J. Patrick Coolican

J. Patrick Coolican

J. Patrick Coolican is Editor-in-Chief of Minnesota Reformer. Previously, he was a Capitol reporter for the Minneapolis Star Tribune for five years, after a Knight-Wallace Fellowship at the University of Michigan and time at the Las Vegas Sun, Seattle Times and a few other stops along the way. He lives in St. Paul with his wife and toddler son.

Handicapping U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer’s chances to become the next speaker

By: - October 23, 2023

Minnesota U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer of the 6th District is the early favorite to become the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, according to D.C. insider tip sheet Punchbowl News.  He’s developed relationships with a wide cross section of the GOP conference as the current majority whip — the No. 3 position in the caucus […]


Democrats should listen to Dean Phillips, or catastrophe may await

By: - August 14, 2023

Democrats have their eyes closed and are silently walking toward a cliff. President Joe Biden has accomplished more important progressive policy priorities since Lyndon Johnson, but in a recent poll he’s running even with the thrice indicted would-be authoritarian Donald Trump. Given the Electoral College tilt toward Republicans, that translates into a Trump victory. I […]


Your plane landed safely — thank the bureaucrats at the FAA

By: - August 12, 2022

A faddish phrase on the right is something called “the administrative state,” which refers to the federal workforce deputized by Congress to craft and enforce rules over the environment, banking, health care, product safety, mass communications, the power grid, etc. A recent profile of the Claremont Institute — which has the unenviable task of stitching together an […]


The pandemic has shown the flaws of American individualism

By: - March 23, 2021

The lone explorer on the trail, an inventor in her garage creating something cool, a rock star on the stage alone under a spotlight. Across time, these archetypal American heroes each eschews the crowd and its stifling conventions and sets out to chart her own path. It’s been a useful American mythos, driving us to […]


Doped up on misinformation

By: - January 29, 2021

Just after the sacking of the U.S. Capitol, a friend of mine sent me a typical post found on the MAGA45 page of the emergent social network MeWe:   Military arrests and takedowns begin this weekend and continue for the next 13 days…International raids have already begun. Italy has also been found complicit in our election […]