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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Recent Commentary

EconomyBlank Section (Placeholder)Featured

The Playboy Mansion And Catwoman’s Lair: Building Blocks Of California’s COVID-19 Economy?

by Bill Whalenvia California on Your Mind
Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Rest assured that William Shakespeare is alive and kicking in coronavirus-stricken California.

Analysis and Commentary

Is Biden Hardly — Or Trying Hard To Be — The New Harding?

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Sunday, April 12, 2020

Political anniversaries sometimes invite comparisons.

EducationFeatured

California’s UC System Suspends Board Scores, But Not The Spirit To Undo Proposition 209

by Bill Whalenvia California on Your Mind
Thursday, April 9, 2020

The California education development receiving the most attention these days? That would be the state’s K–12 public schools closing down for the remainder of the 2019–20 academic year due to fears of spreading the COVID-19 virus—an early “summer vacation” for nearly 6.2 million teens and minors enrolled in more than 10,500 schools statewide (a student population roughly the size of Missouri, America’s 18th-largest state).

Interviews

Bill Whalen On The John Batchelor Show

interview with Bill Whalenvia The John Batchelor Show
Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Hoover Institution fellow Bill Whalen discusses his Forbes article "Coming Soon To The Biden Campaign: “Binders Full Of Women."

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Rue Britannia?

featuring John H. Cochrane, Niall Ferguson, H. R. McMaster, Bill Whalenvia GoodFellows: Conversations From The Hoover Institution
Tuesday, April 7, 2020

In this episode of GoodFellows, a Hoover Institution weekly broadcast examining the ramifications of the global COVID-19 pandemic, senior fellows John Cochrane, Niall Ferguson, and H. R. McMaster exchange their thoughts on why governments fail to anticipate crises, British and European leadership in flux, and the right approach for re-engaging with China.

Analysis and CommentaryPolitics

Coming Soon To The Biden Campaign: “Binders Full Of Women”

by Bill Whalenvia Forbes
Sunday, April 5, 2020

How to pass the time until the presidential campaign returns in earnest?

EducationBlank Section (Placeholder)Featured

How California Got Schooled On Innovation

by Bill Whalenvia California on Your Mind
Thursday, April 2, 2020

Rest assured that the old political notion of “you never want a serious crisis to go to waste” is alive and thriving in California—even amidst a pandemic.

InterviewsPolitics

Bill Whalen On The John Batchelor Show

interview with Bill Whalenvia The John Batchelor Show
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Hoover Institution fellow Bill Whalen discusses his RealClear Politics article "Joe Exotic Meets Joe Quixotic."

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Still A Free Society?

featuring John H. Cochrane, Niall Ferguson, H. R. McMaster, Bill Whalenvia GoodFellows: Conversations From The Hoover Institution
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

In the inaugural episode the Hoover GoodFellows have a lively discussion about how much civil liberties can be sacrificed in an emergency, what steps should be taken to prevent the health crisis from becoming an economic and financial crisis, and whether the decoupling of the US-China relationship will accelerate.

Analysis and CommentaryPolitics

Joe Exotic Meets Joe Quixotic

by Bill Whalenvia Real Clear Politics
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

If you’re a Netflix addict, then you’re likely familiar with the antics of Joseph Maldonado-Passage, a.k.a. Joe Exotic, the star of the docuseries "Tiger King," which chronicles the life and times of the former Oklahoma zookeeper, singer and presidential and gubernatorial candidate currently in prison for taking part in a murder-for-hire plot.

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