by Ben Domenech • The Federalist
Over the weekend, Saturday Night Live aired a Kellyanne Conway sketch that turned out to be very controversial, even for journalists who are generally very anti-Trump in their signaling. The depiction of Conway as a Fatal Attraction sex fiend obsessed with the limelight and furious at being closed off from CNN isn’t funny, it’s just disturbing – even if you don’t know her or her family. But the real indication here is in how quickly SNL moved from a depiction of Conway that was considered empathetic and showed a harried family woman who couldn’t escape the crazy demands of working for Donald Trump to a crazed lunatic obsessed with getting in front of a camera. It’s a total inversion of their earlier sketches, and it shows what happens when partisanship totally skews the perspective comedians have on the characters they’re mocking.
The saddest part about this moment is how revealing it is of the illiberalism of some pockets of American society. Continue reading
by W. James Antle III • Washington Examiner
If you thought Super Bowl week would provide a much-needed respite from our polarized national political climate, think again.
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady have been getting the third degree on whether they support President Trump.
Not only have the two leading NFL figures been peppered with questions about Trump at their media availabilities, but editorialists and opinion writers have been demanding to know: Are you now or have you ever been a passenger of the Trump train?
Brady in particular has found questions about Trump as persistent and difficult to dodge as the New York Giants pass rush circa 2007. Continue reading
by Justin Haskins • Philly Inquirer
Shortly after being sworn into office in January 2009, President Obama, along with Democrats in Congress, spent trillions of dollars on government bailouts, stimulus packages, and various social welfare programs – all passed with the promise they would reverse one of the most significant economic crashes the country has experienced.
After nearly eight years in office, though, Obama has failed to deliver on many of his campaign promises and has left America worse-off than it was when he entered the White House.
During the Obama administration, there hasn’t been a single year in which the nation’s gross domestic product grew at 3 percent or higher, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service. That’s a first for a modern president. Continue reading
By The Federalist Staff
Federalist senior contributor and senior fellow in constitutional studies at the Cato Institute Ilya Shapiro joined Fox News’s “Special Report with Brett Baier” on Monday to discuss the gloomy future of President Obama’s legacy. Continue reading
by Kenneth L. Woodward • Chicago Tribune
Whether out of anger or of angst, Bill Clinton spoke from the core of liberal presumption when he told a Westchester County, N.Y., journalist recently that Donald Trump “doesn’t know much” but does know “how to get angry white males to vote for him.” After all, this was supposed to be the Republicans’ season of discontent. Instead, Democrats emerged from the election with less political clout on the national and state levels of government than at any time since 1928. And Hillary Clinton was again denied her appointed role in history.
If Trump pursued the politics of resentment in courting white, working-class voters and their rural cousins, liberals succumbed to what I call “the politics of righteousness” in overlooking their concerns and underestimating their power. By righteousness I mean the tendency of liberals to assume ownership of the moral high ground whenever cultural values and social norms are at issue in American politics — and to presume that those who disagree are, as Hillary Clinton put it, “a basket of deplorables.” Continue reading
By Matt Mackowiak • Washington Times
With only weeks left in his presidency, President Obama has been reduced to issuing unprovable boasts, sounding like the senior quarterback at a small high school.
In a recent interview on “The Axe Files” podcast with former senior strategist David Axelrod — which makes you wonder if Mr. Obama’s blood relatives were unavailable to interview him — the president claimed he would have been re-elected to a third term had he been allowed to run again. Perhaps conservatives should cheer, as the president finally appears to appreciate the constitutional constraints of his office, but here’s the real takeaway from this softball interview with a South Side Chicago pal.
Mr. Obama is either reeling or delusional. The truth is, his presidency is crumbling as he departs.
Let’s rummage through the wreckage: Continue reading
by Joel Goodman • The Federalist
Some disparage the Founding Fathers’ distrust of the population. They constructed a representative republic rather than a pure democracy, even in a time when voting was limited to white yeomen—those who owned land and had what was considered a “stake in the country.”
The example of the French under Napoleon Bonaparte, who were constantly engaged in referendums that determined the amount of authority Napoleon should have, provide an example of why the Founders eschewed democracy. These referendums were direct votes, considered to be the most democratic of all voting methods. Each vote granted Napoleon more power until he became an absolute emperor over the French people. The French democratically and freely voted away their own liberty.
It appears the American Founders had presaged the events in France by examining the history of earlier democracies. The reasons America is a republic are more basic. Continue reading
by Andrew Kugle • Washington Free Beacon
For weeks, liberals railed against then candidate Donald Trump for refusing to say he would accept the results of the presidential election.
Trump asserted multiple times throughout the campaign that the election could be rigged against him and he could lose because of voter fraud. At a campaign rally in October, Trump said he would accept the election results but reserved his right to challenge the outcome if there was reason to do so.
“I would accept a clear election result, but I would also reserve my right to contest or file a legal challenge in the case of a questionable result,” Trump said.
