E. J. Dionne Quotes

Forgive me for noting that conservatives seem to believe that the rich will work harder if we give them more, and the poor will work harder if we give them less.

Nowhere else in the world do the laws on firearms become the playthings of politicians and lobbyists intent on manufacturing cultural conflict. Nowhere else do elected officials turn the matter of taking a gun to church into a searing ideological question. But then, guns are not a religion in most countries.

A nation that hates politics will not long survive as a democracy.

Hope is different from optimism. Hope is a tough virtue, not a psychological predisposition. Hope insists on taking facts and reason into account and still insisting that improvement … is always a real possibility.

The new culture war is about national identity rather than religion and ‘transcendent authority.’ It focuses on which groups the United States will formally admit to residence and citizenship. It asks the same question as the old culture war: ‘Who are we?’ But the earlier query was primarily about how we define ourselves morally. The new question is about how we define ourselves ethnically, racially and linguistically. It is, in truth, one of the oldest questions in our history, going back to our earliest immigration battles of the 1840s and 1850s.

Politically, Donald Trump doesn’t seem to care much about what he says. He gauges the effect. Sometimes, in the middle of a speech, he will change his direction if the audience doesn’t like him.


The Democrats want to celebrate their successes but don’t want to look out of touch with the people who haven’t risen much in the last decade or so really.

Liberals and conservatives disagree over what are the most important sins. For conservatives, the sins that matter are personal irresponsibility, the flight from family life, sexual permissiveness, the failure of individuals to work hard. For liberals, the gravest sins are intolerance, a lack of generosity toward the needy, narrow-mindedness toward social and racial minorities.

The worst kind of job to have is a job with lots of responsibility and very little power.

I wish we had more [Dwight] Eisenhower Republicans in this [Donald]Trump cabinet.

We have pursued public policies that kind of hold the recovery back, but the private economy is really starting to roll.

I think Donald Trump simply needs to make himself look less bigoted, less dangerous, more comfortable to people.

In the Trump language, words change their meaning day by day depending on his own political needs.

The money matters. And secret money is corrupting, secret money is dangerous, secret money leads to scandal.

I think there are a lot of Americans who are very scared, scared that [Vladimir] Putin manipulated us, worried about Rex Tillerson, the winner of Russia’s order of friendship as the secretary of state.

At the heart of my argument is the view that religious faith, far from being inevitably on the side of the status quo, should on principle hold this world to higher standards.

Common decency is a core part of who people are.

The New York Times had a headline on its website – Trump Turning To Ultra Wealthy To Steer Economic Policy. This doesn’t sound very populist to me. Today’s commerce secretary, the names being talked about for treasury secretary, I think there will be populist talk but maybe no populist action.

I actually think there are more Republicans than people realize who would be sympathetic to immigration reform in the rank and file. I think the lesson for Jeb Bush is politicians shouldn’t write books with long lead times.

Here you had John McCain and Lindsey Graham in a very principled way standing up and defending Barack Obama. You had people like Gene Robinson and a lot of other liberals, who said, and this I personally agree with, however flawed Rand Paul was as a messenger, we need a debate about this. The administration has not been forthcoming enough about its drone policy.

The madman theory can work, but it only works if it’s strategic. And I think one of the problems that President Trump faces is people don’t really know how much strategy is here and how much is he just sort of talking off the top of his head. And I think North Korea is a really classic case of a potentially insoluble problem, a problem that you have to manage.

It sure looks like [Vladimir] Putin did this [hack DNS site]. And we all need to take this seriously.

[I think there are a lot of Americans who are very scared ] that Donald Trump and his campaign, or his future administration, is just in denial. They just want to say, no, no, no, [Vladimir] Putin couldn’t possibly have done this.

I think this is a scary thing [hacking] that does have to be taken out of a partisan context. And one of the best pieces of news this morning is a joint statement, Senator [Chuck] Schumer, Senator [Harry] Reid for the Democrats,John McCain and Lindsey Graham from the Republicans, saying we have to get to the bottom of this.

The Russians stole from the Democratic National Committee with hacking.