Michael Scherer

Michael Scherer is the Washington Bureau Chief for TIME.

Articles from Contributor


Mike Huckabee retains a rosy view of his occasionally stunning, but ultimately losing campaign for the White House. “I kind of like to think of my campaign not as we lost,” he says, “but as the game ended before we finished playing.” So, of course, he has no reservations about starting all over.

Not that he is declaring his candidacy …

“If they don’t know, you can’t tell them”

Amb. Ryan Crocker and Gen. David Petraeus won’t set goalposts for Iraq. They won’t say when troops can start coming home in large numbers. They won’t define clear conditions for withdrawal. As they have been saying for nearly two days now, they will know success when they come upon it. This is kind of like Supreme Court Justice …

What Will Happen Tuesday

We already know the political arguments that John McCain, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton will be making tomorrow when they all get to ask questions of the commanding general in Iraq, David Petraeus. The question is whether the proceedings will enlighten the candidates or the American people about the best way to move forward.

For …

The Coming Electoral Map

The good people of NBC News, where political coverage is led by Chuck Todd, the old Hotline handicapper, have put out a must-read sketch of the coming electoral map. If anything else, the predictions give some credence to the arguments of both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. They certainly do appear to have different strengths against …

McCain Camp Calls Obama “Dishonest” UPDATED THRICE!

IN FLIGHT–Air McCain is officially flying on a week-long bio-tour, intended to reintroduce the candidate to America, as a man shaped by service and country. But as McCain’s charter flight hopped between Maryland and Florida Wednesday, his advisers left no doubt that the general election has already begun.

“The lofty rhetoric,” said …

“If I Only Had McCain”

The Washington Post fronts this morning with the tale of Barack Obama and John McCain’s 2006 spat over ethics reform legislation. Long story short, Obama and McCain once tried to work together to impose tougher congressional ethics rules. But then Obama released a letter criticizing McCain’s approach, McCain took offense, and some …

Say It Ain’t So, Joe

It’s not news that Sen. Joe Lieberman, the onetime Democratic VP candidate, is backing John McCain for President. Nor is it news that Lieberman takes a different view of the Iraq War than most Democrats. But what he said this morning on ABC’s “This Week” is certainly news.

Well, I say that the Democratic Party changed. The Democratic

The Deep New Voice of McCain’s Campaign

Pop quiz: If someone narrated your life, what would his or her voice sound like? Like the hipster kid from those Apple computer ads? Like a spiky-haired designer on Project Runway? Like David Lee Roth or Cindy Lauper or Gene Hackman or Wilford Brimley? Is it high-pitched and caffeinated, or low and slow? Does it rise and fall like a …

Five Things

1. McCain/ex-Bush advisor Mark McKinnon talks to ex-Bush advisor Matthew Dowd about the 2008 contest with fascinating results. For instance:

McKinnon said McCain would be happy to have Bush campaign with him in the fall — that he had no intention of running from Bush, who, McKinnon pointed out, has a personal (as opposed to job

Once a Senator, Never a Saint

Here is my take on John McCain’s record with wealthy interests in the Senate, and the problem of “appearance” for a long-time campaign finance and ethics reformer. From the next issue of the magazine, the story includes this anecdote:

In some cases, McCain’s intervention on causes that favored donors appeared to be exceptional. Consider

McCain’s Irony Effect

Neal Gabler has a must-read op-ed in the New York Times today, and not least because he identifies me as “a blogger,” which I think should give me some long-denied cred next time I head to Yearly Kos. It is about McCain’s use of irony and self-deprecation to win over the political press.

Seeming to view himself and the whole political

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