Four Truths about the Party of Trump
The party of Reagan is over.
Now it’s official: The Trump takeover of the GOP is complete. Here are my four immediate takeaways from the first post–Reagan Republican convention.
1. Trump is going to govern from the center-left on ...
How Can We Move Forward after the Killings in Dallas?
As if God wanted us to pay attention, we’ve seen in the past three days the whole crisis of race and policing recapitulated in three separate incidents.
Last night in Dallas, five cops were murdered. A CNN headline read, “...
Brexit Warning: The Ties that Bind Us Are Not Holding
In the most recent issue of The Atlantic, the always interesting, and frequently brilliant, Jonathan Rauch wrote an essay on why politics doesn’t work anymore. His take? We have reformed away the power of the middlemen — the parties and ...
Not an Occasion to Score Political Points
It began so quickly. Last night I posted a quick note of horror on Facebook and Twitter about the mass murders in a gay bar in Orlando and offered prayers. It felt inadequate. Naturally.
By the morning we had resumed ...
Meet the Republican Traitors Who Sacrificed Women’s Privacy by Supporting Obama’s Transgender Edicts
I was up in the wee hours after midnight Thursday when Daniel Horowitz’s tweet crossed my radar: The GOP-controlled House had just voted in the dead of night to write into law Obama’s executive order banning federal contractors ...
Why I Cannot Support Trump
If Hillary is the Democratic nominee, Donald J. Trump is likely to become the next president of the United States. Paul Ryan’s little Kabuki-theater piece demonstrates that the GOP establishment either has made, or is about to make, its ...
Prince and the Secret Christians among Us
I knew a lot about Prince, an icon of my youth, but not until he died did I discover that he was a serious Christian.
At the Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall in Saint Louis Park, Minn., they made the ...
In his highly anticipated new exhortation The Joy of Love, Pope Francis urges us Catholics to journey with those in irregular relationships and appreciate the good things they can represent.
“I understand those who prefer a more rigorous pastoral care ...
Tuesday is the crucial moment. For Ted Cruz to have any chance of stopping Donald Trump, he has to shock the punditocracy by winning all the delegates in Arizona and Utah.
In Utah, that means he must top 50 percent. Getting ...
Last night’s debate underscores this truth: The GOP is disintegrating.
When the front-runner for your party uses the national debate stage to discuss the size of his Anthony Weiner, you have a problem.
When that same man affirms that ...
Why I Wept for Justice Scalia
I did not expect it to happen, watching the flag-draped casket carrying the husk of Justice Antonin Scalia up the long marble steps of the Supreme Court this morning, but I wept.
I did not know Justice Scalia except slightly, ...
Good-bye, Reagan Revolution
Let’s get the obvious out of the way: Trump’s decision to remove himself from the final debate was tactically brilliant.
He doesn’t do well in the debate format anyway. And his absence left Cruz as the front-runner ...
On Economic and Social Issues, Trump Is No Conservative
It’s time to face the facts after last night’s debate, and two weeks out from when the voting begins in Iowa: Either Trump or Cruz is going to be the GOP nominee, and if Cruz loses Iowa as ...
Will Trump Protect Christians Here at Home?
Three out of the top four GOP candidates just committed to passing the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA) in their first 100 days in the White House.
Carson, Cruz, Rubio, Trump: Which one would you guess refused to make that commitment?
When a Mother Chooses Jihad over Life
‘The motive is unclear.”
That’s the headline CNN is flashing on its screen Thursday evening. “They haven’t ruled out terrorism,” Don Lemon intones. Is this a newscast or an Onion parody?
Sure, somehow the San Bernardino shooter got ...
Yale Wasn’t Made for People Like Me Either
Illiberal attacks on free speech are nothing new. In the early 1970s, the Yale administration pressured the Yale Political Union to disinvite William Shockley, who was in fact a racist. A small group of students had risked the ire of ...
The conventional view is that Ben Carson’s debate performance was a problem.
