This year, it pays to be an ‘angry outsider’

This year, it pays to be an ‘angry outsider’

Heads up, tea partiers. You’re not the only folks staking claim to the mantle of angry outsider. In state after state, voters are taking out their frustrations at the political establishment — and no place reflects the depth and diversity of their ire better than Arkansas, where unions, corporate interests and several insurgent candidates hope […]

Memo to political parties: Adapt or die

Memo to political parties: Adapt or die

Since the birth of the American political party, its primary mission has been to amass power by recruiting candidates, raising money and spreading messages. In short, a holding company that elects people — with a monopoly for a century and a half by Democrats and Republicans. But a chain of events in recent history — […]

Warning to incumbents: You got trouble

Warning to incumbents: You got trouble

Go home. Stick to your guns. Keep your nose clean. Distance yourself from Washington, or even better, your own party. That’s the advice political operatives are giving incumbents and establishment-backed candidates after voters delivered a harsh message to insiders Tuesday night: Enough! One Senate incumbent, Arlen Specter, lost his seat in Pennsylvania. A second, Blanche […]

Obama runs and hides from Specter campaign

Obama runs and hides from Specter campaign

President Barack Obama has become the “coward in chief” when it comes to supporting candidates in trouble. After wooing Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter to switch from the Republican Party to the Democratic side of the fence, Obama pledged that Specter would “have my full support.” But Obama, as he so often does, lied. With Specter’s […]

GOP Right-wingers dump Utah Sen. Bob Bennett

GOP Right-wingers dump Utah Sen. Bob Bennett

Once-popular Sen. Bob Bennett fell victim to a growing national conservative movement with his stunning defeat at Utah’s GOP convention. Delegates voted Saturday to bar the 76-year-old senator from seeking a fourth term, making him the first congressional incumbent to be ousted this year and demonstrates the challenges candidates face from the right in 2010. […]

Bennett begs Republicans: ‘Save my job’

Bennett begs Republicans: ‘Save my job’

Sen. Bob Bennett abandoned Washington this week, spending his days in Utah pleading with Republicans until he was hoarse to let him keep his job — in Washington. The three-term conservative is in serious danger of losing at a GOP state convention Saturday, tripped up by anti-incumbent sentiment and Utah’s quirky nomination system. His only […]

Voter anger didn’t make it to the polls

Voter anger didn’t make it to the polls

It turned out anger didn’t translate at the ballot box. Voters in North Carolina and Ohio kept their incumbents while those in Indiana turned to an old Capitol Hill hand — Republican Dan Coats — in Tuesday’s primaries despite the nation’s bottom-of-the-barrel support for Congress and frustration with the Washington establishment. Coats, who was recruited […]

The politics of immigration

The politics of immigration

Arizona’s tough new immigration law swiftly reconfigured the national political landscape in an already high-octane election year. It creates peril for Democrats and Republicans on a divisive issue with implications for national security, states rights and race. Both parties are trying to figure out the next step, mindful not to enflame their electoral base or […]

Return of the Republican has-beens?

Return of the Republican has-beens?

Republicans once saddled with the burden of President George W. Bush‘s unpopularity are now experiencing a boon from another struggling president: Barack Obama. The GOP senses rising fortunes from coast to coast, as one-time lawmakers such as Richard Pombo in California and Charlie Bass in New Hampshire look to capitalize on voter frustration that booted […]

Americans just don’t trust government

Americans just don’t trust government

America’s “Great Compromiser” Henry Clay called government “the great trust,” but most Americans today have little faith in Washington’s ability to deal with the nation’s problems. Public confidence in government is at one of the lowest points in a half century, according to a survey from the Pew Research Center. Nearly 8 in 10 Americans […]