Bill Whalen

Research Fellow
Biography: 

Bill Whalen, a Hoover Institution research fellow since 1999, writes and comments on campaigns, elections and governance with an emphasis on California and America’s political landscapes.

Whalen is a columnist for the Sacramento Bee and writes on politics and current events for Forbes.com. His commentary can also be seen on the opinion pages of the Wall Street JournalReal Clear Politics, Los Angeles Times and the Fox News’ website.

Whalen has been a guest political analyst on the Fox News Channel, MSNBC and CNN. He’s also a regular guest on the nationally syndicated radio shows hosted by John Batchelor, Larry Kudlow, Lars Larson and the Bay Area’s Michael Krasny.

Whalen has served as a media consultant for California political hopefuls and aspiring policy leaders. His past clients have included former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, former congressman Tom Campbell and former Los Angeles mayor Richard J. Riordan.

Prior to joining the Hoover Institution, Whalen served as chief speechwriter and director of public affairs for former California governor Pete Wilson. In that capacity, he was responsible for the governor's annual State of the State address, as well as other major policy addresses.

Before moving to California, Whalen was a political correspondent for Insight Magazine, the national newsweekly and sister publication of the Washington Times, where he was honored for his profiles and analysis of candidates, campaigns, Congress, and the White House. During those years, Whalen also appeared frequently on C-SPAN, National Public Radio, and CNBC.

In addition to his time in Washington as a political journalist, Whalen served as a speechwriter for the Bush-Quayle reelection campaign and was a senior associate with the public relations firm Robinson-Lake/Sawyer-Miller, offering media and political advice for domestic and foreign clientele.

Whalen currently resides in Palo Alto, California.

Filter By:

Topic

Type

Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

In Philadelphia, Democrats Welcome And Fear A "Rocky" Convention

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Saturday, July 23, 2016

At this time a week ago, we looked at what Donald Trump and Republicans could look forward to in Cleveland. This week, it’s Hillary Clinton’s turn.

Analysis and Commentary

Trump Speaks To America’s ‘Forgotten Men And Women’ In Big, Bold Speech

by Bill Whalenvia Fox News
Friday, July 22, 2016

A postscript to the 2016 Republican National Convention: just how is the wide of a gulf between a Fourth Estate that nitpicked and nunchucked the Republicans’ every move in Cleveland and a viewing audience drawn to this convention’s more forthright rhetoric?

California flag
Featured

California Should Host All National Party Conventions

by Bill Whalenvia Sacramento Bee
Friday, July 22, 2016

As we’re in the calm between the two storms of the party conventions, here’s a halftime report.

Analysis and Commentary

Four Things We've Learned (So Far) From The Republican Convention

by Bill Whalenvia Fox News
Tuesday, July 19, 2016

What have we learned, so far, about the Republican National Convention? Like the man’s many properties, Donald Trump’s name ought to be on this Cleveland production.

Analysis and CommentaryBlank Section (Placeholder)

The Republican Show In Cleveland: All About Space -- And Trump's Final Frontier

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Saturday, July 16, 2016

I’ve been attending or viewing national political conventions for the better part of three decades now – my first journeys taking me to Atlanta in 1988, to watch Democrats convince themselves that a liberal Massachusetts governor could compete in the South, followed by New Orleans and George H.W. Bush uttering six words (“read my lips, no new taxes”) he’d later regret.

Analysis and CommentaryBlank Section (Placeholder)

Three Things To Know About The GOP And DNC Conventions

by Bill Whalenvia Fox News
Friday, July 15, 2016

Well before the opening gavel and way beyond the final benediction, here are three things we can say about the next two weeks of national party conventions. First, if indeed all politics are local, so too is the revenue generated from these political spectacles.

Analysis and Commentary

Political Conventions: Once Dull Events, But Not In Era Of Trump

by Bill Whalenvia San Francisco Chronicle
Friday, July 15, 2016

[Subscription Required] Fans of death-defiance and all-around stupidity might recall Evel Knievel’s rocket-motorcycle ride across a mile-wide chasm of Idaho’s Snake River Canyon back in 1974. (Spoiler alert: His parachute malfunctioned on takeoff; Knievel drifted harmlessly to the canyon’s bottom.)

Analysis and Commentary

The 2016 Election Is Looking A Lot Like 1968, For A Lot Of Reasons Not So Great

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Sunday, July 10, 2016

Try this for feeding your head. The past weekend marked San Francisco’s annual Haight Ashbury Street Fair–a chance for super-wealthy techies and superannuated hippies to groove to the strains of Jefferson Starship, the spinoff of the fabled Airship band that gave us red queens, white knights and hookah-smoking caterpillars.

Analysis and Commentary

In Politics And In Hoops, NorCal Has A Leg Up

by Bill Whalenvia Sacramento Bee
Thursday, July 7, 2016

When Kevin Durant opted for a two-year deal with the Golden State Warriors earlier this week, the narrative was one of an NBA great ditching small-market Oklahoma City for the “Splash Brothers” and the splashier Bay Area. 

Analysis and Commentary

It's His Nomination And His Convention: Imagine Trump Doing Cleveland His Way

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Saturday, July 2, 2016

Someday, someone will incorporate a sarcasm filter into your computer, so you can figure if reporters are typing with a straight face.

Pages