“Clinton would have him for lunch,” Dick Morris declared. “Carson combines the limited knowledge of government and budgeting of Sarah Palin with the soft voice of John ...
Death and Other Scandals of Surrogate-Mother Contracts
On October 8 2015, a young mother died of complications from childbirth.
If we can believe the GoFundMe page put up under the name of Kathleen McRoberts, an Idaho and Utah fertility lawyer, this woman’s name was Brooke: “She was a ...
Fiorina and Rubio Are the Biggest Winners — Kasich and Cruz Lose Ground
In this confusing and fascinating election cycle, I find it most useful to think about this as two races — or possibly three — not just one.
The first is the race for who will be the Great Outsider candidate, leading the ...
By the time you read this, Kim Davis will be sitting in a federal jail cell. Buzzfeed is already gloating over Davis’s perp photo.
Kim Davis’s crime? Refusing to affix her name to a same-sex marriage license, despite ...
Resolving the Kentucky Kerfuffle
The Sixth Circuit just upheld a lower federal judge’s direct order to Kentucky clerk Kim Davis to issue same-sex marriage licenses.
Davis’s lawyers say she is discussing all options, including filing a request for a stay to the ...
RNC Passes Strong Stance on Marriage and Religious Liberty
Time magazine claimed the RNC was retreating from “antigay” issues, based on some resolutions that weren’t taken up unanimously. But the big story from the summer meeting that nobody is reporting is the really strong resolutions against the Supreme ...
Five O’Clock Winners: Santorum, Fighting for the Middle Class; Fiorina, Sounding Like a Commander in Chief
If you ask me who the biggest loser in the undercard debate was, I would say Rick Perry. I suppose I could say George Pataki, for boasting about how he ended corruption and brought reform to New York State (he ...
At Least One Pro-Life Democrat Is Standing Up to Planned Parenthood
I tried, I really tried to explain to the GOP donor and pundit class that fighting abortion is part of a winning political strategy. The old “truce strategy” is just a way of letting the Democrats define what being pro-life ...
On April 20, 2012, Tom De Troyer received a letter from his mother Godelieva de Troyer in the past tense. It told him she had been euthanized on April 19 at a university hospital and left him the number of a friend who ...
Rick Santorum and Justice Roberts — Our Moral Champions
Six cameras are trained on the stage of the National Organization for Marriage’s gala at the Willard hotel in Washington — more cameras than ever before, testimony to the media’s desire to cover leading speaker Rick Santorum, who is ...
If Race and Gender Are Social Constructs, Why Not Sexual Orientation?
By some mysterious providence, three things happened in the past few weeks: Rachel Dolezal was outed as a white woman. Bruce Jenner was lauded as a white woman. And in a New Jersey consumer-fraud case against JONAH (Jews Offering New ...
The Battle for Religious Freedom Comes to New Jersey
As the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) continues its campaign to portray major Christian conservative leaders like Tony Perkins and groups like the Family Research Council as the equivalent of racist hate-mongers, it now faces a different kind of opponent ...
Why Are Palo Alto Kids Killing Themselves?
This week, San Francisco Magazine published an anthropological incursion by Diana Kapp into the lifestyles of the most privileged teens in the nation in order to ask: Why are the kids of Palo Alto killing themselves?
A cluster of teen ...
Hey, Frank Bruni, Lay Off Our Fathers!
Progressivism has now progressed to the point that it wants to be the pope — and not only of Catholics but of the whole world.
First Hillary Clinton declares her job is to change “deep-seated” religious beliefs around the world that ...
Bobby Jindal, in an act of real leadership, went deep into enemy territory to make an announcement: He will not retreat on defending our right to make a living, even if we disagree on marriage — my right and yours, too, ...
The ‘Party of CEOs’ and Religious Liberty
Since Indiana, the need for a new, well-funded political arm for Christians and other traditional believers has never been more obvious.
In so many ways, the days of cheap grace are over. It is going to get increasingly costly and ...
Who's Really Showing Courage in Indiana?
When Tim Cook, the powerful CEO of Apple, bravely announced he was opposed to Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, he urged others to follow. “Opposing discrimination takes courage,” Cook wrote.
