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John Samples
by | Aug 15, 2008

Both of our serious presidential candidates present themselves as mavericks willing to tell the truth to the American people. Here are four truths neither will ever let slip to voters: 1. We can’t do much about inequality. The Democrats have…

by | Jun 18, 2008

The Big Sort: Why the Clustering of Like-minded American Is Tearing Us Apart By Bill Bishop (Houghton Mifflin, 384 pages, $25) This presidential election has already produced its fair share of predictable foolishness and sheer demagoguery. The candidates have promised…

by | May 30, 2008

Much has been made about Barack Obama’s difficulties attracting the votes of conservative Democrats. Some say his problems go back to his race. Others cite his comments about guns and religion. Still others say his social liberalism turns off conservatives…

by | May 19, 2008

Forty four years ago this week Lyndon Baines Johnson traveled to Ann Arbor, Michigan, to deliver a speech that outlined the vision that would guide his administration. The speech may be read profitably today. Barack Obama has evoked “change” and…

by | Apr 30, 2008

We are often told that presidential campaigns should be about “the issues.” But voters will not be enacting laws in November. They will select a president who may well face unexpected dangers or opportunities over the next four years. Voters…

by | Mar 24, 2008

In the middle of his now famous speech on race and politics in America, Sen. Barack Obama claimed that his life story has made him an unconventional candidate. Yet the content of the speech reveals him to be an entirely…

by | Mar 13, 2008

The day he lost the California primary Barack Obama said his campaign has unified Americans of all backgrounds in pursuit of a “common purpose.” Three weeks later, in Texas, he said the nation needs “leaders who can inspire the American…

by | Jan 15, 2008

Suddenly, John McCain has become the frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination. His support in national polls among Republican voters has risen 16 points since December. He may turn out to be the only person standing between Hillary Clinton or…

by | Apr 18, 2006

Last week a staunch Republican friend came back from Capitol Hill with discouraging news. “I can’t believe,” he said, “how many things Republicans don’t believe in that I thought they held as a matter of principle.” He might have been…

by | Dec 15, 2005

Eugene McCarthy will always be remembered as the man who “toppled LBJ” in 1968. His campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination that year seemed futile. Whatever his problems, Lyndon Johnson had one advantage: he was the incumbent who enjoyed the…

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