By Brad Wilmouth | February 3, 2016 | 3:38 PM EST

Appearing as a guest on Tuesday's The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC, New York magazine's Frank Rich asserted that GOP presidential candidate Marco Rubio is "quite far to the right" and has a "very truculent neocon foreign policy" as he and host O'Donnell discussed whether the Florida Senator has the best chance of the "establishment" Republican candidates of being nominated.

By Tom Johnson | January 27, 2016 | 12:59 AM EST

Left-leaning pundits worth their salt know that Donald Trump isn’t a movement conservative, but many of them believe nonetheless that his candidacy is, in some social/cultural/emotional sense, a fundamentally righty phenomenon.

That said, Daily Kos founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas, whose lefty credentials are hardly in question, argued in a Friday post that while Trump “happened to land on the Republican side because of Hillary Clinton’s dominance…he could actually [have made] a stronger case for running as a Democrat.” Kos observed that Trump “has no ideological mooring or conviction” and noted that he “advocated for single-payer healthcare…has called for higher taxes on the wealthy…mocked Mitt Romney’s attacks on immigrants…was pro-choice…Oh, and he was a registered Democrat until 2009.”

By Tom Johnson | January 23, 2016 | 3:14 PM EST

Commenting Friday on National Review’s anti-Donald Trump editorial and symposium, The New Republic’s Jeet Heer and New York magazine’s Jonathan Chait agreed that conservatives are responsible for Trump’s Republican frontrunner status, but differed on which unpleasant right-wing trait, “white identity politics” or anti-intellectualism, was the prime mover.

By Brad Wilmouth | January 12, 2016 | 7:26 PM EST

On Monday's The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC, host O'Donnell and Frank Rich of New York magazine talked up the possibility that GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz is not really a natural-born U.S. citizen and therefore not eligible to serve as President.

Rich, a former New York Times columnist, praised GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump as "brilliant" for pushing the issue, and the two at one point laughed it up together when Rich cracked that a wall should have been built to keep the Cruz family from crossing from Canada into the U.S. Rich: "The problem could have been solved if we had built a wall on the Canadian border and Canada paid for it. Then, the Cruzes never would have entered and we wouldn't have this problem."

By Tom Johnson | January 8, 2016 | 9:29 PM EST

In a Wednesday post, New York magazine's Chait sought to debunk the belief that Marco Rubio is a moderate. As for why some might see him that way, Chait suggested a few reasons, among them that Rubio, unlike fellow Republican presidential contenders Ted Cruz and Donald Trump, “avoids statements that make him appear ostentatiously deranged.”

Chait argued that while Rubio’s focus on positioning himself for the fall campaign “holds him back from viscerally channeling conservative anger,” the Florida senator is nonetheless a hardcore right-winger on economic and social issues and hasn’t distanced himself from “the excesses of the Bush administration’s wild-eyed response to the 9/11 attacks.”

By Sarah Stites | December 31, 2015 | 9:48 AM EST

If you could sum up 2015 in one word, what would it be? In early December, Dictionary.com revealed its top pick. Based off of “language evolution and user interest,” the online lexicon dubbed identity the 2015 word of the year. You can probably understand why it’s become the liberal word of choice to attach to gender.

Recent events have caused the reference website to update its content in order to reflect liberal and media changes in the use of language. “These include a new sense at the word identify to account for the common construction identify as and the addition of the term gender expression,” wrote Dictionary.com staff. 

By Tom Johnson | December 23, 2015 | 11:22 AM EST

New York magazine’s Chait thinks that in a sense, conservatism and Communism aren’t such strange bedfellows when it comes to economic matters. In a Sunday post, Chait categorized “American conservatism” and Marxism as “rigid dogma,” whereas liberalism, he argued, focuses on “data.”

Chait contended that “liberals would abandon, say, new environmental regulations if evidence persuaded them the program was not actually improving the environment, because bigger government is merely the means to an end. No evidence could persuade conservatives to support new environmental regulations, because conservatives consider small government a worthy end [in] itself.”

By Tom Johnson | December 20, 2015 | 12:16 PM EST

The current election campaign pits the forces of backlash (“the old and angry”) against the forces of frontlash (“the new and different”), and November’s vote will be “a referendum on the existence and civic participation of Americans who are not white men,” contended Traister in a Wednesday piece for New York magazine.

Traister posited that “Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton…represent an altered power structure and changed calculations about who in this country may lead,” but warned, “While the resistance may be symptomatic of death throes, a rage at the dying of the white male light, it nonetheless presents a very real threat…Imagine Ted Cruz or Donald Trump or Marco Rubio in office with a Republican Congress and Supreme Court seats to fill. Voting: restricted. Immigration: halted. Abortion: banned. Equal pay: unprotected. Same-sex marriage: overturned.”

By Tom Johnson | December 15, 2015 | 4:55 PM EST

When it comes to global warming, Esquire’s Charles Pierce implies, it’s now conservative Republicans and a few hidebound Democrats versus pretty much everyone and everything else, including the world’s non-human animals and its plant life. Meanwhile, New York magazine’s Jonathan Chait opined that the Paris climate deal was “probably the [Obama] administration’s most important accomplishment."

By Tom Johnson | November 11, 2015 | 5:29 PM EST

Robin Williams’s first album was called Reality…What a Concept. More than one lefty blogger implied that Unreality…What a Concept would have been a fitting title for Tuesday night’s Republican presidential debate.

By Tom Johnson | October 30, 2015 | 9:21 PM EDT

The New York magazine writer-at-large and former New York Times columnist and theater critic says Jeb's problems included not only Dubya’s war in Iraq and pre-9/11 “national-security failures” but also the supposedly unsavory, extreme-right types that 41 and 43 attracted to the GOP, thereby contributing to its ruin.

By Tom Johnson | October 29, 2015 | 5:38 PM EDT

Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio put media bias on the front burner at CNBC’s Republican presidential debate, but conservatives and liberals differed sharply on whether what was in the pot smelled appetizing. Several lefty bloggers turned up their noses at the idea that in last night’s event and in general, the media favor Democrats.