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Jennifer Harper

Jennifer Harper

To read Jennifer Harper's Inside the Beltway columns, click here. Contact her at [email protected].

Articles by Jennifer Harper

Kenneth Starr now heads Baylor University after a career in law that included a stint as special prosecutor in the Monica Lewinsky matter. Some Republicans, including Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, want a special prosecutor to investigate the current IRS scandal.

Inside the Beltway: The Culture Count

Like a bad restaurant, the Obama administration attracts scathing reviews from Republicans and conservative critics who are tired of what's on the policy menu, and repelled by the signature "culture" of White House operations. The trio of scandals centered on Benghazi, the IRS and the Justice Department has ramped up the tirade, and until facts and conclusions emerge, the talk of the moment is culture-centric. Published May 19, 2013

Clad in leather and flanked by fans of Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker helps foster the love for the Milwaukee-based classic in China.

Inside the Beltway: Harleys in China

A noisy cultural moment, and a lucrative one: China has embraced Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Witness the fact that 1,000 Chinese Harley lovers recently roared into Qian Dao Lake, Zhejiang Province, decked out in black leather, skull masks and Viking warrior helmets. Or no helmets. The Beijing-style bikers were there to celebrate the 110th birthday of the iconic, all-American brand. Published May 16, 2013

According to the likely 2016 presidential matchups in a Public Policy Polling survey released Wednesday, Hillary Rodham Clinton leads among Democrats with 63 percent of the votes, well ahead of Vice President Joseph R. Biden at 13 percent and a couple of other Democrats in single digits.

Inside the Beltway: And in summation ...

"These are the tactics of the Third World." — Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican,on the combined effects of the Benghazi matter, the Justice Department seizure of Associated Press phone records and the IRS probe of conservative groups, before the Senate. Published May 15, 2013

Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's new book offers 400 rules for life, business, politics and other stuff, such as "America's economy was built on fortitude, not fear," and "Stay in your lane" is not my favorite phrase. (Image from

Inside the Beltway: Rules a la Rumsfeld

America is not what is wrong with the world. If you expect people to be in on the landing, include them in the takeoff. You get what you inspect, not what you expect. If you're coasting, you're going downhill. Published May 14, 2013

Gary Pruitt, president and CEO of The Associated Press, calls the Justice Department's gathering of two months worth of phone records from AP "serious interference with AP's constitutional rights to gather and report news."
(associated press)

Inside the Beltway: AP plays hardball

News coverage was swift and straightforward following revelations that the Justice Department secretly had obtained two months worth of phone records from The Associated Press, an action the wire service President and CEO Gary Pruitt deemed an "unprecedented intrusion" and "serious interference with AP's constitutional rights to gather and report news," in a letter to Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. made public on Monday. Those are fighting words from Mr. Pruitt, the former CEO of news syndicate McClatchey Co., who has been on the job just over a year. Published May 13, 2013

Rep. Steve Stockman, Texas Republican, is raffling off a Bushmaster AR-15 rifle, "the No. 1 firearm on the gun banners' wish list."
(associated press)

Inside the Beltway: Target practice

"Grab this gun before Obama does." And so advises Rep. Steve Stockman, who is raffling off a Bushmaster AR-15 rifle, which he describes as "almost impossible to find in stores and the No. 1 firearm on the gun banners' wish list." Published May 9, 2013

** FILE ** Mark Sanford is headed back to Washington for this second turn in the House of Representatives, this time with fiancee Maria Belen Chapur at his side. (Associated Press)

Inside the Beltway: An eye on Benghazi

"Terrorists murdered four Americans, we demand the truth," reads a terse new petition for White House transparency on the Benghazi attacks, organized by the American Center for Law and Justice and signed by 77,000 people. "President Obama: With continually changing stories and inaccurate accounts, the American people have been misled. Terrorists attacked American soil —; our embassy — we need the truth and accountability," the petition says. Published May 8, 2013

Sen. Rand Paul isn't hesitating to test the presidential waters, speaking in Iowa on Friday and in New Hampshire on Monday. (Associated Press)

Inside the Beltway: Rand Paul's big show

It's never too early raise the curtain on a 2016 presidential play. Sen. Rand Paul knows his lines and will command the political stage in Iowa on Friday — and in New Hampshire on Monday. Published May 7, 2013

Fans of independent filmmaker Dennis Michael Lynch say his new documentary revealing the toll of amnesty is effective enough to "kill the immigration bill."

