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David Keene

David Keene

Editor at Large — 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

Illustration on foul language by the administration in the White House by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

No, this is not exactly 1974

It was 1974. Richard Nixon was in the White House fighting for his political life and James L. Buckley, who had been elected to the Senate on the Conservative Party line in New York four years before was privately wondering whether he could in good conscience continue to support a president who he believed had betrayed his principles, the presidency and the nation. As the Watergate revelations built, Democrats were demanding the president's head, but most Republicans were still nervously defending their president. Published July 31, 2017

In this July 17, 2016, file photo, then-Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort talks to reporters on the floor of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

Robert Mueller team shows history of crossing ethical lines

President Trump's advisers and defenders in trying to undermine former FBI Director Robert Mueller's investigation of the Trump campaign's alleged pre-election "collusion" with Vladimir Putin's Russia are pointing out that Mr. Mueller and another former FBI director, James Comey, are longtime buddies. Published July 25, 2017

Spiro Agnew in 1969    Associated Press photo

Removing the media manhole cover

On Nov. 13, 1969, Spiro T. Agnew walked to the podium in Des Moines, Iowa, to deliver perhaps the most famous speech ever by a U.S. vice president. It was, of course, the famous "Des Moines Speech" in which Mr. Agnew for the first time took on broadcast media commentators in a way that must make President Trump green with envy. Published July 11, 2017

Illustration on the decline of the FBI by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Why the FBI is hard to trust

Can anyone with a modicum of common sense trust the Federal Bureau of investigation? The answer to that question is a resounding "no." The claim that the FBI strives to be above politics is today and has always been absurd. Published June 24, 2017

Illustration on vocational education for manufacture by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

In praise of apprenticeship

My father was the president of the Rockford, Illinois Labor Council when I was a kid. He was a machinist at a time when Rockford and Cincinnati were the centers of the nation's machine tool industry. I remember that many of those working as machinists in Rockford back then were Hungarian refugees; skilled machinists who had fled after Soviet tanks had put down their attempt to topple their Communist government in 1956. Published June 18, 2017

Illustration on resisting being goaded into a like reaction to attacks on the GOP by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

After the attack in Alexandria

Conservatives will be tempted in the days ahead to blame the left's over the top anti-Republican, anti-Trump rhetoric for the shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise and the others wounded in Alexandria on Wednesday. It will be tempting both because leftist leaders have thrown all decency aside as they vent against those with whom they disagree and because in the hours following the shootings Twitter was awash with messages emanating from the progressive fever swamps celebrating the shootings because Republicans "deserve" whatever they get. Published June 15, 2017

Victor Gold    The Washington Times

Remembering Victor Gold

Victor Gold died quietly last week. His passing was both unexpected and uncharacteristic for in his 88 years no one who knew him or encountered him would have expected him to do anything quietly. Vic was one of a kind; to say that he was passionate about life, his beliefs, football; his friends and life in general hardly begins to describe the man. Published June 8, 2017

Protesters from labor and other progressive groups fill the rotunda of the state Capitol in St. Paul, Minn., on Wednesday, May 24, 2017, to demand that Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton veto the bills that passed before the Minnesota Legislature's special session bogged down earlier in the day. (AP Photo/Steve Karnowski)

The dirty secret behind big labor's decline

My father was a toolmaker and union organizer who, for many years, headed the Rockford, Ill. Labor Council while my mother was serving five terms as head of the Women's Auxiliary of the United Auto Workers. Dad worked as a machinist and my mother as a waitress and clerk in a local jewelry store until my dad retired and joined a couple of buddies to buy a bar. Published May 24, 2017

Illustration on the selection of the next director of the FBI by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Turning the FBI fiasco into a victory

CBS "Late Show" host Stephen Colbert, a major league anti-Trump media star, was taken aback when, upon hearing that FBI Director James Comey had been fired, his audience broke into cheers and wild applause. Published May 15, 2017

Illustration on the Patriot Acts dangerous precedents by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

A lesson in the loss of liberty

It was 2001 not long after the twin towers had fallen and the nation's politicians were running scared. George W. Bush was in the White House and John Ashcroft was attorney general. Published May 11, 2017

The War on Free Speech Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Preserving free speech for all

The traditional belief that free speech and unfettered debate underpin a free society is wounded and dying among many in this country. This is particularly true among the students and faculties at the nation's elite colleges and universities and within the ranks of the leftist "progressives" who dominate today's Democratic Party. Published May 8, 2017

Illustration on the liberal/media underestimation of President Donald Trump by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Recalculating the Trump factor

Last week has to be counted as President Trump's best since his election and inauguration. It was a week that should have shocked his detractors who have been assuming as a matter of faith that whatever momentary fit of public madness catapulted him into the Oval Office has passed. Published May 1, 2017

FILE - In this March 18, 2017 file photo, Congressional candidate Rob Quist meets with supporters during the annual Mansfield Metcalf Celebration dinner hosted by the state's Democratic Party in Helena, Montana. He is trying to fire up the party faithful in his race against Republican Greg Gianforte in a May 25 special election to fill Montana's sole congressional seat. (AP Photo/Bobby Caina Calvan, File)

Hiding his socialism beneath a cowboy hat

Fresh from special election defeats in Kansas and Georgia, Democratic professionals and activists alike are focusing on the election to fill Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke's Montana congressional seat as one more chance to chip away at the Republican majority in the House. Published April 25, 2017

Unrest in Venezuela Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Venezuela's coming civil war

As American public attention has been focusing on terror attacks in Paris, the crisis in Syria and the nuclear-armed lunatic running North Korea, Venezuela to our south is about to explode into violence and civil war with incalculable consequences in our own hemisphere. Published April 24, 2017

Woodrow Wilson and WWI Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The foul fruits of Woodrow Wilson

As a college undergraduate some decades ago, I was assigned an essay on the three most evil men of the 20th century. Adolf Hitler, Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin and Mao Zedong were obvious choices, and most of my fellow students chose from that group. I agreed on Hitler and Lenin, but felt that Stalin and Mao were just additional manifestations of the evil Lenin embodied. My third choice was Woodrow Wilson, which upset my professor at the time, but which I stand by today. Published April 10, 2017

Illustration on Susan Rice by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

The half-baked lies of Susan Rice

Most reasonable observers believed or at least hoped that the nation would finally be spared having to listen to the Clinton and Obama administrations' go-to liar after last November's election. In the normal course of events, National Security Advisor Susan Rice would have simply packed her bags and vanished into well-paid obscurity at a "progressive" university or think tank. But it was not to be. Published April 5, 2017

Podesta Russian Ties Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Democrats' double standard on 'ties' to Russia

Washington and the national media are all about double standards. It should come as no surprise to anyone that the sort of Russian "ties" used to condemn Republicans as possible agents of Moscow are dismissed as irrelevant when Democrats are revealed to have deeper, stronger and far more remunerative connections to Russian banks, oligarchs and institutions than any Republican currently being banished to the outer darkness by Democratic "progressives." Published March 28, 2017

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