Meanwhile back in the real world, an Indiana TV ...
The Diocese of Metuchen Attacks the Jannuzzi Family
I wrote last week about Patricia Jannuzzi, the Catholic teacher removed from a Catholic school for defending Catholic teachings about marriage.
This week the plot thickens, with the diocese telling the New Jersey press that Jannuzzi has never been told ...
Thanks, Human Rights Campaign
The Utah compromise contains way too much legalese for me to comprehensively evaluate it today. But reading the bill, and the response to it from the gay-rights establishment, leads me to say, sincerely and from the bottom of my heart, ...
Walker Supports 20-Week Abortion Ban
Jim, I am guessing it was this really bad interview on life on Fox News Sunday that prompted the open letter from Walker. His pitch is that he can appeal to all parts of the conservative coalition. Even appearing to ...
God Talk Is Not Enough Anymore
If Republicans win all three branches of government in 2016, what legislation will get passed?
Economic growth, ending middle-class stagflation, reversing the debt divide in college students, repealing Obamacare. Into the policy mix, social conservatives have an important question to ask ...
The Triumph of Mark Burnett
A few days ago, I shook Mark Burnett’s hand.
That would be me and a 50 or so other adoring fans who were gathered at the Motion Picture Association of America with Comcast-NBC Universal executive David Cohen to get a ...
It’s been a good week for Governor Scott Walker. He received rave media reviews for his speech at Steve King’s Iowa Freedom Fest.
An unnamed “Republican Party observer” informed the Washington Times that Walker was a smash in ...
The Failure of the Monetarist Creed
In the late 1980s, I attended a speech by my friend, the brilliant George Gilder, in which he said: “When I was a single man, all I thought about was sex, and all I wrote about was sex. Now that ...
The news about marriage is not very good. A Pew Center analysis of American Community Survey data, released a few weeks ago, found that less than half of American children live with a married couple who are both in their ...
The people of Paris and the civilized world, looking for a way to express solidarity after the heinous murders of twelve editors and illustrators, have leapt upon the phrase “I am Charlie Hebdo,” or sometimes, “Nous sommes Charlie!”
The instinct ...
It Doesn't Look Like We're Getting a New Huckabee Strategy
Ramesh predicts that Huckabee will have to run “a very different kind of campaign, one much lighter on evangelical identity politics” if he wants to win the nomination.
Huckabee apparently disagrees, judging from the title of his new book, “God, ...
Last week I wrote about one piece of data that jumped out from the Austin Institute’s fascinating new study, Relationships in America: the Mormon advantage in transmitting traditional Christian practice and views on many things, from life after death ...
Rand Paul: Jeb Has a Common Core Problem
Rand Paul is right; Jeb Bush has a Common Core problem. Many other conservatives who once supported Common Core have since turned against it, in part because the standards, touted as “internationally benchmarked,” turned out unsurprisingly to have been dreamed ...
Someone should start a website, because it turns out our “mainstream” British media made up and reported a story that Pope Francis told a boy with a dead dog that his dog would go to heaven.
Just. Made. Up.
The Dems Refocus on Paychecks, Social Security
The Democrats are responding to their latest defeat by recognizing that they failed under Obama to focus on voters’ core concern: the declining standard of living of the middle class. Caitlin Huey-Burns reports in Real Clear Politics:
When the main ...
Separation of Marriage and State Watch
Almost 60 percent of Americans want to separate marriage and the state, according to a new poll. This is probably a combination of leftists who want to undermine marriage as a norm, and traditionalists who want to protect marriage from the ...
Rome’s Extraordinary Ecumenical Event
Rome — We stood, as for a head of state, and Pope Francis was ushered into the very room in the Vatican in which the bishops held the famous synod on the family this October. With his warm smile and a ...
When Goldy Gopher Wore a Sombrero to a Galactic Fiesta
A letter of apology from the University of Minnesota Office of Student Affairs:
Dear students, faculty, and staff,
I am writing you today to apologize.
