Fred Barnes Articles

Barnes Podcast: 2016 GOP Primary Full of 'Unknown Unknowns'

Hosted by Michael Graham.
2:15 PM, Apr 27, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on his story "What We Don't Know About 2016."

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The Party of Ideas

Applied conservatism, 101.
Apr 27, 2015

Middleburg, Va.
Republicans have few built-in advantages in politics. But they do have one that’s already a factor in the 2016 presidential campaign. That advantage is ideas, especially ones affecting middle-income Americans.

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Barnes Podcast: Breaking Down the 2016 GOP Field

Hosted by Michael Graham.
12:35 PM, Apr 20, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on his recent trip to New Hampshire, and his views on the 2016 GOP field of presidential candidate.

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Hostages? What Hostages?

The unfinished business of compensation for the Americans held in Tehran.
Apr 20, 2015

There were many horrendous moments for the American hostages held by Iranians for 444 days at the U.S. embassy in Tehran. One of the worst occurred when Iranian captors showed a hostage a photo of the school bus that took his son to and from school. If the hostage didn’t cooperate, his son’s fingers would be chopped off and sent, one a day, to his wife.

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Impressive Republican Field Readies to Take on Hillary

11:00 PM, Apr 19, 2015

Nashua, N.H.
Here are three propositions about the 2016 presidential race after a weekend in which 18 Republican candidates spoke to a crowd of party activists in New Hampshire and Hillary Clinton returned home after treading water and avoiding the press in Iowa.

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Barnes Podcast: Justice For the Hostages

Hosted by Michael Graham.
3:35 PM, Apr 08, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on the Iran nuclear deal, the Americans held by Iran as hostages, and whether the hostages and their families will recieve compensation from the government of Iran.

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Key Witness: Prosecutor Manipulated Me Into Falsely Testifying Against Scooter Libby

10:36 AM, Apr 07, 2015

Judith Miller, the former New York Times reporter, has blown a big hole in the case against Lewis “Scooter” Libby, convicted of lying to avoid blame for outing a CIA agent. Miller was a key witness in Libby’s trial, but in her new book she has repudiated her testimony.

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Gary Palmer Goes to Washington

A man of policies, ideas, and solutions.
Apr 06, 2015

In 1989, Gary Palmer founded the Alabama Policy Institute, a conservative think tank. By the time he resigned as its president last year, API had become a powerful force on state issues, everything from pensions to prison reform to politics. Palmer led the successful fight against a lottery—Alabama is among the few states without one—and organized the drive that defeated Republican governor Bob Riley’s bid for a whopping tax increase.

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Democratic Disarray

No love lost between Obama and his party on Capitol Hill.
Mar 30, 2015

Just last week the White House boasted that President Obama is setting the agenda despite Republican control of the House and Senate. He’s in a stronger position now than before the midterm elections in November. “The White House is declaring victory over Washington,” according to Politico.

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A One-Man Deal

Mar 23, 2015

President Obama is headed for disaster in the nuclear deal with Iran. The nearly completed agreement, as best we know, would allow Iran to keep its nuclear infrastructure intact and its centrifuges churning out enriched uranium. The mullahs would be free to build an arsenal of nuclear weapons in as few as 10 years from now. Given Iran’s record of cheating on international arms restrictions and hiding nuclear facilities, inspectors would have to be allowed unimpeded access throughout Iran—which the Iranians are certain to refuse.

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Full Court Press

The Republican state AGs continue to be Obama’s most ­formidable opponents.
Mar 09, 2015

President Obama’s legacy is in jeopardy. The fates of his main achievements—Obamacare, his amnesty for five million illegal immigrants, the Dodd-Frank financial institution reforms—are now in the hands of the federal courts.

This is extraordinary. Until Obama, no president has been in a situation in which judges rather than the elected branches of government can decide if his successful initiatives—successful in having been enacted by Congress or himself—live or die.

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The End Run

Mar 02, 2015

Who could be against submitting a nuclear deal with Iran to Congress for approval? If you guessed Barack Obama, you’re right.

President Obama is not merely opposed to a role for Congress. He’s ready to veto legislation providing for an up-or-down vote on any nuclear agreement with Iran, even if the vote is nonbinding. Why? “Because it would .  .  . negatively impact our ability to reach a diplomatic solution to the Iranian nuclear program and to implement a future deal,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest explained.

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He’s a Raging Partisan

The big lie of Obama’s presidency.
Feb 23, 2015

President Obama’s claim to have disapproved of gay marriage until he changed his mind in 2012 has been exposed as a lie. It was a small, politically expedient lie, but it got a lot of attention last week. Meanwhile a bigger lie hovers over the Obama presidency like an avenging angel, unseen and unheard.

