AUTHOR ARCHIVES

James Oliphant

James Oliphant James Oliphant has covered politics, government, and legal affairs for most of his journalism career. Before joining National Journal, he was a correspondent covering the 2012 presidential campaign for the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, and also worked as a congressional and legal affairs reporter for those newspapers.
Results 1-10 of 27

Obama Wants His Staff To Be More 'Hands On' in National Security Crises

October 21, 2014 President Obama is shocked, we are told. He's "visibly angry" over the government's response to the domestic Ebola threat. A report in The New York Times over the weekend portrayed the president as a frustrated chief executive, directing federal officials to be more "hands on" and to be more on ...

GOP Can't Stop a Lame-Duck AG Pick

October 17, 2014 The White House had every incentive in the world to kick the naming of a new attorney general until after the midterm elections and almost no reason not to. The simple fact of the matter is this: Senate Republicans can holler about how President Obama will be ramming his pick ...

The White House Is Spoiling for a Fight on Immigration

August 29, 2014 The White House appears to be moving full-speed ahead on an executive order that would provide widespread protection to illegal immigrants from deportation, Republicans—and maybe some Democrats—be damned. Those close to the process expect an order in the first few weeks of September—and expect it, in the words of one ...

Why Obama Is Saying 'Torture' Matters

August 4, 2014 Friday wasn't the first time President Obama used the word "torture" to describe the "enhanced interrogation techniques" used by the Central Intelligence Agency against terrorism suspects, but this time might be the most meaningful. Obama's remarks came at the end of an impromptu session with reporters in the White House ...

Clinton Waits For a Contender on National Security

July 31, 2014 For evidence that foreign affairs are swiftly emerging as a central factor in the nascent 2016 presidential race, look no further than Dallas, deep in the heart of Texas and 7,000 miles away from the brutal conflict in Gaza. There, on Wednesday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry gave a speech reaffirming ...

What Would the National Guard Actually Do at the Border?

July 25, 2014 When Texas Gov. Rick Perry this week announced he was sending 1,000 National Guard troops to his state's border with Mexico to deal with the child-migrant crisis, critics—including the White House—dismissed it as a political stunt. Josh Earnest, the White House spokesman, termed it a "symbolic" move intended to "generate ...

What Would the National Guard Actually Do at the Border?

July 25, 2014 When Texas Gov. Rick Perry this week announced he was sending 1,000 National Guard troops to his state's border with Mexico to deal with the child-migrant crisis, critics—including the White House—dismissed it as a political stunt. Josh Earnest, the White House spokesman, termed it a "symbolic" move intended to "generate ...

Obama Tells Europe to Step Up on Russia

July 18, 2014 It took a tragedy on the scale of the downed Malaysian airliner to amplify what President Obama and his national-security team have been saying for months—that Europe cannot afford to ignore the wolf at the door that is Vladimir Putin. Standing before reporters in the White House briefing room, the ...

Why Isn't Obama Going to the Border?

July 7, 2014 President Obama evidently has decided not to put a human face on the crisis unfolding at the U.S. southern border—not even his own. The White House said over and over again Monday that Obama will not travel to the border with Mexico despite flying to Texas this week to raise ...

Obama’s Going To Have To Get His Hands Dirty To Save Iraq

June 30, 2014 The deepening crisis in Iraq may be shaping up to be President Obama's biggest test—and not only because of the risk of the country fracturing along sectarian lines and the potential for the rise of a new jihadist terror state. Few, if any, challenges faced by this White House have ...