Jamelle Bouie

Jamelle Bouie is a staff writer at The American Prospect.

Recent Articles

Pro-"Limited Government" and Pro-Torture.

I'm at the Values Voter Summit, and while waiting for the next speaker I -- along with most of the attendees -- spent a few minutes watching a longer version of this Heritage Foundation video celebrating the Constitution: The video is what you would expect -- sweeping music, interviews with ordinary people, and regular references to "liberty," "rule of law," and "limited constitutional government." By and large, Heritage's central message is that the United States is now on a path of ruin; one of the interviewees -- an older European immigrant -- declares that he has lived under dictators, and Americans don't want that fate. If there's anything ironic about the Heritage message, it's that it comes only two years after almost a decade of pro-Bush cheerleading, where Heritage had nothing but praise for the administration's flagrant disregard for the rule of law. For all its carping about freedom, Heritage had nothing to say when George W. Bush asserted his right to hold detainees...

Short-Term Gain, Long-Term Pain?

"Moderates? I don't need no stinkin' moderates*," says South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint , chairman of the NRSC: "They told me we couldn't win in Pennsylvania with a conservative - Pat Toomey is ahead. They said we couldn't win in Florida with a conservative - Marco Rubio is ahead. They said Rand Paul couldn't be competitive in Kentucky - he's ahead," DeMint said, reeling off the names of conservative Senate candidates he has endorsed. "Everything they said has been wrong. I'm counting on them to be wrong in Delaware." With the exception of Marco Rubio and Pat Toomey -- strong candidates that successfully tied themselves to the Tea Party in its early stages -- Jim DeMint's arch-conservative Senate recruits are incredibly weak candidates. If Sharon Angle were running in a normal election year with average economic growth and a 50/50 public, she would have little hope at beating a sitting incumbent and majority leader to boot. In a year like this, where the fundamentals favor Republicans...

There's More to Winning than Money.

Former eBay CEO Meg Whitman has spent immense sums in her bid to succeed Arnold Schwarzenegger as governor of California, but as Colorlines' Jamilah King reports , it hasn't done her much good in the polls: Whitman also shouldn’t underestimate voters. Despite her massive campaign budget, she’s remained relatively tied with Brown in recent polls. On September 8, Rasmussen Reports found that Whitman only had a three point lead over Brown among likely voters in the state — a margin that was actually five points higher at the end of August. So it actually looks like as Whitman spends more money, the lead is shrinking. I doubt Meg Whitman will lose the election, but if she does, she'll be the latest in a line of self-financed candidates to fail in their electoral bids. As the Center for Responsive Politics found in a recent study, of the 20 top self-funders who competed for the House and Senate, only only six made it through the primaries: Linda McMahon , Carly Fiorina and Ron Johnson for...

A Quick Dose of Election Skepticism.

Daniel Larison , who has an excellent record of predicting election outcomes, isn't convinced that Republicans will win the House in November: Based on CQPolitics’ rankings, available funding and recent polling, I count 25 Democratic House seats that will most likely change hands, 4 Republican House seats (including HI-01) that will become Democratic seats in November, and 16 genuine toss-ups. This doesn’t include FL-25, which is an intriguing and weird race that bears watching and might be an unexpected Democratic pick-up. Even if the Republicans win all of those toss-ups (which is not likely), they will not have enough net seats to take the majority. While I'm mostly sure that John Boehner will be Speaker come January, Larison's skepticism is worth noting; Nate Silver gives Republicans a two-in-three chance of winning the House, which means that Democrats have a one-in-three chance of saving their majority. Those aren't high numbers, but they aren't trifling either, especially in...

"Raise taxes on the rich!" Say a Majority of Americans.

I don't know what the Associated Press has against counting higher numbers, but this is a very annoying headline: "Nearly Half Oppose Tax Hikes for Rich." Here's how the article opens: Almost half the country opposes tax increases for the richest Americans, according to a poll suggesting that congressional Democrats are taking some risk by backing President Barack Obama 's plan to boost levies on the wealthy. Of course, the converse of "nearly half" is "more than half," and the quoted poll -- a new survey by AP-Gfk -- makes this clear. According to the poll, 54 percent of voters support raising taxes on the highest earners, while 44 percent oppose. On the whole, voters aren't thrilled about GOP policies -- period -- and are mostly rewarding Republicans for their success at not being Democrats. Here's my question for the AP's headline writer: Why focus on the plurality that wants the tax cuts, when a much larger majority would rather "soak the rich" in slightly higher marginal tax...

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