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Obama and Dems surrender to love of power

BY MONA CHAREN: We can speculate about why Obama is so disrespectful of the Constitution, the law and the voters. We can imagine that this latest arrogation is impeachment bait — hoping to draw Republicans into a fight that will unite the Democratic base and divide Republicans. Or perhaps he knows that as the first black president, he’s immune from impeachment and is putting a finger in Republicans’ (and voters’) eyes because he can.

Why is drunk driver who killed my sister back at the wheel?

BY EMILY MAINS: A repeat drunk driver killed my stepsister in 2003. Last Saturday, he was arrested for impaired driving for the fourth time. How does a repeat offender get the chance to drive again? How does a judicial system allow a man who has killed to have a second, third and even fourth chance?

Legal case against Obamacare a fiction

BY SIMON MALOY: It’s acceptable, though suspect, when comic book writers rewrite history in order to explore new storylines for existing characters. What makes politicians and lawyers think they can do the very same thing in a blatant attempt to undercut the Affordable Care Act?

Jane Byrne’s Chicago: a city in transition

BY RICHARD C. LONGWORTH: The death of Jane Byrne produced the expected spate of stories on her chaotic one-term reign as Chicago’s mayor, her feisty personality and, especially, the snowstorm that swept her into power. But these eulogies missed the real significance of her election — that she benefitted from and symbolized Chicago’s transformation from an industrial to a global city.

U.S. in poor company on children’s rights

BY ELIZABETH CLARKE: The U.S. lags behind the world as one of the last nations to ratify the universally acclaimed Convention on the Rights of the Child. The only other two nations that have failed to ratify are Somalia and South Sudan.

Pols and pundits distort truth on firefighter staffing

BY PAT DEVANEY: Taxpayer money is financing a propaganda campaign to fool readers into believing that continuing to allow firefighters to negotiate over safe staffing levels will somehow hurt taxpayers in Illinois.

How the banks bamboozled Chicago

BY SAQIB BHATTI: If the banks refuse to renegotiate the interest rate swaps deals voluntarily, Emanuel should use political and economic pressure to force them to the table.

Obama wrong to go it alone on immigration

BY LINDA CHAVEZ: The president shouldn’t go it alone on immigration, but the Republicans must step up and do the right thing by enacting legislation.

Two more years ahead of GOP Animal House

This too shall pass. In the bipolar gong show of Washington politics, it’s the Republicans’ turn. Count on them to opt for televised spectacle over governing. It’s what they do. You think a guy like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz will be dutifully attending committee meetings …

Killer or artist? Rap on trial

BY PAUL DETRICK: Around the United States, aspiring rappers find their their violent rap lyrics are being used against them in criminal trials.

Rauner right on prisons: They are broken

BY JOHN MAKI: As governor, Rauner can bring a new vision to the role of prisons in Illinois, ending the state’s over-reliance on incarceration and promoting better ways to keep the public safe.

GOP’s lame excuse on immigration reform: It’s Obama’s fault

BY SIMON MALOY: If anything, Obama going forward alone on immigration should be an incentive for Republicans to act.

Meet the people saved by Obamacare

BY JAN SCHAKOWSKY: Obamacare isn’t perfect. No law is. But it’s time to stop the false and inflammatory rhetoric. In my district alone, more than 20,000 people who were uninsured now have health care coverage, and seniors and people with disabilities have saved $13.8 million in drug costs.

Abortion lost on Election Day

BY NAT HENTOFF: Connecting abortion with the ending of “innocent human life” describes why pro-lifers throughout America have opposed President Obama from even before he was elected president.

Jerry Seinfeld’s ‘celebrity autism’ doesn’t help

BY MARIE MYUNG-OK LEE: The danger with announcements like Seinfeld’s is that autism, a potentially devastating neurological condition, becomes almost fashionable. Who wouldn’t want some odd quirkiness to make you memorable?

Obama sides with UN jackals

Americans of most political persuasions tend to view the United Nations as corrupt and morally inverted. An organization supposedly dedicated to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights regularly overlooks abuses by the world’s worst actors (Cuba, North Korea, China, just to name three) while expending …

Gun lobby blocks crucial federal appointment

BY HAROLD POLLACK: When the Ebola challenge became a national issue, it would have been nice to have a United States surgeon general in place to help educate. But Dr. Vivek Murthy’s appointment has long been blocked by Republicans offended by his mainstream gun control views. Push through his confirmation in this lame-duck session of Congress.