ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles in the "Politicians" Category

On Wisconsin

[ Posted Tuesday, April 7th, 2020 – 16:37 UTC ]

In the admittedly sophomoric fashion of headline creation, today we do not cheer: "On, Wisconsin!", but rather approach the state from the point of dealing with a tricky subject to address, in the style of: "On The Subject Of...". The reasons are pretty obvious (not to... ahem... badger the point), since the primary election they're holding today simply should not have been held right now, seeing as how we're all still in the depths of a medical crisis which demands as stringent social distancing as possible. But Republicans have successfully demanded that people risk death to cast a ballot, so (sadly) here we are.

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Time For Some Republican-Shaming

[ Posted Monday, April 6th, 2020 – 16:39 UTC ]

Suddenly, it's all out in the open. A fight which Republicans have been waging (and mostly winning) in the background for the past two or three decades is about to move to the center ring of American politics. Because of the stance Republicans have taken, they've now painted themselves into a corner -- and by doing so have given the Democrats an enormous political gift. It remains to be seen if the Democrats realize how politically potent an issue this could be, if properly handled. They could always blow the opportunity, of course. But if they start banging the drum now, they can either cause the Republicans to back down (out of shame) or pay a political price in November, up and down the ballot. Because the issue really is that potent. Here is the nutshell version: "Republicans don't want you to vote. Democrats want everyone to safely and securely have their vote counted."

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Friday Talking Points -- Down The Memory Hole

[ Posted Friday, April 3rd, 2020 – 18:15 UTC ]

From time to time, we occasionally use the word "Orwellian" in our writing, usually to describe some governmental action or individual who seems to have stepped straight out of George Orwell's classic dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four. Today, this term seems more appropriate than perhaps any other time we've ever been moved to use it. You be the judge. Here is the original text from the novel, explaining the protagonist Winston Smith's use of "memory holes" at the Ministry of Truth:

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April Is The Cruelest Month

[ Posted Wednesday, April 1st, 2020 – 16:35 UTC ]

"April is the cruelest month" begins T. S. Eliot's famous poem "The Waste Land," which is why it seems particularly appropriate to quote right now. You'll doubtless be hearing this line again throughout the month, for obvious reasons. But while contemplating the impact of the coronavirus pandemic during April is indeed beyond sobering, what we should all be hoping for is that Eliot's line does indeed prove prophetic. Because the alternative is even worse -- that April will only be a preamble to even worse news in May and beyond.

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Can Democrats Flip The Senate?

[ Posted Tuesday, March 31st, 2020 – 16:54 UTC ]

It's tough to focus on politics right now, in the middle of a viral pandemic that is sweeping the country. But it's also necessary to step away from the coronavirus news from time to time, so I thought it might be useful to take a look today at where the race for control of the Senate stands.

The current makeup of the Senate is 53 Republicans, 45 Democrats, and two Independents who caucus with the Democrats. This means to wrest control away from the GOP, Democrats will have to pick up at least three seats if Democrats win the White House, or four if Trump wins a second term. Luckily for them, the map is a lot more friendly to Democratic chances than it was in the last cycle. Only a third of the Senate is up for re-election in any one election, but the makeup of that third is crucial -- and this time it will mostly be Republicans playing defense, not Democrats.

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Why Is California Doing So Well?

[ Posted Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 16:53 UTC ]

It might sound like a strange question, coming from a Californian, but I do have to wonder why California seems to be doing so well in fighting off the coronavirus pandemic, compared to other states. If this is a real difference, it would behoove others to study why we've been so successful, but there is another possibility -- that we just haven't realized how hard we've been hit yet. Either way, the question of why we're doing so well would seem to be an important one to answer.

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Friday Talking Points -- We're Number One (Hundred Thousand)!

[ Posted Friday, March 27th, 2020 – 18:12 UTC ]

We're number one! Well... number one hundred thousand and climbing, at any rate....

Yesterday, the United States of America took the lead on the world stage, but not in a good way. We're now the most-infected nation on the planet, and are now the number one epicenter of the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak. Today, the number of cases in this country surpassed 100,000 -- a grim milestone indeed. We still have a ways to go before we are the country with the most deaths from the disease, but at the rate we're going that won't be long either.

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Don't Forget The Lag Time

[ Posted Wednesday, March 25th, 2020 – 16:32 UTC ]

Tracking the spread of the coronavirus is tough to do on a real-time basis because of several inherent instabilities in the data, and also because of the built-in lag time. We'd all do well to remember this in the next few weeks, when considering when lifting all the social distancing restrictions. President Trump is already leading the charge to get the country back to normal, so this pressure is obviously only going to grow.

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Five Million Tests? Where Are They, Mister Vice President?

[ Posted Tuesday, March 24th, 2020 – 17:10 UTC ]

President Donald Trump is well known for flat-out lying to the American public. Indeed, he does it so often it has become a defining trait. But what hasn't gotten a lot of attention in the whole White House coronavirus crisis response fiasco is how much Mike Pence is also lying to us all, on the specific issue of the availability of coronavirus tests. We haven't even gotten close to the point where Pence promised us all we'd be at eleven days ago, in fact -- which shows the true magnitude of his lies. In fact, we're only a little over five percent of the way there (from numbers provided by Mike Pence himself, mind you).

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How About A Rent And Mortgage Holiday?

[ Posted Monday, March 23rd, 2020 – 15:48 UTC ]

I am not a macroeconomist. In fact, I am not an economist of any type whatsoever. I begin with these admissions because what I'm about to write is probably wrong in some major way, and/or impossible to accomplish, and/or would have some sort of counterproductive effect that I just haven't thought about. In other words, any real economist could probably shoot this idea full of holes without even breaking a sweat. But I feel I have to at least toss it out there for the purposes of discussion.

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