By Reed Galen

In cities across America we’ve seen an innocent man murdered, protests, destruction, and police out of control. What we haven’t seen is any sense of unity or leadership from the President of the United States. Instead, he’s offered racist slogans, imagery from 1960s segregation protests, and now the threat of martial law, to handle continuing unrest.

Donald Trump is at his most dangerous when he feels weakest. Friday night saw him hustled from the White House to the Presidential Emergency Operations Center — a bunker located deep underground. As cities burned, and marchers chanted on Pennsylvania Avenue…


The Picture of Dorian Gray

by Reed Galen

First things first: I grew up as, and remained, a proud moderate Republican up until 2016. I proudly wore the badge of “RINO” as I thought it a silly insult by a bunch of folks who didn’t win many elections. The candidates they did elect tended to wear tinfoil hats on the floor of the US House.

The word “conservative” in American politics doesn’t mean what it once did. The term “Republican” doesn’t either, for that matter. For a time, they were separate and distinct states of being. One could be a conservative who tended to vote…


Rep. Elise Stefanik’s sudden dive this month into an empty MAGA swimming pool isn’t symptomatic, it’s revelatory.

A former staffer in President George W. Bush’s White House, Stefanik was seen as a new breed of Republican politician: one who would transcend the worsening trends for Republicans among women, young people and moderates. In 2014 she won in her sprawling rural swing district in northern New York with 53% of the vote. Two years later, she won with 65% and President Donald Trump swept the district by 13.7 percentage points.

Stefanik is one of many young American conservatives revealing their stripes…


Courtesy, NBC News.

by Reed Galen

Running for President of the United States is a crucible. The most difficult, degrading, unwinding political process to which an American can subject themselves. And after Wednesday night’s Democratic primary debate in Atlanta, it shows.

Given the current occupant of the White House, it’s easy to understand why the 10 candidates on stage want to display a fiery resolve, a gravitas worthy of the office and seriousness about both their experience and their plans to solve America. But wow — what a snoozefest.

While there were a few dust-ups between the candidates, most of the field suffered…


by Reed Galen

Last week, I had the opportunity to participate in a discussion with Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang on Karen Hunter’s SiriusXM program. I’ve been through three presidential campaigns, attended more rallies and townhalls I can count, and dealt with myriad candidates. What struck me most about Yang was how easily and often his expression ran to a smile. Running for president, no secret, is the most brutal and consequential contest in human politics. The crucible does not create character, it is revelatory of it. On that front alone, Yang is a winner.

I believe Yang’s demeanor is…


by Reed Galen

In two weeks the Democratic presidential field will gather in Atlanta for its next debate. As the requirements for inclusion ratchet up and the time until the Iowa caucuses shrinks, candidates will sharpen their appeals — and their attacks.

The pair to watch, Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, share many traits. Both are New England-based progressives, outspoken opponents of centralized corporate power and wealth, and candidates who sincerely believe government can and should play a larger role in the lives of Americans.

In the parlance of politics, they occupy the same “lane.” Sooner than later, their…


By Reed Galen

Is Tulsi Gabbard an asset of the Russian foreign intelligence service? No one knows, and frankly it doesn’t matter. In the pantheon of presidential candidates there are winners, also-rans and never-gonna-bes. Gabbard fits firmly into the third category.

Which is why it all the more fascinating, frustrating and befuddling why we’re now a week into the Tulsi and Hillary show. …


Courtesy Reuters/Shannon Stapleton

by Reed Galen

The only real winners tonight were the Washington Nationals (Congrats Pops.)

But here’s my too-long recap anyway.

Mayor Pete had his best night. He went after front runner Elizabeth Warren with both style and substance while fending off glancing blows from Tulsi Gabbard and Beto O’Rourke. Most importantly, he sounded like an actual human being.

Warren is learning what it means to be in the lead: It’s all fun and games until you get to the next debate, your signature idea is really someone else’s and half the field is teeing off on you for it.

Senator…


Courtesy Francisco Kjolseth/Salt Lake Tribune

by Reed Galen

As President Donald Trump begins his latest month in the midst of a political hurricane of his own creation, there have been no shortage of articles, blog posts and op-eds by columnists, former Republicans and Never Trumpers proclaiming “now is the time” for GOP leaders to stand up to the president and do what’s right for the country.

The vast majority of this writing takes place in the opinion pages of the Washington Post, New York Times and other Washington, elite-oriented publications. One could walk from Midtown Manhattan to Pennsylvania Avenue atop these pages and never touch…


by Reed Galen

Last night in Houston, Texas 10 Democratic presidential aspirants took the stage for a three hour gauntlet of policy, well-rehearsed lines and unexpected sniping. It was generally miserable for anyone watching.

Surprisingly, for a group this large, most of the candidates played their parts. Bernie was Bernie. Elizabeth Warren was her most Elizabeth Warreny. Joe Biden held serve against most of the progressive wing of the field, particularly Julian Castro, whose attack on Uncle Joe’s age had all the subtlety of a meat axe.

Interestingly, last night was a good example of the Establishment Democrats, in the…

Reed Galen

Independent political consultant. Veteran of three presidential campaigns; too many others to count.

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