Robert Kuttner

Robert Kuttner is co-founder and co-editor of The American Prospect, and professor at Brandeis University's Heller School. His latest book is Can Democracy Survive Global Capitalism? In addition to writing for the Prospect, he writes for The Huffington Post, The Boston Globe, and the New York Review of Books. 

Follow Bob at his site, robertkuttner.com, and on Twitter. 

Recent Articles

We Need Howard Schultz to Run for President Like Starbucks Needs Cockroaches

The Democratic Party is finally willing to work for working people again. Schultz could really screw that up. 

Photo by Amy Harris/Invision/AP Howard Schultz speaks in Los Angeles. I t was inevitable that some socially liberal, economically center-right billionaire would run for president. So Howard Schultz, former CEO of Starbucks, has nominated himself. This is sheer poison. His story, that voters are hungering for a moderate who can solve problems, is malarkey. Here’s what Schultz told The New York Times : We have a broken political system with both parties basically in business to preserve their own ideology without a recognition and responsibility to represent the interests of the American people,” Mr. Schultz said in the interview. “Republicans and Democrats alike—who no longer see themselves as part of the far extreme of the far right and the far left—are looking for a home. No, Howard, we don’t have a “broken political system.” We do have a broken economic system. Politically, we have wall-to-wall Republican obstruction. And after three Democratic administrations that were far too Wall...

Why Trump Blinked First

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik President Donald Trump speaks to reporters at Indianapolis International Airport. A s I’ve been observing, his Republican Senate support was steadily crumbling. LaGuardia shutting down was the last straw, and more government employees were starting to refuse to work. You can imagine Trump’s fantasies about firing them all and finding temps to work as air traffic controllers (oops), but when Mitch McConnell defects, then Trump knows the game is up. McConnell took the pressure from the Senate Republican caucus as long as he could—and then turned the pressure on Trump . So once again, the Deep State—otherwise known as the U.S. Constitution—has held: barely held, but held. Nancy Pelosi made a monkey of Trump when he thought he could barge into the people’s House without an invitation. His threat to invoke a state of emergency was a nonstarter, too. Presidential power is a funny thing. You have it, until you don’t. The Republican defections also bode well for Trump’s...

Why Trump Will Lose His Shutdown Ploy

AP Photo/Alex Brandon President Donald Trump departs after speaking about the partial government shutdown, immigration and border security in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House. P resident Donald Trump’s latest offer of a deal to resolve the government shutdown was an inept playing of a weak hand. It was never in the cards for Democrats to agree to Trump’s $5.7 billion wall demand in exchange for just three years of protection for the Dreamers plus temporary reprieves for some other immigrants. Trump obviously knew this when he made the offer. He is still betting that the public will accept his argument that a physical wall is needed to protect Americans from an invasion of refugees and an inflow of illegal drugs. But public opinion isn’t buying it . There is no such invasion. Flows of undocumented migrants have dramatically slowed in recent years, and most illegal drugs are smuggled in on commercial flights, not via illegal border crossers. The main driver of the opioid...

Trump’s Crumbling Wall -- of GOP Political Support

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin President Donald Trump speaks in New Orleans. T he increasing Republican skittishness about Trump’s wall and the continuing government shutdown offers an instructive preview of how the Trump presidency is likely to end: when key Republican senators decide that Trump is more trouble than he’s worth. What’s new about this crisis is the increasing number of Republican defections. Politically, Trump’s obsession has backfired. His demand for the wall and his holding the rest of the government hostage become more unpopular by the day. The most recent polls show that the public blames Trump more than the Democrats for the shutdown by margins approaching 2–to–1. There are at least seven Republicans in tight re-election races in 2020, and they aren’t happy. They include Cory Gardner of Colorado, Susan Collins of Maine, and Rob Portman of Ohio. Senators Pat Roberts of Kansas, who is retiring, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska have also expressed exasperation in comments to...

Can Trump Really Use Emergency Powers to Build a Wall?

AP Photo/Alex Brandon, file President Donald Trump waves as he arrives to speak at a rally in Tupelo, Mississippi. P resident Trump has threatened to use his emergency powers as president to build his $5 billion vanity wall. Can he do this? Maybe he can. A series of laws gives extraordinary emergency powers to the president—in a true emergency. One emergency law authorizes the secretary of the army during a presidentially declared emergency to direct troops to help construct “authorized civil works, military construction and civil defense projects that are essential to the national defense.” Another law allows the secretary of defense, to reprogram funds to build necessary military projects, if so directed during a presidentially declared emergency. These laws, however, are in conflict with the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which generally prohibits he use of the military on American soil, except in very narrowly specified circumstances. It all turns on whether this is a bona fide...

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