Alec MacGillis
Senior Editor

Christmas in Sioux City
September 30, 2011

They better start laying in the Champagne in Des Moines and Cedar Rapids, because it looks like it's going to be another holiday season in Iowa for the political circus. Florida Republicans today announced that they would, as they'd been threatening to, move their primary to January 31st. This will push the traditional first four states earlier into January, with one plausible scenario putting the Iowa caucuses on January 9, the New Hampshire primary on January 17, the Nevada caucuses on January 21 and the South Carolina primary January 28.

A Heartfelt Apology To The Club For Growth
September 30, 2011

Earlier this week, I posed what I saw as a crucial question hanging over Rick Perry's prospects in the primary: whether Republican voters nationally would show more concern than Texas voters have about the pay for play, corporate-welfare aura that has enveloped Perry's tenure as govenror.

Crandall Who?
September 29, 2011

This evening, Rick Perry heads to Wheeling, W.V. for a private fundraising event hosted by Bob Murray, founder and CEO of Murray Energy. Does that name ring a bell? It should: Murray Energy was the lead partner in the Crandall Canyon mine in Utah where nine miners were killed in 2007, six in an initial collapse and three more who went in 10 days later on a rescue mission.

Marcus To The Rescue
September 29, 2011

Not so long ago, it looked like Marcus Bachmann might be a liability for his wife's campaign, what with all the talk of his clinic's unusual therapeutic approach. But with its post-Ames buzz vanished, the Bachmann campaign has now apparently decided that Marcus is an asset to be deployed, based on this missive that just arrived in my in-box: Dear Fellow Conservative, Michele is the real deal. Not only does she continue to inspire me every day with her strength, but she is the same woman of character as when I first met her 35 years ago. Michele is not your typical politician.

The Permanent Candidate
What’s driving Rick Perry?
September 28, 2011

What’s driving Rick Perry?

Fired Up, Ready To Go Settle For Less
September 28, 2011

A few days ago, before this blog was launched, we got word in the paper of record that new Census data showed the county around Greenwood, S.C. as the one hardest hit by the Great Recession: the 70,000-person county's poverty rate more than doubled between 2007 and 2010, to 28 percent, the largest increase for any county in the country, and median income plunged by 28 percent, a drop of $12,000.

Crony Capitalism: Who Cares?
September 28, 2011

In my first cover story for the magazine, which went up on-line today and will hit newsstands next week, I tell the story of Rick Perry's remarkable rise, with a focus on the enterprise he's built around himself in Texas: a flow of money (campaign contributions coming in; contracts, appointments, and awards from his $800 million in economic development accounts going out) that is unprecedented in scale even in Texas, where the sky's the limit for political donations. Perry's primary rivals have already tried to give this enterprise a name -- the dread alliterative, crony capitalism.

Welcome to The Stump
September 28, 2011

If you thought there was something missing from the 2012 campaign season, something that made it less compelling or uplifting than the cycle of four years past, well, today we are here to fill that void: we are resurrecting the Stump. Four years ago, I was an avid reader of TNR’s campaign blog from the outside, following Noam Scheiber and Mike Crowley’s posts in my capacity as a political reporter for the Washington Post.

Perry vs. the Lap Dance Lobby
September 13, 2011

Rick Perry’s campaign for the presidency largely consists of touting the pro-growth policies of Texas—a state with no personal income tax, and the 47th lowest tax burden in the country—as a model for the rest of the United States. Perry’s claim is that his state, where he has served as governor for the past 11 years, has found more creative and more business-friendly ways to fill its coffers.  Don’t tell that to one of the state’s most vibrant industries: its nearly 200 strip clubs.

Under the Radar
June 09, 2011

The drab Amtrak depot in Detroit, Michigan, was recently the venue for a truly surreal scene: A Republican governor accepted—gratefully—a check from the Obama administration. This was not just any federal funding, either, but $200 million for that most Europhiliac of abominations: passenger rail. Wisconsin’s Scott Walker, Ohio’s John Kasich, and Florida’s Rick Scott had all rejected the money. But here was Rick Snyder, the state’s new Republican governor, standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Carl Levin, John Conyers, and John Dingell, beaming genially and brandishing a giant check.

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