The Corner

Politics & Policy

Taking Stock with a Champion of Freedom

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is the congresswoman from Miami. As regular readers know, she is also one of my favorite people in public life (and in life). She is an untiring champion of freedom, democracy, and human rights — for people in her native Cuba and people all over, without exception. She does not want for herself and her loved ones what she does not want for others — for you and yours.

A member of Congress since 1989, she is retiring at the end of this session. I went to Capitol Hill to do a podcast with her, along with Scott Immergut, the producer extraordinaire, commonly known as “Blue Yeti.” Our podcast is here.

We were in the congresswoman’s office — which has dogs, babies, and general good cheer. This is a family atmosphere. There is a mixture of English and Spanish. Ileana seems den mother to all. People of various types come in and out.

As I remark on the podcast — and she does, too — no one ever enjoyed being a member of Congress more than Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. She even enjoys the fundraising. As for those who are grumpy about being congressmen, she says, “Why don’t they find something else to do? Find their joy?”

In our Q&A, I ask her why she is leaving, of course. I ask her about Cuba, about Miami, and about her family. (Her husband is a Vietnam vet — wounded — and one of their children is transgender.)

I also ask her about presidents: Reagan, Bush 41, Clinton, Bush 43, Obama, and Trump. And about House speakers: Gingrich, Hastert, Boehner, Pelosi, and Ryan.

Toward the end, we talk about the health of American institutions — including Ros-Lehtinen’s party, the GOP. She is ever ebullient, a happy warrior if there ever was one. In this podcast, she is candid, informed, and delightful. Whatever your politics, I think you will enjoy.

Again, here.

Most Popular


The Democrats’ Disastrous CNN LGBT Town Hall

A few days after Donald Trump committed the worst foreign-policy blunder of his presidency by betraying America’s Kurdish allies in northern Syria, former vice president Joe Biden, the elder statesman and co-frontrunner in the Democratic presidential primary, was on a national stage talking to CNN’s primetime ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Fox News Anchor Shepard Smith Resigns

Fox News Channel's chief anchor, Shepard Smith, announced on air Friday that he would be resigning from his post after 23 years with the network. “This is my last newscast here,” said Smith. “Recently, I asked the company to allow me to leave Fox News. After requesting that I stay, they obliged.” He ... Read More
NR Webathon

Don’t Let Michael Mann Succeed

I  enjoyed the running joke of Jarndyce v. Jarndyce in the great Dickens novel Bleak House, back when I first read it. Little did I know that one day I and the magazine that I love would effectively be caught up in a version of that interminable case, courtesy of a litigious climate scientist with zero regard ... Read More

Beto Proposes to Oppress Church with State

Beto O’Rourke’s presidential campaign is within the margin of error of non-existence, but in his failure he has found a purpose: expressing the Democratic id. His latest bid for left-wing love came at a CNN forum on gay rights, where he said that churches that oppose same-sex marriage should have to pay ... Read More