Author

John Micek

John Micek

A 3-decade veteran of the news business, John L. Micek is the Pennsylvania Capital-Star's Editor-in-Chief. An award-winning political reporter, Micek’s career has taken him from small town meetings and Chicago City Hall to Congress and the Pennsylvania Capitol. His weekly column on U.S. politics is syndicated to 800 newspapers nationwide by Cagle Syndicate. He also contributes commentary and analysis to broadcast outlets in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. Micek’s first novel, “Ordinary Angels,” was released in 2019 by Sunbury Press.

COMMENTARY

The GOP’s anti-abortion crusade is not pro-family at all

By: - May 6, 2022

In the hours after the bombshell leak of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion toppling Roe v. Wade, I awaited the torrent of Republican-authored press releases vowing to provide every resource the federal government could muster to support the millions of new families they were going to usher into existence. Of course, that didn’t happen. […]

COMMENTARY

What are book bans really about? Fear

By: - April 20, 2022

More years ago than I really care to count, the children’s librarian in my little town in rural northwestern Connecticut, apparently tired of my endlessly renewing the same book over and over again, pressed a copy of “The White Mountains” by John Christopher into my eight-year-old hands. Mrs. Bullock was her name. She was the mother of one of my […]

COMMENTARY

Public defenders are the bedrock of our legal system. Tom Cotton damaged that

By: - April 10, 2022

Since it seems to have become something of a thing of late, here’s what the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution says about the right to an attorney and the right to a fair and speedy trial: “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an […]

COMMENTARY

Targeting vulnerable transgender kids? A cruel and dangerous waste of time

By: - April 2, 2022

The other day, the host of a television public affairs show asked me what I thought a group of Republican lawmakers were trying to accomplish as they pursue passage of a gratuitously cruel bill that would ban transgender athletes from competing on women’s sports teams. I’ll admit it. I was stumped. I couldn’t think of […]

COMMENTARY

Column: Does the GOP want to repeal Obamacare? Take them literally and seriously.

By: - March 28, 2022

Victoria Schiano’s son, Cole, is 5 1/2. And he’s enduring what no kid his age should ever be asked to endure. He has mitochondrial disease, lives with a a central line to his heart, and has a feeding tube connected to his stomach and his intestines. He also needs constant monitoring for his seizure disorder. He […]

COMMENTARY

Republicans denounce Putin’s war on facts, but are silent on the one at home | John L. Micek

By: - March 20, 2022

There’s a lot that’s terrible about Russian strongman Vladimir Putin’s brutal attempt to erase Ukraine from the map of Europe. From the incalculable humanitarian disaster that has seen millions of Ukrainians flee their home country, to the appalling carnage on the streets of Mariupol that was devastatingly humanized with the death of a pregnant woman and her unborn […]

COMMENTARY

Bullies understand one language. The U.S. and West must speak with one voice

By: - February 26, 2022

There are days when big news events just swallow up your entire schedule. Thursday was one of those days. As was the case at the onset of the pandemic, and again with the 2020 election and its aftermath, and the violence of Jan. 6, it felt like the only thing we could do as a […]

COMMENTARY

3 poll numbers that should scare Democrats. And 3 that should give some hope

By: - February 20, 2022

If the central argument for President Joe Biden’s election in 2020 was his competence and decades of experience in Washington, three numbers in a new nationwide Quinnipiac University poll are a warning shot for the White House and Democrats as they look to hold their majorities in the U.S. House and Senate. Here they are: 56, 61, and 62. And […]

Report: Justice Dept. to investigate Republicans who sent fake Trump electors to Congress

By: - January 27, 2022

The U.S. Dept. of Justice has launched an investigation into an apparent attempt by Republicans in seven battleground states won by President Joe Biden in 2020, including Pennsylvania, to allegedly subvert the election results by sending falsified slates of electors for ex-President Donald Trump to Congress, according to a published report. Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco told CNN  that […]

COMMENTARY

In Year Two, no more Mr. Nice Biden, please

By: - January 23, 2022

About halfway through his marathon news conference last week, President Joe Biden finally asked the only question in Washington that’s worth asking. With congressional Republicans standing in the way of the Democrats’ every initiative, including voting rights (which should be as bipartisan as it gets), what do they actually support? “What are Republicans for? What […]

COMMENTARY

About the GOP’s historical amnesia on voting rights

By: - January 16, 2022

If you get into an argument with a Republican about the GOP’s lamentable support for voting rights and its fractured relationship with Black Americans, it won’t be long before your rhetorical sparring partner bellows “Robert Byrd” at you and declares the argument over. The logic here, if it even can be called that, is that […]

COMMENTARY

What should happen if abortion returns to the states? An expert explains

By: - December 12, 2021

To say there’s a lot riding on the U.S. Supreme Court’s eventual ruling in a case challenging Mississippi’s restrictive abortion ban is a galactic understatement. If, as currently appears the case, the court effectively topples Roe v. Wade, the 1973 precedent that declared a constitutional right to abortion, and without a uniform federal statute making abortion the law of […]