Andrew Romano

Stories by Andrew Romano

  • It's the Economy, and Stumper is Stupid

    When it comes to economic policy, Stumper's expertise can be summed by this memorable exchange from NBC's Emmy-winning comedy 30 Rock,...
  • When Will It End?

    Yesterday, I gave careful consideration to Chris Bowers' prediction that "the campaign [will be] over" on May 7, the day after North Carolina and Indiana vote--and decided that it was, well, wrong. Since then, a handful of readers have asked when I think the Democratic nominating contest will wrap up. My answer?June.As I wrote yesterday, the political poo-bahs known as superdelegates--the ones who will put either Obama or Clinton over the top--are highly unlikely to break for one or the other before the remaining Democratic primary voters have had a chance to cast their ballots."don't want to be seen as elites coming in and overturning the will of the people." That leaves two possibilities: either a) the superdelegates step in after the primaries and declare a TKO or b) the slugfest continues for unabated for 80 days, until the convention in Denver finally, mercifully ends their (and our) suffering. I say June because the last primaries are on June 3,...
  • The Filter: March 27, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.DOUBLE NEGATIVE(David Greenberg, New Republic)The issue of negative campaigning and its proper bounds...
  • Clinton's 'Tonya' Option

    When politicians start mining the sports world for comparisons, sportswriters strike back. Newsweek's Mark Starr, who became acquainted with the skater while covering the 1994 Winter Olympics, weighs in on what some Democrats are calling the "Tonya Harding option": Never for a moment have I doubted that politics was as...
  • Clinton on Wright: She Went There

    For weeks, Hillary Clinton was mum on the issue of Jeremiah Wright, Jr., Barack Obama's former pastor. Not anymore. On March 21, Patrick Healy of the New York Times reported that Team Clinton had told allies not to "talk openly" about Wright's incendiary remarks--even though they could potentially boost the New York senator's bid. The reason? Fear that "it could create a voter backlash and alienate black Democrats." Besides, Healy added, paraphrasing the Clintonites, "cable television is keeping the issue alive." But now that the foam has fallen from Bill O'Reilly's mouth--at least in part--it seems that Clinton herself is all too eager to break the self-imposed silence. In an interview today with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the former First Lady told reporters and editors that she--unlike someone we know--would have stampeded from the pews had her pastor made remarks as wrongheaded as Wright's. "He would not have...
  • Ron Paul: 'I Feel Badly About Just Quitting'

    While I was on vacation, NEWSWEEK's Sarah Elkins spoke to Ron Paul about why he's still running for president--even though, with 14 delegates, he trails John McCain by 1246 and has admitted that "victory in the conventional political sense is not available in the presidential race." It's a fascinating interview. Excerpts:...
  • The Filter: March 25, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.ONE BRUISING SCENARIO FOR CLINTON(Adam Nagourney, New York Times)There remains at least one scenario where Mrs. Clinton could win. It is...
  • Clinton's Last Best Hope: The 'Electoral Vote' Equation?

    It's no secret--at least to people who are paying attention to this year's presidential contest--that Hillary Clinton's case for the Democratic nomination has grown, well, thinner over time. Her first hope was to catch rival Barack Obama in the race for pledged delegates with wins in big states like New York, California, Ohio and Texas, but it quickly became clear to everyone involved--including her staffers--that Obama's massive caucus-state blowouts had made it mathematically impossible for the New York senator to erase his 150-delegate lead by the end of regulation. Next, her advisers turned to the popular vote, arguing that a win there might give the party leaders known as superdelegates a reason to choose her over Obama. The only problem? Now that effort to schedule revotes in Florida and Michigan have collapsed, the vox populi arithmetic appears nearly impossible as well. With 10 states (or an estimated five million people) left to vote, Clinton would need...
  • The Audacity of Hops

     As numerous pundits and prognosticators--including yours truly, circa last August--have pointed out, the defining dynamic of the deadlocked battle for the Democratic nomination is the divide between blue-collar, low-information "beer-track" voters, who tend to favor Hillary Clinton, and college-educated "wine-track" types, who flock to Barack Obama. Apparently, no one told the brewmasters at Sixpoint Craft Ales in Brooklyn, N.Y. Early last week--during my self-imposed Spring Break from Blogging--I stumbled across an announcement that the small local microbrewery had just released 30 kegs of what it called "a tribute to the inspiration that has been Senator Barack Obama's presidential campaign": Hop Obama Ale. The Illinois senator is no stranger to serendipitous product placement. "Obama Girl" still scampers around in her skivvies. Jay Jay French, guitarist for the schlocky '80s hair-metal combo Twisted Sister, has re-recorded the...
  • Spring Break is Over, Stumper is Back