It has come to my attention that the student-led Game Room Programming committee in Student ...
So Trump picks Pence. It’s a good fit for Trump: an establishment conservative, well connected to the donor and the D.C. class, and a man full of the genial Midwestern virtues that ensure he’s not going to ...
Trump Will Not Protect You from the Democrats on Gay Rights
David French is right. Evangelicals and other social conservatives need to get serious about political engagement or we will lose our right to associate, organize, and keep our jobs while speaking Christian views on sex and marriage in America. French ...
Why I Can’t Repent My Defense of Marriage
Après-deluge, I said I would not fight over the Left’s stigmatization of Christianity over the dead bodies of 49 Americans massacred in a gay bar. But when it comes to the point, or very close to it, that the ...
Power Is Not the Point, Truth Is — Defining Conservatism after Trump
So Paul Ryan, John McCain, and others have now endorsed Trump. The GOP is unifying around a brilliant, talented nationalist who hurls insults, dances openly with racism, and changes his promises at the drop of a hat.
Gary Johnson and ...
What Happens to Conservatism Now?
Donald Trump just released a superb list of potential Supreme Court justices, something no other candidate has ever done. But in the exact same moment he proffered the list, Trump reneged on his promise that he would choose his justice ...
My Trouble with ‘Never Trump’
I don’t like Donald Trump for president, but I do like Trump voters. It is the job of the presumptive nominee to unite the party and I am pausing for a few breaths, at least before deciding to go ...
When Republicans Shill for Democrats on Social Issues
In the last few days we’ve entered into a new phase in the campaign: Paul Manafort, the designated grownup in the Trump palace, has embarked on persuading Donald Trump to stop his degrading Twitter rants, and on persuading the ...
Social Conservatives’ Big Problem: We Lack Power (and How to Fix It)
Ellen DeGeneres is very unhappy.
New York’s Andrew Cuomo, and the governors of four other states, are banning official travel to Mississippi.
Charles Barkley is asking the NBA to take the All-Star Game away from North Carolina. PayPal is ...
I had a fantasy about last night’s debate and, no, thank the Lord, it had nothing to do with Donald Trump.
What if, after putting in an elevating and eloquent debate performance that redeemed his little dip into the ...
John Kasich’s Shameful Treatment of the Victims of Left-Wing Hatred
Presidential candidates can have an impact on culture. Above everything else, they have the capacity to decide how to frame the issues and push them to their opponents, in the primary and in the general election.
I was very grateful ...
Notes from a Republican-Watcher in South Carolina
Greenville, S.C. — It’s 7: 00 a.m. I’m sitting in the lobby of the EconoLodge, watching a hotel clerk watching a TV screen showing a hotel waitress watching Rubio speak on a tiny little TV set about the debt ...
Sarah Palin’s Disgusting Excuse for Her Son’s Violence against His Girlfriend
It’s the political season, and I want to cut Sarah Palin some slack. She and her family have endured disgusting, unjust verbal abuse over the years, and I like her, personally.
But some things cannot be overlooked. I would ...
Rubio or Cruz: Who Will Emerge as the Hero of Common Core Moms?
‘Common Core, the set of education standards that were adopted by 46 states five years ago but have since become toxic with the conservative base, has not been at the center of the Republican primary debate, which has so far been ...
The GOP’s Corrupt Obamacore Bargain
The success of Donald Trump, Ben Carson, and Ted Cruz this year is a great and anguished shout from Republicans voters to the powers-that-be in Washington: The system is broken; it’s not working for us.
If you want to ...
Sorry Trump, People Have a Right to Be Muslim-American
Religious freedom is a core American value, one of those things that really do make us different. We invented it. We practiced it from the beginning. And I am not going to let it go without a fight.
Watching President ...
Hillary Clinton and the Democrats Have a Houston Problem
It was a shocking election, shocking to Democrats who fell victim to their own bubble propaganda that social issues are going to be the key to their comeback, and shocking to establishment conservatives who have fallen victim to the “truce ...
