Tag: White House

How’s the Trump presidency faring and what’s its effect on “Victorian Reagan conservatives” and the political chattering class? Hugh Hewitt, a conservative talk-radio and MSNBC host (not to mention the recipient of several Trump barbs as a 2016 GOP debate host), weighs in on the good, the bad and the ugly of Trump’s reign.

Donald Trump’s rallies with the Rolling Stone’s “You Can’t Always Get What You Want, But If You Try Sometimes, You Get What You Need.” Is that the prevailing conservative attitude 14 months into his presidency? Rich Lowry, editor of The National Review, discusses the right’s complicated relationship with a President who both delivers for and confounds the Republican base, but do they get what they need?

Did you like the show? Please rate, review, and subscribe!

Breaking: Hope Hicks Resigns WH Post


White House communications director Hope Hicks, one of candidate and President Trump’s longest-serving advisers, has announced that she will leave the administration. From the New York Times:

Ms. Hicks had been considering leaving for several months. She told colleagues that she had accomplished what she felt she could with a job that made her one of the most powerful people in Washington, and that there would never be a perfect moment to leave, according to White House aides.

Her resignation came a day after she testified for eight hours before the House Intelligence Committee, telling the panel that in her job, she had occasionally been required to tell white lies but had never lied about anything connected to the investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.

Ordinarily, the second-place finisher in a presidential election doesn’t have a second political act. But the times aren’t ordinary and Mitt Romney, the 2012 GOP nominee, is now a US Senate candidate in Utah. Hoover research fellow Lanhee Chen, Romney’s 2012 policy director, discusses what compelled his former boss to make the run and whether Romney will be a Trump White House ally or nemesis.

Member Post


As a lot of the Ricochetti know, I continue to desire to be a great writer and thinker, like a Roger Scruton (of course, I don’t think I will ever get to this philosopher’s level) .  I have a long way to go.  I would love to make a living off of writing or, at least, […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Just how horrible was Hurricane Harvey? We’ve got the numbers.

It’s DACA Day for Donald Trump. Will he keep his campaign promise to overturn Obama’s illegal executive order, or will he listen to his heart?

Member Post


I just found out that Gorka resigned from his position as Trump’s Deputy Assistant.  But as I wrote about Bannon’s resignation, there is no shock value to this taking place today.  Bannon and Gorka had and hold a shared vision for Trump’s Make America Great Again and Gorka also contributed to Breitbart, where Bannon also […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

What Is the Purpose of Really Dumb Political Stunts?


Someone flew a giant inflatable chicken with Trump hair next to the White House.

I’m not sure why someone flew a giant inflatable chicken with Trump hair next to the White House, but apparently it made an important political statement. Perhaps something about animal rights, vegetarianism, or the importance of free-range conditions. Or that Trump is chicken for not doing something that the balloon owners want him to do. Maybe a basic cable channel is premiering a show that has something to do with flying poultry.

Regardless, the picture was passed around social media by people thinking it was a “sick burn,” as the kids liked to say a decade ago. But, as with most silly protests, I was left with a simple question: Why?

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America approve of White House Chief of Staff, John Kelly, firing Anthony Scaramucci, who Jim asserts was simply wrong for the job. They also condemn Nicolas Maduro for tightening his hold on Venezuela as a sham election gives him the power to replace representatives of the opposition-controlled legislature.  Jim and Greg mock Dr. Jill Stein, the Green Party’s presidential candidate in 2016, for her ridiculous comments made to MSNBC that North Korea is threatening the US because we “cornered them into feeling like they have to develop a nuclear weapon.”

Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for August 1, 2017 it’s the Summer’s Almost Ov…. oops, I mean it’s the Scaramucci Does the Fandango edition of the podcast with your hosts Todd Feinburg and Mike Stopa.

Our topics today range from absurdity to armageddon, from Springtime for Kelly to Nuclear Winter for Kim.

Presidential Chaos


The Trump White House is in a perpetual state of dysfunction and chaos. Trump kicked off the past week with a series of attacks on Jeff Sessions, his Attorney General and long-time loyalist, for recusing himself from the ongoing investigation of Russia’s interference with the 2016 election. There are tricky arguments, pro and con, on whether Sessions should have removed himself the investigation. But nothing can excuse Trump’s barrage of immature and abusive tweets against a key member of his own team. The upshot is an impasse in which Sessions cannot resign and Trump dare not fire him.

