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Must-Read Op-Eds for May 30, 2013

Updated

BEING ERIC HOLDER

RICH LOWRY

REAL CLEAR POLITICS

What Eric Holder has done is so troubling to everyone, including Eric Holder, that President Obama has ordered a review of Justice Department policy — to be undertaken by the single most appropriate man for such a task: Eric Holder. Eric Holder has a tight July 12 deadline to report back on Eric Holder. Let’s hope he can manage to be fair-minded to Eric Holder, despite his bitter disappointment upon learning of his practices.

MICHELE, HERE’S THE BELL

GAIL COLLINS

NEW YORK TIMES

The most interesting question about Bachmann is how she and Sarah Palin came to be the two most high-profile women in the Tea Party. Neither one has ever had a real political organization. Palin didn’t like being governor enough to finish the term. Bachmann has been a terrible legislator. Women in Congress tend to be good at working with others. Michele Bachmann is good at talking on her cellphone during meetings.

They certainly have intense personalities. But you have to wonder if the secret is that, by political standards, they both look extremely hot. And if it’s their appearance that made them such stars, is that for the benefit of the Tea Party men or the Tea Party women?

MICHELE BACHMANN, GOP SQUEAKY WHEEL, READY TO RETIRE

DANA MILBANK

WASHINGTON POST

[Bachmann] made her announcement in a video released in the wee hours of Wednesday morning containing her trademark mixture of bombast, paranoia and error. The error came fairly late in her eight-minute, 40-second spot. “I fully anticipate the mainstream liberal media to put a detrimental spin on my decision,” she declared over vague synthesizer music. Detrimental? Um, no. It’s hard to see the mothballing of Bachmann as anything but unalloyed good news, for the party and the country.

Must-Read Op-Eds for May 29, 2013

GOP NEEDS MORE DOLES AND FEWER BACHMANNS

EJ DIONNE JR.

WASHINGTON POST

Bachmannism is far from finished. The Minnesota right-winger deserves to be memorialized with an “ism” because she perfected a tactic well-suited to the current media environment: continually toss out outlandish, baseless charges, and, eventually, some of them will enter the mainstream media — if, at first, only in the form of “coverage” of what conservative radio shows, Web sites or Fox News are talking about.

BACHMANN BOWS OUT

CHARLES M. BLOW

NEW YORK TIMES

If there’s one thing that Bachmann’s time in Congress has taught me it’s this: Don’t trust anything that comes out of her mouth. I’ll wait for the fact check.

Bachmann had made a place for herself as one of the most divisive, inflammatory, and flat-out dishonorable members of Congress in recent history, and her strong association with the Tea Party (she was the founder of the Tea Party Caucus) has gone a long way toward shaping the group’s image for ill.

DICK DURBIN, THE IRS, AND ME

KARL ROVE

WALL STREET JOURNAL

What was going on is obvious: Mr. Durbin wanted the IRS to silence conservatives. So did every other congressional Democrat who wrote similar letters to the IRS, from Senate Finance Committee chairman Max Baucus to New York Sen. Chuck Schumer to Vermont Rep. Peter Welch. But in the glare of public attention, using the IRS to cripple or destroy opponents looks corrupt. Abuse of power always is.

ERIC HOLDER, GIVING JUSTICE A BAD NAME

MICHAEL GERSON

WASHINGTON POST

… Justice Department officials attributed Holder’s actions to the “withering pressure to investigate leaks from both within the intelligence community and the Congress.” So the weather vane complains about the wind. Apparently the attorney general’s convictions about the First Amendment could not survive a pelting hail of interdepartmental memos. … At times he has displayed the legal sensibilities of a flower child. At other points, he has provided the legal justification for [the] expanded drone war or pursued the broadest attack on press freedom in decades. No, Holder’s signature is not ideology; it is incompetence. He has spent five years learning from mistakes. It has been an expensive education.

Must-Read Op-Eds for May 30, 2013

Updated