Why Cruz is SC’s Biggest Loser

There’s no question that the main story coming out of the South Carolina primary is another big win for Donald Trump. His double-digit margin over his nearest competitors was very much along the lines of his impressive victory in New Hampshire and looked to have won him all of the state’s delegates. Trump proved that nothing he could say — whether it was repeating far-left talking points about George W. Bush, endorsing the ObamaCare personal mandate or opposing entitlement reform — could alienate his supporters. With one-third of GOP primary voters solidly in his pocket, it’s possible to argue that he has a clear path to the Republican nomination so long as he is facing two or more competitors in the remaining states, especially once most of the contests become winner-take-all affairs.

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Why Cruz is SC’s Biggest Loser

Must-Reads from Magazine

The Proliferation of America’s Enemies

Controversies come and go so fast in the Trump administration that it’s all too easy to lose sight of individual issues. It is, therefore, worth remembering that before the events in Charlottesville grabbed public attention on Saturday, the president had been making news with his bellicose statements against North Korea and Venezuela.

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We Are Cowards

We ignored the warning signs.

The only morally acceptable response to the events in Charlottesville is full-throated condemnation. Full stop. This is not the time for moral equivalencies. The barbarism committed by a white supremacist in the name of white supremacy should not elicit sympathy or a deeper exploration of root causes. The root cause of this weekend’s murderous violence is racism. The end.

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Explaining Trump’s Charlottesville Behavior

The nucleolus of Trump.

You can choose to have whatever opinion you have on the president’s statement today condemning white supremacists, but it’s hard to believe he would have read it out if he’d had his druthers. No, the real Donald Trump was the one we saw on Saturday when he decided to condemn violence “on many sides” in response to the deliberately provocative and intentionally violent neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville, Virginia; when he decided to refer to the events as “sad” in tweets; when he wished “best regards” to those injured by the car that was deliberately smashed into them, killing 1 and injuring 20. When he acted in that way, he was operating according to his instinct. And his instinct said:  Do not attack the white supremacists.

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Charlottesville and the American Crisis

Podcast: A ugly old adversary reemerges.

In the first COMMENTARY podcast of the week, I ask Noah Rothman and Abe Greenwald whether we are seeing a rise in extremist political violence in the United States and what it portends. And then we talk about what it means for the president to have chosen not to take the layup of denouncing Nazis when he had the chance. Give a listen.

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Resisting the Islamic State from Within

Heroes in obscurity.

Perhaps the best book I ever read was Natan Sharansky’s Fear No Evil, a memoir of his time in Soviet custody and an explanation of how he outwitted his KGB interrogators as they sought to break him. Almost every activist imagines that he is speaking truth to power, but to do so when power is overwhelming takes both courage and skill. But while the KGB sought totalitarian control, they could be subtle. That is one adjective that cannot be applied to the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh).

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