Friday, May 3, 2019

The Meaning of the Attacks on Barr

Pelosi targets AG as criminal liar; conservatives claim it’s a smear campaign intended to head off investigations into 2016 FBI actions.

My take: Democrats feel they have no option but to pursue Barr to the ends of the earth. The Wall Street Journal editorial page has yet two pieces Friday claiming this effort is motivated by a desire to neuter Barr’s probe into the origins of the investigation into the Trump campaign and Russia. Beltway media remains transfixed by every twist and turn of Democratic outrage at Barr and rejects the Journal’s thesis. Pelosi and Co. are being applauded for doing what they think is right. But the chances are a lot higher that their pursuit hurts their 2020 chances than that they actually do any damage to the attorney general — let alone force him from office. Barr simply doesn’t care and is experienced enough to know how to decline, delay, and deflect.

Only Mueller Can Speak for Mueller

Hill Democrats try to directly book G-Man of few (spoken) words for testimony.

My take: Team Mueller has proven to be adept at leaking (despite its reputation to the contrary). Now the main question is just how clever Mueller will be when he finally appears on the Hill. It is a near certainty that he will be more cautious in his pronouncements than Democrats would like. The additional questions are, what are Muller’s own goals when he finally speaks and how effective will he be in achieving those goals?

Mind the Gap

Trump’s job approval on the economy is well above his overall approval numbers.

My take: This is why it is essential that the eventual Democratic presidential nominee have a clear theory of the case about how to be a good steward of a good economy. If the party picks someone to go against Trump who is seen as incapable of handling the economy, Trump could win re-election with a historically low job approval rating.

Not a Bumper Sticker

Michael Bennet trumpets entrance into Democratic field with essay that would fill the beds of a pair of Ford pickups.

My take: The Coloradan has fans among the donor class, the Obamas, the Clintons, and his Senate colleagues, but he is going to need a lot of time on the ground in Iowa and New Hampshire to get better known by those voters who don’t read Medium posts.

Biden the Free Trader

Rivals lay in wait over former Veep’s past support for trade deals.

My take: Hillary Clinton hurt herself politically with some in 2016 by walking away from her past backing of trade pacts. Biden will eventually have to demonstrate whether he plans to stand and fight — or shift and explain. Both paths are littered with danger.

14 thoughts on “Friday, May 3, 2019

  1. Hey Mark, great to see you covering politics again! Really miss your show on Bloomberg (WADR); your guys’ commentary was top-notch and highly entertaining.

    Suggestion: start a podcast!

    Best regards

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  2. So glad to see you back, Mark. MJ should have an open seat at the table. I enjoyed today’s analysis. Dems should focus on 2020. Elections have consequences, as they say.

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  3. I think your article is very balanced. It’s refreshing to say the least a rarity in the Information Age today. I watched you on MSNBC a few years ago. I would ask you just one question. Why would you tamper with an economy that has made such a great comeback? From what I have seen the candidates on the left are so extreme in their spin (lies) and haven’t a clue about our economy. Americans want success. We thrive on success not constant change failure high taxation and wasted spending on costly social justice programs that fail time after time. They seem to be stuck in the utopian fantasy of all will be better if everyone pays to fix everyone else. In reality it is never enough and never will be.
    I have a sister who never understood overspending without consequences may feel good in the moment but down the road it set her back further and further as the years went on, She is now 75 and has nothing to call her own. I do not want my country ending up in the same boat. I’m hoping this doesn’t happen to our great country even as we head in a better direction at the moment.
    Independent voter

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