Jonathan Alter

Jonathan Alter is a contributing editor of the Washington Monthly. He is the author of His Very Best: Jimmy Carter, a Life.


The End of Washington Gridlock?

That sound you’re hearing may be the cracking of gridlock in Washington. Bipartisan bills on three of the big issues of 2013 — the budget, immigration and guns — could pass Congress this spring. If the B.I.G. agenda goes through, the public will cheer, providing incentives for politicians to do more. It would also go… Read more »

Meet the Man Who Showed Us Romney’s Hidden Side

History sometimes has a way of tying itself up with a little bow. That’s the way I felt in January when I introduced Scott Prouty, the bartender-turned- videographer who helped sink Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, to Teddy Goff, the 28-year-old director of digital media for President Barack Obama’s re-election. Prouty was a new source. After… Read more »

Why Democrats Must Get Smart on Entitlements

In a season of depressing budget news, the worst may have been that a majority of U.S. House Democrats signed a letter urging President Barack Obama to oppose any benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and other entitlements. That’s the last thing we need. To hold the line on harmful cuts to discretionary spending,… Read more »

’They Deserve a Vote’ Can Be More Than Rhetoric

State of the Union addresses are traditionally laundry lists of policy proposals. U.S. President Barack Obama’s this week started that way, but it ended as the most emotional speech before a joint session of Congress in modern memory. The theatrics of the event also introduced a new approach to framing the public debate that could… Read more »

Come Clean on Drones

The rule of law is the moral underpinning of U.S. foreign policy. President Barack Obama must now reaffirm that principle. This task became all the more urgent with the disclosure last week of a secret document that provides the Justice Department’s legal analysis of the targeted killings of suspected terrorists. After NBC News obtained the… Read more »