One Year Later: The Failure of the Arab Spring
January 24, 2012

I. A year has passed since liberal America and the liberal opinion class, in particular, went ecstatic over the Arab debut into the modern world. I know that my standing in that class is suspect. So, being a bit flummoxed myself by the not altogether dissimilar developments in the vast expanse from the Maghreb to Mesopotamia, I conquered my doubts and made a slight stab for hope. But I quickly realized that I was wrong and left the celebration.

October 12, 2011

Welcome to TNR’s 2011 list issue. Last week we named DC's most over-covered stories, most over-rated thinkers, most powerful, least famous people, TNR's favorite people and the worst words in Washington. Today's installment: DC's sell-outs. EVAN BAYH When Indiana Democrat Evan Bayh announced that he did not intend to run for office in 2010, on the eve of the deadline for the primaries—despite pleas from both President Obama and Rahm Emanuel to stay in the race—he opened up another Senate seat for Republicans and left Democrats scrambling.

June 23, 2011

Transgender people are some of the least protected, most persecuted people in the United States.

Weak One
May 28, 2011

Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty announced his candidacy for president on Monday, just a week after fellow presidential contender Newt Gingrich managed to torpedo his own nascent campaign within a matter of days. Could Pawlenty avoid the same fate?

The Hidden Tradeoffs of GOP Candidates
May 24, 2011

[Guest post by James Downie] Last week, Ezra Klein suggested that perhaps the lack of enthusiasm among the GOP establishment for Tim Pawlenty lay in his unimpressive record as governor, including his reliance on "accounting shortcuts" to try to close the deficit, rather than actually cutting the size of the state government. Indeed, one of Pawlenty's favorite habits was shifting costs to local governments, as documented here: Pawlenty oversaw dramatic reductions in higher-education funding and refused to spend more on early childhood programs.

Romney Stock: Buy!
May 23, 2011

Mitch Daniels announced over the weekend that he will not seek the presidency. As far as I can tell, conventional wisdom holds this is good for Mitt Romney, the frontrunner about whom no Republicans seem particularly enthusiastic. The theory goes like this: Daniels, the governor of Indiana, had great potential as a candidate. He was smart and conservative. He was likeable, with a few endearing quirks.

The Rust Belt, Still a Bit Rusty
May 19, 2011

  The economy may be recovering but many, if not most, Americans don’t seem to have noticed. A story by Michael Fletcher, from Wednesday’s Washington Post, helps explain why. The article focuses on manufacturing jobs in the Midwest--i.e., the Rust Belt. The manufacturing sector was in decline even before the recession began; during the downturn, that decline continued. Now, though, factory jobs are starting to come back and, as noted in this space previously, the unemployment rate across the Midwest fell at a reasonably quick pace over the last year.

More Car Talk for the Campaign
May 18, 2011

Unemployment in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois is falling more quickly than in the rest of the country. The Big Three are hiring again. Does one development have anything to do with the other? Does it mean President Obama can brag about the auto industry rescue package?

Car Talk and the Campaign
May 16, 2011

President Obama plans to make the auto industry rescue a major part of his reelection campaign, according to a new Politico story by Ben Smith and Byron Tau. As readers of this space know, I think he has a strong argument on the merits. The news from General Motors in particular has been extremely positive for the last year.

The Myth of Moderate Mitch
May 11, 2011

During his tenure in office, Mitch Daniels, the Republican governor of Indiana, has enacted a set of policies that would make any conservative proud. Elected with the help of donations from the Koch brothers, he signed bills that abolished the right of teachers to bargain for anything other than wages and wage-related benefits and initiated the largest private-school voucher program in the country. He’s said he will sign a bill that will end Medicaid funding for Planned Parenthood in his state and ban all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.