Read Stuff, You Should: Paul Ryan's Beard

Jonathan Bernstein is a Bloomberg View columnist. He taught political science at the University of Texas at San Antonio and DePauw University and wrote A Plain Blog About Politics.
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Happy birthday to T Bone Burnett, 67.

Lots of good stuff:

1. I enjoyed Julia Azari’s thoughts on populism at Mischiefs of Faction, especially her interesting point that "the idea of populism as the main blueprint for leftist politics dangerously conflates political process with policy substance" -- which I’ve argued is true more broadly about democracy and left-wing politics. The post is excellent, though I do wish she had engaged with the Dixiecrats and their place within populism and the Democratic Party.

2. Also at MoF: John Patty on credit-claiming.

3. Jordan Ragusa at Rule 22 looks at historical evidence to figure out the chances of an Obamacare repeal.

4. At the New West, Matthew Green recalls working as an intern for Barbara Boxer and what he learned about Capitol Hill.

5. Buzzfeed’s Ben Smith’s excellent reporting on Reince Priebus and what he’s made of the Republican National Committee received some attention yesterday because of what he said about the Clintons’ personal lives. But the story is worthwhile because it explains what formal party organizations can do in today’s complex, networked parties. One caveat: The idea that the RNC or its Democratic counterpart were ever very powerful is a total myth. Never happened.

6. I enjoyed Philip Klein’s item about Mitt Romney 2016, and largely agree with his analysis. At the Washington Examiner.

7. While Matt Yglesias’s speculation at Vox about the mechanism behind Romney’s run is entirely plausible.

8. And the Fix’s Jaime Fuller on presidential facial hair. Important question inexplicably not raised: What equivalent will women have to signal they aren’t running?

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg View's editorial board or Bloomberg LP, its owners and investors.

To contact the author on this story:
Jonathan Bernstein at jbernstein62@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor on this story:
Max Berley at mberley@bloomberg.net