For NRO, A.J. Kritikos writes: On Friday afternoon, Kentucky senator Rand Paul spoke at Harvard’s Institute of Politics. Despite the libertarian and conservative arguments he put forth to the Cambridge audience, he was received warmly, though his more detailed legal arguments on national-security issues need some fine-tuning.
Senator Paul’s prepared remarks primarily addressed privacy and national-security issues, beginning, appropriately enough, by alluding to the Boston Tea Party. After describing how the British used general warrants to harass colonists, and the subsequent writings of James Otis on the topic that helped catalyze opposition to the Crown, Senator Paul addressed privacy concerns that have arisen since 9/11. The checks and balances required by the Constitution, in his view, have been partially abandoned in response to the threat of terrorism, highlighting the Patriot Act as an example.
That law was part of counterterrorism efforts responding to 9/11 that Paul characterized as being marked by “hysteria.” While the law certainly was enacted rapidly, suggesting that America has been hysterical in its pursuit of al-Qaeda and its associates seems more reminiscent of his father than the more mainstream image Senator Paul has sought to cultivate. Read the rest of this entry »
Michael Barone writes: What do young Americans want? Something different from what they’ve been getting from the president they voted for by such large margins.
Evidence comes in from various polls. Voters under 30, the Millennial generation, produced numbers for Barack Obama 13 percentage points above the national average in 2008 and nine points above in 2012.
But in recent polls, Obama’s approval among those under 30 has been higher than the national average by only one percentage point (Quinnipiac), two points (ABC/Washington Post) and three points (YouGov/Economist).
Those differences are statistically significant. And that’s politically significant, since a higher percentage of Millennials than of the general population are Hispanic or black.