Commentary

Michael Medved: Trump’s Surprising Coalition: Not Just “Deplorables”

Opioid

James T. Hogkinson, the crazed gunman who fired at Republican congressmen in early June, hardly fits the common image of a militant Bernie Sanders Democrat. He was 66, married for 30 years, a proud gun-owner, working in construction and living in a small Midwestern town. In fact, he came close to stereotypes of one of Trump’s blue-collar “deplorables,” which only highlights the dishonest nature of common media narratives.

Actually, Trump’s core support wasn’t the downtrodden working class: he did better among the third of voters who earned more than $100,000 a year than among the two-thirds who earned less than that. Among the one-third of voters who earned below $50,000, Trump lost to Clinton by 12 points. Nor were his supporters overwhelmingly uneducated: he actually won white voters with college degrees, 37 percent of the overall electorate. The Trump coalition was far more varied and complex than simplistic analysis and conventional wisdom suggest.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/329522235″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

 

Read More »

Lanhee Chen: Karen Handel’s Victory

Tax Reform

Republican Karen Handel’s victory in the special election in Georgia’s Sixth Congressional District will generate a lot of punditry and spin.

Democrats will argue that they got a lot closer than they should have in a district that Republican Tom Price, now the Secretary of Health and Human Services, won by 23 points less than a year ago.

Republicans will respond by noting that their opponents poured $30 million into the race and yet the Democrat wasn’t able to do any better than Hillary Clinton did in losing the district to Donald Trump last year.

Both sides are right, to some degree. That’s why it’s hard to draw too many conclusions about what this means for the midterms next year. There are many political lifetimes to be led between now and then. And intervening events will impact voters’ opinions over the next 17 months.

We’d all be well served to take a deep breath and let it all unfold. Predicting the future never has been a very good business to be in, anyway.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/329371539″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

Read More »

Michael Medved: Public Opinion and Obamacare

Opioid

In 2010, the health insurance legislation known as “Obamacare” was overwhelmingly unpopular. But Democrats in the White House and Congress pushed it through anyway, and then paid a severe price in the next elections. Today, the health care package known as “Trumpcare” is similarly unpopular, but the Republicans seem determined to pass legislation this summer, even at the risk of serious losses of their own in 2018 Congressional elections.

Does this mean the electorate is confused?—hating Obamacare, and then hating the most serious attempt to repeal and replace it? Actually, public reactions are sensible and consistent—what Americans hate is the whole idea of the federal government making sweeping, bureaucratic decisions, on something as personal and important as medical insurance.

If the GOP made clear that their proposals provide individuals with more choices, and give the states more discretion to shape their own policies, their reforms would win much broader popular support.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/329039752″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

Read More »

Michael Medved: Lingering Faith in Faith

Opioid

For sixty years, Gallup has asked about public attitudes toward faith, giving respondents a clear choice: “Do you believe that religion can answer all or most of today’s problems, or that religion is largely old-fashioned and out of date?” In 1957, 82 percent expressed confidence in religious solutions, while only 11 percent considered faith old fashioned. Today, the margin is much closer, but Americans still think religion has the answers—55 percent to 34 percent.

Among those who say they “seldom” or “never” go to church, a full third still think religion can solve contemporary problems. And among Democrats, a plurality agrees that faith has the answers all people seek.

Even among those who consider themselves political liberals, and those who never participate in public worship, there’s still a lingering suspicion that faith-based solutions benefit individuals and society. Believers should never write off America as a secularized, Godless, lost cause.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/328868194″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

Read More »

Albert Mohler: Senator Sanders vs. Religious Liberty

Billy Graham

Bernie Sanders recently announced that he will oppose President Trump’s nominee for assistant budget director, Russell Vought, because Vought penned a blog in which he said that Muslims “stand condemned” because they have rejected Jesus Christ.

Vought’s post was a defense of his alma mater, Wheaton College, a Christian institution, and what he articulated was nothing other than historic orthodox biblical Christianity.

Senator Sanders made his position quite clear: “I would simply say, Mr. Chairman, that this nominee is really not someone who is what this country is supposed to be about.”

Here you have a sitting United States senator rejecting a presidentially appointed candidate simply on the basis of the fact that he had the temerity to write an article defending historic Christian doctrine.

Senator Sanders would no doubt say that he’s a staunch defender of the separation of church and state, and yet what he did here was nothing less than an absolute violation of religious liberty.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/328472997″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

 

Read More »

Michael Medved: Demonizing, Dehumanizing the Opposition

Opioid

The context of the brutal assault in Alexandria, Virginia that wounded Congressman Steve Scalise sends an important public message: our elected representatives may wield enormous power but they’re still ordinary Americans who enjoy getting up early on a bright Spring morning to practice for things like a charity baseball game.

The crazed shooter had been so warped by hateful leftist propaganda that he couldn’t recognize the obvious humanity of his victims: he asked about party affiliation, and when told they were Republicans he was ready to kill. This time the targets were conservatives and the assailant was a self-styled “progressive,” but both sides have indulged the recent toxic tendency to demonize and dehumanize opponents.

The idea that disagreements over health care, taxes, and foreign policy are enough to justify violent assault is repugnant and profoundly un-American. President Trump sounded the right note when he asked the nation to respond to such hatred by coming together for the common good.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/328239919″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

 

Read More »

Lanhee Chen: Americans

Tax Reform

As Americans, we are drawn together by so much more than what divides us. We have a common sense of purpose and destiny. And we wake up each day knowing how blessed we are to live in this remarkable country.

Even as we are saddened by news of the shooting of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and four others, including two Capitol Police officers who were wounded while doing their jobs, we recognize that we, as Americans, must be about so much more than what separates us.

We come together to celebrate the bravery of our first responders and marvel at those who place their lives on the line each day to protect the things we hold dear. And we come together, in spite of the pettiness and politics, to honor those who serve the public each day, selflessly and courageously.

Now is a time for us to rise above our differences. Now is a time to elevate the tone of our public discussions—and to remember that our fates are tied together, as Americans.

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/328061433″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

Read More »