Trump Admninistration

Pruitt blew it

Featured image That’s Ramesh Ponnuru’s assessment, and I agree with it. Ponnuru writes: EPA administrator Scott Pruitt had enemies who were out to get him because he is a Republican, a conservative, a high-ranking member of the Trump administration, and an environmental deregulator. But it wasn’t liberals, the media, or deep staters who made him get large raises for his top aides, deny that he knew about it, and then admit that »

Poll: Americans approve of Trump’s handling of most key domestic issues

Featured image A new poll by the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard (CAPS) and The Harris Poll places President Trump’s approval rating at 47 percent. That’s the highest the number has been in more than a year, though it isn’t great. But Trump’s approval rating on key issues and subject areas may be more consequential than his general approval rating. Why? Because if Americans like the job he’s doing on, »

Chai Feldblum’s term expires, yet she lingers on

Featured image Chai Feldblum’s term as EEOC Commissioner has just expired. Readers may recall that Feldblum is the architect of President Obama’s radical LGBT agenda, which she has pushed relentlessly at the EEOC. President Trump nonetheless renominated Feldblum for another term as commissioner (it would be her third). She was part of a package that included two Republicans. Sen. Mike Lee put a hold on Feldblum’s nomination, and I believe he’s been »

A Supreme Court nominee by July 10? [UPDATED]

Featured image Reuters reports that President Trump may nominate a replacement for Justice Kennedy before July 10. That’s when Trump is scheduled to leave the U.S. for his trip to Europe. Reuters cites, “a White House official” as its source. I think there’s a good chance that Trump will, indeed, select his nominee before he departs for Europe. The goal should be to get a Justice confirmed by the beginning of October »

In winning trade battles we might lose the war

Featured image Yesterday, Steve linked to and discussed an article in which Irwin Stelzer argues that President Trump might win the trade disputes he has incited, and that winning them might even be “easy.” The article is significant because as Steve noted, Stelzer is not a fan of Trump. In addition, Stelzer is an astute observer of economic matters. As a counterpoint to Stelzer’s article, I recommend this piece by David Goldman. »

George Will’s misguided case for voting against the GOP this year

Featured image What is American conservatism? Is it an attitude, an aesthetic and/or sensibility, an approach to living? Or is it a set of policy preferences — limited government interference in our lives, lower taxes, judges who don’t invent rights, a strong military, etc.? For me it is both. But one’s opinion as to which of these strands predominates will likely determine one’s view of President Trump. Conservatives who view conservatism as »

On pardons

Featured image The editors of the Washington Post are upset that President Trump pardoned Dinesh D’Souza. They also express concern that Trump might pardon Martha Stewart and Rod Blagojevich. I have no problem with the D’Souza pardon. The Obama administration threw the book at D’Souza for a relatively small campaign finance law offense that, as I understand it, normally results in a slap on the wrist. It did so, in all likelihood, »

The smearing of Fred Fleitz

Featured image Fred Fleitz has been appointed chief-of-staff of the National Security Council. Power Line has frequently linked to Fleitz’s work, particularly on Iran and the nuclear deal. We welcome his appointment. Naturally, those who view foreign policy from a vastly different perspective don’t welcome it. And that’s fine. They have every right to attack Fleitz’s positions and the way he has expressed them. But as is its wont, the left has »

Trump takes on the bureaucracy with civil service reform

Featured image On Friday, President Trump signed three executive orders aimed reforming the federal bureaucracy. The first order makes it easier to fire incompetent federal employees. The second limits the amount of time federal employees can be paid for union work. The third requires federal agencies to negotiate union contracts in less than a year. Last year, Congress passed a law that made it easier for the Department of Veterans Affairs to »

Put up or shut up on the Trump threatens democracy claims, Part Two

Featured image In my first post on this subject, I argued that 15 months into the Trump presidency, those who claim he’s a threat to democracy should have to point to actions he’s taken that support this assertion. I then submitted that Trump’s actions do not support claims that he threatens free speech, flouts the rule of law, assaults minority rights, or colludes with foreign adversaries. In this post, I’ll argue that »

Put up or shut up on the Trump threatens democracy claim

Featured image Some on the left and in media are beginning to acknowledge the excesses of the anti-Trump resistance. For example, Evan Mandery of Politico discussed the shunning of Alan Dershowitz for the sin of raising civil libertarian concerns about some of Robert Mueller’s conduct. And Jack Goldstein acknowledged and worried about the “deep state’s” assault on President Trump. In both cases, though, there was a caveat. Mandery expressed it in remarkable »

Confirm Jeff Clark

Featured image For conservatives, the rolling back of oppressive, costly, and unnecessary federal regulations is probably the signature achievement of the Trump administration so far. This rolling back, if it continues and if it survives challenge, will deliver a major blow to the administrative state and provide the equivalent of a large national tax cut. EPA is the federal agency at the center of the rollback. Indeed, most of the “tax cut” »

Poll: Trump’s standing with Democrats improves

Featured image Congressional Democrats are resisting President Trump with every fiber of their being. The Democratic mainstream media is also dead set against the president. But many ordinary Democratic voters appear to be keeping an open mind, and Trump is gaining a grudging respect from some of them. That, at least, is the finding of a new poll from CNN. Trump isn’t exactly killing it in the CNN poll. It shows him »

Jack Goldsmith on the deep state

Featured image Jack Goldsmith, writing in the Guardian, tells us that the “deep state” is real and dangerous. His assertions carry weight for two reasons. First, Goldsmith should know. He was a high ranking Justice Department official — head the Office of Legal Counsel — during part of the George W. Bush administration. This placed him in the middle of issues regarding national security, electronic surveillance, and the like. He also worked »

The FBI Escalates Its War on the Trump Administration

Featured image Scott wrote earlier about the FBI’s raid on the home and office of President Trump’s long-time lawyer, Michael Cohen. I want to add my own thoughts in a separate post. News reports indicate that the FBI raid resulted, at least in part, from a referral by Robert Mueller. The subject of the raid included “payments to the former porn actress known as Stormy Daniels.” Good going, Bob–you were assigned to »

Trump Is Now More Popular Than Obama

Featured image Media hostility to President Trump has been unremitting since he secured the Republican nomination. It didn’t stop, or even slow down, with his inauguration. The many achievements of his young administration haven’t given the press pause, either: his coverage continues to be just about 100% negative. What, then, to make of the fact that Rasmussen Reports, which conducts the only daily presidential approval poll of likely voters, finds Trump at »

Education Department will rescind its Guidance on school discipline. . .later

Featured image Four years ago, the Obama administration promulgated a Dear Colleague letter on school discipline. It was a joint Department of Justice/Department of Education production. The Dear Colleague Letter applies a disparate impact analysis to school discipline. Its premise is that discipline should be meted out in the same proportion to students of all races. Non-discriminatory treatment isn’t enough. DOJ/DoEd wanted to see equal results. The Obama DOJ/DoEd policy is perverse. »