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February 01, 2023 | Talking Points Memo
But succeeding at his Cancer Moonshot’s goals will require more than funding research into cancer treatments. As the first day of February marks the beginning of National Cancer Prevention Month, it’s worth acknowledging that cancer prevention requires different approaches than treatment, and must include a reckoning with the carcinogens that pervade our environment. If Biden really wants to fight cancer in America, he’s going to have to challenge the fossil fuel and petrochemical industries. Among other things, this means confronting an Achilles heel of the Democratic Party: domestic fracking.
January 25, 2023 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
Biden’s Choice of Chief of Staff Threatens Populist Potential
Last Friday marked the exact midway point of Biden’s presidential term. With this newly divided Congress, there are scant possibilities for legislation in the next two years. By and large, this next stage of Biden’s presidency should be all about the executive branch: implementing recent laws, enforcing existing laws, and enacting much-needed regulation. (Biden should have been overseeing these things all along, of course—that’s what the Presidency is for!)
January 20, 2023
Donald Trump and his Department of Justice consistently made a mockery of the law throughout his four years in power. And while their laughable reasoning and indefensible positions were struck down at a historic rate, many cases were still waiting for Biden. The new administration tossed out a handful immediately but an alarming number remain, either in some form of pause or advancing forward with the Biden administration adopting Trump’s position.
January 20, 2023
Two Years into Biden Administration, the Government Maintains Trump-Era Legal Positions in Dozens of Cases
Midway through Biden’s term, the Biden administration continues to advance Trump-era legal positions in court, according to an update released today to the Revolving Door Project’s long-running litigation tracker.
January 18, 2023 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
FDA Tobacco Scientist Joins Cigarette Company. Nothing To See Here!
We’ve barely begun wading into the troubled waters of the 118th Congress, and House Republicans are already out for the blood of their longtime nemesis: federal workers.
January 11, 2023 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
We spent October highlighting the perpetual underfunding of most federal departments and agencies, and urging Congress and the Biden administration to use December’s omnibus bill to finally provide them with the money and resources they need. Sadly, while appropriations did increase for FY2023, budgets consistently fell short of what agencies requested. The most jarring example may be the Department of Housing and Development (HUD), whose budget is a whopping $16 billion shy of the requested $77.8 billion. Biden recently announced his goal to cut homelessness by 25 percent in the next two years, but it’s hard to see how even this meager goal will be achieved without a fully funded HUD.
January 04, 2023 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
As 2022 ends and 2023 begins with record-breaking winter heat blanketing Europe and much of the south and north-eastern United States—68°F and humid in DC, in January!—climate change is in the air, if not on the legislative agenda. We expect that much of the hard-won climate progress in the next year will be in executive branch implementation and regulation, alongside state-level legislation and court cases.
December 21, 2022
How better to mark the darkest day of the year than with a bit of dark humor? This winter solstice, we present our 2022 Revolving Door Superlatives, where we spotlight the most craven, captured, and corrupt personnel and policy debates of this past year. From Revolver of the Year to 2022’s Worst Look to our Biggest Personnel Nightmare Entering 2023, we have a positively ghoulish assemblage of honorees for your perverse reading pleasure. Take comfort, dear reader, in this at least: the days are only getting longer from here on out.
December 07, 2022 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
Pipeline Permits, Border Walls, and the Nightmare at Red Hill
Simply put, we would ask for more rigor from the wonks who would like a say in how we redesign America’s energy systems. The challenge is massive, yes: to better serve more people with more efficient, less wasteful, less toxic energy infrastructure, while restraining the human footprint on the planet, so that other forms of life can also thrive. But it is also an energizing challenge, and eminently worthy of human effort. Any theory of climate change mitigation that is inflexible and unimaginative enough to involve bulldozing those who stand in its way is just another partial paradise, a green veil thrown over the same extractive relationships that got us here.
November 30, 2022 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
Union Joe’s Disgrace
If rail workers are so important to our economy that a single week of striking could cost the economy $1 billion, and if their demands are so modest that any decent employer would easily exceed them, then meeting their demands seems like the obvious solution. But the American balance of power is such that railroad bosses have the allegedly most pro-labor president in history doing their dirty work for them.
November 24, 2022 | The American Prospect
It’s been a bad few weeks for the sort of opinionated center-left pundit who prides themselves on data-driven, hyper-quantitative approaches to solving society’s intractable problems.
November 24, 2022 | The American Prospect
Both EA and popularism appeal to a desire for mathematical rigor and objective calculation, whether it’s calculating lives-saved-per-dollar or playing probabilities in politics.Both EA and popularism appeal to a desire for mathematical rigor and objective calculation, whether it’s calculating lives-saved-per-dollar or playing probabilities in politics.
November 18, 2022 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
To Dispel a Mirage
The political world is looking altogether different today than it did last week. With the midterm vote counts and global climate conference wrapping up, while one billionaire throws lighter fluid on the long-smoldering fire that is Twitter1 and another billionaire-no-longer’s crypto exchange goes up in smoke, attention is spread thinner than Lauren Boebert’s apparent margin of victory. (The race is headed to a recount.)
October 28, 2022
It seems pretty incontestable that a big part of the media’s job is “informing the public of things they need to know.” Accordingly, the media’s coverage of how the government spends money is a spectacular example of how it fails. Congress has enabled a vacuum of sensible, accessible information about the appropriations bills it’s supposed to pass each year to fund government activity, and the media has not stepped in to fill the void.
October 26, 2022 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter
Politicking Is Storytelling; Stories Need Conflict
Much has been made of recent polls showing the erosion of support for Democrats ahead of the midterms, tied to voters’ profound economic pessimism. As always, wading through the morass of bad takes (looking at you, Ross Douthat) can put many off the task of meaning-making about public political opinion altogether. Our line of thinking in these final weeks before the election remains much the same as it was back in January, when our Jeff Hauser and Max Moran outlined an argument for what Biden’s message should be.