The President followed his Sessions tirade with an ill-considered tweet haphazardly announcing a ban on transgender people serving in the military, which everyone from a blindsided James Mattis on down regarded as a gratuitous insult to many transgender soldiers who have served with distinction. His tweet of course carries no legal consequence, but it puts everyone in government in limbo until the President either issues that foolish order or is, once again, talked off the ledge by his few remaining sensible advisors.

Then Trump appointed the pugnacious and vulgar Anthony Scaramucci as his communications director, who gave a profanity-laced interview with the New Yorker’s Ryan Lizza before being ousted from his role at the urging of Trump’s new Chief of Staff, John Kelly. Still, Scaramucci’s appointment was a major disruption. It set in motion the resignation of Trump’s beleaguered Press Secretary Sean Spicer and the sacking of Reince Priebus as Chief of Staff. We can expect more speeches like Trump’s over-the-top political diatribe at the Boy Scouts jamboree, which prompted Michael Surbaugh, the Scout’s CEO, to issue an apology to the boy scouts and their families for the President’s misbehavior.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America show optimism that new White House Chief of Staff John Kelly will bring stability and focus to the Trump administration. They also criticize Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski for her refusal to answer a question about why she did not vote for the repeal of Obamacare even though she voted in favor of repeal in 2015. And they react to Maryland Rep. John Delaney announcing his candidacy for the Democratic Party’s nomination for president in 2020, right after they figure out who he is.

Welcome to Politics as Theater


It’s not so rare that politics turns into dreaming dreams of revenge–and dreams of monsters. Newly-acquired power is intoxicating rather than edifying or instructive. Things get in the way of getting what you want and that encourages revengeful action. The solidity — or at least viscosity — of political life is almost unbearable. The more you want to change things the harder it gets, it seems. What do the supporters of the current president or administration have but anger at their opponents, who are either invisible or too many to count? Politics for supporters of the president looks like an endless series of the same two choices: Shout in anger at people you want to destroy or give up on politics in disgust.

So also with those who are afraid of the power they themselves or their allies no longer wield: They begin to see monsters lurking in every change. The boundaries of reality are an unsteady bulwark against nightmares. You never know what’s coming. You only know that you’re not in control. The unprecedented vulgarity of the administration and its talking puppets humiliates the proud architecture of D.C. and the usual decorations that feed the American pride in America and the way things used to be. By itself, that announces unfathomable changes. Politicians in D.C. still wear suits, but might turn to demotic habits at any point now, it seems. The conventions and politeness of politics now seem shattered, humiliated.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America celebrate the liberation of Mosul from ISIS control and the tightening of the noose around ISIS in Syria as well. They also discuss reports that former FBI Director James Comey’s memos on conversations with President Trump contain classified information. And they lightheartedly critique Donald Trump Jr.’s account of a fruitless meeting between top Trump campaign officials and a Russian lawyer who claimed to have dirt on Hillary Clinton but really wanted to talk about adoption policy.

Member Post


Prometheus Americus Watching Trump, a political neophyte, exhorting the forgotten with stolen memories from a golden age, unschooled in the Machiavellian DC art of dissembling, tweeting all night while the failing world sleeps, taking on all comers foreign and domestic with no hesitation, an angry reptile now caged by the God of establishment, tail swirling […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Organizing the White House: Trump Getting it Right


In all the stories about Republicans and conservatives lauding President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet picks – even as Democrats go scalp hunting – one surprising fact has escaped partisan and media attention: This may be the most shrewdly organized entering White House since Ronald Reagan’s. To see why, look at the history of the top inside position, chief of staff.

Starting with Franklin Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower, there developed separate Democratic and Republican ways of organizing the White House. Democrats preferred the FDR model in which cabinet members and senior staff enjoyed more or less direct access to the president. Republicans followed Ike’s example and had a strong chief of staff who controlled the all flow of people and information in and out the Oval Office.

As a result, Democratic administrations gained reputations as unruly free-for-alls, Republican ones as disciplined and efficient. But from Eisenhower’s Sherman Adams to George H.W. Bush’s John Sununu and even George W. Bush’s Andrew Card, most GOP chiefs of staff left their posts to one degree or another under a cloud, invited to leave if not publicly forced out.

One need not look further than Donald Trump’s ascendancy to the top of the GOP candidate heap to know that Americans have become disillusioned with the political establishment. James Piereson takes a look at previous political ‘revolutions’ that have already taken place in this country. Piereson tells us that another is on its way. His latest book, Shattered Consensus, is a masterwork of historical and political analysis and should not be missed. On a positive note, Piereson is not another crying out from the wilderness that America will fall. On the contrary, he believes that any current political turmoil is a precursor to another period of growth for the nation.