Eliza Newlin Carney

Eliza Newlin Carney is a weekly columnist at The American Prospect. Her email is ecarney@prospect.org.

 

Recent Articles

Trump to Political Pros: You’re Fired

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer
rules-logo-109.jpeg Of all the people taken aback by a Republican convention that has featured angry floor revolts, attacks on the the popular GOP home state governor, and a plagiarism scandal that drew a tardy and inconsistent response, the most traumatized may be the party’s political consultants. Much has been made of the many senators, erstwhile former GOP White House candidates, former presidents, and Republican Party elders, including the entire Bush family , who have stayed away from Cleveland this week. But news stories have largely overlooked the hundreds of political professionals who have been watching in horror as Donald Trump, now the party’s official nominee, broke every rule in the conventional political playbook. Trump’s impulsive, improvisational style, his reliance on Twitter and social media over TV ads, his limited fundraising , his failure to bring in many seasoned political pros to advise his campaign—other than the controversial Paul...

Convention Cash More Controversial Than Ever

For this year’s conventions, the political parties are collecting bigger checks under more relaxed rules, even as voter anger mounts over special-interest corporate money.

(Photo: AP/Carolyn Kaster)
Political conventions have long been notorious for being rules-free zones where corporate donors may funnel fat checks to little-regulated host committees in exchange for exclusive cocktail receptions, briefings, and special-access events with candidates, party officials, and lawmakers. rules-logo-109.jpeg But this year, the Republican and Democratic National Conventions have taken this wide-open fundraising to a whole new level. The checks are bigger. The disclosure is scantier. Both parties will inaugurate a number of dubious “firsts”—the first conventions with no public funding; the first conventions funneling six-figure checks into new, high-dollar party accounts; the first conventions in many years staged as early as July, to leave more time for general election fundraising. For Democrats, it will also be the first convention in eight years to permit lobbyist donations. At the same time, mounting public outrage over political money, coupled with the...

Trump’s Shaky Shakedown

AP Photo/John Minchillo
rules-logo-109.jpeg Having done no fundraising, zero advertising , and little traditional organizing for the bulk of his presidential campaign, Donald Trump is finally starting to act more like a conventional candidate, at least when it comes to asking for money. Trump and the Republican National Committee this week announced that 80 additional GOP bundlers have signed on to their joint fundraising effort, essentially quintupling the number of people helping round up money for Trump and his party. In May, the billionaire businessman held his first official fundraiser with the RNC. In June, he announced with much fanfare his first emailed fundraising solicitation. Trump’s belated pivot to fundraising has raised questions over how he will reconcile his quest for checks with his earlier claim that he’s blissfully independent of big donors. In September, Trump boasted on Twitter : “By self-funding my campaign, I am not controlled by my donors, special interests or...

Is This the Year of the Latino Voter?

Latinos have had some of the lowest voter turnout rates, but this November—with unprecedented mobilization campaigns and the specter of a Trump presidency—may be different.

Bob Mack/The Florida Times-Union via AP
This article appeared in the Summer 2016 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . Miami residents of all ages streamed by the hundreds to Marlins Park on a recent spring Saturday, but they weren’t there for a baseball game. True, the event opened with members of the crowd rising to place their hands over their hearts. But instead of singing the national anthem, the group of stadium-goers who kicked off the festivities that March 19 were reciting the Oath of Allegiance that marks the naturalization ceremony for U.S. citizenship. And the 1,600 people standing in line in the stadium loggia weren’t waiting for hot dogs. They were immigrants with green cards waiting patiently for help filling out the paperwork to apply for naturalization themselves. “I’ve had my residency papers for 19 years, but one of the main reasons I’m becoming a citizen now is because I want to vote against Donald Trump,” Cuban exile Antonio Fernandez Robinson told...

Don’t Blame the Voters

AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty
rules-logo-109.jpeg What ails democracy, and who is to blame? Faced with the disruptive impulses that have given rise to Donald Trump and more recently to Great Britain’s disastrous exit from the European Union, a chorus of commentators has laid the blame not on out-of-touch elites, but on average voters. The real problem, we hear, is not that economic and political systems have concentrated power in the hands of too few, but that voters have too much sway over the process. In a widely-circulated New York Magazine article last month, Andrew Sullivan blamed a “hyperdemocracy” born of ever-expanding freedom and egalitarianism for the rise of Trump. The danger of “democratic wildfires” was precisely what led the Founding Fathers to establish checks and balances in the form of tightly circumscribed voting rights, the Electoral College, and the separation of powers, Sullivan argues. “To guard our democracy from the tyranny of the majority and the...

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