Grading City Hall: See our report card for L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson
Opinion L.A. Observations and provocations from The Times' Opinion Staff
Will Trans-Pacific Partnership hold back new generic drugs?

The Times' editorial board, which has long supported free-trade deals, sounded a note of caution Friday about the next one in the pipeline, the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

"The Obama administration's goal has been to persuade its trading partners to move toward U.S. standards in these areas, which tend to be more demanding than their own," the board wrote. "But it's important that the deal not undermine...

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Senate maneuvering spares Planned Parenthood -- for now

A series of hidden-camera videos by anti-abortion activists capturing Planned Parenthood executives discussing tissue harvesting from aborted fetuses has renewed calls by Republicans to eliminate all federal support for the organization. But as bad as it's been lately in Washington for Planned Parenthood, the group can actually thank Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) for preventing things...

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Fast-tracking VA firings makes for bad policy

The scandals that rocked the federal Department of Veterans Affairs last year rightly had some high-reaching consequences, including toppling secretary Eric K. Shinseki. Whether Shinseki’s successor, Robert McDonald, has been able to effect much of a cultural change within the department that provides, among other things, healthcare for some 6 million veterans is uncertain. But it is troubling that...

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Some credit for the little-known figure behind L.A.'s 1984 Olympic Games deal

With all the renewed excitement about a possible return of the Summer Olympics to Los Angeles, we may be hearing the name Bob Ronka again.

Don’t know who he is? You’re not alone. I hadn’t heard his name until yesterday, when the circumstances of L.A.'s Olympic negotiations in the 1970s suddenly became particularly relevant.  Boston dropped out as the U.S. bidder for the 2024 games this week, saying...

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How Obama might keep the Iran deal alive if Congress votes no

In my column on Wednesday, I listed conservatives’ proposed alternatives to President Obama’s nuclear agreement with Iran. Contrary to what some officials have said, options other than war do exist; they’re just not likely to work.

Here’s one more intriguing possibility: If Congress votes to reject the deal, Obama could still comply with some parts of it.

This scenario was suggested by Robert Satloff...

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Genetics trumps claim that The Donald's hair is fake

Given all the other critical things people are saying about Donald Trump, you might think he would (as it were) brush off the jokes about his hair.

As Trump might say, you’d have to be an idiot to believe it doesn’t matter to him.

The tycoon-turned-presidential candidate especially resents intimations that his tresses are fake, a familiar theme for comedians. David Letterman came out of retirement...

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