    Hey everyone,The headline says it all. After a week spent recovering from bloggeritis, I'm back in the saddle. A big thanks to Holly Bailey, Suzanne Smalley, Katie Paul, Arian Campo-Flores, Catharine Skipp and Richard Wolffe, who held down the fort while I was away. New posts coming soon. Best,Andrew 
  • The Filter: March 24, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories. Clinton, Obama and McCain on how they plan to revive the economy.8 QUESTIONS THAT WILL SHAPE WHERE THE RACE FOR THE DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL NOMINATION GOES FROM HERE(Dan Balz, Washington Post)What is the most likely outcome of the dispute over the delegations from Florida and Michigan? What remaining state contests will be most important and why? ...
  • The Filter: March 20, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.CLINTON FACING NARROWER PATH TO THE NOMINATION(Adam Nagourney, New York Times)Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton needs three breaks to wrest the Democratic presidential nomination from Senator Barack Obama in the view of her advisers. She has to defeat Mr. Obama soundly in Pennsylvania next month to buttress her argument that she holds an advantage in big general election states. She needs to lead in the total popular vote after the primaries end in June. And Mrs. Clinton is looking for some development to shake confidence in Mr. Obama so that superdelegates, Democratic Party...
  • The Filter: March 19, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.OBAMA STANDS HIS UNIQUE GROUND ON RACE(Peter Wallsten and Peter Nicholas, Los Angeles Times)From the earliest days of his career, Barack Obama has sought to assure...
  • Alter on Obama

    Here's Jonathan Alter's take: This speech, which he wrote himself over the last couple of days,...
  • Wolffe: Obama's Audacious Address

    Richard Wolffe reports on Obama's "Race and Politics in America" speech from Philadelphia.  It remains to be seen whether Obama's speech will...
  • Miller: Trying Times for Trinity

    Tired of hearing (and reading) pundits rant about Barack Obama's controversial pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Jr.? I know I am. It's not that the story isn't important--it is. But one can only take so much pontificating. Luckily, my NEWSWEEK colleague Lisa Miller spent several weeks reporting on Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago before the Wright story broke wide. Actual facts, scenes and stories matter more, at this point, than what Bill O'Reilly and Maureen Dowd have to say--at least in my humble opinion. Take a look:Always a volatile combination, race and politics is particularly...
  • Isikoff: A Delegate Loophole for Clinton?

    After seeming to leave the door open to pursuing Obama's pledged delegates in a recent interview with NEWSWEEK--despite repeated denials from a spokesman--the Clinton campaign has now elaborated on the possibility to my colleague Michael Isikoff. Whether efforts will be passive--as in Iowa last week--or more overt, it appears inevitable that when push comes to shove in the run-up to the convention, pledged delegates won't be left to their own devices. Here's Isikoff's report:Citing wiggle room in an obscure, 26-year-old Democratic Party rule, Hillary Clinton's campaign is leaving the door open to the idea of attempting to persuade Barack Obama's...
  • Stumper on Spring Break

    Hi all,For the past six months or so, I've crisscrossed the country, posting to Stumper three, four or five times a times a day. But with an unprecedented five weeks until the next primary in the midst of a titanic nomination fight that won't end anytime soon, I figured this would be my last chance to take a little vacation. For the rest of the week, then, I'll contribute the Filter each morning and the occasional item thereafter. I'll definitely pop back in if some big news breaks. But otherwise, I plan to calmly step away from my keyboard and seek treatment for my debilitating case of bloggeritis. Stumper, however, will go on. The brilliant Holly Bailey--NEWSWEEK's White House correspondent and John McCain embed--will take the reins, overseeing an impressive roster of the magazine's best political reporters as they continue to do the good work of keeping you in the Election 2008 loop. You probably won't even want me to come back.Happy trails,Andrew 
  • The Filter: March 17, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.FOR DEMOCRATS, INCREASED FEARS OF A LONG FIGHT(Adam Nagourney and Jeff Zeleny, New York Times)While many superdelegates said they intended to keep their options open...