Adele M. Stan

Adele M. Stan is a columnist for The American Prospect. She is research director of People for the American Way, and a winner of the Hillman Prize for Opinion & Analysis Journalism.

Recent Articles

Yes, It Could Happen Here

Right-wing authoritarianism is on the rise around the world—including here. But we’re lulled by the sameness of our everyday lives.

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik President Donald Trump walks across the South Lawn as he arrives at the White House. I n the United States, as in much of the world , democracy is in peril . Regarding the state of the American republic, one need only glance at the Twitter feed of President Donald J. Trump to see how. And if that doesn’t convince, just have a look at what’s going on in the state legislatures of Wisconsin and Michigan, where Republican lawmakers have convened extraordinary lame-duck sessions to clip the wings of incoming Democratic governors and executive branch leaders just ahead of their inaugurations. (More on this from my colleague, Paul Waldman, here .) Going into this week, there was little doubt that today would be a tough day for the president, what with James Comey, the former FBI director fired from that position by Trump, testifying on the Hill, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller expected to drop sentencing memos destined to shed light on aspects of his investigation...

When Liars Start Telling the Truth: Michael Cohen Puts Trump in Peril

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer Michael Cohen, former personal lawyer to President Donald Trump, leaves federal court in New York. W hen your whole political career is built on a pack of lies, it is imperative that those who surround you be reading from the same page of the lie book. In this regard, President Donald J. Trump has often fared quite well, beginning with then-Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s defense of the president’s made-up figures for crowd attendance at his inauguration (the biggest ever), or White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway’s concoction of the phrase “ alternative facts .” That’s what Michael Cohen, who served for decades as Trump’s personal lawyer, said he was doing when he testified before Congress that, by January 2016, Trump had stopped pursuing a deal in Moscow to build a new Trump Tower there. In court yesterday, according to The New York Times , Cohen explained, “I made these statements to be consistent with” Trump’s “political messaging.” But now Cohen is singing a...

Facebook Anti-Soros Campaign Treated Hate Like Just Another Political Position

Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire URN:39829962/Press Association via AP Images O n the evening before Thanksgiving, as reporters and senators and members of Congress were traveling to family gatherings, Facebook quietly issued a statement in which its executives admitted that the tech giant had hired Definers, LLP, described as a “dirty tricks” public-relations firm, to smear the philanthropist and financier George Soros. The statement was issued after weeks of denials by Facebook leaders, who had previously claimed that the blockbuster New York Times story that broke the news of the anti-Soros campaign was riddled with inaccuracies. The hiring of Definers was apparently prompted by a speech delivered by Soros at the 2018 Davos Economic Forum, in which he decried the monopolization of tech platforms—particularly Facebook and Google—as a threat to democracy. In a long critique of the structure and nature of social media and other internet platforms, Soros said : The internet monopolies have...

Stacey Abrams Could Be Dems’ Best Hope for Winning in 2020

Alyssa Pointer/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams makes remarks during a press conference at the Abrams Headquarters in Atlanta. O n November 16, one of the most extraordinary political speeches in American history was delivered, when Stacey Abrams, the Democratic nominee in Georgia’s gubernatorial race, acknowledged that her opponent would be the Peach State’s next governor, but refused to concede that she had lost the race. “To be clear,” she told supporters, “this is not a speech of concession.Concession means to acknowledge an action is right, true or proper. As a woman of conscience and faith, I cannot concede. But my assessment is that the law currently allows no further viable remedy.” For years, Abrams has been fighting the state’s systematic disenfranchisement of voters—most of them African American—at the hands of Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, the very man who was claiming victory over her in the race for governor...

The Constitution Is on the Ballot

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci) Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Columbia Regional Airport, in Missouri on November 1, 2018. P resident Donald J. Trump wants you to believe that this election is all about him. And in a sense, it is. If Democrats take back either or both chambers of Congress, they can thwart the president’s agenda. It’s an agenda that requires thwarting if the republic is to be preserved. This week, the president made clear his willingness to disregard the Constitution of the United States, claiming he can override any provisions he doesn’t care for with a simple stroke of the pen. At present issue is the 14th Amendment, which confers citizenship on all who are born in the United States. Pundits have labeled this latest Trumpian gambit as a campaign “stunt”—the kind of promise that will evaporate, as if it were never made, after Tuesday’s midterm elections. They note the requirement of yet another constitutional amendment—a rightfully heavy procedural lift—to...

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