The Kavanaugh Paper Flow
A review of all the paperwork that circulated through Brett Kavanaugh’s office when he was staff secretary would pretty much amount to a review of all the paperwork that circulated through the White House in those years, and yet would also reveal essentially nothing about Kavanaugh. It would mostly amount to a monumental waste of the Senate’s time.
Congress Is Weak Because Its Members Want It to Be Weak
Presidential hyperactivity in recent decades has masked a rising tide of dysfunction—giving us policy action to observe and debate while obscuring the disorder that was overtaking our core constitutional infrastructure. It kept us from facing what should be an unavoidable fact: Congress is broken.
The Roberts Court
If Justice Kennedy is replaced by a reliable judicial conservative in the mold of Justice Gorsuch, then Chief Justice John Roberts would probably become the swing vote on the Court. And he would swing in response to a different set of priorities than Kennedy’s—a set of priorities that might in time become core concerns of America’s legal and constitutional culture as a result, at least for practical purposes.
The Border Fiasco As Another Warning Sign
Trump has created an unusually complicated political problem for Republicans in Congress in the summer of an election year, and he keeps finding ways to make it worse.
The Definition of Mensch
Charles Krauthammer’s example in so dark an hour of his life was yet another reason to be grateful to him, and for him.
Happy Flag Day
In this moment in particular — a time when the question of the very nature of American patriotism and nationalism is much in the air — the flag can offer us one path through challenging terrain.
The American Context of Civil Society
In both the conservative and progressive imagination, civil society is valued—for opposite reasons—as an arbiter between the individual and the national state. But by viewing civil society as the core of America’s social life, we can see our way toward a politics that might overcome some of the dysfunctions of our day.
More Twisted Logic on Obamacare
Obamacare was a bad law that advanced bad policy and fit very poorly with the structure of our constitutional system. But a recent Department of Justice brief in a federal district-court case repeats and reinforces the very worst of the counter-constitutional cynicism that characterized the Obama administration’s approach.
A Thought on the Trump-DOJ Scandal
We Americans have a habit of putting fundamental social and political questions out of our minds by turning them into technical legal questions. This tendency is one of the forces at work in the increasingly dramatic showdown between the Department of Justice and the President.
The Trump administration’s newly proposed rule to make it harder to use federal Title X dollars to promote and provide abortion is a modest but significant and important step.