What really divides conservatives

Featured image What best explains the division we see among conservatives these days? Is it ideology, strategy, or just tactics? All three factor in. But I believe the biggest source of division is cognitive. Some conservatives perceive that the left is bent on radically transforming American values, institutions, and ways of living, and will use almost any tactic, regardless of its legality, to accomplish the transformation. Others perceive the current moment as »

Whose Shrinking Island?

Featured image Yesterday President Obama riffed in front of a Democratic audience, attacking the only enemies he cares about–Republicans. He described Republicans as “extreme,” and said, among other things, “Washington Republicans are alone on their own shrinking island.” Put aside the hatefulness for a moment. Like so much that Obama says, this characterization is delusional. National Journal published this map of the United States, by Congressional district, after the 2014 election. It »

Trump still rolling, empire yet to strike back

Featured image There’s another poll of the GOP presidential race out, a Washington Post-ABC News production. It tells basically the same story as its predecessors. Donald Trump continues to lead with a little better than 30 percent support; Ben Carson remains in second a little above 20 percent; Marco Rubio holds third place at about 10 percent. Despite Trump’s consistently strong showing, Nate Silver and the folks at FiveThirtyEight remain unimpressed. They »

Harry Reid’s choice for Speaker presents his demands [UPDATED]

Featured image If the endorsement of Rep. Luis (the illegal immigrant’s best friend) Gutierrez was not enough to demonstrate that Rep. Paul Ryan is a bad choice for Speaker of the House, then surely Sen. Harry Reid’s endorsement is. Reid told reporters yesterday that he’s “Paul Ryan fan” and hopes the former Republican vice presidential nominee gets the nod. Reid added: [Ryan] appears to me to be one of the people over »

Don’t discount Trump; the “establishment” no longer does

Featured image Eliana Johnson reports that the Republican establishment is beginning to believe Donald Trump might well win the Republican presidential nomination. Eliana is right. So is the Republican establishment. The best evidence of the establishment’s view of the matter is the fact that Alex Castellanos, the quintessential GOP insider, believes Trump might well win. Byron York reports: Castellanos, who once said flatly that “Trump is not going to be the nominee,” »

Brooks of the Times

Featured image David Brooks is the prominent New York Times columnist who made a name for himself as a conservative writer at the Weekly Standard and in his early books of comic sociology. At the Times, however, Brooks has gone native. He has become a one-man source of global warming. And I don’t mean climate change. Sometimes he can’t see what is in front of his face, as in his take on »

Should we believe fired Benghazi committee staffer’s claims?

Featured image It’s a good week for the mainstream media when it has a story with which to beat up on congressional Republicans, and a great week when it has two. This is a great week. The first story is, of course, the House Republicans’ quest to attempt to find a new Speaker. For an indeterminate period, this may be the gift that keeps on giving. The second story must also warm »

Paul Ryan: Luis Gutierrez’s choice for Speaker

Featured image I may be one of the few who is saying publicly that Rep. Paul Ryan is a bad choice for Speaker, but I’m not the only one who believes his selection would benefit liberals, comparatively speaking. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, an extreme left-wing Democrat, told MSNBC that Ryan’s ascent to Speaker “would be good for the country.” Breitbart correctly describes Gutierrez as “perhaps the most extreme open-borders advocate in Congress.” It »

Will Paul Ryan be the next speaker? I hope not

Featured image Following Kevin McCarthy’s surprising decision to drop out of the race for House Speaker, attention has turned to Paul Ryan. The widely respected Wisconsin man is viewed by many as the Republican representative most likely to (1) obtain the votes needed to become Speaker and (2) perhaps provide a degree of party unity post-selection. Ryan apparently does not want the job, for an obvious reason (it’s a daunting post) and »

Who gets released when drug sentences are relaxed?

Featured image Sens. Grassley, Cornyn, Lee, Flake, and (inevitably) Lindsey Graham have teamed up with liberal Democrats like Sens. Leahy, Durbin, and Schumer to push legislation that will result in the release of major drug felons, some of whom brought guns along when they committed their crimes. Hoping to increase the momentum for this sort of leniency, the Washington Post presents a warm front-page profile of a “non-violent drug offender” who was »

Boehner’s shortcomings, not GOP dysfunction, were his downfall

Featured image John Boehner’s resignation has sparked another round of claims from the mainstream media that the Republican party is hopelessly divided and incapable of governing. These claims, one suspects, are presented more in delight than in sorrow. There’s no question that there deep divisions exist within the party about tactics and, to a much lesser degree, policy. But the MSM’s spin on Boehner ignores the possibility that his problems as Speaker »

Live from Council Bluffs, it’s John Kasich

Featured image Nebraska attorney David Begley continues his series of reports on appearances of the presidential candidates in Iowa for us. Yesterday Dave attended the appearance of Ohio Governor John Kasich in Council Bluffs, Iowa: Why would Power Line readers be interested in John Kasich? In the first place he has decent poll numbers. The Real Clear Politics average has him at 10 percent or fourth in New Hampshire. Nationally, Bloomberg has »

Whatever happened to that deep Republican bench?

Featured image Fox News offers a new poll of the Republican presidential field (scroll past the Pope Francis stuff to get to the GOP race). The poll shows Donald Trump still in front with 26 percent support. He’s followed by Ben Carson at 18 percent. Then come Carly Fiorina and Marco Rubio at 9 percent; Ted Cruz at 8; and Jeb Bush at 7. This poll is more favorable to Dr. Carson »

Two Clues for the GOP

Featured image Two news items from the Gallup Poll folks ought to be providing a screaming clue to the GOP: Item #1: Half in U.S. Continue to Say Gov’t Is an Immediate Threat PRINCETON, N.J. — Almost half of Americans, 49%, say the federal government poses “an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens,” similar to what was found in previous surveys conducted over the last five years. When »

Fiorina and Rubio surge, as Trump and Carson slide

Featured image Debates matter. That’s not a scoop. Yet many doubted whether Marco Rubio’s quality performance last week in California would help him, and the doubts weren’t unreasonable. After all, he had debated very well in Cleveland, yet received no significant bounce. This time, though, Rubio has been rewarded. A new CNN/ORC poll shows him at 11 percent, up from 3 percent less than two weeks ago. The poll is of Republicans »

The Coulter case

Featured image Ann Coulter had an idiosyncratic reaction to the prime time GOP candidates’ debate at the Reagan Presidential Library this past Wendesday. Israel came up too frequently to suit her taste. She somehow found it fitting and appropriate to tweet the comment below. Coulter has stood by her comment, as in this Hollywood Reporter story. How many f—ing Jews do these people think there are in the United States? — Ann »

Poll: Fiorina leads in New Hampshire

Featured image A poll by an outfit called Voter Gravity has Carly Fiorina leading the Republican field in New Hampshire. She’s at 22 percent, four points ahead of Donald Trump. Ben Carson, John Kasich, and Jeb Bush all hover around the 10 percent mark. I put little stock in this poll. However, since Wednesday’s debate I’ve been thinking that Trump’s fellow “non-political class” members could land a one-two punch against him in »