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Melissa Harris-Perry | The Nation

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Melissa Harris-Perry

Melissa Harris-Perry

 Race, gender, politics, religion and our struggles.

Women Voters Will Decide This Election

Although Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are currently neck and neck, a recent NBC News and Wall Street Journal poll says the president is leading among women voters by eight points. Suddenly, reproductive health and pay equity have become key questions of this election. But “women's issues” is a misnomer for what are really economic policies that impact everyone. Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry asks: Will Romney and Ryan be held accountable for their proposed rollback of women’s rights?

—Christie Thompson

For more on the role of women in this election, check out Bryce Covert on Mitt Romney’s flip-flop ongender equity.  

The Psychological Toll of Voter Suppression

Though activists are celebrating a slate of recent victories against voter ID laws, the fight isn’t over. Republicans in Florida are purging eligible voters from registries, and using intimidation tactics to convince Sunshine State citizens of their political inefficacy. Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry breaks down why voting rights can never be a partisan issue: they are crucial to our national social (and mental) well-being.

—Christie Thompson

For more voter suppression coverage, check out The Nation and Colorlines.com’s joint project, Voting Rights Watch 2012.

How Occupy Has Changed the Conversation on Class

It’s been just one year since protesters took over Zuccotti Park, yet some are already writing Occupy’s obituary. While the Tea Party movement has pushed Republicans even further to the right, Occupy has produced no political candidates or parties. But as Nation blogger Allison Kilkenny points out, it’s Occupy’s strategy (not shortcoming) to organize outside the political system. She joins Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry to highlight why progressives need to get to the polls and take to the streets this November.

—Christie Thompson

It's Time to Talk About the Poor

In 2011, nearly 5.7 percent of Americans struggled to put food on the table. But with an overwhelming focus on the middle class at both national conventions, rising poverty went largely unmentioned. Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry and Nation blogger Ari Melber ask, Why has a real conversation about America’s poor been mostly missing from this election?

—Christie Thompson

Romney Falls Further Out of Touch With Women

Once, long ago, Romney believed that abortion “should be safe and legal in this country.” Now, as he charges ever more towards the right, he has rejected his earlier views, further alienating women voters. Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry and Nation senior editor Emily Douglas discuss just how out of touch Romney has become, and how his stance is costing him mightily in swing states.

—Max Rivlin-Nadler

Ryan Is No Rand

Paul Ryan, like a college libertarian, claims to be a staunch follower of the anti-government icon Ayn Rand. But as a federal employee, who believes in limiting the rights of immigrants and women, he’d most likely be disowned by her. Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry explores the tensions between Ryan and Rand, with help from this article by Nation writer Ben Adler. 

—Max Rivlin-Nadler

Paul Ryan and the Social Contract

In his first speech as the Republican vice presidential candidate, Paul Ryan used phrases from the Declaration of Independence to support his own free-market, small-government agenda. Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry breaks down why he chose the words of Jefferson and how he has misinterpreted them to attack the social safety net and every other progressive gain since the beginning of the twentieth century.

—Max Rivlin-Nadler

Mr. Romney Goes to Europe

Aside from all the obvious gaffes during Governor Romney’s trip to Europe, it’s become increasingly clear that he intends to mold his foreign policy on that of George W. Bush. By doing so, he risks alienating a world already leery of US power, and signals a return to the recklessness that led to the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars. Filling in for Rachel Maddow, Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry breaks down Romney’s insidious discourse on world affairs. 

—Max Rivlin-Nadler

When Rape Jokes Aren't Funny

When comedian Daniel Tosh told an audience member that her gang rape would be “funny,” he crossed the line between humor that points out the cruelty of rape and one that celebrates the act. Nation columnist Jessica Valenti joined fellow Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry to discuss Tosh’s lack of sensitivity, the feminist perspective and if there’s such a thing as a genuinely funny rape joke.

—Max Rivlin-Nadler

The GOP's Attack on Voters

With a state representative in Pennsylvania admitting that voter ID laws “will help Romney win the state of Pennsylvania,” how can courts not strike down the recent surge of voter ID laws as a partisan attempt to discourage low-income and minority voters? Nation contributor Ari Melber joined Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry on her show this weekend to discuss how such laws clearly restrict voting rights and how true universal suffrage has been a struggle for the United States since its founding.

—Max Rivlin-Nadler

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