As I write I do not know what the final synod report will say. One of the drafters described it as being more questions than answers. “The questions will be clear,” said Oswald Cardinal Gracias of Mumbai at a press ...
They hugged. Kim Davis asked in advance whether it would be okay to hug the pope and was told yes. So she hugged him and he hugged her back.
Preach incessantly. Use words when necessary.
The Left was confused, and ...
Is Judge Vance Day of Oregon the Next Kim Davis?
Let’s pause a moment to savor and celebrate that on Monday morning Kim Davis will be back at work in Rowan County, Ky. She not only survived, she has triumphed, thanks to a special extralegal conscience protection fashioned specifically ...
Ben Carson, Marriage Champion
Dr. Ben Carson, who has come under criticism from social conservatives (including me) for some of his rhetoric on abortion and (in my case) for his lack of rhetoric on gay marriage, has just emerged as a marriage champion, signing ...
Trump Joins Kasich as the Anti–Anti–Gay-Marriage Candidate
Even as the Phillips family is struggling for financial existence against punishing government fines for refusing to bake a gay-wedding cake, Donald Trump is doubling down (along with Kasich) on his position as an anti–anti–gay-marriage Republican.
As Paul ...
Scott Walker: Front-Runner No Longer
Just a month ago, Scott Walker was quietly riding high, the front-runner in the first GOP contest, Iowa, preferred by 22 percent of Republicans there. Walker was the outsider politician, the bare-knuckle fighter who had stood up to the unions and ...
A Report Card on How Candidates Responded to Supreme Court on Gay Marriage
Over at ThePulse2016.com, I’ve just released a report card on how GOP candidates responded to the Supreme Court ruling overturning the classic understanding of marriage.
The humongous field (not then including Jim Gilmore) divides into three basic tiers:
What’s behind the Trump Bump
The good news is that we have a GOP front-runner. The bad news is that his name is Donald Trump.
The latest ABC News poll shows Trump at 24 percent, eleven points ahead of number-two Walker, and twelve ahead of number-three ...
Oregon Wedding Cakes Are Just the Excuse
Theoretically, liberalism picks pluralism over public morality, nowhere more so than in the intimate realm of human sexuality.
But the regulatory state has gotten so large, and so powerful, with such extensive reach into Americans’ livelihoods, that the Left cannot ...
What I Want GOP Candidates to Say about Marriage
The Supreme Court has ruled 5–4 that the Constitution guarantees a right to gay marriage. Will this decision be the Brown v. Board of Education of our times or this generation’s Roe v. Wade? The difference, of course, is that ...
Carly Fiorina Has Earned the Right to Run as a Woman
It was a deft and striking piece of gender display. Carly Fiorina made it clear: She’s running for president as a woman. Last night at the Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C., she delivered what she called “the ...
A Pro-Middle Class Economic Plan for the GOP
Rick Santorum has a work ethic like nobody else. As he launched his campaign today, this work ethic made his signature issue the needs of the average “working family.”
“Working families don’t need another president tied to big government ...
At Last, the House Passes a Late-Term Abortion Bill
The House passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, thank God. And thank John Boehner.
This is the bill that would ban abortions if the unborn child is 20 weeks or older. The bill was supposed to be passed by the ...
A Letter to Justice Anthony Kennedy
Dear Justice Kennedy:
The forces for gay marriage are powerful. You have been their hero in the past, when gay people were not so powerful. The tables are turned now, as I think is clear to everyone. The LGBT community ...
Why I, Unlike Senator Rubio, Would Not Attend a Gay Wedding
Senator Marco Rubio, one of our most attractive and charismatic leaders in the rising generation, just announced he’s running for president. So naturally he’s being peppered with the one question uppermost in the minds of American voters: What ...
Catholic College Now Refuses to Play Gordon College
Orwell, call your office. In the name of tolerance Emmanuel College is actually refusing to permit its athletes to play a game with Gordon College athletes:
“At Emmanuel College, a Catholic school in Boston, athletic director Pam Roecker said that ...
