Stephanie Mencimer

Stephanie Mencimer

Reporter

Stephanie works in Mother Jones' Washington bureau. A Utah native and graduate of a crappy public university not worth mentioning, she has spent several years hanging out with angry white people who occasionally don tricorne hats and come to lunch meetings heavily armed.

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Stephanie covers legal affairs and domestic policy in Mother Jones' Washington bureau. She is the author of Blocking the Courthouse Door: How the Republican Party and Its Corporate Allies Are Taking Away Your Right to Sue. A contributing editor of the Washington Monthly, a former investigative reporter at the Washington Post, and a senior writer at the Washington City Paper, she was nominated for a National Magazine Award in 2004 for a Washington Monthly article about myths surrounding the medical malpractice system. In 2000, she won the Harry Chapin Media award for reporting on poverty and hunger, and her 2010 story in Mother Jones of the collapse of the welfare system in Georgia and elsewhere won a Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism.

Gonzo Finally Gets A Job

| Wed Jul. 8, 2009 9:58 AM EDT

Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has been the butt of many jokes over the past year thanks to media reports suggesting that he was unable to secure gainful employment after his disasterous tenure in the Bush administration. Sadly, it looks like those jokes will have to stop, as the Harvard Law grad has landed a teaching gig for the fall at a prestigious institution of higher learning: Texas Tech, in Lubbock, Texas. The guy once predicted to be the first Latino Supreme Court justice won't be teaching law or anything like that. Instead, he'll headline a poli-sci course on contemporary issues in the executive branch, based, apparently, on what little he can remember of it.

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GOP May Delay Sotomayor Hearings

| Tue Jul. 7, 2009 12:30 PM EDT

After several concerted weeks of trying, congressional Republicans so far have failed to find any good reason why Sonia Sotomayor should not be confirmed as the next Supreme Court justice. Apparently, though, they just think they need more time to find a smoking gun. CQ Politics reports today that Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) may use some procedural rules to delay the confirmation hearings scheduled to start Monday. He told CQ that the Judiciary Committee needed more time to pour over documents from the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund, where Sotomayor had long served on the board. He also added that several members of the committee would be tied up with the concurrent health care reform hearings next week. One of Session's colleagues, though, suggested another motivation for the delay: air time.

With both [hearings] “on television at the same time,” said Charles E. Grassley , R-Iowa, who sits on both panels, “What senator wants to be absent from either one of them?”

 

Time Of The Preacher: Obama's New Spiritual Guide

| Mon Jun. 29, 2009 1:49 PM EDT

UPDATE: The White House shot down the Time magazine report noted below that President Barack Obama and Michelle have picked the chapel at Camp David as the church for their family. Press secretary Robert Gibbs said, "There have been no formal decisions about joining a church."

Washington has been buzzing for months about where the Obama family will finally lay down some local church roots. Various congregations have been quietly lobbying, but it looks like the president is going to follow in his predecessor's footsteps and make Camp David's Evergreen Church his spiritual home, Time reports today. No doubt DC's black churches are crushed, but Evergreen apparently offered the Obamas a modicum of privacy that the city churches did not. But Evergreen also has another major draw: It's current chaplain is none other than Lt. Carey Cash, the great-nephew of the late, great music star Johnny Cash.

As Time's Amy Sullivan notes, Obama couldn't get much farther from his former controversial minister Jeremiah Wright than he could with Cash. The younger Cash, 38, did a tour of Iraq with a Marine battalion and, like his famous uncle, is a southern Baptist. (Evergreen, though, is a nondenominational church that caters to Camp David's military personnel.) The Navy rotates chaplains through the church every three years, so Cash's arrival in January was just a coincidence. But if he has any of his uncle's charisma, the Obamas are no doubt in for a treat. Johnny Cash was a gospel singer at heart and was considered something of a preacher himself, after all. He was even close to religious icon Billy Graham, who once made a cameo appearance in one Cash's songs. "The Preacher Said "Jesus Said'" anyone?

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Tue Sep. 9, 2014 6:30 AM EDT | Updated Tue Dec. 16, 2014 10:10 AM EDT