Where Things Stand Post-Wisconsin

After Bernie Sanders’ win in today’s Democratic caucus in Wyoming, the election enters an extended intermission until the next big contests in New York on April 19 and Pennsylvania on April 26, making this a good time to put where we are in perspective. The two figures below depict the number of delegates awarded by Republicans and Democrats on each date with a … Read More

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The Circular Reasoning of Conventional Wisdom

If you’ve been following mainstream election coverage during the current slog phase of the campaign and it doesn’t seem to make much sense, then you’ve been paying attention. On the Democratic side, we are told Bernie Sanders faces a must-win election today in Wisconsin, without which he would have no chance of winning a nomination that’s already out of his reach. On the Republican side, … Read More

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Stop Worrying

I’ve had the opportunity to speak about the election in recent days at Bryn Mawr College and at my home university, Villanova, where we somehow found time to talk about a matter other than basketball. Located as these institutions are in the politically moderate Philadelphia suburbs, I encountered a number of people who are deeply worried about the Trump phenomenon. They see … Read More

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Trump in Two Acts: Now What? (Act II)

Caricature by DonkeyHotey A couple of days ago we tried to put the Trump phenomenon in perspective and understand how a celebrity figure with no obvious qualifications for the presidency could be on the verge of attaining the nomination of a major political party. We noted that Donald Trump had shrewdly appropriated the anger fomented by Republican leaders among economically and culturally … Read More

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Trump in Two Acts: How it Happened (Act I)

Caricature by DonkeyHotey The lead political article in Monday’s New York Times attempts to explain how Donald Trump rushed in and stole Republican voters away from party elites while they were napping. To hear the Times explain it, Trump is succeeding because blue collar Republicans became “disenchanted” and “lost faith in the agenda of their party’s leaders,” who in turn had “lost touch” with ordinary … Read More

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Bernie’s Long-Term Gift to the Republican Party

As expected, Bernie Sanders won overwhelming victories in yesterday’s caucuses in Washington state, Alaska and Hawaii, and, as expected, coverage of those victories was muted in comparison to the breathless way pre-March 15 contests were reported. As Sanders continues to lead the Democratic Party from behind, a meme is developing in some circles on the right that Bernie’s continued presence in the race … Read More

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One Million People Voted Yesterday

Even if you follow politics closely, you could be forgiven for not realizing there were contests yesterday in Arizona, Utah and, for Democrats, Idaho. After the hype and fanfare of Super Tuesday, followed by the two sequels Super Tuesday II: The Michigan Surprise and Super Tuesday III: Hillary Fights Back, yesterday’s contests felt like an afterthought. Some of this, no doubt, … Read More

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Obama Opts for Divide and Conquer

When Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell slammed the door on a Supreme Court replacement before it opened, Washington conventional wisdom coalesced around the expectation that President Obama would nominate a liberal jurist who could excite the Democratic Party base ahead of the upcoming election, then make the Senate’s failure to confirm his selection an issue in the fall. The logic of this approach … Read More

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It’s the System, Stupid

Speaking Tuesday en route to victories in Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Illinois and Indiana, Hillary Clinton implored her supporters to “keep contributing” because “our campaign depends on small donations for the majority of its support.” She envisioned a future where young people will be able to “go to college without borrowing a dime for tuition” and promised to make sure that “Wall Street” … Read More

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Republicans Go With Option B

John Kasich spoke at Villanova yesterday and I had the chance to see him in action.  He’s a good retail politician, and his easy nature played well with the partisan crowd. But the fact that he was in Pennsylvania just hours after winning the primary in his native Ohio says everything about why he is very, very unlikely to be the … Read More

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