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How to never win another election

Robin Lakoff, professor emerita of linguistics | November 16, 2012

Suppose you have just been defeated in a tough political contest. Suppose further that it was one that, in your heart, you expected and felt entitled to win. Suppose in addition that most serious analysts attributed your loss, to a significant extent , to your antagonizing several key groups of voters: African Americans, women, Latinos, … Continue reading »

It’s the Tea Party, stupid

Lawrence Rosenthal, executive director, Center for Right-Wing Studies | November 5, 2012

Apart from certain quarters on the Right predicting a Romney victory on Election Day, the final weeks of the campaign witnessed a gathering sentiment, almost a last-minute conventional wisdom, about the election’s outcome. It went something like this: Obama had a significant and reliable lead until the first debate. Pre-debate, Republicans lamented a lackluster Romney … Continue reading »

What would Romney do? How reelection strategy could shape a Romney presidency

Dan Farber, professor of law |

If Romney is elected president tomorrow, the sun will still rise in the east and sea will still be salty.  Beyond that, predictions about a Romney presidency become more difficult, given his exceptionally inconsistent history on the issues. As I showed in an earlier post, Romney’s views about environmental and energy issues flipped 180° between … Continue reading »

Neoncons and the foreign-policy presidential debate: The ism that dare not speak its name

Lawrence Rosenthal, executive director, Center for Right-Wing Studies | October 23, 2012

In Monday’s final presidential debate, President Barack Obama came full circle and more from his conflict-averse showing in the first debate. Obama not only attacked his opponent, but, in the absence of much challenge from Mitt Romney, took it upon himself to raise the very points required to mount his attacks. For the most part, … Continue reading »

How to put the shine on Romney’s jobs plan

Brad DeLong, professor of economics | October 18, 2012

The scary thing is that in three hours I could write a 1,000-word study with tables and charts projecting that the Romney plan will generate 12 million jobs before 2017. It’s trivially easy to do: Project labor force growth over 2000-2008 forward–thus you have already baked the retirement of the baby boomers into your projections. … Continue reading »

It’s about the dog

Lisa García Bedolla, chancellor's professor, education and political science, and director of the Institute of Governmental Studies | October 17, 2012

After watching the second presidential debate, I’ve found myself thinking a lot about the dog. When I first heard the story that Mitt Romney had strapped their dog, Seamus, to the roof of their car on a trip to Canada, the dog lover in me was horrified that a pet owner could do such a … Continue reading »

Why are gas prices so high?

Rosemary Joyce, professor of anthropology | October 16, 2012

The second presidential debate is over. The spinning is going strong. Almost all the journalism seems to be about the contest. And that is too bad, because at a few points, there were actual issues raised that might be worth following through. For example: Republican candidate Mitt Romney argued that a president should be judged … Continue reading »

The first presidential debate

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | October 4, 2012

In Wednesday night’s debate, Romney won on style while Obama won on substance. Romney sounded as if he had conviction, which means he’s either convinced himself that the lies he tells are true or he’s a fabulous actor. But what struck me most was how much Obama allowed Romney to get away with: Five times … Continue reading »

Four reasons why Romney might still win

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | September 21, 2012

Can Romney possibly recover? A survey conducted between Sept. 12 and Sept. 16 by the Pew Research Center — before the “47 percent victim” video came to light – showed Obama ahead of Romney 51% to 43% among likely voters. That’s the biggest margin in the September survey prior to a presidential election since Bill … Continue reading »

The 47% charge in U.S. history

Claude Fischer, professor of sociology | September 19, 2012

There are many angles — and many comments on each angle — to Mitt Romney’s statement that 47% of American voters are “dependent upon government, … believe that they are victims, … believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, … that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to … Continue reading »

How Romney keeps lying through his big white teeth

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | August 30, 2012

“We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers,” says Neil Newhouse, a Romney pollster. A half dozen fact-checking organizations and websites have refuted Romney’s claims that Obama removed the work requirement from the welfare law and will cut Medicare benefits by $716 billion. Last Sunday’s New York Times even reported on its … Continue reading »

Romney, Ryan, and the Devil’s budget: Will America keep its soul?

George Lakoff, professor emeritus of linguistics | August 23, 2012

Coauthored with Glenn Smith America was born with a great soul, a moral view of Democracy in which citizens care about their fellow citizens and join together to take responsibility not just for themselves but for each other, for America as a union, a joint enterprise. The government’s job was to carry out that moral … Continue reading »

Why Romney’s choice of Ryan won’t help America debate the big issues

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | August 17, 2012

I keep hearing that Mitt Romney’s pick of Paul Ryan “enables the country to have the debate it needs to have,” or “permits us to have a grownup discussion,” or “finally presents America with a real choice.” The New York Times oped page proclaims: “Let the Real Debate Begin!” Debate? What debate? Romney isn’t even … Continue reading »

Climate change: What did Romney believe and when did he believe it?

Dan Farber, professor of law | August 3, 2012

Two days ago (July 31, 2012), I posted documentation about Romney’s views about climate change.  Today, I want to discuss where he’s been consistent and when he has changed course. What’s causing climate change? Romney has been consistent in saying that the climate is changing. In terms of the reasons, however, he’s been cautious, hedging … Continue reading »

Three lessons from Mitt Romney about bullying

Jeremy Adam Smith, Editor, Greater Good Magazine | May 14, 2012

Last week, the Washington Post reported that presumptive GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney was a bully in high school. The most serious incident, reconstructed from interviews with both witnesses and perpetrators, involved chasing down a student thought to be gay and pinning him to the ground. Romney, who witnesses say was the ringleader, then took … Continue reading »

How to lie with statistics: Job losses, women, and presidential candidates

Rosemary Joyce, professor of anthropology | April 12, 2012

In case anyone hasn’t heard yet, yesterday apparent Republican candidate for president Mitt Romney rolled out his argument for the women’s vote in November. And it was a doozy: 92.3% of jobs losses during the Obama presidency belonged to women. 92.3%! Can you believe it???!! Well, no. You can’t. Not that the numbers are made … Continue reading »

Why Mitt won’t be able to hide from his primary self (we’re no longer in an Etch-A-Sketch world)

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | March 23, 2012

Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom couldn’t have said it better – or worse. When asked by CNN Wednesday morning whether Mitt was being pushed so far to the right by Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich that he’d be handicapped in the general election, Fehrnstrom said “you hit a reset button for the fall campaign. Everything changes. … Continue reading »

Republican Agonistes: After Michigan

Lawrence Rosenthal, executive director, Center for Right-Wing Studies | March 1, 2012

The narrowness of Mitt Romney’s victory over Rick Santorum in Romney’s home state of Michigan ensures that the ever more scathing struggle for the Republican nomination is far from resolved. In 2010 the Tea Party established that it owned a chokehold on the Republican nominating process by way of its outsized representation as participants in … Continue reading »

Placing a ceiling on protection for public health

Dan Farber, professor of law | February 21, 2012

Governor Romney has endorsed an idea called regulatory budgeting, but it really means capping protection for public health.  Romney’s position paper explains the concept as follows: To force agencies to limit the costs they are imposing on society, and to provide the certainty that businesses crave, a system of regulatory caps is required. As noted, … Continue reading »