Michael Scherer

Michael Scherer is the Washington Bureau Chief for TIME.

Articles from Contributor

The GOP’s Bad Brand

On a conference call just now, Oklahoma Rep. Tom Cole, who runs the NRCC, was asked to diagnose the grim situation of the Republican Party in the wake of a third special election loss, this time in the 1st District of Mississippi. His answer:

You have to get beyond campaign tactics and take a long hard look: Is there something wrong

McCain VP Wire, Smelly Fish Edition

From WCCO.com:

[Minnesota] Gov. Tim Pawlenty landed a 17-inch walleye Saturday during the Governor’s 60th Annual Fishing Opener at Breezy Point on Pelican Lake, but Lt. Gov. Carol Molnau reeled in a 19-inch walleye about two-and-a-half hours earlier. . . .

“I have a wife who genuinely loves to fish. I mean, she will take the lead and

U.S. Sniper Program in Crosshairs

If there is only one story you can make time for today, this one gets my vote. It is by Mark Benjamin, a former colleague of mine and crackerjack investigative reporter at Salon, and Christopher Weaver. Called “Killing by the Numbers,” it tells the tale of a group of snipers who killed an unarmed Iraqi vegetable farmer named Genei Nesir …

The F in FEC: Farcical? Fantasy? Phony?

For years now, the Federal Election Commission has been, more or less, a joke, dominated by political pressures as much as clear thinking. As a result of political infighting, it does not even have enough commissioners to act on anything right now. In fact, the only action of note that anyone at the FEC has taken in the last several …

More Views From HillaryLand

The Hill-O-Plane last night from Indiana had an odd feel to it. Just as we took off, leaving BlackBerry range, Obama was quickly closing the statewide margin in Lake County. The press corps was not convinced that Clinton had won the state, giving the whole flight a sort of deck-of-the-Titanic feel. Campaign staff never faltered in their …

What Taking Action Looks Like

Philosophical dilemma: What is a photo-op tour without the pictures? We here at Time.com do not want anyone to go without. So here are some highlights from John McCain’s “It’s Time for Action Tour” last week, which incidentally is totally different from this week’s “Call to Action Tour.” (Hint: One has a complete sentence for a title. …

McCain Watch Cont’d. . .

Though I would not employ the same adjectives, I just wanted to endorse Joe’s comments on the apparently shifting tone of the McCain campaign. A couple months ago, I wrote with some admiration about the “high standards” that the campaign seemed to be adopting in dealing with partisan gunslingers. As campaign manager Rick Davis wrote in …

The Coolest D.C. Party is Still Lame

I’ve been working in Washington D.C. for five years, but Saturday was my first experience with the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner. A real horror show. My write-up, for Time.com, can be found here. It begins:

WASHINGTON — We are a sorry lot, us D.C. dwellers. Not sexy enough for Los Angeles, we settle for the pancake

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