Alec MacGillis
Senior Editor

Rick Perry And The Map Worth A Thousand Words
October 03, 2011

Amid all the talk today about what sort of place Rick Perry comes from—and how much people there clung to their appellation of a certain piece of land —it's worth calling attention to what has to be one of the most telling and eye-opening maps of contemporary voting behavior. In 2004, George W. Bush beat John Kerry with 50.7 percent of the vote. Four years later, Barack Obama beat John McCain with nearly 53 percent of the vote.

“He’s Just Not Like That”
October 03, 2011

Something about Rick Perry seems to inspire conversation that is awfully elemental. First, he was praying for rain. Then there were the Texas wildfires last month, and the question of whether or not they were related to the man-made climate change in which Perry does not believe. And now comes the rock. We'll leave it to others to litigate just exactly when a certain offensive word was visible on the boulder at the entrance to piece of land that Perry and his father starting leasing as a hunting ranch starting in the 1980s.

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.

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