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Jennifer Harper

Jennifer Harper

A graduate of Syracuse University, Jennifer Harper writes the daily Inside the Beltway column and provides additional coverage of breaking national news, plus long-term trends in politics, media issues, public opinion, popular culture, Hollywood foibles and “eureka” moments in health and science.

She has been a frequent broadcast commentator on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, C-SPAN, Voice of America, Citadel Broadcasting, Talk Radio Network and other news organizations. Born in Elizabeth, N.J., Ms. Harper grew up in Texas and arrived in Washington in time for Watergate -- and has been tracking the political and media landscape ever since.

She is an active member of the American Federation of TV Radio Artists and Screen Actors Guild. She has won 14 journalism awards during her years at The Washington Times.

To read Jennifer Harper's Inside the Beltway columns, click here. Contact her at

Articles by Jennifer Harper

Former President Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a visit to the Iowa State Fair on Aug. 12 in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Timing is everything for Donald Trump’s legal strategy

"In politics, timing is everything. Trump's announced press conference is on Monday. As usual, he is dominating media coverage which people will know will be negative. He knows that at least one segment will be devoted to his legal troubles on all the Sunday morning news shows, which typically set the storylines for the following week. All of these don't bother Trump," a new commentary released by the editorial board states. Published August 17, 2023

The news media has long tracked former President Donald Trump over the years. One columnist now predicts an even greater press frenzy centered on Mr. Trump in the future, focussed on legal matters. (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Trump trials to create a media frenzy not seen in decades

So. what kind of political and cultural event are we looking at when former President Donald Trump faces a courtroom in the near future? "The Trump trials will be an O.J.-level media frenzy," predicts Jim Geraghty, a National Review columnist. Published August 16, 2023

A "Vote Here" sign is seen outside a polling place during the 2020 South Carolina presidential primary on Feb. 29 in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

‘Hot Girls Vote’: NextGen America makes unique turnout appeal

"Hey Hotties! Let's make one thing clear: When it comes to voting, being a Hot Girl is a state of mind. Everyone is a hottie -- as long as they're willing to use their voice and their vote," said the public outreach, which was released Tuesday by NextGen America, a national organization focused on motivating -- and registering -- young potential voters. Published August 15, 2023

In this file photo, a group of migrant families walk from the Rio Grande, the river separating the U.S. and Mexico in Texas, near McAllen, Texas, on March 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

Sen. Tim Scott outlines his plans for border security as president

Sen. Tim Scott has released a lengthy but comprehensive list of his plans to counter the challenges brought on by porous U.S. borders. Here's a few examples of what the South Carolina Republican has in mind, gleaned from a written report the lawmaker shared with the Beltway. Published August 13, 2023

Thousands of fairgoers pack Grand Avenue during the Iowa State Fair on Friday, Aug. 13, 2021, in Des Moines, Iowa. (Bryon Houlgrave/The Des Moines Register via AP)

One candidate’s visit to Iowa on State Fair weekend

The Iowa State Fair remains the traditional, cheerful, down-home, must-go place for presidential hopefuls. It can be a positive and productive campaign stop -- except for those trying times when a candidate gets caught on camera trying to consume a chili dog with dignity or commune with an uncooperative farm animal. Let's consider a single schedule here. Published August 10, 2023

Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee, from a collection of Civil war photographs, dated 1861-1865, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.

Yea or neigh: Lee’s horse becomes controversial at Confederate general’s college

Horses can be regarded as noble heroes -- but not by everyone, it seems. "Traveller, the horse which served Confederate General Robert E. Lee, has long been a fixture of campus culture at Washington and Lee University, as the famous steed, known for his courage and stamina, is buried on campus," according to the College Fix, a student-written watchdog organization that monitors cultural developments on U.S. campuses. Published August 9, 2023

John Parkin, co-owner of Coyote Point Armory displays a handgun at his store in Burlingame, Calif., June 23, 2022. (AP Photo/Haven Daley, File)

Democrats take aim on guns with massive tax increase

"House Democrats have reintroduced legislation that would impose a 1,000% excise tax on 'semiautomatic assault weapons' and high-capacity magazines. Rep. Don Beyer, Virginia Democrat, introduced the legislation Friday along with 24 other House Democrats. Beyer had introduced legislation on the same idea last year with 41 cosponsors, and even with a Democratic-controlled House, the bill remained stuck in committee," a new report from Just the News said. Published August 8, 2023

This undated photo provided by the Sacramento ConventionVisitors Bureau shows a home in the Fab ‘40s neighborhood of Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Sacramento Convention and Visitors Bureau)

Republicans like to live large, survey shows

Much of the nation appears to crave lots of space -- neighborhood space, that is. "A majority of Americans (57%) say they would prefer to live in a community where 'houses are larger and farther apart, but schools, stores and restaurants are several miles away,''" according to a Pew Research Center survey released Thursday. And yes, there's a political dynamic at work. Published August 7, 2023

Signs point to the entrance on the last day of early voting before the midterm election as a man walks out of a polling site in Cranston, R.I., on Nov. 7, 2022. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)

Ramaswamy warns GOP field against looking like ‘partisan hacks’

"The sad truth is that the Republican Party right now is a party in search of an agenda. We blew the 2022 midterms because we acted like a bunch of partisan hacks spewing poll-tested platitudes about the 'failed Biden agenda.' Well, we should expect the same fate in 2024 unless we level up and actually articulate what we stand for," entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy declared. Published August 6, 2023

