The Corner

Hotline on Frist:

The ‘06 midterm elections claim another GOP victim today when Bill Frist quits the WH’08 race. But for Frist, the damage was done before 11/7.

– In ‘00, Frist was on George W. Bush’s VP short list. In ‘02, he was pegged as the GOPer “most likely to succeed.” But then, Dr. Frist, who literally saved lives at the Capitol one day, became Senate Maj. Leader, and the non-ideological outsider became an ideological insider, the man who campaigned against Tom Daschle in ‘04 and used a videotape to diagnose Terri Schiavo.

– Now, Frist is taking the long view. By not running, he saves face and tries to rehabilitate his image. Maybe he goes to the Gates Foundation and fights AIDS in Africa. Maybe he starts his own medical org. Whatever he does, he needs to find that “Doctor” title.

– It’s what made him different. “Just another pol” isn’t going to win in ‘08, especially one so closely tied to his party’s defeat (just ask Dick Gephardt). Maybe by ‘12, after a run in another world, Dr. Frist could be viable again. (Btw, early beneficiaries from Frist’s move? Mike Huckabee and Newt Gingrich, the only remaining southern ‘08 GOPers).

ME: I thought Frist was lost as soon as he started to refer to himself in the third person. This exit quote from this morning nicely demonstrates the problem: “I really do need to re-energize in terms of who Bill Frist is.”

Rich Lowry — Rich Lowry is the editor of National Review. He can be reached via email: 

Most Popular

PC Culture

‘White Women’ Becomes a Disparaging Term

Using “white men” as a putdown is no longer extreme enough for the Left. Now it is moving on to doing the same for “white women.” How rapidly this transpired. It was less than two years ago that the approximately 98.7 percent of white women working in media who were openly rooting for Hillary Clinton ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The World Keeps Not Ending

We were not supposed to have made it this far. George Orwell saw night descending on us in 1984. Orwell was, on paper, a radical, but in his heart he was an old-fashioned English liberal. He dreamed of socialism but feared socialists. He feared them because he knew them. I was in the sixth grade in 1984, but I ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Beatification of Beto

The media’s treatment of Texas Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke wasn’t the most egregiously unfair coverage of the past year -- that would be the treatment of Brett Kavanaugh -- but it ranks among 2018’s most annoying. The endless glowing profiles of O’Rourke in every publication from Vanity Fair to ... Read More

A Free People Must Be Virtuous

Dear Reader (Even those of you who didn’t seem to notice or care that I failed to file this “news”letter on Friday), So I’m sitting here at Gate C6 at O’Hare waiting for my flight home. I am weary, pressed for time, in desperate need of a shower, and filled with a great sense of dread for the work ... Read More