Articles by Karl Rove
John Boehner is a decent, honorable man who displayed his deep commitment to country and party last week, announcing that he will resign from the House of Representatives in October and relinquish the speaker’s gavel.
Mr. Boehner would have easily beaten any challenge to his leadership. But having decided some time ago that a quarter-century in Congress was enough, he chose to spare his Republican colleagues and the institution he loves a bruising fight.
For the right reasons, congressional Republicans want to end taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood, the country’s largest abortion provider.
Horrific undercover videos released by the Center for Medical Progress show Planned Parenthood officials blithely talking about selling fetal organs. One video shows a former technician for StemExpress, a company that worked with Planned Parenthood, explaining how she used scissors to cut apart “the most gestated fetus and closest thing to a baby I’ve seen” to “procure a brain.”
The difficulty with a Thursday column after a Wednesday presidential debate is that the newspaper is put to bed hours before the debate starts. But here are a few observations about the GOP contest that don’t depend on how specific candidates fared in their second face-off.
The race is likely to swirl unpredictably for some time to come. On this day in 2011, Texas Gov. Rick Perry led the presidential field with 29.9% in the Real Clear Politics average of polls. Still in the future were the periods during which Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum were each the front-runner.
On Tuesday Hillary Clinton finally admitted to ABC World News Tonight anchor David Muir that using a private server for her emails as secretary of state “was a mistake.” The rest of us have known that since the story broke in March.
This belated concession won’t end the controversy. A half-year of misleading and inaccurate statements has demolished her credibility. Mrs. Clinton continues to insist that her use of a private server was permitted.
Political junkies are focused on Donald Trump, but Hillary Clinton’s weakness remains a huge story. Her support among Iowa’s likely Democratic caucusgoers has dropped to 37%, down 20 points since May, according to an Aug. 26 Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics poll. Meanwhile, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is up 16 points to 30%, and Vice President Joe Biden, who isn’t even running, is up six points to 14%.
The poll caused great consternation among Mrs. Clinton’s supporters, as it should have. Some of her advocates tried to claim that the survey contained good news, in that the former secretary of state’s favorable rating among Democratic caucusgoers remained at 77%.
Beautiful, sweet Nan passed away Saturday. Our border collie was diagnosed with cancer in February and given a month. They could operate, the veterinarians said, but it would buy her only weeks and her quality of life would be poor. So we prepared ourselves as best we could and tried to make her last remaining days comfortable.
Instead, we had Nan for almost half a year more than we expected—and for all but a few moments, she was herself: energetic, demanding, loving and life-affirming. Mercifully, when the end came, it came quickly. The last thing we wanted was for her to suffer.
Asked Tuesday if she had wiped her server to delete the emails she had sent while serving as secretary of state, Hillary Clinton should have said “yes” or “no.” Instead Mrs. Clinton was evasive.
She first pleaded ignorance, stuttering “I have no idea.” Fox News’s Ed Henry pressed her, saying, “You were the official in charge of it. Did you wipe the server?” Mrs. Clinton then tried sarcasm: “Like with a cloth or something?”
President Obama came into office promising to unify America, but he has made political discourse meaner and more cynical. Whenever Mr. Obama is playing a weak hand, he questions the motivations of those who disagree with him and mangles the truth to undermine any criticism.
Take the president’s recent statement that Republican opponents of his nuclear deal with Iran are making “common cause” with hard-liners in Tehran who chant “Death to America.”
Which Donald J. Trump will show up at Thursday night’s Republican debate in Cleveland?
There’s the Trump who calls the other GOP candidates “clowns” and responds to criticism with schoolyard insults. Then there’s the Trump who last week tweeted about the coming debate: “it is certainly my intention to be very nice & highly respectful of the other candidates.” Mr. Trump seems to have recognized that as the candidate atop the Republican heap, he now will be held to a higher standard than he was as a celebrity polling in low single digits.
On Thursday, Aug. 6, the 2016 presidential race will enter a new and important phase. Ten Republican presidential candidates will step on stage in a prime-time debate in Cleveland sponsored by Fox News and Facebook. The remaining GOP candidates will debate earlier that day. Viewership will be large, giving contenders their best opportunity so far to present their views, values and character to millions of Americans.
Although the event is advertised as a two-hour debate, the large number of candidates ensures that it will feel more like 10 simultaneous news conferences.