limited the availability of abortion services to women. These took the form of long waiting periods, requiring multiple visits to clinics, forcing younger women to notify their parents and the fathers, forcing doctors to issue scary warnings to women about the dangers of abortions and forcing women to listen to them, and so on. The goal seemed to be that if they could not ban abortions entirely, they could make it so hard to get that the right was almost nullified.
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George Will is now available for offers

Right wing columnist and Fox News commentator George Will has left the Republican party because of their choice of Donald Trump as presidential nominee. He has also urged that people not provide him with any financial support and that they should work to ensure his defeat at the general election in November, brace themselves for four more years of a Democratic presidency, and seek to return to power with a more acceptable nominee in 2020.
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Trump and Jesus

According to a recent news report, James Dobson, former head of the group Focus on the Family (and remember that any group that has the word ‘family’ in its name is likely to be a bigoted one) said that Donald Trump had recently come to “a relationship with Christ” and that he knows the person who recently brought Trump and Jesus together. Dobson also said that Trump was still a ‘baby Christian’.
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Samantha Bee on the Brexit vote

While her clip was as funny as it usually is, she also shows the young woman who says that she regrets her vote to leave the EU because she did not realize the consequences and that if she had to do it again, she would vote to remain. Bee also shows the interview with the man who said that although he wanted the UK to remain in the EU, he voted to leave as a protest vote because he thought that the Remain vote would win.
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Political fallout of the Brexit vote

I must admit that I have been taken by surprise by the ‘sky is falling’ reactions to the vote by the UK to leave the European Union. This is my fault in that I, like so many Americans, wasn’t paying close attention to what was going on in Europe and while it appears that dire warnings about the consequences of leaving were commonplace over there, this news did not really register for me in the days before the vote.
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US Supreme Court strikes down Texas abortion restrictions

In an important decision today, the US Supreme Court by a 5-3 vote in the case Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt struck down the 2013 law in Texas that had placed onerous restrictions on clinics that provide abortions and thus threatened to shut down nearly all of them in the state. That law, if upheld, would have set the stage for similar laws in other states, effectively largely nullifying the right to abortion except for rich people who could afford to travel to the very few clinics in the US (or abroad) to get safe, legal abortions.
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Avoiding facile lessons from the Brexit vote

There has been much gnashing of teeth and tearing of hair about the UK voting in a referendum to leave the EU. There have been some analyses of the demographics of the vote that looked at how each of the over 300 local authorities voted and comparing that with the demographics of that area. The analysis suggests that those voting to leave were more likely to be older, less formally educated, have lower incomes, and live in areas that had smaller population densities and fewer foreign-born and unmarried people.
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What happened with justice Kennedy between Fisher I and Fisher II?

Opponents of affirmative action, like opponents of abortion, have been steadily chipping away at it hoping to make it so marginal as to be effectively dead or to even land a final blow that eliminates it altogether. In the case of Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin (that I discussed earlier here) they thought that the latter moment had come, at least when it came to affirmative action in public university admissions because all the signals were that the court would rule against the UT’s policy of using race as a a limited factor in their consideration of prospective students.
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Second thoughts on Brexit?

There seems to be some confusion in the UK about what to do now that the referendum on leaving the European Union resulted in the Leave side winning. It appears that there is a possibility that the UK may not actually leave after all. The actual process of leaving only begins when the government invokes Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty that forms the basic structure of the union and there seems to be hesitancy on both sides about triggering it.
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