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David Keene

David Keene

Opinion Editor — David Keene, a trusted adviser to presidents, a longtime champion of personal liberty and one of conservatism’s most respected voices, serves as the opinion editor of The Washington Times – overseeing the newspaper’s editorial page, commentary section and online opinion strategy. An author, columnist and fixture on national television, Mr. Keene has championed conservative causes for more than five decades while offering advice to Republican presidents and countless candidates. He additionally served as chairman of the American Conservative Union and president of the National Rifle Association.

Articles by David Keene

Illegal Voter Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

From Free State to sanctuary state

Maryland is quite a place. The state's voters elected a Republican governor in 2014, but control remains in the hands of the same "progressives" who enjoy veto-proof majorities in both houses of the legislature on most issues. They vote as if former Gov. and presidential wannabe Martin O'Malley is still ruling the roost in Annapolis. Published March 22, 2017

Illustration on dealing with gun crime in Chicago by Donna Grethen/Tribune Content Agency

A gun-crime tool that works

President Trump threatened last week to send the "feds" in to clean up Chicago if the city doesn't do something to reduce the escalating murder rate that has made the gang-infested Windy City among the most dangerous metropolitan areas in the world. What the president doesn't seem to realize is that he has the tools to deal with the crisis without so drastic a step. Published January 30, 2017

Choice to Protect Students Illustration by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Schools need an adequate defense, too

Members of the Senate committee grilling Betsy DeVos last week were shocked at her response to a question from Connecticut Democrat Chris Murphy. Mr. Murphy, an ardent supporter of gun control, asked the prospective secretary of education whether "guns have a place in or around schools." Published January 23, 2017

Illustration of Nat Hentoff by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

A taste for authentic liberalism

Nat Hentoff, who died Saturday at age 91, was a champion of a classical liberalism that is no longer in vogue. He believed, above all, in freedom, the individual and the free speech guarantees found in the First Amendment of our Bill of Rights. He was in many ways the conscience of the First Amendment at a time when everyone from the left to right at least professed to believe in the right of those they disagreed with to speak their piece. Published January 9, 2017

The Old Soviet Union Illustration by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Confusing Putin with the old Soviet threat

We seem prepared to believe any evil of Vladimir Putin's Russia, which has with its second-rate military establishment and failing economy somehow morphed in the minds of many Americans into a greater threat than the old Soviet Union. Published January 2, 2017

Illustration on radical students at University of Wisconsin at Madison by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Unchanged and unbending campus radicals

The University of Wisconsin in Madison has always been a bit strange. I ought to know. I was there during the wave of radicalism that crested in the Sixties. Published December 26, 2016

Illustration on fake news by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

A love-hate relationship with 'fake' news

Scurrilous and "fake" news has been around since the penny tabloids of an earlier era when politicians actually subsidized newspapers and paid journalists to spread lies about their opponents to what they hoped was a credulous public. Published December 12, 2016

Illustration on John Bolton for Secretary of State by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Naming a secretary of state

President-elect Donald Trump is having a heckuva time deciding on who to nominate as secretary of State. It began with former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani's insistence that he wanted and deserves the job as payback for the yeoman work he did for candidate Trump when many leading Republicans were, shall we say, less than enthusiastic in their support of his fellow New Yorker. Published December 1, 2016

Illustration on the infantile reaction of sore losers by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

'A pack of sore losers'

It was election night 1960 and as the votes trickled in, those surrounding Vice President Richard Nixon were convinced Democratic vote fraud in Illinois and Texas were about to cost their man the White House in the closest presidential election since 1840. Published November 28, 2016

Illustration on Hillary and gun control by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Saying goodbye to guns

Earlier this year when Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and the National Rifle Association's Wayne LaPierre addressed the NRA's annual meeting both claimed that if she ever becomes president, Hillary Clinton will do all in her power to eviscerate or, in Mr. Trump's words, "abolish" the Second Amendment to the Constitution. Mrs. Clinton and her supporters called the charges lies and claim there is no evidence that she wants to do either. Published November 1, 2016

Illustration endorsing Donald Trump's candidacy by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