Matt Margolis, a columnist for, a news and opinion site, wonders what the late talk radio host Rush Limbaugh would have thought about the indictment of former President Donald Trump this week. (AP Photo)

The Trump indictments? Rush Limbaugh predicted them

"What would Rush have said? Well, we don't really have to wonder. In one of his last episodes before his death, Limbaugh predicted that Democrats would attempt to prevent Donald Trump from becoming president again by indicting him," wrote Matt Margolis, a columnist for the news and opinion site PJ Media. Published August 3, 2023

Former U.S, representative Tulsi Gabbard has been named the "hottest politician" on Earth — followed by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, former prime minister of Finland Sanna Marin, Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau and Jacinda Arden, former Prime Minister of New Zealand. She is seen here during the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition Spring Kick-Off Saturday, April 22, 2023, in Clive, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Fashion site ranks the world’s ‘hottest politicians’

It's a tough job, but someone's got to do it. And that job is to name the "hottest celebrities" on the planet according to, an online news organization dedicated to this search -- along with fashion-minded tips. The wide-ranging findings also includes a global list of the "hottest politicians" from around the planet. Curious? Published August 2, 2023

In this March 28, 2019, file photo, traffic makes its way into Manhattan from Brooklyn over the Williamsburg Bridge in New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

DeSantis program means Florida won’t take such a toll on drivers

Some news of a new policy from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis -- and one that could bring him support from drivers in the Sunshine State and potentially set an example for other states with lots of highway tolls and lots of cash-strapped drivers. Published August 1, 2023

In this file photo, the beach and boardwalk are seen, Friday, Nov. 13, 2020, in Rehoboth Beach, Del. President Joe Biden owns a $2.7 million, Delaware North Shores home with a swimming pool that overlooks Cape Henlopen State Park, is blocks from the ocean and a short drive from downtown Rehoboth Beach.  (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

No presidential ‘staycation’ as Biden heads back to Delaware

There's never been much talk of a summertime "staycation" for the U.S. president, or Congress for that matter. Let us recall that many Americans have opted for the proverbial staycation -- dutifully staying at home during their time off and lolling in the backyard rather than at a fancy resort or theme park. President Biden, meanwhile, left Friday for his beach vacation in Delaware. Published July 30, 2023

A scene of GOP gatherings past: The candidate Donald Trump speaks during the Iowa Republican Party's Lincoln Dinner, Saturday, May 16, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall) ** FILE **

GOP presidential candidates head to Iowa for Lincoln Dinner

Iowa has not lost its traditional charm for high-profile Republicans. A sizable number of them will travel to the Hawkeye State to attend the state Republican Party's annual Lincoln Dinner -- billed as "Iowa's biggest political event of the year." Published July 27, 2023

Former President Donald Trump greets supporters as he arrives at New Orleans International Airport in New Orleans, Tuesday, July 25, 2023. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Trump’s appearance at UFC card called part of his ‘macho strategy’

Well, here's another entry for our lexicon. This little phrase comes to us from Axios in a short update that details the news organization's impression of former President Donald Trump and his recent appearance at a fight card in Las Vegas. "Former President Trump, fighting to return to the White House and avoid prison, dropped in on an Ultimate Fighting Championship night in Vegas, and was a guest on a UFC podcast," Axios said in a brief report. Published July 26, 2023

The image from video provided by the Department of Defense shows an unexplained object as it is tracked high in the clouds, traveling against the wind. There's a whole fleet of them, one naval aviator tells another, though only one indistinct object is shown. It's rotating." The U.S. government has been taking a hard look at unidentified flying objects, under orders from Congress, and an official report was released in June 2021. (Department of Defense via AP)

House hearing set for Wednesday on UAPs

For those with serious interest in otherworldly things, don't forget: The House Oversight subcommittee on National Security, the Border and Foreign Affairs will hold a hearing titled "Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena: Implications on National Security, Public Safety, and Government Transparency" at 10 a.m. Wednesday on Capitol Hill. The committee is investigating the increase in sightings of UAPs -- or UFOs, if you prefer -- and the impact this has on national security, among other things. Published July 25, 2023

Cassidy Hutchinson, former aide to Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, is sworn in to testify as the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol continues to reveal its findings of a year-long investigation, at the Capitol in Washington, June 28, 2022. Hutchinson who ended up providing damaging testimony against him and his allies in the wake of the Jan. 6 siege of the U.S. Capitol has a book deal. Cassidy Hutchinson's "Enough" will be released Sept. 26 by Simon & Schuster. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

Cassidy Hutchinson’s Jan. 6 book ‘Enough’ gets September release date

Simon & Schuster announced Monday that it is publishing "Enough" -- a memoir by Cassidy Hutchinson. The former special assistant to former President Donald Trump and his former chief of staff Mark Meadows sat at a desk that was "mere steps from the most controversial president in recent American history," according to the publisher in advance notes and biographical materials. Published July 24, 2023

Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy speaks during the Turning Point Action conference, Saturday, July 15, 2023, in West Palm Beach, Fla.(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Trump-Ramaswamy 2024

The all-important pairing of potential White House candidates has begun -- at least among the folks in New Hampshire who support former President Donald Trump in his quest to return to the nation's highest office. Published July 23, 2023