March 25, 2016 |
Divergent results in Western states that voted Tuesday reflect how polarized the presidential race remains in both parties as the primary calendar starts to run out of pages. In a normal cycle, the question of Republican and Democratic nominees would be settled (or pretty much so) by now. On the GOP side, Donald Trump crushed Texas Sen. Ted Cruz by 22 percentage points in Arizona's primary, 47 percent to 25 percent. It was a winner-take-all contest, so the front-runner picked up 58 more delegates.
March 9, 2016
ON SATURDAY, when Republican front-runner Donald Trump stretched his considerable lead by winning the Louisiana presidential primary, I realized that Mitt Romney had failed yet again. Romney, you may recall, is the presidential two-time loser whom the GOP tapped in an attempt to slow Trump's momentum. Republican leaders hoped that Romney delivering a speech in which he called Trump a liar, misogynist, con man and fraud would make the party faithful turn to a more traditional candidate.
March 7, 2016
ISSUE | ROAD TO THE WHITE HOUSE Can Trump take a punch? Mitt Romney delivered an articulate, spot-on speech on the many negatives and personal liabilities of Donald Trump ("Republicans in turmoil," Friday). But did it deliver a knockout blow to Trump? No, it did not. Trump has amply displayed his biases, his misogyny, his prejudices, and his lack of policy specifics while campaigning. His supporters shrug them off, believing the man will shake things up, get things done, and "make America great again.
March 7, 2016 |
Donald Trump won Louisiana's Republican primary and Kentucky's caucuses, but Texas Senator Ted Cruz claimed caucus wins in Maine and Kansas to bolster his argument that he is the main alternative to the businessman and reality TV star for the party's presidential nomination. In the Democratic race, front-runner Hillary Clinton won the primary in Louisiana, according to the Associated Press, while Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders had victories in Kansas and Nebraska caucuses, party officials said.
March 3, 2016
REPUBLICANS now want to "Dump the Trump"? Come on. Too late, dudes. Shoulda listened when you had a chance. Last August, I wrote that if party leaders didn't want Trump, they needed to act, put together a deal to winnow the field with promises of future rewards and settle on a pair that could win in November. I even noted that a GOP ticket able to take Florida and (especially) Ohio can snag enough Electoral College votes to win the general election. Know the last Republican elected president without winning Ohio?
December 21, 2015 |
'Maybe this is the year we run the experiment?" I knew immediately what David Axelrod meant. And it wasn't the first time I'd heard the sentiment expressed while in Las Vegas to cover last week's Republican debate. We were sharing notes after the debate, awaiting an appearance on CNN. Axelrod spoke of the philosophical divide within the GOP as to whether the party is best served by nominating a pure conservative or a more pragmatic centrist. For many purists, history begins in 1980 with the nomination of Ronald Reagan.
November 19, 2015 |
DWIGHT EVANS seeks a new political place. After 34 years in the Legislature during which he ran, then lost, the powerful House Appropriations Committee, after failed runs for lieutenant governor, governor and twice for mayor, he's now running for Congress. I wonder why. Why leave one mess in one Capitol for an arguably bigger mess in another? Especially since Washington runs on seniority, so if he wins, he starts on the bottom rung of the ladder. Maybe he's bored with Harrisburg.
July 2, 2015
NOW THAT JERSEY'S big boy has cannonballed into the presidential pool, the question is whether he sinks or swims. There's a good argument for sinking. He's in a (so far) 14-way Republican primary in which he polls in low single-digits. His approval rating in his own state is 30 percent, after topping 70 percent just two years back, so he isn't exactly ascending. He gave a dud 2012 convention speech more about himself than about nominee Mitt Romney. He warmly embraced President Obama after Hurricane Sandy prior to the 2012 election; some Republicans actually believe that helped Obama win. There's the George Washington Bridge thing.
June 21, 2015 |
Gov. Christie tried Friday to win over Republican activists gathered in Philadelphia to hear from several presidential hopefuls, casting himself as a terrorism fighter who wouldn't shy away from blunt talk in a run for the White House. In remarks spanning a half-hour, Christie emphasized his background as a federal prosecutor after the Sept. 11 attacks - experience he said would set him apart in the 2016 field. Of the declared or potential candidates, "you are looking at the only one who has actually used the Patriot Act," he said.
June 15, 2015 |
For Jeb Bush, the initial plan was to stun the opposition into submission with boatloads of money, his network, his lineage. But nobody in the Republican presidential race was scared off by the former governor of Florida (except, perhaps, Mitt Romney). Instead, as he prepares to formally launch his candidacy Monday, Bush has slipped from heavy favorite to just one of several candidates clumped together near the top of a growing field. He does not lead in any of the early-voting states, most polls show.