US Press: pick of the papers

The ten must-read opinion pieces from today's US papers.

1. A grim night for Perry, but a good one for Romney (Boston Globe)

Things got less funny for Texas Governor Rick Perry as last night's Republican presidential debate went on, writes Joan Vennochi.

2. Perry's sweet spot (Los Angeles Times)

Republican voters want to beat Obama, says Jonah Goldberg. But they also want to like their candidate. That's a bigger challenge for Mitt Romney than for Rick Perry.

3. Rick Perry is no George W. Bush (USA Today)

Richard Land argues that voters should understand that the two Texans aren't cut from the same cloth.

4. Doubts About Perry Echo Those Faced by Reagan (Wall Street Journal)

Republicans worry that Perry is too ideological, too conservative or too extreme to win a general election, says Gerald F. Seib.

5 Failing the Lincoln test (Washington Post)

Michael Gerson argues that Obama is blowing his chance at greatness.

6. Jobs plan is good and strategic policy (USA Today)

DeWayne Wickham suggests that Obama has blended some GOP tax cuts into his plan to put people back to work.

7. Protect Our Right to Anonymity (New York Times)

Jeffrey Rosen discusses a court case on surveillance technology which threatens Americans' expectation of anonymity in public places.

8. The pass-alone pain from school cuts (Star Tribune)

The state should step up to reduce the need for voters to fund basics, says this editorial.

9. Political roadblock threatens transportation projects, jobs (Detroit Free Press)

This editorial makes the case for investment in transportation to connect communities, fuel the economy and shape patterns of growth.

10. The Misuse of Life Without Parole (New York Times)

A fair-minded society should not sentence anyone to life without parole except as an alternative to the death penalty, says this editorial.

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Cabinet audit: what does the appointment of Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary mean for policy?

The political and policy-based implications of the new Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.

The world shared a stunned silence when news broke that Boris Johnson would be the new Foreign Secretary. Johnson, who once referred to black people as “piccaninnies” and more recently accused the half-Kenyan President of the United States of only commenting on the EU referendum because of bitterness about colonialism, will now be Britain’s representative on the world stage.

His colourful career immediately came back to haunt him when US journalists accused him of “outright lies” and reminded him of the time he likened Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton to a “sadistic nurse”. Johnson’s previous appearances on the international stage include a speech in Beijing where he maintained that ping pong was actually the Victorian game of “whiff whaff”.

But Johnson has always been more than a blond buffoon, and this appointment is a shrewd one by May. His popularity in the country at large, apparently helped by getting stuck on a zip line and having numerous affairs, made him an obvious threat to David Cameron’s premiership. His decision to defect to the Leave campaign was widely credited with bringing it success. He canned his leadership campaign after Michael Gove launched his own bid, but the question of whether his chutzpah would beat May’s experience and gravity is still unknown.

In giving BoJo the Foreign Office, then, May hands him the photo opportunities he craves. Meanwhile, the man with real power in international affairs will be David Davis, who as Brexit minister has the far more daunting task of renegotiating Britain’s trade deals.