Author

John L. Micek

John L. Micek

John L. Micek is the Pennsylvania Capital-Star's Editor-in-Chief. He's been covering Pennsylvania politics for more than 20 years and most recently served as Opinion Editor at PennLive/The Patriot-News in Harrisburg, Pa. Micek's commentary is syndicated to more than 800 newspapers nationwide by Cagle Syndicate. And he's a regular contributor to a host of broadcast outlets in Pennsylvania and abroad.

COMMENTARY

No, guns do kill people. And the solution is glaringly obvious

By: - January 27, 2023

My Nhan, 65, immigrated to the United States from Vietnam in the 1980s, and made her home in California’s San Gabriel Valley, in a community called Rosemead. Her niece, Fonda Quan, said she was ready “to start the year fresh,” and celebrate with her friends, according to the CBC. She never got the chance. Nhan was among the […]

COMMENTARY

New poll is a roadmap to Republican grievance in 2022

By: - November 4, 2022

A new poll provides an eye-opening glimpse into the values and motivations of the modern Republican Party, and the cultural and political forces that will drive the party faithful to the polls on Nov. 8. The latest American Values poll by the Public Religion Research Institute also zooms in on the views of white evangelical Protestants who backed former President […]

COMMENTARY

Still think everything is awful? Here are three reasons for hope | John L. Micek

By: - October 7, 2022

Step away from Twitter. Stop doom-scrolling. Yes, I know, American democracy is under assault. Russian President Vladimir Putin is muttering dark warnings about nuclear weapons in the face of heroic and historic resistance by Ukraine. Dozens of people are dead and large swaths of Florida have been devastated by Hurricane Ian. And Kanye West did something so uniformly awful in Paris that […]

‘Abortion absolutely is healthcare’: U.S. House panel told as GOP pursues nationwide ban

By: - September 30, 2022

A nationwide abortion ban would widen disparities in health care and drive up the maternal mortality rate, particularly among Black women, physicians and advocates told a U.S. House panel on Thursday. “Women’s progress has always been inextricably linked with the ability to control our own bodies,” Jocelyn Frye, the president of the National Partnership for […]

COMMENTARY

DeSantis’ compassionless conservatism underscores urgency of real immigration reform

By: - September 23, 2022

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ decision to airlift 48 migrants from San Antonio, Texas to the island resort of Martha’s Vineyard, Mass. last week was depthless in its cruelty and cynicism, evoking the worst of America’s nativist and segregationist history. But if there was one benefit to this singular act of exploitation for shameless political gain, […]

COMMENTARY

Biden’s Philly speech was a challenge to all of us. We have to step up

By: - September 9, 2022

Returning to the state where he launched his candidacy — and the one that handed him the White House in 2020 — President Joe Biden last Thursday called on Americans to join him in a fight to preserve democracy and to beat back the forces of extremism. The 30-minute address was equal parts tribute to […]

COMMENTARY

With Roe headed to the states, every vote this fall matters

By: - July 1, 2022

Ever since she was old enough for me to tell her anything, I’ve been telling my daughter that she could grow up to be whatever she wants to be, that no obstacle, big or small, would ever stand in her way. I’ve told her that she’ll set her own destiny — that she’ll write the […]

What the Founders meant by ‘virtue,’ and how it could save our politics now

By: - May 5, 2022

Writing in his diary in the spring of 1759, John Adams mused aloud on the images that were likely to run through his head as he found himself lapsing into a thoughtful mood. “In such silent scenes, as riding or walking thro the Woods or sitting alone in my Chamber, or lying awake in my Bed, my Thoughts […]

COMMENTARY

About the GOP’s historical amnesia on voting rights

By: - January 14, 2022

If you get into an argument with a Republican about the GOP’s lamentable support for voting rights and its fractured relationship with Black Americans, it won’t be long before your rhetorical sparring partner bellows “Robert Byrd” at you and declares the argument over. The logic here, if it even can be called that, is that […]

COMMENTARY

Biden’s agenda: Dems need to decide if they want to win a battle, or lose the war

By: - November 1, 2021

(*This column was updated at 8:11 a.m. on Saturday, 10/30/21 to correctly reflect the priorities of the Progressive Caucus) Democrats on Capitol Hill may not be directly taking their cues from the legendary Carthaginian military leader Hannibal, but as moderates and progressives fell on each other this week over President Joe Biden’s watered-down domestic spending […]

Report sheds new light on Pa. lawmaker’s role in Trump’s election pressure on Justice Dept.

By: - October 12, 2021

A newly released congressional report on efforts by former President Donald Trump and his allies to pressure the U.S. Dept. of Justice and overturn the 2020 election prominently highlights a Pennsylvania lawmaker who is a close Trump ally, and who was in the vanguard of lawmakers who objected to certifying President Joe Biden’s victory last November. The […]

COMMENTARY

Everything we know about work is wrong. The pandemic proved it

By: - August 31, 2021

So what can the plight of a little cafe tell you about the state of the American economy and the changing face of work? A lot, as it turns out. The other week, the bistro where my family and I have been grabbing brunch every Sunday since the start of the pandemic announced that it […]