Will column: Finance steered by an Iowa tractor driver

His tractor is so noisy that, when driving it, the man who calls himself “just a farmer from Butler County” puts his cellphone under his cap, set on vibrate. Charles Grassley, 85, who has served in the Senate longer than all but 11 of the 1,983 other senators — and who still runs 3 miles four mornings a week — does not have ample time for farming because he has visited all of Iowa’s 99 counties every year for 38 years, and last missed a Senate vote 8,300 votes ago, when Iowa was flooded in 1993.

Parker column: Abusurity of yearbook politics

WASHINGTON — In 1983, just before winning a third term as Louisiana’s governor, Edwin Edwards famously said the only way he could lose the race was “if I’m caught in bed with either a dead girl or a live boy.”

The State of the Union: Petrified

WASHINGTON — One should never feel sorry for anyone working in President Trump’s White House. They volunteered for this dreadful and chaotic administration. But it’s hard to envy those tasked with writing drafts of his State of the Union address.

Parker: Abortion law the banality of evil

WASHINGTON — C.S. Lewis was only partly right when he wrote: The greatest evil … is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried and minuted) in clean, carpeted, warmed and well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voice.

Ruthless, head-patting grandma owned Trump

There was a time not long ago when women in politics were counseled never to speak about their children, if they were moms. A woman needed to seem strong enough for the job. Especially for the male consultants in the room, being a mom read “too soft,” maybe even too weak.

Trump legacy of fall, not wall

WASHINGTON — When F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote, “Let me tell you about the very rich. They are different from you and me,” he inadvertently foreshadowed the government shutdown of 2018-19.

Democrats have their Thatcher in Elizabeth Warren

Margaret Thatcher’s description of herself as a “conviction politician” alarmed some Britons but delighted others because her convictions were incompatible with the flaccid centrist consensus that had produced their nation’s 1970s stagnation. In 1979, voters rolled the dice, sending her to Downing Street. In Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Democrats have their Thatcher, if they dare.

Parker: Era of jumping to conclusions

WASHINGTON — When a white, Catholic-school boy wearing a “Make America Great Again” cap is shown staring down a Native American Vietnam War veteran, sending the media scrambling for their pitchforks and torches, one might want to pause and stroke one’s chin.