Bill Whalen

Virginia Hobbs Carpenter Fellow in Journalism
Biography: 

Bill Whalen, the Virginia Hobbs Carpenter Fellow in Journalism and 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.

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Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

California, New Jersey and Uncivil Unions

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Monday, February 22, 2010

Here’s a quick tale of two states, on different coasts, with a lot more in common than “Real Wives” reality shows. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

Congressional Races: Forecasting the Coming Wave

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Saturday, February 20, 2010

A favorite political language exercise these days is describing the wave seemingly destined to crash ashore this November. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

Boxer Now Officially a Fighter

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Friday, February 19, 2010

In other non-Tiger-related news this Friday: California Sen. Barbara Boxer is now officially going for a fourth term, filing her Declaration of Candidacy and nominating petitions earlier today. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

Arnold Beichman, 1913-2010

by Bill Whalen with Arnold Beichman, George P. Shultzvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Thursday, February 18, 2010

One of the great pleasures of being affiliated with the Hoover Institution is the opportunity to be near those who literally changed the course of history (George Shultz, the late Edward Teller), as well as remarkable men and women who embodied so much of the drama and change this world has witnessed this past century. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

California First Lady . . . Zsa Zsa Gabor?

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Wednesday, February 17, 2010

What’s a California gubernatorial contest without a splash of celebrity – especially one with a German accent? . . .

Analysis and Commentary

Razing Arizona Climate Change?

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Last week, I offered a few thoughts on how climate change will work its way in California’s gubernatorial race — Democrat Jerry Brown embracing the concept, while Republican Meg Whitman wants a temporary freeze (pun intended) on AB 32, the state’s landmark greenhouse-gas bill. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

What to Make of Bayh’s Good-Bye

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Monday, February 15, 2010

This morning’s surprise announcement by Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh that he won’t seek a third term — a surprise in that Bayh enjoyed a healthy lead and a flush war chest — didn’t lack for high-minded talk. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

California Con-Con a Non-Non Starter

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Thursday, February 11, 2010

So much for the people’s revolt in California – at least, in this election cycle. . . .

Analysis and Commentary

Open Primary, Same Closed Results?

by Bill Whalenvia Bill Whalen: Politi-Cal
Thursday, February 11, 2010

To some, it’s the promise of an end to ultra-partisan lawmakers. . . .

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