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'President ‘No’ vs. the Republicans'

2:07 PM, Feb 19, 2015

Fred Barnes, writing for the Wall Street Journal:

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Barnes Podcast: Jeb And Hillary are Truly "Old School" Politics

Hosted by Michael Graham.
4:30 PM, Feb 18, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on the old school politics of Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush

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The Telltale Obama Budget

Liberals may love its priorities. Voters don’t.
Feb 16, 2015

Democrats have moved to the left in the Obama era. And if the party’s base, President Obama, and Senator Elizabeth Warren have their way, they will move even further to the left in the next two years. Liberals will rejoice, but there’s a downside. The Democratic nominee will have a considerably harder time winning the presidency in 2016.

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Barnes Podcast: Brian Williams and Barack Obama Both Had History Problems This Week

Hosted by Michael Graham.
4:35 PM, Feb 06, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on the week that was for Brian Williams and Barack Obama.

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What You Missed If You Didn’t Watch

Five insights into Obama, none of them flattering.
Feb 02, 2015

If you skipped President Obama’s State of the Union address on TV last week, you missed something. It was long (61 minutes) and uninspiring. Yet as the Obama presidency enters its seventh year, the speech was revealing. Here are a few things we learned about Obama’s thinking.

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Taking Ben Carson Seriously

The 2016 campaign’s most interesting long shot
Jan 26, 2015

As Jeb Bush, Mitt Romney, and untold others ramp up their campaigns for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, they’re going to be in for a surprise. A candidate neither they nor the political class regard as a serious contender is ahead of them in organizing a well-financed and unique campaign operation. It includes a “director of campaign culture” to motivate the staff and make sure the campaign reflects the vision and character of the candidate. 

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Barnes Podcast: President Talked, But Up to GOP to Act

Hosted by Michael Graham.
1:15 PM, Jan 21, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on President Obama's State of the Union address.

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Obama Blows Smoke

12:45 AM, Jan 21, 2015

We know that supply-side economics emphasizes serious cuts in tax rates and Keynesianism relies on massive amounts of government spending.  But how in the world does “middle class economics” work?  After President Obama cited it repeatedly in State of the Union speech, I waited and waited for him to explain how it works. He never did. 

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The Speaker and His Critics

They wanted a public drama, and got it.
Jan 19, 2015

"I'm for the most conservative outcome that we can get,” Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell told Politico’s Manu Raju last summer. House speaker John Boehner would agree with that goal. But critics to their right disagree. They are for the most conservative outcome they cannot get.

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Barnes Podcast: On Islamist Terror, Obama Is MIA on More Than Paris March

Hosted by Michael Graham.
4:15 PM, Jan 12, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on Islamist terror and President Obama's approach.

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Barnes Podcast: What Does Boehner Victory Mean for GOP?

Hosted by Michael Graham.
4:50 PM, Jan 06, 2015

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on the re-election of John Boehner as Speaker of the House, what it means for the caucus, the GOP agenda in 2015 and beyond.

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The Pipeline and the Damage Done

Obama’s Keystone Kops routine.
Jan 05, 2015

For a symbolic issue, the Keystone pipeline has sure caused a lot of damage—to Canadian-American relations, to Democrats, to President Obama. And it feeds, underscores, or reflects a variety of political divisions, some of them quite bitter.

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He Never Learns

Obama’s no-deal presidency.
Dec 29, 2014

On domestic issues, President Obama rarely leads and doesn’t like to negotiate. In his first two years in office, he didn’t have to do either. He was spoiled by having overwhelming Democratic majorities in the Senate and House. And he hasn’t gotten over it yet.

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Jeb Bush, (Former) Governor in Chief

4:22 PM, Dec 17, 2014

Jeb Bush is considering running for president in 2016, but he might have run in 2008 if not for the reasonable belief the country wouldn't elect brothers to the White House successively.

In 2006, Fred Barnes wrote about Jeb as America's "governor in chief"—a popular, conservative reformer who could lay claim to the title of best governor in the country. Here's an excerpt:

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On a Roll

Suddenly, things look up for the GOP.
Dec 15, 2014

Republicans have lost the last two presidential elections, but not much else over the past six years. They’ve captured the House and Senate. They now hold 31 governorships and 69 of the 99 state legislative chambers. What this means is pretty simple: There’s an emerging Republican majority.

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Barnes Podcast: On the U. Va Rape Story

Hosted by Michael Graham.
5:15 PM, Dec 08, 2014

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with executive editor Fred Barnes on the Rolling Stone U. Va rape story.

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He Never Learns

Obama stands alone, alas.
Dec 01, 2014

There’s a lesson from President Obama’s first term that he should have learned long ago. It’s simple: On an issue that affects many millions of Americans, it’s best—even necessary—to have bipartisan support in Congress. Going forward in a purely partisan fashion is bound to cause national discord, increase polarization, and heighten distrust in Washington. Worse still, it means the issue will be controversial for years to come.

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