The Conservative Political Action Conference is not playing major league ball. “The political world is buzzing about the American Conservative Union’s pointed decision to deny [Gov. Chris] Christie an invitation to its annual CPAC gathering. . . . This country is in grave trouble, and the Left is ascendant. The center-right coalition simply does not have the luxury of engaging in internecine [fights] …. Enough with the internal expulsions, name-calling, bans and retaliatory boycotts. The American Idea is worth fighting for, but that imperative task is made nearly impossible when conservatives — broadly defined — insist on endlessly fighting each other.”

Top-notch analysis. “California does not have an illegal immigrant problem. It has a welfare problem.” Read the whole thing.

Expert statecraft reduced to a clown show. “The White House on Wednesday said it did not approve the release this week of hundreds of illegal immigrants being held in detention centers, as Republicans turned up the heat on the budget-cutting move ahead of the sequester. White House spokesman Jay Carney and a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) official said the decision by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was not signed off on by the administration, but was made by career officials.”  Whatever the debacle, blame the little people.

Exemplary analysis of the George W. Bush administration’s Middle East policy from Elliott Abrams.

Not impressive, let alone “intimidating.”  Lee Smith on the American Israel Public Affairs Committee: “Despite an operating budget of more than $60 million, on the most crucial issue facing Israel’s security, AIPAC has lost the policy debate. The winners include those who believe you can’t stop a nation from getting the bomb if it’s determined to do so, those who think the Iranians have a right to nuclear weapons, and those who argue the Iranians can be contained — among them, our new Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.” Read the whole thing.

Take the time. Watch this virtuoso performance by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) analyzing the Middle East. Is he ready for prime time? Oh, yes he is.