Kari Lake’s ‘Perfect Answer on Abortion’
Plus, Tim Ryan’s Alpha Maneuver.
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BILL LUEDERS: Kari Lake’s ‘Perfect Answer on Abortion’
An email arrived in my inbox the other day from the Alliance for Free Citizens, a national advocacy group “committed to local and state-based solutions.” It bore the subject line “Kari Lake Gives Perfect Answer on Abortion to Opposition Media.” Whatever could it be?
Lake is the Republican candidate for governor in Arizona. The former Fox 10 Phoenix anchor rode an endorsement from Donald Trump to a narrow win in the August 2 primary and is now squaring off against Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs in the November 8 general election.
In late September, a judge allowed a 1901 law, enacted 11 years before Arizona became a state, to spring back into effect, following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision. Last Friday, the Arizona Court of Appeals, in a move that only the Arizona Supreme Court could reverse, blocked enforcement of that 1901 law pending the outcome of an appeal by Planned Parenthood.
SHAY KHATIRI: Iranians Want Democracy. Who Are We to Say No?
In the American Conservative, Sohrab Ahmari asks a question that many Iranians have asked for decades, especially during the recent protests: If the clerics go, who will take their place? “Who would you have rule us?” he asks. “What principle of unity and continuity do you propose? ‘Woman, Life, Freedom’? LGBTQIA+ Pride? An empty flag, erasing 2,500 years of history?” It’s interesting that Ahmari, an American citizen, refers to Iranians as “us,” because he nowhere entertains the idea that Iranians might choose their own future at the ballot box.
Iran has no history of completely free and fair democracy. As Ahmari recounts, Iranians tried constitutionalism in the early twentieth century, but the experiment failed. One reason, as he mentions, is that the United Kingdom and Russia, amid the Great Game, made sure that it failed. Ahmari is echoing the left-wingers of a generation ago, laying too many of the Greater Middle East’s problems at the feet of bygone empires and not enough at the feet of indigenous leaders, which denies Iranian politicians agency in shaping their country’s future. As it happened, Iran’s democracy also failed because its elites were corrupt and rigged elections.
Fetterman’s stroke was always going to be THE big story, and now the moment’s arrived. Plus, Herschel Walker’s talk of redemption without confession, Mastriano’s antisemitism, and abortion v crime overshadows democracy in the midterms. Lucy Caldwell joins Charlie Sykes.
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KIMBERLY WEHLE: Supreme Court to Hear Cases on Content Policing.
Last week saw two events portentous for the tech industry generally and violence on the internet specifically: Elon Musk said that he would after all buy Twitter for $44 billion, a deal headed to close by October 28; and the Supreme Court agreed to hear a case called Gonzalez v. Google LLC. Together, these stories could define the trajectory of online hate speech, which has been globally linked to increases in violence toward minorities, mass shootings, lynchings, ethnic cleansings, and the decline of democracy.
If the Twitter deal goes through, Musk is expected to lift the ban on Donald Trump’s use of the platform, which since January 8, 2021 has confined the former president to his comparatively feeble platform, Truth Social. Trump had 88,936,841 Twitter followers and posted a total of 59,553 tweets and retweets. Around 60 percent of his tweets following the November 2020 presidential election were messages challenging and undermining the legitimacy of the results—an average of 14 a day—including his now-infamous December 19, 2020 tweet: “Big protest in D.C. on January 6th. Be there, will be wild!”
MONA CHAREN: Tim Ryan’s Alpha Maneuver.
At least one Democrat has started to figure out how to exploit a GOP weakness. He’s Tim Ryan, who is running against J.D. Vance for Ohio’s open U.S. Senate seat. Ohio should be a romp for Vance, as Trump won the state in 2020 by 8 points. Instead, the race appears tight.
What has Ryan figured out? He’s calling out Vance as a beta male.
Look, in a different world—say, the planet Vulcan—where the inhabitants, like Mr. Spock, were unburdened by primitive passions and instincts, everyone would make decisions about political candidates based entirely upon rational policy choices. But that’s not how human beings operate. Part of politics is about policies, of course. But beneath the surface—and these days, not very far beneath the surface—political combat partakes of the dog park. There are rituals of alpha dominance and beta submission.
Happy Wednesday! The Guardians didn’t have it last night, but there’s a lot of baseball left. And what was with the dragon? I’m still hopeful Southwest will be able to find my missing Bulwark nalgene bottle, but I was transported back in time to where I first discovered them: Newman Outfitters. Owned by the legendary Paul Newman.
A strange Buckeye controversy… Over closed practices, formations, and game tape.
Thiel tries to rescue Masters… Encouraging Mitch McConnell to match donations to save a subpar candidate. And apparently part of that strategy is laughably fake newspapers.
Why does the world love to hate? The Barney the Dinosaur story.
What could happen in a second Trump term? A lot of very bad things.
NARA goes to the mattresses… Over Trump’s false document claims. Don’t make an enemy out of archivists!
Dennis Prager has lost the plot. But we knew that a long time ago.
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