5:05 PM, Aug 1, 2015 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
Here's part of Maureen Dowd's interesting and moving column in tomorrow's New York Times on Joe Biden:
When Beau realized he was not going to make it, he asked his father if he had a minute to sit down and talk.
“Of course, honey,” the vice president replied.
At the table, Beau told his dad he was worried about him.
My kid’s dying, an anguished Joe Biden thought to himself, and he’s making sure I’m O.K.
“Dad, I know you don’t give a damn about money,” Beau told him, dismissing the idea that his father would take some sort of cushy job after the vice presidency to cash in.
Beau was losing his nouns and the right side of his face was partially paralyzed. But he had a mission: He tried to make his father promise to run, arguing that the White House should not revert to the Clintons and that the country would be better off with Biden values.
Hunter also pushed his father, telling him, “Dad, it’s who you are.”
Read the whole thing, as they say. And read the accompanying Times news article, reporting that Joe Biden is seriously considering a presidential bid.
But then stop for a minute. Ask this question: Who gave Maureen Dowd the details of the conversations between Joe Biden and his sons? The details are, after all, pretty ... detailed: There are direct quotations from Beau, Hunter, and Joe; a sentence capturing the thought process of Joe; a brief description of Beau's physical state. It's great reporting, and it's a story well-told; but we can ask, how did Maureen Dowd know this? Who was willing and able to give her this level of detail?
Surely not a political aide or associate. Surely not a normal family friend. Perhaps there's a very close family friend or two in whom Joe Biden (or Jill, or Hunter) would have confided these conversations—but surely such a friend wouldn't have spoken to Maureen Dowd without Joe Biden's okay.
So Joe Biden may have authorized a friend to speak to Maureen Dowd. Or Joe Biden may have spoken to her himself. Or perhaps Jill or Hunter Biden spoke with her. Who knows the details and circumstances? One can easily imagine, for example, one of the Bidens telling a sympathetic Dowd the story, off-the-record, of their beloved son and brother's last wishes—and then, a few weeks later perhaps, yielding to Dowd's request that she be able to report at least some of what she was told in print.
Let me be clear: I'm not criticizing either the Bidens or Dowd. I'm simply pointing out that when you think about who could be the source of Dowd's extraordinary account—you'd have to be crazy to think Joe Biden isn't awfully serious about running for president.
8:32 AM, Jul 31, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush, as well as Martin O'Malley and Ben Carson, will speak today at the National Urban League Conference in Florida.
Democrats and their voters.Aug 10, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 45 • By P. J. O’ROURKE
I would like to address myself to the poor, the huddled masses, the wretched refugees teeming to America’s shore, the homeless, the economically, socially, and mentally tempest-tossed. Also, I’d like to address the young, the hip, the progressive, the compassionate, and the caring. I’d like a word with everyone who votes for Democrats.
Democrats hate your guts.
Democrats need your vote and they’ll do anything—no matter how low and degrading—to get it. They hate you the way a whore hates a john.
7:44 AM, Jul 30, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Hillary Clinton's campaign is hiring from journalistic outfits. Julie Whitaker, a member of BuzzFeed's distributed content team, has been hired to run Clinton's social media accounts.
Whitaker announced her hiring on Twitter, of course.
4:25 PM, Jul 29, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Rep. Grace Meng of New York has come out against the Iran nuclear deal. Meng's statement reads as follows:
8:29 AM, Jul 24, 2015 • By SHOSHANA WEISSMANN
Senator Elizabeth Warren praised two Democratic presidential candidates - Sen. Bernie Sanders and Gov. Martin O'Malley - for their stances on Wall Street. "I'm pleased that Sen @BernieSanders and Gov @MartinOMalley are supporting @TammyBaldwin's bill to slow down the Wall Street revolving door," Warren tweeted.
The remarkable success of Kentucky’s Republicans. Jul 27, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 43 • By JOHN DAVID DYCHE
In many respects, 2015 represents a high-water mark for Republicans in Kentucky. But the GOP’s Bluegrass State successes bring new challenges.
Fresh off his landslide reelection last year, Mitch McConnell is majority leader and getting rave reviews for making the Senate function again. The state’s junior senator, Rand Paul, has a national following and is a credible candidate for president. No state can boast a more influential pair of senators.
8:51 PM, Jul 11, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Anthony Weiner, the husband of Hillary Clinton's closest aide, Huma Abedin, is suggesting that Bernie Sanders run as an independent. Sanders, of course, is currently challenging Clinton for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 presidential race.
Leave Hamilton on the $10 bill.Jul 20, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 42 • By MICHAEL W. MCCONNELL
With all the grave issues confronting the nation in these dangerous times, it may seem frivolous to worry overmuch about whose picture appears on the $10 bill. But public symbols matter. They are one of the ways we tell each other, and the world, what we honor as Americans. Treasury secretary Jack Lew announced in late June that Alexander Hamilton will be replaced on the $10 bill by a woman—no particular woman, not yet, but someone of the female sex, to be selected at some point in the future.
Bernie Sanders can cause her a lot of pain. Jul 20, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 42 • By JAY COST
Bernie Sanders, the socialist senator from Vermont, is surging in the polls against Hillary Clinton. A Quinnipiac University survey has him within 20 points in Iowa, while three of the last four polls have found him within 15 points in New Hampshire. Judging by state polls alone, Sanders is in about as good a spot vis-à-vis Clinton as Barack Obama was at this point in 2007. So perhaps it is time to ask whether Sanders can pull off a similar upset.
9:04 AM, Jul 9, 2015 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
The mainstream press corps and (at least privately) many Republicans officeholders have adopted two seemingly irreconcilable positions. They claim Obamacare is politically toxic for Democrats yet is somehow immune to repeal by Republicans (even after President Obama leaves office). A recent piece by National Journal’s Josh Kraushaar perfectly illustrates this confusion. Kraushaar observes that “the polit
10:04 AM, Jul 2, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
The former top political adviser to Barack Obama, David Axelrod, has likened the Bernie Sanders surge to Howard Dean's in the 2004 election. Axelrod made the comments on Twitter.
"Bernie's huge crowds recall Howard Dean's in '04 when he rallied 'Democratic wing of Democratic Party,'" said Axelrod. "Dean was impactful, but Kerry won."
Jul 6, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 41 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
It’s the summer of 2015, and the left is on the march. Or perhaps one should say—since the left presumably dislikes the militarist connotations of the term “march”—that the left is swarming. And in its mindless swarming and mob-like frenzy, nearly every hideous aspect of contemporary leftism is on display.
A rare partnership on free trade.Jul 6, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 41 • By FRED BARNES
"It was like an out-of-body experience,” Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell says. He was talking about his congratulatory phone call from President Obama after Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) passed the Senate last week.