Gene Healy (born November 16, 1970) is an American political pundit, journalist and editor. He serves as Vice President at the libertarian think tank Cato Institute, as well as a contributing editor to Liberty magazine.

Gene Healy
Born (1970-11-16) November 16, 1970 (age 51)
Alma materGeorgetown University
University of Chicago Law School


Healy holds a B.A. from Georgetown University and a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School.[1][2]


Healy is editor of the 2004 book Go Directly to Jail: The Criminalization of Almost Everything. He is the author of The Cult of the Presidency: America's Dangerous Devotion to Executive Power (2008) and False Idol: Barack Obama and the Continuing Cult of the Presidency (2012).[1][2][3][4] His research interests include executive power and the role of the presidency, federalism, and over-criminalization.[1][2][5][6]

He has appeared on PBS's Newshour and has been a guest on NPR's Talk of the Nation. His writing has been published in major newspapers including the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, and the Legal Times.[1][2] He writes a weekly column for the Washington Examiner.[2]


In 2011 Healy made the case that Ronald Reagan was neither a neoconservative[7] nor a libertarian.[8] In 2013 Healy argued that wanting restraint in foreign policy is not "isolationist" and even stated, "...'isolationism' has always been a smear word designed to shut off debate. It was coined in the late 19th century by Alfred Thayer Mahan, 'an ardent militarist, who used the term to slur opponents of American imperialism.'"[9] In 2014 Healy criticized Hillary Clinton's interventionist foreign policy, saying, "I think when you look at the totality of her record, it's very concerning. And if she realizes her lifelong dream in 2016 to become commander-in-chief of the U.S. Armed Forces, she won't have to urge anyone to bomb. She'll be able to give those orders herself."[10]


  • Go Directly to Jail: The Criminalization of Almost Everything (editor) (2004) ISBN 9781930865631
  • The Cult of the Presidency: America's Dangerous Devotion to Executive Power (2008) ISBN 9781933995199
  • False Idol: Barack Obama and the Continuing Cult of the Presidency (2012) ISBN 9781933995199
  • author (2008). "Drug Prohibition". In Hamowy, Ronald (ed.). The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE; Cato Institute. pp. 128–29. doi:10.4135/9781412965811.n81. ISBN 978-1412965804. LCCN 2008009151. OCLC 750831024.


  1. ^ a b c d "Debate: Has The President Exceeded His War Powers Authority?". April 7, 2015. Retrieved November 28, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Policy Scholars: Gene Healy". Cato Institute. Retrieved December 27, 2012.
  3. ^ Balko, Radley (March 15, 2013). "Obama, Civil Liberties, And The Presidency: An Interview With Gene Healy", The Huffington Post.
  4. ^ Smith, Kyle (October 31, 2012). "The Grand Obama Illusion: Major Promises Never Delivered". Forbes. Retrieved November 28, 2015.
  5. ^ Friedersdorf, Conor (June 21, 2011). "Libertarians Aren't All Selfish Jerks". The Atlantic. Retrieved November 28, 2015.
  6. ^ Cella, Matthew; Shinkman , Paul D. (May 26, 2015). "The Great Iraq Mistake". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved November 28, 2015. ...Gene Healy, who studies executive power as a vice president at the Cato Institute.
  7. ^ "Reagan Was No Neocon". February 2011.
  8. ^ "Ronald Reagan Was No Libertarian". 2011-02-08.
  9. ^ "It's not isolationist for America to mind its own business". 2013-12-10.
  10. ^ "You've been warned, America: Hillary Clinton has never met a war she didn't like".

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