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Kirsten Powers

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Title: Kirsten Powers  
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Collection: 1969 Births, American Bloggers, American Catholics, American Christians, American Columnists, American Feminist Writers, American People of Irish Descent, American Political Pundits, American Presbyterians, Clinton Administration Personnel, Converts to Protestantism from Atheism or Agnosticism, Converts to Roman Catholicism from Protestantism, Fox News Channel People, Georgetown University Law Center Alumni, Living People, New York Democrats, Newsweek People, People from Fairbanks, Alaska, University of Maryland, College Park Alumni, USA Today Journalists, Writers from Alaska
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Kirsten Powers

Kirsten A. Powers (born 1969) is an American political pundit and analyst. She began her career as a Democratic Party staff assistant with the Clinton-Gore presidential transition team in 1992, followed by an appointment as Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Public Affairs in the Clinton administration from 1993-1998. She subsequently worked in various roles including press secretary, communications consultant and party consultant.[1] She also serves as a columnist to USA Today, Newsweek and The Daily Beast, and a contributor on Fox News.[2]

Powers wrote a column for The American Prospect[3] and her numerous articles have appeared in USA Today, Elle, the New York Observer, Salon, and the Wall Street Journal. In 2005 journalist Ben Smith wrote that Powers was "emerging as one of the Democratic Party’s national voices."[1]


  • Early life and education 1
  • Career 2
  • Political positions 3
  • Personal life 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Early life and education

Powers was born and raised in Fairbanks, Alaska. Her parents were archaeologists, with Irish-American heritage.[1][4][5][6] She credits her interest in politics and debate with being "expected to state and defend my positions on the issues of the day every night at dinner."[4]

She graduated from the Georgetown University Law School for a year and a half.


Powers served in the Clinton administration as the deputy assistant U.S. trade representative for public affairs.

She left to become the vice president for international communications at America Online.[2] After AOL's merger with Time Warner, she became a vice president at the AOL-Time Warner Foundation.

Powers has worked in New York State Democratic politics for many years. She was a staff member of the Human Rights First and the National Council for Research on Women (NCRW).[2]

In 2015, she published The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech.

Political positions

Powers supports universal health care, believing to be a moral imperative to supply health care to all Americans.[7] Thus, she initially supported Obama's health care reform but later became critical of its implementation. She lamented that the laws resulted in a doubling of costs: "if I want to keep the same health insurance, it's going to cost twice as much."[8] She later opined: "A lot of people who have really been screwed over by the law [and] are left without insurance or with extremely expensive insurance", and agreed with a Ron Fournier headline in National Review, "Why I'm getting tired of defending Obamacare."[9]

She opposed the "don't ask, don't tell" on homosexuals serving in the military,[10] supports civil unions for same-sex couples, and sees marriage strictly as a religious institution.[11]

Powers opposed the the Fairness Doctrine,[12] and a constitutional amendment to ban flag burning.[13] She also supports comprehensive immigration reform and providing a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants and favors gun control.[14] She also supports closing Guantanamo Bay and transferring its prisoners to federal prisons.[15]

Powers opposed the Iraq war[16] and supports the right of countries to choose their own governments free of outside influence. However, in 2011 she criticized Americans' lack of concern about the Muslim Brotherhood rising to power in Egypt as "naivete". Her concern partly derived from her then-husband Marty Makary being of Coptic origin.[17]

Powers opposes the death penalty[18] and supports the pro-life movement. She opposes elective late-term abortions[19] and has called for abortion provider Planned Parenthood to be shut down.[20] In a 2011 piece in The Daily Beast, she argued that access to birth control does not prevent abortions. She later retracted her piece as based on faulty data.[21]

Personal life

Powers briefly dated former Congressman Anthony Weiner in 2002, and remained his close friend after their romantic relationship ended. After initially defending him when the story of Weiner's sexting scandal surfaced in May 2011, Powers later condemned his conduct and called for his resignation from Congress.[22]

Powers married Marty Makary, Professor of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University, in January 2010; the couple divorced in 2013.

Powers was raised as an Episcopalian but spent much of her early adult life as an atheist. In her mid-30s, she became an evangelical Christian. The process of conversion began when she dated a religious Christian man, who introduced her to the Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City and the teachings of its pastor, Tim Keller, and culminated in an experience in 2006 when, during a trip to Taiwan, she believes that she had an epiphany of Jesus Christ.[5] She has called her conversion "a bit of a mind bender" due to her political beliefs and former atheism, and prefers the term "orthodox Christian" over "evangelical" to describe herself, given the cultural baggage around the latter term.[23] She has said that the biggest impact her new-found faith had on her political beliefs was that she came to "view everyone as God's child and that means everyone deserves grace and respect."[4][14] On October 10, 2015, Powers was received into the Catholic Church.[24][25]


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  8. ^ Noel Sheppard, Kirsten Powers: 'No Explanation For Doubling My Premiums Other Than Subsidizing Other People', News Busters, November 13, 2013
  9. ^ Kirsten Powers: I'm Tired Of "Having To Defend This President" and Obamacare, Real Clear Politics video, February 11, 2014.
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  23. ^ Let's Get To Know Fox’s Liberal Pundit Kirsten Powers: ‘I’m an Orthodox Christian’, Laura Donovan, The Jane Dough, May 25, 2012
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  25. ^ Christianity Today: "Pope Francis’ Latest Convert: Kirsten Powers - Fox News commentator announces that she’s becoming Catholic" by Bob Smietana October 9, 2015

External links

  • columnThe Daily Beast
  • columnUSA Today
  • columnThe American Prospect
  • columnNew York Post
  • columnThe Wall Street Journal
  • columnSalon
  • columnThe Washington Spectator
  • blog entriesThe Huffington Post
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