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.

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 […]

COMMENTARY

Four more children dead, and a nation shrugs. Is enough finally enough now? | John L. Micek

By: - December 4, 2021

(*This column was updated at 3:10 p.m. on Friday 12/3/21, to reflect that the accused shooter’s parents have been charged with involuntary manslaughter in connection with the deaths of four teenagers) Families in Michigan will set an empty place at the table this holiday season in the wake of the mass shooting at Oxford High […]

COMMENTARY

Biden’s agenda: Dems need to decide if they want to win a battle, or lose the war | John L. Micek

By: - October 30, 2021

(*This column was updated at 8:11 a.m. on Saturday, 10/30/21 to correctly reflect the priorities of the Progressive Caucus) Democrats on Capitol Hill may not be directly taking their cues from the legendary Carthaginian military leader Hannibal, but as moderates and progressives fell on each other this week over President Joe Biden’s watered-down domestic spending […]

COMMENTARY

My 9/11 prayer: The lessons we can learn from the great silence

By: - September 11, 2021

Two decades ago, my sister was teaching English at the Hosaka English Academy, in Numazu, Japan, about two hours southwest of Tokyo. Sometime in the dark hours after the attack, as the entire world was struggling to make sense of a tragedy that was nearly incomprehensible in its scale, the mother of one of my sister’s students came […]

COMMENTARY

Everything we know about work is wrong. The pandemic proved it

By: - August 26, 2021

So what can the plight of a little cafe tell you about the state of the American economy and the changing face of work? A lot, as it turns out. The other week, the bistro where my family and I have been grabbing brunch every Sunday since the start of the pandemic announced that it […]

COMMENTARY

In our mad, polarized, COVID surge summer, the only way out is through | John L. Micek

By: - August 13, 2021

It all kind of piled up this week: COVID hospitalizations and deaths are up. We’re still trying to convince the unvaccinated to get vaccinated, even as intensive care units fill beyond capacity. As the Delta variant of the implacable virus attacks our children. Florida’s governor threatens the withhold the wages of educators who want to protect the lives of young people in their charge. […]

COMMENTARY

Ban assault weapons. Every last damn one of them. The answer is staring us in the face

By: - March 28, 2021

Where do we go next? What do we do now? Those are the questions I found myself asking after I spoke to a panel of gun violence reduction activists this week. It was two nights after the murders in Boulder, a week after the rampage in Atlanta, and hours after the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee played out a […]

COMMENTARY

Congressional Dems bent the universe toward justice this week. We need to keep pushing

By: - February 28, 2021

Hopes of getting an increase to the piteously low federal minimum wage tucked into the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill were dealt a serious blow this week when the U.S. Senate’s Parliamentarian ruled that it couldn’t be included in the massive legislative package now moving through Congress. The announcement that came Thursday night was widely […]

COMMENTARY

‘Is this America?’ A Black Capitol police officer’s question is what the Trump trial is all about

By: - February 12, 2021

Earlier this week, in an emotional moment among emotional moments, the lead U.S. House Impeachment Manager, U.S. Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., shared the story of a Black U.S. Capitol police officer and the racist abuse he endured when a mob with murder on its mind sacked the seat of government last month. “I sat down […]