Tag: Carter

Trump: The Profit Unarmed

In the wake of the collapse yesterday of the Republicans’ effort to repeal Obamacare—let’s hope this really is the endgame of that effort—it’s time to re-up, first, this piece I did for the Times, just after the House Republicans’ effort to repeal Obamacare collapsed; and, second, this piece I did for n+1, arguing that Trump’s would be a spectacularly weak and ineffective presidency, along the lines of Jimmy Carter’s. It goes without saying that it’s too early to celebrate, and now that McConnell has declared his intention to pass a simple repeal (rather than repeal and replace), we need to stay on the phones. But there is some reason to think, as Brian Beutler argued yesterday, that even though the House GOP came back […]

Unlike Jimmy Carter, Trump has been remarkably weak. And that may turn out to be his salvation.

Using Steve Skowronek’s theory of the presidency, particularly his theory of disjunctive presidencies, I’ve been plugging the Trump-Carter comparison, as many of you know. It occurred to me this morning, however, on reading this quite astute piece from Matt Yglesias, that there may be an interesting flaw in that comparison. Yglesias points out, and I think he’s right in ways that few people have grappled with, that in many ways, Trump ran well to the center of the Republican Party during the primaries. Trump promised not to touch Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid; he seemed chill with gay marriage; at times he praised Planned Parenthood; he ran against free trade; and he was a sharp critic of the neocon adventurism of the Bush […]

1980 v. 2012

In 1980, women made up 49% of the electorate, and voted for Reagan over Carter by a one-point margin. In 2012, women made up 53% of the electorate, and voted for Obama over Romney by an 11-point margin. In 1980, non-whites made up 12% of the electorate, and voted for Carter over Reagan by anywhere from a 20- to a 70-point margin. In 2012, nonwhites made up 28% of the electorate, and voted for Obama by anywhere from a 50- to a 90-point margin. In 1980, under-30 voters made up 23% of the electorate, and split evenly between Reagan and Carter. In 2012, under-30 voters made up 19% of the electorate, and voted for Obama over Romney by a 23-point margin. […]

Sheldon Wolin: Theoretician of the Present

At the annual conference of the American Political Science Association, which met in Philadelphia this past weekend, I participated in a panel commemorating the life and work of Sheldon Wolin, who died last year. Here’s my contribution. * * * * As a political commentator and witness of his moment, Sheldon Wolin is primarily identified with the 1960s. With the passage of time and recession of those years, that identification—coupled with his partiality to the local and penchant for the past—has earned Wolin a reputation for quaintness and nostalgia. Yet what has struck me most, in re-reading some of his archive these past few months, is how alert and alive Wolin was to what came after the 1960s: not only the conservative backlash […]