If it's in the News, it's in our Polls. Public opinion polling since 2003.

Commentary by Michael Barone

Most Recent Releases

White letter R on blue background
April 10, 2020

Will Post-Coronavirus America Blaze New Trails or Just Keep Hunkering Down? By Michael Barone

On my daily walk down a side street, I saw the restaurant with a diagonal cross made of adhesive tape on its sign. Gone was the notice that it would open for takeout; it looked to be closed for good.

White letter R on blue background
April 3, 2020

Contrast Between China and Its Neighbors Shows Communist Regime's True Character By Michael Barone

There's no greater contrast between how countries have treated COVID-19 than that between nations on both sides of what might be called the Asian Iron Curtain. It's a contrast that tells us much about how to handle the virus -- and how events now in the distant past can determine the fates of hundreds of millions of people today.

White letter R on blue background
March 27, 2020

Anti-Pandemic Rules the Opposite of Anti-Climate Change Rules By Michael Barone

It's unnerving, and perhaps instructive, that the arrangements elites have been prescribing for dealing with what they call our most dangerous environmental threat -- climate change, formerly known as global warming -- are almost precisely the opposite of the arrangements deployed to deal with the more immediate threat of COVID-19, aka the novel coronavirus.

White letter R on blue background
March 20, 2020

Sailing in Unprecedented Waters By Michael Barone

Precedent doesn't provide much guidance. There's a deadly coronavirus threatening to circulate through the population. The resulting government orders and social sanctions of self-distancing and self-isolating behavior are unprecedented in living memory.

White letter R on blue background
March 13, 2020

A Problematic Nominee Against a Problematic President By Michael Barone

What just happened? The Democratic presidential nomination race, which gave signs of lasting months, is now basically over.

White letter R on blue background
March 6, 2020

Super Tuesday Finally Serves Its Intended Purpose -- After 32 Years By Michael Barone

Super Tuesday has finally served its intended purpose for the first time since it was invented for the 1988 presidential cycle, 32 years ago.

White letter R on blue background
February 28, 2020

Are Nonwhites Voting More Like Other Americans? By Michael Barone

Bernie Sanders' victories in the inaccurately counted Iowa caucuses, the crisply conducted New Hampshire primary and the Nevada caucuses have made two things clear.

White letter R on blue background
February 21, 2020

Democrats' DNA Makes Them Feel the Bern By Michael Barone

The 2020 presidential race has got the Democratic Party, the oldest political party in the world, twisted in knots. Its basic character and enduring values -- its political DNA -- which have enabled it to rebound from multiple political disasters, may be producing another disaster this year.

White letter R on blue background
February 14, 2020

Another Year of the Interloper? By Michael Barone

It's a familiar plotline. An interloper runs for a party's presidential nomination and, with an anti-insider pitch, scores wins and near-wins in the first contests with vote pluralities.

White letter R on blue background
February 7, 2020

Democrats' Blunders Help Create Favorable Winds for Trump By Michael Barone

Are we watching a great political party commit suicide?

White letter R on blue background
January 31, 2020

A Sanders Sweep? By Michael Barone

The old becomes the new. It's less than a week from of the Iowa caucuses, and Bernie Sanders, born in September 1941, three months before Pearl Harbor, leads the RealClearPolitics average of recent polls by 4 points in Iowa, 10 points in New Hampshire and 5 points in the biggest delegate prize, the Super Tuesday-voting California.

White letter R on blue background
January 24, 2020

Historians Say New York Times Gets History Wrong By Michael Barone

We live in history-making times. Not so much because of the impeachment trial going on in the Senate, which will make history only if it routinizes impeachments of impolite presidents when their opposition party gets control of the House, but because of what looks like an ongoing battle for control of the central narrative of American history.

White letter R on blue background
January 17, 2020

What We've Learned From the Democratic Race -- So Far By Michael Barone

Elections are a form of communication. Voting tells politicians, and the press if they're capable of getting the message, what citizens will tolerate and what they won't. The Democrats haven't voted yet, but they've been campaigning for more than a year and have just had their last debate before the Iowa caucuses two weeks from Monday.

White letter R on blue background
January 10, 2020

Trump Responds to Iran's Act of War By Michael Barone

In all the reportage and commentary on the killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, I haven't seen much mention of an interesting parallel between the Iranian mullah regime's attacks on America this past week and its attacks when it first came to power 40 years ago.

White letter R on blue background
January 3, 2020

Census Numbers Undercut 'Ascendant America' Theory By Michael Barone

From the first years of the one-fifth of this century already completed, we've been told that a new, ascendant America -- more nonwhite, more culturally liberal, more feminist -- was going to dominate our politics for years to come.

White letter R on blue background
December 27, 2019

We're Living in the (Almost) Best of Times By Michael Barone

The best of times, the worst of times. Your instinct on which one we're living through is affected by your basic temperament, but it also depends on how well you're observing -- and quantifying -- things in the world around you.

White letter R on blue background
December 20, 2019

'One-Nation' Conservatism Wins Again in Britain By Michael Barone

Last week the world's second-oldest political party showed, and not for the first time, its capacity to regenerate itself and win an impressive majority in difficult circumstances.

White letter R on blue background
December 13, 2019

The (Sometimes) Bizarre Democratic Nomination Race By Michael Barone

Some recent news stories verge on the bizarre -- the House Democrats' futile fuss over impeachment, Speaker Nancy Pelosi's acceptance of President Donald Trump's U.S.-Canada-Mexico trade treaty. But they're not as bizarre, or possibly as consequential, as unanticipated developments in the Democrats' presidential nomination contest.

White letter R on blue background
December 6, 2019

Twitter Politics' Roots in Tabloid-War Politics By Michael Barone

Sometimes the latest new thing is something antique. That's especially true in American politics, which has had seriously contested presidential elections every four years (with one exception) since 1800 and competitions between the same two durable parties since 1856. We're even on our (lucky?) 13th presidential race since the nominating rules were changed, back in the 1970s, to favor primaries rather than caucuses.

White letter R on blue background
November 29, 2019

Give Thanks for America's Increasing Fairness By Michael Barone

It's Thanksgiving week in a country whose warring political tribes are not much inclined to giving thanks. But any American with a reasonable historic perspective can easily find reasons to do so.