Why conservatives shouldn’t want Paul Ryan to be House Speaker

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI). Official portrait.

After Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy announced he wouldn’t run for Speaker of the House, some in his caucus cried. The upheaval and chaos was just too much. Now some conservatives say they want Paul Ryan to be the next Speaker, with Ryan reluctant to take on the position. That would be a huge mistake for […]

Will the Republicans who would be speaker choose to govern?

John Boehner may have cried publicly more often than most speakers of the U.S. House of Representatives, but he had no tears the day he revealed he would be stepping down from his lofty position and resigning from Congress. Republican dislike for governing got so bad it drove out the sitting speaker, who actually sang […]

How much do Maine people want to fund Planned Parenthood?

Maine poll by Hart Research Associates

National data show strong support for funding Planned Parenthood, but what do Maine people think? A new poll from Hart Research demonstrates that Mainers want the group to receive federal funds. [You can see details about the poll’s sample and methodology below.] Not only do 70% oppose defunding Planned Parenthood, but 55% strongly oppose defunding. A […]

How the LePage food stamp asset test actually hurts students, opportunity


In answering critics of the food stamp asset test, the LePage administration shows it’s either misinformed or misleading people about the policy’s impact on college students. Yesterday DHHS spokesperson Sam Adolphsen hit back at a BDN editorial which pointed out that the new rule would undermine people’s ability to climb out of poverty. As part […]

With Trumpism, Republicans are reaping what they sowed

Republican pundits have been beside themselves about the rise of Donald Trump. Charles Krauthammer proclaimed that Trump’s candidacy “will damage the [Republican] party” because Trump isn’t a “serious” candidate. George Will said Trump was an “affront” to those focused on “making conservatism intellectually respectable and politically palatable.” Bill Kristol even said that he would support […]

Why Trump’s response to “Obama is a Muslim” sadly is not surprising

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011. Photo credit: Gage Skidmore (Creative Commons)

Yesterday in New Hampshire, Donald Trump was asked a question by a man who directly said that President Obama is a Muslim and not an American. Per CNN: “We have a problem in this country. It’s called Muslims,” an unidentified man who spoke at a question-and-answer town hall event in Rochester, New Hampshire asked the […]

Will any GOP candidates dare to say what Reagan thought of immigrants?

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Tonight the Republican presidential candidates will debate at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, and it goes without saying the former president will be invoked over and over again. Reagan’s the Great Man of modern American conservatism. Heck, anti-tax activist Grover Norquist even started an organization, the Ronald Reagan Legacy Project to get things named after […]

It’s been the summer of Jeb and Donald, Hillary and Bernie

When, a few years ago, Barbara Bush said, “We’ve had enough Bushes in the White House,” perhaps she was expressing a mother’s worry that what’s happening to Jeb Bush right now would happen. After being proclaimed the frontrunner for the Republican nomination and raising a stunning amount of money — $114 million in the first […]

Which presidential candidate is seen most unfavorably? Not Hillary Clinton

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Amidst all the different questions asked about presidential candidates, this last summer the media seemed drawn to the one that asks if a candidate is seen favorably or unfavorably. And there’s been a huge amount of press about Hillary Clinton’s favorables falling, even as she leads in nearly all nomination and general election polls. So […]