Rubin: Harris, Buttigieg and Klobuchar shine in the fifth debate

Only in the Trump presidency could a 10-person presidential primary debate with no clear front-runner seem anticlimactic. After Ambassador to the E.U. Gordon Sondland’s throw-everyone-under-the-bus testimony and Defense Department official Laura Cooper’s testimony that Ukrainians knew by July 25 their aid was conditional on addressing Trump’s concerns, it was natural to start the debate with an impeachment question, which candidates managed to guide back to their major themes: Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) on corruption, South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg on the morning after Trump, former vice president Joe Biden making clear Trump and Vladimir Putin don’t want him to be president and so on. (Wash. Post)

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Petrilli: Montgomery County talks a good game on “equity.” Now it has a chance to walk it, too.

There’s been a lot of talk about racial equity in Montgomery County as of late. It is motivated in part by a disturbing “racial equity profile” released in June, which shows dramatic disparities between white and Asian residents and their African American and Latino counterparts in employment, health, education and many other domains. If leaders want to do more than engage in virtue-signaling — and especially if they want to make a tangible difference in the lives of families of color — they have a rare opportunity to put their money where their mouth is. That’s because the county’s teacher contract is up for negotiation — and it could be the most effective mechanism for driving better outcomes for Montgomery County Public Schools’ black and brown children. (Wash. Post)

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Goldberg: Republicans throwing everything against the wall to defend Trump

Maybe you're a fan of Jackson Pollock's paint-splatter stuff. That's cool. My only point is that when you flick paint at a canvas, nobody expects the result to look like a tree, a person or a bowl of fruit. Similarly, in politics, when you throw everything against the wall to see what will stick, the result probably won’t be pretty, and it definitely won’t paint a coherent picture. This is both the stupidity and the genius of the Republican defense of President Donald Trump in the impeachment inquiry. (Balt. Sun)

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EDITORIAL: Trump is spreading his ‘fake news’ rhetoric around the world. That’s dangerous.

To the long list of President Trump’s dubious achievements, add the spread of “fake news” as a loanword to the non-English-speaking world. Inspired by Mr. Trump’s own diatribes against press coverage he dislikes, authorities from Brazil to Tanzania deploy the epithet against reporters upon whom they, like the U.S. president, wish to focus the anger of social media crowds. We learned of this repercussion of Mr. Trump’s leadership in a meeting with this year’s winners of the Committee to Protect Journalists’ press freedom awards. (Wash. Post)

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Goldberg: Republicans throwing everything against the wall to defend Trump

Maybe you're a fan of Jackson Pollock's paint-splatter stuff. That's cool. My only point is that when you flick paint at a canvas, nobody expects the result to look like a tree, a person or a bowl of fruit. Similarly, in politics, when you throw everything against the wall to see what will stick, the result probably won’t be pretty, and it definitely won’t paint a coherent picture. This is both the stupidity and the genius of the Republican defense of President Donald Trump in the impeachment inquiry. (Balt. Sun)

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EDITORIAL: Forget politics this holiday season, and talk about something cheerier at the dinner table: death

Death and dying is not something that most people like to openly discuss, but I suggest cozying up with your favorite beverage for a few minutes, because we need to get some important issues out in the open. Now, can I be honest about something? We are all going to die at some point in time — you, me, everyone around us and those who come after. (Balt. Sun)

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Marchand: Teachable Moment for Maryland Education and Taxes

As a Republican executive in a dark blue state, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has one of the toughest balancing acts in the country. Gov. Hogan must stay true to the small-government principles that propelled him into the office, while governing within the confines of a left-of-center state. But now the popular Maryland leader faces an unprecedented challenge: the Kirwan Commission, which has proposed an annual $4 billion increase in school spending to revamp the education system in Maryland. (Md. Matters)

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EDITORIAL: Michael Bloomberg, Deval Patrick make 2020 Democratic presdeintial field denser, loopier

What does it say about the Democratic presidential field of 18 (give or take) wannabes still vying for the party’s 2020 nomination when two more are only now jumping into the race, just days ahead of the fifth candidates’ debate on Wednesday night [Nov. 20] in Atlanta? It’s not exactly an embarrassment of riches. It’s just rich in embarrassment. (Wash. Times)

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