Spurious questions about Rick Perry's intelligence only serve as a distraction from discussing concrete political achievements. 1:51 PM, Aug 29, 2011 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
Jonah Goldberg wrote a column about the recent attacks on Rick Perry, arguing that identity politics on the right are "intensely wearying" and "conservatism needs to spend less time defending candidates for who they are, and more time supporting candidates for what they intend to do." Of course, this is very difficult to do so long as the media is "equat[ing] funny accents with stupidity, and they automatically assume someone who went to Texas A&M must be dumber than someone who went to Yale."
The White House now explicitly recognizes repeal as a very real possibility. 7:55 AM, Aug 20, 2010 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
Politico has released a piece that begins as follows: "Key White House allies are dramatically shifting their attempts to defend health care legislation, abandoning claims that it will reduce costs and deficit, and instead stressing a promise to 'improve it.'" This is a truly remarkable sentence.
Do editors at the newspaper know what's going on?5:00 PM, May 5, 2010 • By DANIEL HALPER
Did Ben Smith bury the lede in his article on the Washington Post's left-leaning online presence ("Washington Post shifts leftward online")? According to Smith's account, Weigel was hired by editors who thought he was a conservative who would provide "balance." And he was hired on the recommendation or their liberal blogger Ezra Klein. Klein, for his part, says he "presented [Weigel] to the paper simply as the best reporter on the subject."
So why would Post editors have thought Weigel was a conservative? Did Klein wrongly leave them with that impression?
A federal judgeship is a valuable thing.3:21 PM, Mar 5, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Congressman Jim Matheson responded to the story about his brother's nomination to the federal court--just as President Obama is trying to persuade the congressman to switch his vote from No to Yes on health care--with this statement to Fox News:
"I am happy for my brother... The federal 10th Circuit Court will gain a judge devoted to judicial integrity, fairness and knowledge of the law. The Weekly Standard's piece is rubbish."
By pretending that the issue is whether or not Scott Matheson is qualified to be a judge, Congressman Matheson and Jonathan Chait are deploying a "weapon of mass distraction," to quote another estimable Democrat, Alan Grayson. No one has questioned Scott Matheson's qualifications; my original post included his sterling credentials, as detailed in a White House press release.
The real question is whether or not the White House used the nomination to influence Congressman Matheson's vote on health care. Did the White House engage in an explicit quid pro quo, i.e., did someone in the administration threaten to hold up the nomination until Matheson agreed in private to vote for the bill?
Not really.1:33 PM, Feb 16, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
A Politico piece parsing the "myths" that Democrats and Republicans have created about health care ends up perpetuating one: "the Senate bill allows families and businesses to purchase insurance across state lines, a favorite policy proposal of the right."
Reihan Salam has debunked this:
When the president claims that the Senate health-care bill he still hopes to salvage includes many Republican ideas, he's stretching. Republicans wanted interstate competition for insurance policies, allowing New Yorkers to buy South Dakota policies that have fewer expensive mandates. The bill allows states to form interstate compacts, allowing New York to decide that New Yorkers can buy policies from certain other states—almost certainly other states with similarly stiff regulations. Just as the Harlem Globetrotters always choose to play the hapless Washington Generals, this isn't a real competition: It has the form of a Republican idea, but not the substance.