Read Stuff, You Should: Ted Cruz and Syria

Jonathan Bernstein is a Bloomberg View columnist. He taught political science at the University of Texas at San Antonio and DePauw University and wrote A Plain Blog About Politics.
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Happy Birthday to Cassandra Peterson, 63.

Why, yes, there is good stuff:

1. It appears the Democrats have an Electoral College advantage (though certainly no lock); Tom Holbrook has the numbers. I'll believe it a bit more if it holds up for one more election (and of course in the one recent election where it mattered, it was Republicans who benefited). But, yes, if I had to put money on the Electoral College winner of a 50/50 national vote, I'd be bet on the Democrats.

2. Jonathan Ladd explains what the lies parties tell about their own histories tell us about party identification.

3. I love the Justin Wolfers item about misperceptions and the drop in crime not only because it's good, but because it's a great example of what the new sites -- in this case, The Upshot at the New York Times -- can do that regular old newspapers couldn't, and magazines often didn't.

4. "The rise of outsider politicians in Latin America and Europe," from Flavia Freidenberg and Maria Esperanza Casullo over at the Monkey Cage.

5. Ross Douthat bends over backward and then some to find a generous interpretation of Senator Ted Cruz's speech to Middle East Christians, and just can't find one.

6. But what's really going on here? Matt Yglesias nails it: "Douthat and other conservative writers such as Byron York and Timothy Carney, who cheered his criticisms of Cruz, are likely in part trying to signal a general disapproval of Cruz and his tactics, not just a specific disagreement about Syria policy."

7. Ed Kilgore, meanwhile, looks at Mike Huckabee's presidential prospects.

8. And I guess I should read Jean Merrill's The Pushcart War. Because Alyssa Rosenberg says so, and she's rarely wrong.

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To contact the author on this story:
Jonathan Bernstein at jbernstein62@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor on this story:
Max Berley at mberley@bloomberg.net