Skip to content

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, is the former opinion editor of The Washington Times. 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. He can be reached at

Articles by David Keene

Illustration on political witchhunts by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Adrift in the age of #MeToo

The other day as my old friend Adam Walinsky and I were lamenting the craziness of the current political atmosphere, he asked me what earlier period I believe was as bad as the one we are living through today. Adam, a former speechwriter and aide to Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, once ran as the Democratic candidate for attorney general in New York and is a close student of history. I asked in return if he was thinking of the McCarthy era, Published September 18, 2018

Illustration on Democrat political aspirations in the 2018 mid-terms by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Weaving a 'blue wave' from impeachment fantasies

Democrats are convinced that the "blue wave" they've been counting on to set the stage for President Donald Trump's impeachment in a House of Representatives they control is out there and building. They continue to enjoy a four to six point "generic" advantage in the polls, and there is evidence that their voters are more anxious to turn out and vote than their Republican counterparts — two indicators that combine with the media's continuing effort to demonize Mr. Trump to give them more than a fighting chance to take the House. Published September 11, 2018

Journalism Problem Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Journalism and the bias problem

NBC's Chuck Todd has taken to the pages of The Atlantic to call on his fellow journalists to take down Fox News, charging that Fox News founder Roger Ailes has waged a concerted 50-year campaign to divide the American people and demonize legitimate journalism. Published September 9, 2018

Insecure John Brennan Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Politics and security clearances

Former CIA Director and current MSNBC commentator John Brennan's intelligence service cronies have taken to the airwaves in their disgust at President Trump's decision to revoke Mr. Brennan's security clearance for what they claim is a first-time-ever act of vengeance by an out-of-control president. Published August 22, 2018

Maduro in Flames Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

A case study in suffering and lack of freedom

The tragedy that is Venezuela, a case study in the suffering and lack of freedom woven into the very fabric of Marxist socialism doesn't receive the attention it deserves at a time when last week's Gallup poll shows that Democrats view socialism more favorably than capitalism. Published August 14, 2018

Prison Reform Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Reforming the criminal justice system

On May 22, the House of Representatives managed to pass the First Step Act prison reform by a vote of 360 to 59, an unheard of margin in today's deeply divided Congress. The bill is a long-overdue attempt to at least begin to reform the way those caught up in the criminal justice system are treated while in prison and how they are prepared to live once they have paid their debt to society. Published August 8, 2018

Carrying China's Water Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Getting Beijing to back down

Western business has lusted after the Chinese consumer market for hundreds of years. The dream of a billion or two Chinese consumers buying one's products is as intoxicating today as when British textile makers yearned for the Chinese to keep their mills humming forever, but until recently the Chinese consumer market existed more in their dreams than in reality. Published August 7, 2018

The Nixon China Visit Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

When Nixon met with Mao

The outrage over President Donald Trump's demeanor during his Helsinki sit-down with Russia's Vladimir Putin resembles in many ways the reaction to the visit of another U.S. president to the capital of a foreign adversary. Published July 25, 2018

Supreme Court Struggle Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Supporting Judge Kavanaugh

Once one buys into a conspiracy theory everything makes sense because everything can be explained in terms of the conspiracy. Published July 23, 2018

Imperialism in flower again

That, however, was then. In today's world others are not as willing as they once were to tolerate the sort of overt aggression that took place during the days when Nazis and Communists were running amok, forcing aggressor nations to find subtler ways of taking over their neighbors. Published July 17, 2018

ACLU Losing Its Way Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Supporting the rights of others who may disagree

Chuck Morgan headed the American Civil Liberties Union's Washington office in the mid-1970s. He worked with conservatives and liberals on free speech issues and became a friend to many on both sides of the political aisle. Published June 26, 2018

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and lawmakers show support of "dreamers" as they mark the 6th anniversary of the announcement of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, June 15, 2018. Pelosi says the GOP immigration bill fails to provide a permanent legislative fix to protect dreamers and would codify President Trump's anti-immigrant agenda. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Predicting the future from polling data

The giddy optimism of late last year that had Democratic leaders salivating at what many saw as a coming midterm "blue wave" that would decimate their opponents, give them control of both the House and Senate, and leave Donald Trump a toothless lame duck who would be lucky to escape impeachment even before voters would have a chance to boot him out in 2020, has vanished. Published June 19, 2018

When energy and commercial development clash

Hundred and perhaps thousands of Calvert, Charles and Prince George's County citizens in Maryland have been battling Dominion Power and state regulators to stop Dominion from building what's called a "compressor station" on the Charles County/Prince George's County line. Published June 7, 2018

Rep. Donna Edwards, Maryland Democrat, said the bill passed by the House Wednesday would punish federal employees, and amounts to union-busing.

Donna Edwards has put ambition ahead of principle

When Sen. Barbara Mikulski of Maryland retired two years ago, Rep. Donna Edwards gave up her safe Prince George's County congressional seat to take on her House colleague, Montgomery County's Chris Van Hollen, in the Democratic primary. Ms. Edwards lost by nearly 13 points, in part because a supportive outside group ran a negative and wildly inaccurate ad in the final weeks of the campaign that backfired on her. Published May 21, 2018

Lessons from West Virginia

Democrats continue to insist in spite of a complete lack of evidence that the Russian government, Russian corporations or at least individual Russians with ties to Vladimir Putin colluded with the Trump campaign to affect the outcome of the 2016 presidential campaign, thereby denying their candidate the White House. Published May 13, 2018

When character assassination is the name of the game

Adm. Ronny Jackson, President Trump's choice to head the Veteran's Administration, learned last week that in today's Washington, character assassination is the name of the game. Republican senators looked the other way as Democrats, led by Montana Sen. Jon Tester, leaked unsubstantiated charges from unnamed accusers claiming the decorated veteran as an incompetent pill pusher, bully and uncontrollable drunk. By week's end the admiral, knowing that he was never going to be confirmed anyway, removed himself from consideration. Published May 1, 2018

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Samantha Mayor lights a candle during the Yom HaShoah candle lighting ceremony, Sunday, April 15, 2018, at the Downtown Jewish Center Chabad Education Center, in Fort Lauderdale as her parents Ellyn and Jesse help. The ceremony remembers victims of the holocaust and she also lit 17 candles for the victims of the Parkland school shooting. (Joe Cavaretta/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)

What led to the Broward County rampage

As the orchestrated outrage over the February shootings at Florida's Parkland high school dies down, it's time to look at what really led to the rampage during which Nikolas Cruz gunned down and killed 17 Margery Stoneman Douglas students. Published April 23, 2018

Illustration on Scott Walker in Wisconsin by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Wisconsin's long political winter

As the temperature in Washington edged up toward 80 over the weekend, Madison and most of the rest of Wisconsin was fighting one of the worst snowstorms that had hit the state in years. Motorists were warned to stay off the roads. Snow, wind and temperatures in the teens or lower made one question whether spring is, in fact, just around the corner. Published April 17, 2018

Remembering Pat Korten

Pat Korten, who died after a stroke last week, was one of the unsung heroes of the early conservative movement. We were students together at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, which in the mid-Sixties was morphing into an ideological battleground much like Berkeley in the West and Columbia in New York. The campus left, often encouraged by the university's left-wing faculty, was on the march and growing increasingly intolerant. Published April 12, 2018

Qatar and the World Cup Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

A hotbed of tranquility

Standing on the flight line in the hot sun at Al Udeid Air Base, the largest U.S. airbase outside the United States, contemplating the truly awesome firepower of a line of B-52 bombers, it is hard to give much credence to charges that Qatar is anything but a valued ally in the war on Mideastern terrorism. Published April 3, 2018