In the third presidential debate, Trump said he would keep people in suspense when asked if he would accept the results of the election. This answer drew an immediate rebuke from his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton. Continue reading
by Edward Morrissey • The Week
In the wake of a stunning election result, many people — especially in the media — have struggled for an explanation. Rather than acknowledge the obvious and prosaic answer — that voters in swing states chose change rather than the status quo — analysts have sought a Unified Theory of Donald Trump’s Success. Trump couldn’t possibly have won fair and square, the assumption goes, so all that’s left is to identify whatever went wrong and banish it so this never happens again.
Over the past week, the consensus Unified Theory from the media is this: Blame fake news. This explanation started with BuzzFeed’s analysis of Facebook over the past three months, which claimed that the top 20 best-performing “fake news” articles got more engagement than the top 20 “mainstream news” stories. Continue reading
by Peter Roff • Townhall
Despite what many people think the left-liberal coalition’s decision to base so much of its effort on keeping the government out of our bedrooms is, long term, a losing strategy. Conservatives have a slight advantage where these issues are the only ones considered by people when deciding how to vote. If they could redirect their efforts to keeping government out of the kitchen they might have something.
Uncle Sam has decided what we eat and drink is somehow his business. The government says it wants to bend the healthcare cost curve downward but really this is just another version of the ”we know what is best for you” argument that has so many people up in arms. Continue reading
by Daniel J. Mitchell • Foundation for Economic Education
Hillary Clinton has an editorial in the New York Times entitled “My Plan for Helping America’s Poor” and it is so filled with errors and mistakes that it requires a full fisking (i.e., a “point-by-point debunking of lies and/or idiocies”).
We’ll start with her very first sentence.
The true measure of any society is how we take care of our children.
I realize she (or the staffers who actually wrote the column) were probably trying to launch the piece with a fuzzy, feel-good line, but let’s think about what’s implied by “how we take care of our children.” It echoes one of the messages in her vapid 1996 book, It Takes a Village, in that it implies that child rearing somehow is a collective responsibility. Continue reading
by Tom Ciccotta • Breitbart
At a free speech symposium at the University of Missouri, CNN commentator Sally Kohn argued that pro-free speech conservatives are really just afraid of the increasing desire for multiculturalism on college campuses.
Kohn, who frequently appears as a progressive commentator on CNN, claimed at the symposium that the right, by fighting for free speech, has merely been seeking new ways to stifle calls for diversity, particularly on college campuses.
Kohn argued that pro-free speech conservatives are really just afraid of “multiculturalism.”
Kohn’s CNN colleague Kirsten Powers challenged her, arguing that “speech is not in itself dangerous.” Kohn responded that their white, upper-middle class backgrounds disqualify them from deciding if free speech is harmful. Continue reading
By Peter Roff • Washington Examiner
The office of attorney general is a role that is unrivaled in government. Its occupant possesses the power to prosecute private citizens, corporations and even governments on the public’s behalf.
It is the reason that most fair-minded attorneys general maintain a semblance of nonpartisanship, generally picking cases that serve the broadest public interest instead of giving in to the quick and easy returns that come with pursuing flashy lawsuits, pandering to powerful voting blocs or chasing big paydays.
All this has changed thanks to the pioneering efforts of a Washington, D.C.-based law firm, Cohen Milstein, and firms like it, which have been aggressively courting a pool of potential new clients among the nation’s attorneys general. Critics of the practice call this a troubling trend often encouraging the pursuit of potentially lucrative but legally dicey cases they might not otherwise touch. Continue reading
by Abigail Stevenson • CNBC
If politicians don’t fix the Affordable Care Act, then the vulnerable Blue Cross and local HMO plans — which serve as the backbone of Obamacare — must exit, said Robert Laszewski, the President of Health Policy and Strategy Associates.
“What the politicians need to do is to understand they have got about a year to fix this,” he said in an interview with CNBC’s “Closing Bell.”
Republicans do not want to fix the existing flaws for Obamacare, Laszewski said. Instead, they want to repeal and replace it. He added that Democrats are now stating that they would rather go to a single-payer insurance plan or a public option within a government-run plan. Continue reading
Various progressive factions have undertaken an effort to criminalize dissent using the courts and statutory law.
For quite some time the American Left has been busy turning American law into a partisan political weapon. Various progressive factions have undertaken a disparate and uncoordinated but still ideologically homogeneous effort to criminalize dissent using the courts and statutory law.
By most traditional metrics, these efforts have been failures: the liberals have often lost, and the conservative targets have avoided jail time or crippling criminal or civil convictions or penalties. But the weaponization of our legal system should not be judged by traditional metrics. The point is not for liberals to “win” any particular lawsuit or legal enforcement so much as it is to use lawsuits and the law as the weapons in and of themselves. The process is the punishment. And in most of these cases the punishment is very severe. That’s the idea.
In large part this reflects growing liberal opposition to a pluralistic society: not merely opposition to ideas but rather opposition to ideas about ideas, a strong and deliberate enmity towards intellectual diversity and dissenting thought. Continue reading