Walker, Republicans Dominate in Wisconsin Recall (Updated)

As I write this, Republican Scott Walker is flirting with a 60-40% landslide victory over Democrat Tom Barrett in the Wisconsin recall election. The GOP state senators up for recall are also all leading by 20%+ margins. While the counting is early yet and those margins may come down (even though the races have been … Continue reading Walker, Republicans Dominate in Wisconsin Recall (Updated)

A New Oath of Office

Roger Pilon's op-ed in the WSJ today, "Congress Rediscovers the Constitution," gave me an idea. According to Pilon, when representative Barney Frank was asked about the rule the newly elected Republicans in the House are considering adopting that would require all members to cite the specific passage in the Constitution authorizing any proposed legislation, Congressman Frank said, … Continue reading A New Oath of Office

Defending the Kochs

[Author's note: Although I wrote it before the election, I embargoed this essay until today, lest anyone think I was advocating for a political party or for an electoral victory. The sentiments expressed below are unrelated to any partisan agenda.] Billionaire businessmen and philanthropists Charles and David Koch have come in for a lot of … Continue reading Defending the Kochs

The Flummoxing Tea Partiers

David Boaz at Cato discusses the fact that the Tea Party phenomenon---and it is a phenomenon---continues to "freak out" commentators on the Left. He writes (preserving his links and italics): With a few rare exceptions like [Jonathan] Rauch and John Judis, non-conservative intellectuals are just freaked out by a mass movement against big government. Jill … Continue reading The Flummoxing Tea Partiers

Hope and Change meets Reality

There is an excellent and quite revealing interview with President Obama (conducted by Jann Wenner) in the October 15 edition of Rolling Stone. Several things are clear. First, President Obama views his accomplishments in the first two years quite positively: When I talk to Democrats around the country, I tell them, "Guys, wake up here. We … Continue reading Hope and Change meets Reality

A Winning Agenda

Like many other people, I was underwhelmed by the recently released Republican "Pledge to America." Longwinded, wishy-washy, and mostly tinkering on the edges. I am not a member of the Republican Party (or any other party), and I am indeed one of those who fails to much difference of substance between the two major parties---at … Continue reading A Winning Agenda

Why Good Principle Doesn’t Make Good Politics

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, under a tough re-election challenge from Republican Sharron Angle, is running ads slamming Angle for opposing health insurance mandates. Angle was one of two state senators to vote against mandated coverage of colonoscopies and correctly argued that these mandates drive up costs for … Continue reading Why Good Principle Doesn’t Make Good Politics

Washington and the “Spirit of Party”

We have had some discussion on the curious case of Christine O'Donnell (here), and on the apparently dwindling advantage Republicans are enjoying over Democrats as we transition from primaries to the general election (here). For the record, I am not a member of any political party. I am, moreover, repelled by arguments that people should … Continue reading Washington and the “Spirit of Party”

Tomorrow’s Primaries in NY and NH

Tomorrow my current and future states of residence are holding primaries. In New York the Republican gubernatorial contest has generated quite a lot of controversy, even though the nominee is likely to lose to Andrew Cuomo, while I've heard almost nothing about the special senatorial contest, even though that nominee has a fair shot at … Continue reading Tomorrow’s Primaries in NY and NH

Hope and (Party) Change?

There has been more than enough bad news for Democrats lately. The other day, a new Gallup poll gave Republicans a historical 10 point lead over Democrats in the generic ballot for Congress. Today Gallup released more dire news. “Americans saying the Republicans in Congress would do a better job than the Democrats in Congress … Continue reading Hope and (Party) Change?

Polling Update

A new Gallup poll has Republicans up 5 percentage points in the national congressional poll (generic ballot). The RealClearPolitics average has the Republicans at +6. As Sean Trende points out, these polls historically underestimate actual Republican performance. If the Republicans actually win by about 10 percentage points in the national vote, we would expect a … Continue reading Polling Update

Democrats, Lefty Blogosphere Unite Against Paul

Rand Paul's victory in the Kentucky Senate primary has befuddled and deranged much of the left. Matt Yglesias calls Paul a "lunatic," while the Daily Caller reports on Democratic attempts to portray him as "out-of-touch, elitist, and selfish." Ed Kilgore says Paul's "radicalism," identified by his association with the Tea Party and calls for "massive … Continue reading Democrats, Lefty Blogosphere Unite Against Paul

Rand Paul’s Insurgent Campaign

Over at fivethirtyeight, Ed Kilgore pooh-poohs the notion that Rand Paul's expected victory in today's Republican U.S. Senate primary in Kentucky represents an anti-incumbent, insurgent mood among voters: Kentucky has a closed primary system with a very early cutoff date for registration changes, so independents are quite literally not going to be a factor in … Continue reading Rand Paul’s Insurgent Campaign

Richard Blumenthal, Reporting for Duty

While my fellow bloggers explore the philosophical foundations of libertarianism, let me turn to matters more pedestrian: elections. Having been a resident of the nutmeg state for the past two decades, Richard Blumenthal has been as constant and as exciting a presence as steamed cheeseburgers (believe it or not, they do that in some parts … Continue reading Richard Blumenthal, Reporting for Duty