Peter M. Robinson

Murdoch Distinguished Policy Fellow

Peter M. Robinson is the Murdoch Distinguished Policy Fellow at the Hoover Institution, where he writes about business and politics, edits Hoover's quarterly journal, the Hoover Digest, and hosts Hoover's video series program, Uncommon Knowledge™.

Robinson is also the author of three books: How Ronald Reagan Changed My Life (Regan Books, 2003); It's My Party: A Republican's Messy Love Affair with the GOP, (Warner Books, 2000); and the best-selling business book Snapshots from Hell: The Making of an MBA (Warner Books, 1994; still available in paperback).

In 1979, he graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College, where he majored in English. He went on to study politics, philosophy, and economics at Oxford University, from which he graduated in 1982.

Robinson spent six years in the White House, serving from 1982 to 1983 as chief speechwriter to Vice President George Bush and from 1983 to 1988 as special assistant and speechwriter to President Ronald Reagan. He wrote the historic Berlin Wall address in which President Reagan called on General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev to "tear down this wall!"

After the White House, Robinson attended the Stanford University Graduate School of Business. (The journal he kept formed the basis for Snapshots from Hell.) He graduated with an MBA in 1990.

Robinson then spent a year in New York City with Fox Television, reporting to the owner of the company, Rupert Murdoch. He spent a second year in Washington, D.C., with the Securities and Exchange Commission, where he served as the director of the Office of Public Affairs, Policy Evaluation, and Research. Robinson joined the Hoover Institution in 1993.

The author of numerous essays and interviews, Robinson has published in the New York Times, Red Herring, and Forbes ASAP, the Wall Street Journal, and National Review Online. He is the editor of Can Congress Be Fixed?: Five Essays on Congressional Reform (Hoover Institution Press, 1995).

In 2005, Robinson was elected to serve as a Trustee of Dartmouth College.

Robinson lives in northern California with his wife, their children and their dog, Crusoe.

His research papers are available at the Hoover Institution Archives.

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Recent Commentary

What Did Afghanistan Mean?

by Peter M. Robinson interview with H.R. McMaster, Victor Davis Hansonvia Hoover Digest
Monday, January 31, 2022

Hoover fellows H. R. McMaster and Victor Davis Hanson scrutinize the long and ultimately futile American campaign to remake Afghanistan.

The Losses of Lockdown

by Peter M. Robinson interview with Tyler Goodspeedvia Hoover Digest
Monday, January 31, 2022

New Hoover fellow Tyler Goodspeed, a former White House economic adviser, on the Trump economy before COVID—and why it proved a boon for the American taxpayer, worker, and investor.

Fanfare for the “Uncommon” Man

featuring Peter M. Robinsonvia Hoover Digest
Monday, January 31, 2022

Celebrating a quarter-century of Hoover’s long-running video series, Uncommon Knowledge with Peter Robinson.

By Guy Denton

“This Is a Sputnik Moment”

by Peter M. Robinson interview with Amy Zegartvia Hoover Digest
Monday, January 31, 2022

Hoover fellow Amy B. Zegart has built her career analyzing the big threats. Today’s biggest, she says, is China.

An Honest Man

by Peter M. Robinson featuring Thomas Sowell, Jason Rileyvia Hoover Digest
Monday, October 18, 2021
Jason Riley offers a biography of Hoover fellow Thomas Sowell, the maverick scholar and fierce defender of fact over faction.

Doom with a View

by Peter M. Robinson interview with Niall Fergusonvia Hoover Digest
Monday, October 18, 2021

Hoover fellow Niall Ferguson’s new book represents a grand tour of COVID-19 and other catastrophes and the people who have had to face them.

The Man Who Wouldn’t Be Canceled

by Peter M. Robinsonvia Hoover Digest
Wednesday, July 14, 2021

The mob came for Laurence Fox, a brilliant British actor, after he made some mildly controversial remarks on the BBC. Refusing to apologize and vanish, Fox then launched a most public counterattack: a campaign for mayor of London.

Tarnished Gold

by Peter M. Robinsonvia Hoover Digest
Wednesday, July 14, 2021
Yesterday’s state of limitless promise is today’s state of smoke and mirrors—and broken promises.
Uncommon Knowledge

A Quarter-Century Of ‘Uncommon Knowledge’

featuring Peter M. Robinson, John Raisian, John B. Taylor, Hoover Institutionvia The Dispatch
Saturday, May 15, 2021

A history of the long-running public affairs show hosted by Peter Robinson.

No Grace and No Redemption

by Peter M. Robinson interview with Douglas Murrayvia Hoover Digest
Monday, April 26, 2021

Douglas Murray, author of The Madness of Crowds, on the madness of identity politics.