Inside the Beltway: Park Geun-hye shows backbone

"We will make them pay," South Korea President Park Geun-hye said of the fate of North Korea should it launch an attack of any size or scope on her nation, to CBS News. Published May 6, 2013

Elizabeth Colbert Busch, the sister of comedian Stephen Colbert, has been rolling through South Carolina aboard a splashy campaign bus in her quest to win this week's special election for the U.S. House representing the 1st District.
(Elizabeth Colbert Busch for Congress)

Inside the Beltway: LaPierre's summation

"Today, the National Rifle Association is a record 5 million strong. Even as thousands of Americans join our cause every day, the media and political elites denigrate us. They cringe at the sight of long lines at gun shows. They mock Americans who are buying firearms and ammunition at a record pace. They scorn and scold the NRA. They don't get it, because they don't get America." Published May 5, 2013

Tina Brown, editor-in-chief of the Daily Beast, announced Thursday that her publication had "parted company" with media critic Howard Kurtz after his false assertion about basketball player Jason Collins.

Inside the Beltway: Mucho mucho

"The Obama administration spent between $2.52 million and $2.77 million for hotel rooms and rental cars during the president's 2012 trip to Mexico for a G-20 summit," proclaims Britain's Daily Mail. "Government travel documents available online show that the State Department contracted with a travel agency to spend between $1,889,383 and $2,078,327 on hotel rooms alone, for the President, the Secret Service, and the rest of the State Department and White House staff and VIPs." Published May 2, 2013

"It is a continued source of amazement that the simple fact that I am working hard with like-minded Senators to keep my promise is seen as newsworthy and cause for wild speculation," Sen. Ted Cruz said of rumors he is mulling a presidential run. (Associated Press)

Inside the Beltway: Ted Cruz control

As Americans mull their disgust with Congress and the White House, one lawmaker is getting positive buzz. That would be Sen. Ted Cruz, who is striking a presidential pose, and in these times, it's never too early. Published May 1, 2013

They were attempting to rescue Lt. Cmdr. Richard D. Hartman, who had been at the control of a single-seat Douglas A4 Skyhawk when he was shot down 24 hours earlier. (image from US Navy/

Inside the Beltway: Crew comes home

They were last airborne on July 19, 1967: the four-man Navy crew from the USS Hornet that took off in an SH-3A Sea King helicopter to rescue a downed pilot in Ha Nam Province, North Vietnam. Hit by anti-aircraft gunfire, the helicopter crashed and the men never returned. Nearly 46 years later, the pilot and his crew will be united again for a final time. Published April 30, 2013

"The time has come for Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform," says Arnold Schwarzenegger, who came to the U.S. from Austria. He will host an immigration forum Tuesday at the University of Southern California. He plays a DEA agent in his next film.

Inside the Beltway: Schwarzenegger's immigration

When he is not starring in action movies or promoting fitness, Arnold Schwarzenegger, is a bona fide wonk — and the namesake of the University of Southern California's Schwarzenegger Institute for State and Global Policy. Yes, the Schwarzenegger Institute, where the motto is "advancing policy not politics." Published April 29, 2013

Citizens Hearing on Disclosure organizer Stephen Bassett has assembled five former lawmakers and 40 witnesses to demand government transparency in extraterrestrial matters.

Inside the Beltway: Out there

"If the Congress won't do it's job, the people will," declares the Citizens Hearing on Disclosure, set to take off in the main ballroom of the National Press Club on Monday. Disclosure? Are we talking health care here, or gun control? No, we're talking extraterrestrial. Of course, the nation's capital may seem like another planet at times, but no matter. Published April 28, 2013

Former President Bill Clinton has embraced social media by opening a Twitter account. To join the 400,000 followers he has collected so far, find him at #Bill Clinton.

Inside the Beltway: Dinner bashing

It's been all the rage this week to bash the White House Correspondents' Association dinner. Multiple accounts now claim that the giddy juxtaposition of journalists, Hollywood celebrities and notorious operatives has become commercialized, off-message and unbecoming. Yeah, well. Close to 3,000 "correspondents" will be vying for attention Saturday night as the network cameras roll and the Makers Mark bourbon stylishly flows at myriad cocktail events. And yes, there were only 11 attendees when the event was first staged 99 years ago. Published April 25, 2013