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Pitting the humanitarian imperative to help dislocated children against the plight of American communities places victimology in the service of party politics. Both Republicans and Democrats claim the moral high ground while conveniently avoiding the political economy of the problem they lament -- and have collaborated in creating.

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With less than three weeks left before the midterm elections, President Obama is making the rounds in support of Democratic allies such as Massachusetts Gov Deval Patrick, whom Obama praised in a Boston appearance Saturday while (continued).

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He's already the stuff of "SNL" parodies, so Massachusetts' newly minted Sen.-elect Scott Brown might as well go ahead and drop the "-elect" part from his title. Brown sent letters to state officials Wednesday prodding them to get on with the election certification process so he could be sworn in Thursday.

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Democrats would like an interim senator to fill Ted Kennedy's shoes until a January election provides a more permanent solution, and the Massachusetts House of Representatives on Thursday agreed to give Gov. Deval Patrick the power to appoint just such a person.

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