Michael-Barone is senior Political Analyst for the Washington Examiner.
A resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, he is also a
Fox News Channel contributor and co-author of The Almanac of
American Politics. His column is published Wednesdays and Sundays.
I have a piece out today in american.com, the website of the American Enterprise Institute, where I am a resident fellow. It’s headlined “How to Understand Obama’s Chances in 2012.” I note that since 1994 there has been a convergence in voting for president and for the House of Representatives, and so the popular vote for the House is a pretty good proxy for the vote for president. Read More
If you want a full explanation of the Gang of Six budget proposals and a list of 17 (!) arguments why the package is bad public policy, you can’t do better than to check out Keith Hennessey’s blog here on the proposal and here on the arguments against. Read More
An outfit called Generation Opportunity (which boasts 842,000 friends on its “Being American” Facebook page) commissioned an online poll of adults age 18 to 29 in April from the Polling Company/Woman Trend Inc. The most interesting results are from young Hispanics. They preferred “reducing federal spending” to “raising taxes on individuals” in order to “balance the federal budget” by 1 69%-27% margin. Read More
Rupert Murdoch was attacked while testifying before a House of Commons committee (hat tip to Glenn Reynolds at instapundit.com). “It’ll be interesting to find out how the attacker got access,” Reynolds writes, and in an update adds, “The security lapse is shocking—a pie is much harder to smuggle in than a gun or knife. Read More
In my Sunday Examiner column I noted that the national debt currently amounts to 62 percent of gross domestic product and I cited Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart’s book This Time Is Different for the proposition that economic growth is impaired when debt reaches 90 percent of gross domestic product. Read More
Even good journalists can make mistakes, based on commonly held assumptions which are simply wrong. Take the New York Times’s economics reporter David Leonhardt. Read More
Scorcho! The Atlantic’s Clive Crook is an alumnus of The Economist and temparmentally inclined to political centrism. So it’s a bit of a surprise to see his considerably less than admiring assessment of Barack Obama’s press conference today. “Obama is the co-author of the current breakdown in Washington,” he concludes. “Obama is right that Congress needs to behave more responsibly and starting doing its job. Read More
Have you ever gotten the impression that there are always huge cost overruns on big infrastructure projects, like high-speed rail lines? If so, you haven’t gotten the wrong impression. That’s the message from Virginia Postrel, writing for Bloomberg News. She quotes a definitive study of cost and ridership estimates by Oxford business school scholar Bent Flyvbjerg, which nails the case. Read More
The Los Angeles County elections director has tweeted that Democrat Janice Hahn beat Republican Craig Huey in yesterday’s California 36th congressional district special election by a 55%-45% margin. This is in a district that Barack Obama carried 64%-34% in 2008. Read More
From a correspondent in the far north of Minnesota comes a link to this article from the Duluth News Tribune reporting that $5 million already awarded for planning the Northern Lights Express “high-speed” rail line from Minneapolis to Duluth may be rescineded. It seems that members of the House Appropriations subcommittee considering this has the weird idea that federal funds can more sensibly be spent to repair the damage from recent floods on the upper Missouri and other rivers in the Upper Midwest. Read More
Great interactive map showing where long-distance calls are being placed to, by county. Which leads to this cluster-map, showing regional concentrations of connections. (Note that the Northeast and the Gold Coast of Florida are in the same noncontiguous group). Read More
Those who remain convinced that more government spending will produce a robust economic recovery ought to read the Weekly Standard’s Fred Barnes’s “Lessons from Canada” in the most recent issue of National Affairs. In the 1990s Canada’s Liberal party government reduced its national debt and revived its economy by, among other things, reducing federal employment by 45,000 jobs, 14% of the total. The ratio of spending cuts to tax increases was nearly 7-1. Read More
We don’t pay much attention to Italy here in Washington, but in London the Daily Telegraph is reporting that Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi says he will step down at the time of the scheduled 2013 election. As the article explains, he faces various legal challenges. This would bring to an end a tempestuous political career that has lasted nearly 20 years. Read More
Immigration from Mexico to the United States has slowed down toward zero: that’s the thrust of an excellent story by Damien Cave in the New York Times (complete with excellent interactive graphics). I plan to write a column on that subject, but I can’t resist pointing out that I have been predicting this trend for more than two years now.
● June 7, 2009 blogpost. “There’s a need on all sides to rethink immigration policy. Read More
The latest news of a rail boondoggle comes from Hawaii, from a blogpost by Panos Prevedouros on Joel Kotkin’s newgeography.com blog. Read More