Mary Lynn Jones

Mary Lynn F. Jones is a Washington-based writer. Her work has also appeared in The Chicago Tribune, National
Journal
, the Washington Business Journal and Barron's Guide to the Most
Competitive Colleges
. A native Washingtonian, Jones has been a regular
political commentator for WMAL-AM and has made numerous radio and television
appearances, including on National Public Radio's "Talk of the Nation"
and Fox
News Channel. Mary Lynn received her master's degree in journalism from
Columbia University and her bachelor's degree from Wellesley College.

Recent Articles

Hard Money, Harder Races

Like retired Gen. Wesley Clark and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), two-time presidential candidate and former Sen. Gary Hart (D-Colo.) is expected to make national security a centerpiece of any possible White House campaign. The 66-year-old Hart -- who predicted terrorist strikes against the United States before September 11 and has argued that waging war against Iraq could lead to further attacks -- is giving a number of speeches in Iowa, New York, Massachusetts and California on foreign policy and defense, as well as the economy, to see how much interest there is in him staging a campaign. He's said he'll decide by April whether to enter the race, and he already has a Web site up and running ( www.garyhartnews.com ). In a recent speech before the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, Hart said the White House should focus less on national missile defense and more on human intelligence, and that it must address the circumstances that lead people to resort to terrorism rather than...

Health Class

It may have made big news on Tuesday, but Sen. John Kerry's (D-Mass.) disclosure that he has prostate cancer isn't likely to be a major story throughout the 2004 presidential campaign. Of course, his press conference drew live coverage on CNN, and anytime a candidate for the White House makes a big announcement, the media tune in. Americans are particularly interested in learning about the health of presidential candidates -- think Paul Tsongas in 1992, Bob Dole in 1996 and vice presidential nominee Dick Cheney in 2000. (Or even fictional candidates: On The West Wing , the president's failure to disclose during his first run for the White House that he had multiple sclerosis has been a major theme of the show.) We worry because we know what the stresses of the presidency can do to a person. Look at George W. Bush. He's a physically fit and seemingly healthy man, but his hair isn't the same color today as when he entered the White House a little more than two years ago. As Ross Baker,...

Gary Hart's Comeback

Like retired Gen. Wesley Clark and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), two-time presidential candidate and former Sen. Gary Hart (D-Colo.) is expected to make national security a centerpiece of any possible White House campaign. The 66-year-old Hart -- who predicted terrorist strikes against the United States before September 11 and has argued that waging war against Iraq could lead to further attacks -- is giving a number of speeches in Iowa, New York, Massachusetts and California on foreign policy and defense, as well as the economy, to see how much interest there is in him staging a campaign. He's said he'll decide by April whether to enter the race, and he already has a Web site up and running ( www.garyhartnews.com ). In a recent speech before the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, Hart said the White House should focus less on national missile defense and more on human intelligence, and that it must address the circumstances that lead people to resort to terrorism rather than...

Name Game

Teresa Heinz did a curious thing last week. The wife of Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), a White House hopeful, changed her name to Teresa Heinz Kerry. Her husband's campaign did not deny that the move was motivated not by love but by political necessity. "There were political people who were advising the senator who were concerned it would be confusing," Heinz's spokeswoman Chris Black told The Boston Globe . Heinz will continue to use Heinz as her last name in her personal and professional life; it will change only in the context of her husband's campaign. Such a move is troubling for several reasons. Why can't a woman spouse keep her own name in politics? Voters will know that the two are married; heavy media coverage of the campaign will take care of that. And it's not as if voters aren't used to the idea of women keeping their maiden names or names from other husbands. It's certainly OK for women officeholders -- just think of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), whose husband is Frank...

Gone Fishing

It's only January 2003, but by this point, Democrats can safely guess that their next presidential nominee will come from the pool of candidates who have already announced interest in seeking the White House: Sens. John Edwards (D-N.C.), John Kerry (D-Mass.), Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.), former House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt (D-Mo.), former Gov. Howard Dean (D-Vt.) and the Rev. Al Sharpton. And if you think it's a little early for the field to be complete, you're not alone. Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.), who sought the party's nomination in 1988 and is currently contemplating another bid, said on Hardball recently, "Maybe by the time I think I can do my duty and run, it may be too late." What's happened is that the presidential nominating process has gotten so front-loaded that, in a little more than 12 months, we're likely to know who the party's nominee is. The tentative date for the Iowa caucus is Jan. 19, 2004, with New Hampshire's primary on Jan. 27 and the South Carolina and...

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