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 writes on politics and current events for Forbes.com. His commentary can also be seen on the opinion pages of the The Washington Post and Real Clear Politics, as well as Hoover’s “California On Your Mind” web channel.

Whalen hosts Hoover’s “Area 45” podcast on politics and policy in the age of the Trump presidency and he serves as one of the moderators of Hoover’s “GoodFellows” broadcast on the social, economic and geopolitical consequences of the coronavirus pandemic.

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 and Lars Larson.

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.

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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InterviewsPolitics

Bill Whalen On The John Batchelor Show

interview with Bill Whalenvia The John Batchelor Show
Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Hoover Institution fellow Bill Whalen discusses his Forbes article "The Speaker’s Death By A Thousand Snips And Cuts."

Analysis and CommentaryPolitics

The Speaker’s Death By A Thousand Snips And Cuts

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Thursday, September 3, 2020

Why bother with a column about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to a San Francisco hair salon earlier this week – an appointment that caused political embarrassment for America’s highest elected Democrat as a surveillance camera caught her violating, at the time, at least two local ordinances (getting her hair done indoors and not wearing a mask)?

PoliticsFeatured

New Election, Same Old Problem: California’s Initiative Overload

by Bill Whalenvia California on Your Mind
Wednesday, September 2, 2020

With only 60 days remaining until the election, now’s a good time to look at what lies ahead on the California ballot.

Analysis and Commentary

Biden’s Barristers, Trump’s Barricade And Other Doomsday Scenarios

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Sunday, August 30, 2020

With seven weeks left until Election Day, now’s as good a time as any for fans of democracy to hit the panic button. Or so it would seem, judging by some of the doomsday prophecies making their way around the Internet.

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GoodFellows: Fiery But Mostly Peaceful

featuring John H. Cochrane, Niall Ferguson, Lanhee J. Chen, Bill Whalenvia Hoover Podcasts
Saturday, August 29, 2020

Its virtual national convention concluded, what is the Republican Party’s vision—is it the party of Trump moving forward? Hoover Institution senior fellows Niall Ferguson and John Cochrane and Hoover research fellow Lanhee Chen (the policy director for Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign) discuss the potency and lasting effect of Trumpism, the rising influence of social media, and whether the televised spectacle of urban unrest and violence works to the incumbent’s benefit.

InterviewsPolitics

Bill Whalen On The John Batchelor Show

interview with Bill Whalenvia The John Batchelor Show
Friday, August 28, 2020

Hoover Institution fellow Bill Whalen discusses the presidential race and what each candidate has to offer.

Analysis and Commentary

In Fleecing The Rich, California Lawmakers May Go Where Even Warren Didn’t Dare

by Bill Whalenvia The Washington Post
Friday, August 28, 2020

“You can never be too rich or too thin,” observed an exiled member of the House of Windsor not named Harry or Meghan. Unless, that is, you reside in the Sussexes’ adopted California, where lawmakers want to impose the nation’s first “wealth tax” — an ill-timed, ill-considered scheme likely to bring Sacramento more embarrassment than revenue.

FeaturedPolitics

The President’s Acceptance Speech: Trump Fatigue Vs. P.C. Fatigue

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Friday, August 28, 2020

I’ll admit: in the hours leading up to President Trump’s convention acceptance speech, I kept waiting for a change in plans: Trump forsaking the South Lawn of the White House in order to mingle with regular folks somewhere in Middle America.

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Fiery But Mostly Peaceful

interview with John H. Cochrane, Niall Ferguson, Lanhee J. Chen, Bill Whalenvia GoodFellows: Conversations From The Hoover Institution
Friday, August 28, 2020

Its virtual national convention concluded, what is the Republican Party’s vision—is it the party of Trump moving forward? Hoover Institution senior fellows Niall Ferguson and John Cochrane and Hoover research fellow Lanhee Chen (the policy director for Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign) discuss the potency and lasting effect of Trumpism, the rising influence of social media, and whether the televised spectacle of urban unrest and violence works to the incumbent’s benefit.

The State

Hollywood Nights, California Daze

by Bill Whalenvia California on Your Mind
Wednesday, August 26, 2020

One way to view California is through a television lens.

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