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Donald Trump’s Taxpayer First Budget

Presidential budgets are political statements. A few are designed to set out a negotiating position, to pull members of both parties closer to the White House’s view of how the government should be spending the taxpayers money. Most are simply statements of political priorities, attempts at making policy points that the president feels are important or often overlooked. President Trump’s budget melds both of these concepts to make a powerful point: We can’t have it all. Notably, this is the exact opposite message that President Obama used his budgets to promote. Take, for instance, this Washington Post commentary on Obama’s…

Trump’s Anti-Terror Speech Couldn’t Have Come at a Better Time

President Donald Trump sent two concordant messages to the Middle East this week. First, for only the second time in the history of the Syrian civil war, Trump ordered American warplanes to intentionally attack Iranian proxies working to foment continued unrest. Second, Trump gave a well-received speech in Saudi Arabia, using support for Muslim governments to be more active in the fight against terrorism and extremism. The dichotomy offered a powerful message to extremists, as well as allies: The United States is not afraid to show force in the region, but also hopes that it can exist to support—not lead—efforts…

Are Democrats Pro-Tax Reform? Depends on the Year

There is a phenomenon in physics whereby the mere act of observing an event changes the outcome. This is perhaps most pronounced in the debate over whether light was composed of particles, which travel in a straight line, or waves, which travel in undulating ripples. Experiments have proven that when electrons are not observed, they behave as waves, but once an observer begins to watch the electrons they behave like particles. There is a similar effect when it comes to Democrats and tax reform. When Democrats know that their voters aren’t watching, they discuss the necessity of tax reform and…

Tax Reform Debate Should Focus on Growing the Economy

This post will not be popular. Let’s get that out of the way at the beginning. The United States, like much of the developed world, is enjoying a populist moment, when the economic frustrations of those who feel left behind are bubbling up into our political system. And yet this is a post that isn’t focused on blue collar workers, or the Rust Belt, or the rural areas that have felt the negative impacts of globalism, mechanization or technology. Instead, it’s a post about misperceptions about the progressivity of the tax code. In some ways it is a defense of…

Mello’s Loss is the Latest Casualty in Democrat’s Civil War

“Are you ready for a political revolution?” a fiery Bernie Sanders asked at a rally in Omaha while campaigning for Heath Mello in the race for Omaha mayor. The answer, was no. Despite national attention and the personal interest of Sanders, who has become a figurehead for the activist left, Mello was defeated by Republican Jean Stothert by 9 points. It was yet another miss for Democrats, who are now 0-3 in high-profile, post-inauguration elections despite throwing vast amounts of resources into them. In some ways this one hurts the most. If Democrats can’t build their anti-Trump momentum in a…

Democrats’ Broke the Health Care System, Now They’re Lying to Keep it That Way

Obamacare was a bill built on lies so it’s fitting that Democrats must now turn to lies to keep their signature legislative accomplishment afloat. Given the law’s slow-motion self-destruction, it’s easy to forget the lengths that President Obama went to in order to get the bill over the finish line. “If you like your health car plan, you can keep it.” “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.” “I will not sign a plan that adds one dime to our deficits.” “I will sign a universal health care bill…that will cover every American and cut the costs…

Democrats Are Exacerbating, Not Fixing Their Internal Problems

There is something supremely telling in the fact that the Democratic Party is going to extreme lengths to hide the results of its post-election autopsy. Despite languishing in a historic nadir of power, having lost the House of Representatives, the Senate, the presidency, and countless state legislative and gubernatorial seats, Democrats simply refuse to admit they have a serious problem. Politico’s Heather Caygle and John Bresnahan report about House Democrats’ attempt to cover up their autopsy: House Democrats are going to extreme lengths to conceal a report on the party’s problems. After nearly five months, Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.)…

Obamacare’s Bad Deal for Young Adults Led to Its Demise

Republicans didn’t kill Obamacare. Young adults killed Obamacare. Many readers are sure to question that provocative statement, so let’s unpack it a bit. The first thing we have to understand is that demographics matter a lot when it comes to insurance. Insurance only works when there are enough low cost, healthy people in the “risk pool” to offset the high cost, chronically ill people. Put another way, the lucky are asked to subsidize the unfortunate. If there are too few healthy people, then the underlying costs of insurance become too high, and the risk-reward of going uninsured too good, which…

Crisis Averted, Promise Fulfilled. Obamacare is No More

Republicans control the House of Representatives, the Senate and the White House for one simple reason: They promised to repeal and replace Obamacare. Today was the first step in fulfilling that fundamental promise. There are certainly easier promises that Republicans could have made. Health care is complex, both when it comes to policy and politics, and any reform plan is inevitable to create some perceived winners and losers. And honestly, Republicans probably didn’t have to proactively do anything. The system that Democrats created was doomed to fail. Each of the last three years we have been met with myriad headlines…

Even By the Flawed “100 Days” Rubric, Trump is a Success

In case you’ve missed the million or so stories on the topic, Donald Trump has been president for 100 days. This, we are told by historians and political analysts, is a critical benchmark by which we can judge President Trump’s performance against his predecessors. In reality, it’s a dumb conceit that tells us little other than that society likes round numbers. The originator of the First 100 Days gimmick was Franklin Delano Roosvelt, who used it to great political advantage. The problem, as Jonah Goldberg writes for National Review, is that the conceit has now become a cult that highlights…