This consequential election

Former Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld once said that when a nation goes to war it must by necessity rely on "the army it has rather than the army it wishes it had." Anyone contemplating the political struggle in which the nation, the Republican Party and America's conservatives find themselves in today should think about those words because in a political campaign voters have a choice between not the candidates they might have wanted, but the candidates on the ballot. Published October 16, 2016

Preserving the 'genius' of the Constitution

The success of the American Republic is directly traceable to the wisdom and work of the 55 men who gathered in Philadelphia in 1787 to draft a constitution designed not so much to empower government, but to limit that power. Forrest McDonald, perhaps the most influential of historians on the intellectual origins of the Constitution, claimed it could not have been written by any other 55 men at any other time in history. At fewer than 8,000 words, it's a short document when compared to the fundamental documents of other nations and it has, in spite of its critics, stood up remarkably well since its adoption in 1789. Published September 12, 2016

Phyllis Schlafly   The Washington Times

The queen of conservatism

Phyllis Schlafly's death last weekend came not so much as a shock, but a surprise. Mrs. Schlafly was 92 years old and had stepped down as head of Eagle Forum, but many of those who knew her and worked with her find it difficult to imagine a world without the lady from Alton, Ill., who helped shape and lead the modern conservative movement. Published September 7, 2016

Illustration on animal testing of medicines by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

A boy is not a rat, a pig or a dog

Some years ago, my West Virginia hunting and fishing buddy was invited to appear on a local television station high in the mountains with an animal rights activist, a young vegan mother who brought her one-year-old daughter with her. In the midst of the discussion after the young lady argued that we humans ought to stop treating animals as our inferiors, my friend turned to her and asked a simple question. Published September 6, 2016

A big slush fund for the Clinton Foundation

Hillary Clinton, after learning there is a chance that hackers could release potentially embarrassing Clinton Foundation emails before the November elections, has announced that if she is elected president the foundation will no longer accept the foreign and corporate donations that have convinced all but her most loyal sycophants that she may well have been peddling influence to the highest bidder as secretary of State Published August 22, 2016

Illustration on Venezuela's descent in to chaos under socialism by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Why Venezuela faces collapse

Last week the socialist government of Venezuela began seizing and destroying handguns, rifles and shotguns -- continuing the late Hugo Chavez's effort to solve the nation's crime problem by disarming the nation. However, since Chavez imposed what he and his followers proudly called "21st- Century Socialism" on one of the wealthiest nations in South America, Venezuela has been in economic, political and social free fall. Published August 21, 2016

Jacob Zuma Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Of arms and the man named Zuma

I first met Jacob Zuma, South Africa's controversial president, in 2002 when he was serving as then-President Thabo Mbeki's vice president. I was in South Africa at the behest of a number of South African outfitters and professional hunters to urge the government to reject a British-inspired laundry list of firearms regulations that would have crippled big-game hunting in South Africa. Published August 11, 2016

Helen Delich Bentley. (The Washington Times)

Baltimore's 'unforgettable' advocate

Anyone growing up in the '50s and '60s would be hard pressed to avoid the Reader's Digest, which was read by, well, just about everybody, including a lot of folks too pretentious to actually admit they read it. You could find it at the barbershop or the doctor's office if you didn't get it at home and every issue seemed to include something you would find interesting or informative or both. Published August 8, 2016

Illustration on a potential Clinton administration's threat to Second Amendment rights by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Hillary's firearms falsehoods

Donald Trump keeps calling his Democratic opponent "Lyin' Hillary," and poll after poll shows that though most voters might shy away from Mr. Trump's blunt characterization of Hillary Clinton, they share his belief that the lady cannot really be trusted or believed. Published August 1, 2016

Illustration on Ted Cruz' ploy to be "Reaganesque" by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Ted Cruz's risky strategy

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz went "all in" Wednesday as he addressed the Republican Convention delegates in Cleveland, laid out his vision and pointedly ignored the opportunity to endorse the candidacy of Donald Trump. It was a risky move and may not work out as well for the ambitious Texan as he hopes. Published July 21, 2016