Even before Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell released his before-the-corpse-is-cold statement suggesting that the next president should pick Justice Antonin Scalia's successor, it was clear the Republican Senate is not going to confirm whomever President Obama picks. There's too much at stake. A new Democratic justice would shift the balance of power on the big bench. Facing the same dynamics, Senate Democrats would not have approved a nominee put forward by George W. Bush in his last year.
It is a measure of the stature and the significance of Justice Antonin Scalia that, upon the news of his death at a hunting lodge in Texas, Washington was instantly caught up in an unseemly quarrel over who would succeed him.
DEAR DR. ROACH: It's a new year, and many of my friends are embarking on a detox or cleanse. Is there such a thing as beneficial detoxing and cleansing? If so, how is it done properly, and what are the benefits? -- D.M.H.
"There's a special place in hell for women who don't help each other," said former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright in a message to young women voters at a weekend campaign event for Hillary Clinton. Clinton punctuated Albright's comment with her loud, phony laugh. Team Clinton later pointed out that Albright has used that line for years. Clinton herself described the line as "lighthearted," but pointed. Pointed? As in: Vote for Sanders, rot in hell.
The San Francisco Unified School District's board is poised to expand its Condom Availability Program for high school students into middle schools. The school district no longer offers Algebra I as an eighth-grade course - Algebra I has been folded into a two-year, eighth-grade and ninth-grade class that is supposed to be more comprehensive. But the board is ready to bring a high school program to middle school by handing out condoms to sixth-graders.
DEAR DR. ROACH: I am a 39-year-old male with systemic lupus. I read your article on artificial and natural immunity and how getting the flu shot helps "prime" the immune system. I have been told by some that priming the immune system with any vaccine is not a good idea in my case, since I could develop antibodies that attack my own body.
When I crossed paths with a Democratic campaign consultant in Austin last March, I suggested he come to the local International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers hall to hear Bernie Sanders speak. The Vermont senator, I added, was pondering a presidential run.