Our Emotional-Fragility Epidemic
Why are we all so emotionally fragile?
Both men and women, right-wingers and feminists, are beginning to ask that question, especially about the next generation of college students.
In The Federalist, Chris Hernandez, a cop and former Marine combat veteran, ...
Who Is Patricia Jannuzzi?
I can’t get this question out of my head: Who is Patricia Jannuzzi?
These last few weeks, we’ve seen a lot of religious organizations publicly wrestling with gay rights. The Mormon Church authorized new protections for gay people, ...
It looks like gay-rights people and the LDS church have come to a compromise with this proposed new legislation that protects the rights of gay people and religious people. Religious-liberty experts will need to analyze this, but I was told ...
Progressive Elites' Anti-Christian Animus
Lately I’ve had the idea of essays pairing Hollywood movies with scholarly works I am reading: American Sniper, say, with the classic book On Killing, for example. By some strange coincidence I walked out of a showing of Kingsman ...
The Washington Post on Rick and Karen Santorum’s important new book, Bella’s Gift. I look forward to buying and reading it. It seems to be an amazing thing for a presidential candidate to do, to tell the unvarnished ...
I am not sure I want presidential candidates weighing in on matters of etiquette, either, but frankly Megyn Kelly’s success in getting props as a journalist by attacking Huckabee on something so trivial is unattractive on so many fronts. ...
Yep, the House GOP Has Rubbish PR Skills
Mollie Hemingway nails it on the sheer idiocy of the House leadership in pulling the bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks:
They have zero public relations skills.
It’s not news to anyone that our media are supportive of abortion ...
Others Who Are Not Charlie Hebdo
In my column, I said I am not Charlie Hebdo, because I do not believe in gratuitously offending other people’s religion in juvenile ways, and because I do not deserve the title, as I am no martyr. No hero ...
How Could Huckabee Win the Nomination in 2016?
Over at RealClearPolitics, Scott Conroy explains why “God, Guns, Grits and Gravy” looks like a good strategy to Team Huckabee.
He first notes the conventional wisdom on Huckabee’s weaknesses:
He has been an anemic fundraiser in the past and ...
Professor Robin Fretwell Wilson writes movingly of the generational challenges the young men in her family face, after her father rose from dirt poverty to live the American dream.
Marquette Suspends Professor Who Blogged About Free-Speech Violations
A student taped a Marquette teacher telling him opposition to gay marriage would not be permitted in her class. Another Marquette professor blogs about this inappropriate conduct. Guess who gets disciplined at this Catholic university?
I joke but this is ...
Gay, Celibate, Christian?
The Washington Post talks to Eve Tushnet and others, about the new movement of young Christians affirming both their sexual orientation and traditional Christian teaching. (Eve Tushnet is the author of a new book Gay and Catholic: Accepting My Sexuality, ...
With even New York Times columnists and distinguished social scientists like Andrew J. Cherlin reinforcing the core truth that the retreat from marriage is causing core inequalities in the opportunities of millions of American children, it is worth asking: Who ...
On the Middle Class, Schumer Is Right
Almost exactly one year ago, I and my colleagues at the American Principles Project released an election autopsy on the lessons of 2012. Countering the conventional wisdom that conservative social issues were distracting voters from the GOP’s winning economic message, ...
The always interesting Jonathan Rauch writes about the science of middle-age disappointment (sometimes the precursor of the classic “midlife crisis.”). According to Gallup data, life satisfaction in the U.S. peaks at age 15 and declines steadily, reaching a nadir between 45 ...
How to Save Capitalism from Libertarians
I have a prediction to make. Something new is going to emerge in the 2016 election — a genuine conservative populism.
The Democrats have made it clear — with President Obama signaling he will impose his unilateral immigration non-reform asap along with climate-change ...
Heading to Rome to Discuss the Family with Pope Francis
I will be at the Vatican for the interfaith Colloquium on Marriage, which Pope Francis is going to open and speak to us at.
The sponsors are producing some interesting videos at their website.
Look forward to reporting on what ...