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COMMENTARY BY MICHAEL BARONE

  • A Cold Wind off Lake Michigan -- for Chicago and America By Michael Barone

    "It's the Lord of the Flies on LaSalle Street," wrote columnist John Kass in the Chicago Tribune. In case the references are unclear, whether because high schools haven't been assigning the William Golding novel in the last few decades or because out-of-towners unaccountably don't realize that Chicago's City Hall front is on LaSalle Street, the curmudgeonly Kass was writing about Mayor Rahm Emanuel's announcement that he won't run for a third term as mayor next February.

  • Democrats' Visions of Hand Signals From White Supremacists By Michael Barone

    The highlight, at least for some television watchers, of the first day of the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, came when the young woman seated directly behind the nominee rested her right hand on her opposite elbow and pressed her index fingertip against her thumb, forming a kind of circle or OK sign.

  • John McCain: Warm Remembrances of Roads Not Taken, or Taken and Now Abandoned By Michael Barone

    Warm remembrances of Sen. John McCain have been filling the political air since his death last weekend. They'll continue through his the memorial service in Phoenix, his funeral Saturday at Washington National Cathedral and his interment at the Naval Academy cemetery in Annapolis on Sunday.

  • Democrats Better off Playing by the Rules Than Denouncing the Rules By Michael Barone

    When you lose a game, particularly a game you had good reason to expect you'd win, do you try to figure out how to play better? Or is your first reaction to demand changes in the rules?

  • Has Trump Delivered on His Economic Promises? By Michael Barone

    Is President Trump fulfilling candidate Trump's promises?    

  • Still Not Clear Which Party Will Lose the House By Michael Barone

    We're heading into the home stretch in America's unusually lengthy (six months and nine days) primary election season. Some three-quarters of Americans have had a chance to vote for Democratic and Republican candidates for Congress, and state and local offices.

  • Liberals Against Freedom of Conscience By Michael Barone

    Why is it considered "liberal" to compel others to say or fund things they don't believe? That's a question raised by three Supreme Court decisions this year. And it's a puzzling development for those of us old enough to remember when liberals championed free speech -- even advocacy of sedition or sodomy -- and conservatives wanted government to restrain or limit it.

  • Will the Trend of Low Birth Rates Be Reversed? By Michael Barone

    Sometimes a society's values change sharply with almost no one noticing, much less anticipating the consequences. In 1968, according to a Gallup survey, 70 percent of American adults said that a family of three or more children was "ideal" -- about the same number as Gallup surveys starting in 1938. That number helps explain the explosive baby boom after Americans were no longer constrained by depression and world war.

  • Time to Junk Racial Quotas in Higher Education By Michael Barone

    "It's time for enlightened America to hit reset on affirmative action once and for all," writes Columbia University linguistics professor John McWhorter in The American Interest. By affirmative action, of course, he means the racial quotas and preferences that most selective college and university admissions departments employ.

  • The Kavanaugh Confirmation Kabuki By Michael Barone

    Theater, much like Japan's Kabuki -- that's all the Supreme Court confirmation process is. Donald Trump's presentations of his two nominees, Judge Neil Gorsuch last year and Judge Brett Kavanaugh on Monday, were uncharacteristically graceful -- a worthy theatrical innovation, in the view of even some Trump critics.