Noreen Malone in The New Republic on Megyn Kelly Fox News' election night coverage may have culminated in disaster (who gave Karl Rove that whiteboard?), but it gave host Megyn Kelly a chance to prove her aptitude at disaster control, argues Noreen Malone. Kelly's detractors see little more than a pretty face, but Malone thinks she's not as vacant as critics make her out to be. She's especially good at reigning in her network's most zealous impulses, Malone argues: "Kelly hasn’t just succeeded at her job for being smart and telegenic (though she’s both), she’s done well because she cares more about what’s good for Fox than what’s good for the Republican party."
Seth Mandel in Commentary on Republican governors Democrats may have earned big wins in the Senate and, obviously, the White House. But looking at the new landscape of state leadership, Seth Mandel sees more GOP governors than there have ever been over the last decade. Thirty states have GOP governors now, and many of them are eager to implement small government reforms. "Blue states used to elect liberal Republicans who would basically govern as the Democrats would," Mandel writes. "But that’s not the case with this (young) crop. Many on the right are thinking about the promising future of these governors in terms of a 2016 presidential run." If the GOP of today has a future on the national stage, it may come out of the states, Mandel argues.
Margaret Carlson in Bloomberg View on female senators With one in every five senators now female, Congress is as close as its ever been to gender parity. But it's still nowhere near where it should be, Margaret Carlson argues, citing female senators' legislative track record as evidence that the institution remains a boys club. "Think of the signature legislation of the last few decades, referred to in shorthand by its sponsors’ names: Gramm-Rudman, McCain-Feingold, Nunn-Lugar. They are men, all," Carlson writes, distrusting the idea that this election marks another Year of the Woman. "I await the day when we celebrate not the Year of the Woman but the Year of the Man, because their numbers are so depleted that 20 of them in the same chamber is a miracle to behold. That’s the day we’ll know women have real power."
Jay Ulfelder in Foreign Policy on forecasting world affairs Yes, Nate Silver nailed it with his election forecasting model, and yes, stat geeks trounced hack pundits in predicting the results. But forecaster Jay Ulfelder says quantitative enthusiasts still have their work cut out for them in predicting what will happen on the world stage. America's presidential election is small potatoes by comparison. "Rules are transparent; high-quality data, including surveys of would-be voters, are often available; and the connection between those data and the outcome of interest is fairly straightforward," Ulfelder argues. "The task is much tougher in competitive authoritarian regimes, where subtler forms of coercion tilt the field in favor of one party, but don't quite guarantee a specific outcome."
Damien Ma in Foreign Affairs looking back on China's last decade The refrain will be familiar to American voters who listen to new presidential contenders: "Are you better off now than you were four years ago?" Living under one-party rule, Chinese voters don't have the option of throwing their hat in the ring with challengers, but the question of how they've fared under 10 years of Hu Jintao's presidency is still pressing. With Xi Jinping primed to assume leadership, many Chinese citizens are looking back ambivalently on a decade of enormous economic growth but persistent domestic hardship. "China is prosperous but staggeringly unequal, and strong but profoundly insecure," writes Damien Ma. "Indeed, in recent years, China has experienced intensifying clashes between bottom-up demands for social equality, individual freedoms, and environmental stewardship and the Chinese Communist Party’s aggressive defense of the status quo."
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