Republicans

Republicans Fight Back in Court Against Democratic Revisions of Voting Policy

Republicans in several states are pushing back against Democratic-led changes to state voting laws that they say are unfair and likely to cause chaos in the upcoming Nov. 3 elections. Republican state senators asked the U.S. Supreme Court Sept. 28 to block a Pennsylvania Supreme…

What If 2016 Was a Fluke?

Donald Trump, like the prophet Joshua, understands the power of blowing his own horn. And like Joshua, Trump brought a wall tumbling down in 2016: the “blue wall” of states around the Great Lakes that supposedly gave Democrats an advantage in the Electoral College. Trump…

The Democrats’ Vote-By-Mail Problem

As the coronavirus pandemic fanned across the country in the spring, Democrats looking ahead to the presidential election urged people to stay home in November—and vote by mail. Minnesota’s secretary of state encouraged all eligible voters to cast their ballot by mail. Virginia Governor Ralph…

Only About 3.5% of Americans Care About Democracy

Imagine a candidate you like. This politician has everything: the right positions on taxes, abortion, foreign policy, immigration; sound judgment; enough personal probity to be trusted with your wallet, house keys, or email password. Now imagine that that candidate does or says something antidemocratic. For…

Even Fast-Casual Restaurants Are Telling Me to Vote

I have recently been reminded, asked, or commanded to vote approximately 6 million times. These nudges have come from the people and places I’d expect—candidates, local officials, civic and political organizations—but also, more so than in any other election year I remember, from the places…

The Health-Care Fight Republicans Can’t Afford

There’s a reason Donald Trump has never produced a health-care plan that protects consumers with preexisting medical conditions: Ending protections for the sick is the central mechanism that all GOP health-care proposals use to try to lower costs for the healthy. Every alternative to the…

Actual Senate Confirmation Hearings Take Time

As Donald Trump and Senate Republicans try to confirm Amy Coney Barrett as a justice of the Supreme Court in the 38 days between her nomination and Election Day—with many votes already being cast—much of the criticism has focused on the hypocrisy of moving this…

Trump Secretly Mocks His Christian Supporters

One day in 2015, Donald Trump beckoned Michael Cohen, his longtime confidant and personal attorney, into his office. Trump was brandishing a printout of an article about an Atlanta-based megachurch pastor trying to raise $60 million from his flock to buy a private jet. Trump…

Judiciary Reform Is Not Revenge

Following Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death, Democrats, not surprisingly, are outraged at Republicans’ course reversal on filling a vacancy during an election year. Two proposals are gaining momentum among commentators and progressive activists: expanding the number of justices and instituting term limits. These ideas almost…

Large-Scale Political Unrest Is Unlikely, But Not Impossible

When a reporter recently asked Donald Trump if he would accept a peaceful transition of power, the president wouldn’t commit. “We’ll see what happens,” he said. In an apparent reference to mail-in ballots, he went on, “We’ll want to have—get rid of the ballots and…

GOP Report Warns of Election Chaos, Possible ‘Constitutional Crisis’

Two senior Republicans in Congress are warning that widespread problems with mail-in voting coupled with Democrats’ efforts “to change state election laws and procedures at the last minute” for partisan advantage could be setting the stage for “an unprecedented constitutional crisis” in the upcoming Nov.…

What the Supreme Court Fight Means for the Senate Majority

The struggle over Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s replacement on the Supreme Court could help propel Democrats to the brink of a Senate majority in November’s election. But whether it lifts them over that threshold could turn on the terms of the confirmation fight. Given the nature…

A Defense of Court Packing

It was only a matter of time, really. Ever since Senate Republicans refused to hold a vote on Merrick Garland four years ago, progressives have argued that Democrats need to wrest back control of the Supreme Court by packing it full of liberal justices. By…

Is This Really the End of Abortion?

Friday was a perfect early-autumn evening in Washington, D.C., less than 50 days away from the election. Marjorie Dannenfelser, the head of the Susan B. Anthony List, arguably the most powerful anti-abortion group in Washington, had wrapped up her day on Capitol Hill. She and…

Can Democrats Stop the Nomination?

Anyone confidently predicting one way or another whether Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell can seat a new justice on the Supreme Court is blustering. Here is the only thing that’s certain: The coming fight will not be resolved by principle—no matter how senators talk or…

Trump Is a Feudal Lord

The Trump administration named New York City, Seattle, and Portland, Oregon, “anarchist jurisdictions” on Sunday, threatening to slash federal funding due to protests against police brutality and property damage. The announcement built on an earlier order that accused several cities of “permitting anarchy, violence, and…

Is This How Biden Blows It?

Last weekend, Philippe Reines walked over to Ron Klain’s house in Washington, D.C., to hand off his Donald Trump outfit: the suit, the shoes with the lifts, the shirt, the long red tie, the cufflinks. Just in case. When the former Hillary Clinton aide stored…

A Dangerous Moment for the Court

The Supreme Court seems strangely immune to the bitterness that plagues our politics. Even now, when Americans can no longer agree on basic facts, the Court’s relative popularity has endured. Following Donald Trump’s 2016 election, the Court has what may be its most conservative majority…

Biden Urges Senate Republicans Not to Vote for Supreme Court Nominee

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden gave a speech on Sunday honoring the legacy of late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, while also urging Senate Republicans not to replace her seat until after the election. Biden, who called Ginsburg an “icon” and a “matriarch” in his remarks,…

Don’t Make the Election About the Court

I know that Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s empty Supreme Court seat has provoked an epic, long-awaited clash between Democrats and Republicans, that the very principle of judicial independence hangs dangerously in the balance. I realize that the social-media wave cannot be stopped, that the talking heads…

Senate Republicans’ Last Chance to Stand Up to Trump

Nearly every reporter in Washington has experienced it: A Republican member of Congress says, “Off the record,” shifts into a quieter voice, and expresses how much he or she doesn’t like President Donald Trump. Soon after, you watch this same elected official speak up in…

Four Reasons to Doubt Mitch McConnell’s Power

To use power, you must have it. On the night of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that a Trump nominee to replace Ginsburg would receive a vote on the floor of the Senate. That announcement promised a use of…

Howie Hawkins Is No Kanye West

Howie Hawkins may be the Green Party’s presidential nominee, but he isn’t Jill Stein—or at least, he can’t be, because he’s not on the ballot in as many swing states as Stein was in 2016. Courts in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania decided this week to keep…

What Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Death Means for America

A furious battle over a Supreme Court vacancy is arguably the last thing the United States needed right now. The death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg today represents a devastating loss for feminists who held up the 87-year-old as an icon of women’s rights, and…

The American Government Gave Up on Reality

Alexander Hamilton and his colleagues wrote 85 separate essays to make their case that Americans should take a risk and ratify the 1787 Constitution. Three sentences into the very first of those Federalist Papers, Hamilton made clear that he knew full well the stakes of…

Why Isn’t Trump Trying to Win?

The fate of an incumbent president is exquisitely sensitive to economic conditions. Incumbents tend to lose elections when the economy is weak (e.g., George H. W. Bush’s defeat in 1992) and win when it’s strong (e.g., Bill Clinton’s romp four years later). The 2020 economy…

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