Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Go Big Or Go Home


By John Feehery

US Capitol east side.JPG

“US Capitol east side” by Martin Falbisoner – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

(This originally appeared in the Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank)

When it comes to trade legislation, policy makers can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The Senate is expected to finish with the Trans-Pacific Partnership and related bills soon; the House is likely to do so by July 4.

Getting to the finish line will involve a lot of horse-trading and maneuvering–political blood, sweat, and tears. I predict that Congress will give the president a big victory by passing TPP. (more…)

Amtrak: Status Quo is Not Acceptable


By John Feehery

Amtrak - GE P42DC - Heritage Phase III Livery.JPG

“Amtrak – GE P42DC – Heritage Phase III Livery” by Braniff747SP – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Mike Simpson was right, of course.

The Idaho Republican told the Appropriations Committee Democrats that their efforts to politicize the Amtrak train crash were inappropriate and out of order.

We don’t know what caused the horrific crash. We don’t know if it was engineer error, sabotage, equipment malfunction or just system incompetence.

Unfortunately, Republicans made it easy for the Democrats to demagogue the issue. (more…)

The Toughest Vote


By John Feehery

Jim DeMint by Gage Skidmore 2.jpg

“Jim DeMint by Gage Skidmore 2″ by Gage Skidmore. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Robin Hayes openly wept on the House Floor after voting to give President Bush fast track authority late in 2001.  He thought the vote in favor TPA would cost him his seat.

He wasn’t the only one.

Many folks cried when Republicans passed TPA at President Bush’s request, but many shed only crocodile tears, hoping upon hope to get political and other help from the White House and the GOP Leadership. (more…)

Jim Wright: Leaving a Mark


By John Feehery

Speaker Jim Wright of Texas.jpg

“Speaker Jim Wright of Texas” by Photographer not credited. – Image courtesy of Office of the Clerk, U.S. House of Representatives. Via Office of the Clerk, U.S. House of Representatives website at [1]. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Jim Wright left a mark.

I came to Washington to work for House Republican Leader Bob Michel in September of 1989, about four months after the Texas Democrat stepped down in disgrace.

Wright had run roughshod over the House Minority, radicalizing Members like Dick Cheney, and empowering bomb-throwers like Newt Gingrich. (more…)

Scandals Alone Won’t Stop Clinton


By John Feehery


“120214-D-TT977-225″ by Secretary of Defense – Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

(This originally appeared in The Hill)

There’s no way that draft-dodger is going to beat the president.”

I made that bold prediction at a rehearsal dinner a few months before the 1992 election, and I was convinced that the scandals that had plagued Bill Clinton would disqualify him in the eyes of the American people.

Others took a different view. The economy had lackluster growth, President George H.W. Bush seemed disinterested in a domestic agenda and Clinton seemed young and energetic. (more…)


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