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GOP watch: The 'exceptional' debate

The Washington Post’s Tumulty: “‘American exceptionalism’ is a phrase that, until recently, was rarely heard outside the confines of think tanks, opinion journals and university history departments. But with Republicans and tea party activists accusing President Obama and the Democrats of turning the country toward socialism, the idea that the United States is inherently superior to the world's other nations has become the battle cry from a new front in the ongoing culture wars. Lately, it seems to be on the lips of just about every Republican who is giving any thought to running for president in 2012.”

“Some, however, wonder whether Obama's conservative critics are sounding an alarm about the United States' place in the world - or making an insidious suggestion about the president himself.”