From the Left



Our most personal vote

From the Left / Mark Shields /

In the presidential elections of 2000 and 2004, the Democratic nominees, former Vice President Al Gore and Sen. John Kerry, were both seen by the nation's voters as more knowledgeable and more intelligent than the Republican standard-bearer in both elections, George W. Bush. But those same voters in both campaigns found Bush to be more honest, ...Read more

Trump is doing his best to lower voters' expectations about Biden

From the Left / Mark Shields /

The political shadowboxing before presidential debates is cleverly choreographed. Take the 2000 contest between then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush and then-Vice President Al Gore. Before that year's first general election debate, the Bush team did a superb job of lowering expectations for Governor Bush by emphasizing to reporters what an experienced...Read more

Jim Leher was America's most trusted 'referee'

From the Left / Mark Shields /

What do presidential candidates George H.W. Bush, Michael Dukakis, Bill Clinton, Bob Dole, Ross Perot, Al Gore, George W. Bush, John Kerry, Barack Obama, John McCain and Mitt Romney all have in common? On the biggest night each of their political careers, when they -- live and on national television without teleprompters or prepared texts -- ...Read more

Never forget how you made them feel

From the Left / Mark Shields /

The "post-game" analyses of the 2020 Democratic National Convention have gone on for longer than the convention itself. Critics continue to weigh in on whether Barack Obama or Michelle Obama was the more effective speaker and whether Joe Biden, in his 24-minute acceptance speech (remarkably brief by historical standards), put to rest questions ...Read more

Converts are the missing group of voters in 2020

From the Left / Mark Shields /

Political polls elicit predictable reactions from the candidates being polled. The campaign of the candidate trailing in the poll almost invariably invokes history: "I, for one, am grateful that Christopher Columbus didn't take a poll before he bravely sailed off in search of a New World. He never would have left the dock" or, "Thank goodness ...Read more

Honoring the fallen

From the Left / Mark Shields /

Capping a week of deserved tributes, the funeral for Rep. John Lewis in Atlanta's historic Ebenezer Baptist Church brought me back a quarter-century to another funeral for another revered member of Congress, former House Speaker Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill.

On a cold January day at St. John the Evangelist Church in North Cambridge -- where O'Neill ...Read more

Voters have decided on Trump

From the Left / Mark Shields /

By now, Republican officeholders are daily and in ever-increasing numbers coming up with reasons why they will be unable to attend the late-August GOP convention in Jacksonville, Florida. In every campaign year, everything is a poll -- who shows up and who doesn't when your candidate comes to town; who elbows in for the picture with the standard...Read more

The buck doesn't stop here

From the Left / Mark Shields /

Dan Buck is a philosopher friend of mine with a rare gift for explaining the political world. Back when Ronald Reagan was an enormously popular president (carrying 93 out of a possible 100 states in two national campaigns), I marveled at how voters were so unfailingly tolerant, even forgiving, when the Gipper said things that were factually ...Read more



Jimmy Margulies Dana Summers Michael Ramirez Tim Campbell Clay Bennett Dan Wasserman