NCPA Commentaries by Pete du Pont

Pete du Pont served for many years on the NCPA Board of Directors, first as policy chair and then as chairman of the board, in addition to his current service on the NCPA’s Emeritus Board of Directors.  He also wrote a regular column for, the online news service of The Wall St. Journal for many years.

Pete du Pont has served as Governor of Delaware, U.S. Congressman (R-DE), and former candidate for President of the United States (1988). Gov. du Pont formerly hosted a nationally-syndicated radio commentary and appeared on several editions of the PBS Firing Line debates with William F. Buckley, Jr.

  • Apr 25, 1996

    The Popcorn Follies

    Popcorn is not a trivial matter. I am reminded of that at the movies where buttered buckets of the stuff are consumed and the surplus spread on the floor under my seat.

  • Apr 18, 1996

    Kennedy-Kassebaum, the Revolution's Waterloo?

    "[It] is not," Winston Churchill said after the British military victory at El Alamein, "the end. It is not even the beginning of the end."

  • Apr 10, 1996

    The Forbes Legacy

    One great strength of the American political system - and one that no doubt baffles foreigners - is the way it brings people who are enemies one day together as allies the next. Just recently we saw Phil Gramm, Lamar Alexander and Steve Forbes attacking Bob Dole in Iowa and New Hampshire. But just a few weeks later, Gramm, Alexander and Forbes all dropped out of the race and endorsed him.

  • Apr 04, 1996

    The Failure of Protectionism

    The Great Wall of China dates from the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), but successive invasions from the North proved that it had no more military utility than the "impregnable" Maginot Line did for the French in 1940. Gunpowder and artillery long ago had rendered castle walls useless too.

  • Mar 28, 1996

    Reviving The Growth Agenda

    The campaigns of Steve Forbes and Pat Buchanan resonated with voters this primary season because they were the only two candidates running who directly addressed the problem of economic growth. Inside the Beltway everything seems fine - and why not? Bill Clinton has created lots of employment for policy wonks, with his everchanging agenda of plans to nationalize health care, raise taxes, and pay people to become "volunteers."

  • Mar 20, 1996

    A New Way to Please Employees

    For a decade employers and benefits managers have been aggressively working to lower their health care costs. While they have been largely successful in their efforts - health care costs rose only 2.1 percent in 1995 - the savings came at a price: a lot of employees have been dissatisfied with being transferred into managed care plans.

  • Mar 07, 1996

    Prospecting the Federal Government: How Buchanan Found Gold In Alaska

    Pat Buchanan is running hard and strong, perplexing all the pundits in the process. His issues, mostly trade, immigration and abortion, appear to be resonating with a sizable block of voters. But, there's a broader message here - Pat is tapping into a rich vein of distrust and disgust with the national government.

  • Mar 03, 1996

    Chile, Singapore, and Mom's Old Age

    Social Security is back in the news. First, Republican presidential candidate Steve Forbes suggested a market-based retirement system for young people. Now press reports indicate that the Advisory Council on Social Security will soon endorse a privatization of Social Security.

  • Feb 22, 1996

    Tuning Out of Politics

    There's an old joke about the man who was asked in a poll, "Do you think the nation has a problem with ignorance and apathy?" To which he responded, "I don't know and I don't care."

  • Feb 14, 1996

    Limiting Welfare Benefits for Illegitimate Children: The Family Cap

    One of the most controversial welfare reform proposals under consideration would limit the amount of cash assistance mothers on welfare would receive if they bear additional illegitimate children. But in this case it's not just a theory, there is some practical experience to help evaluate the idea. The state of New Jersey passed a family cap law in 1992, taking effect in August 1993. No longer does a mother on welfare receive additional welfare money for bearing more children.