Mark Levin at CPAC in February 2015.
|Birth name||Mark Reed Levin|
September 21, 1957 |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
|Show||The Mark Levin Show|
|Network||Cumulus Media Networks|
|Time slot||6:00–9:00 pm ET|
Mark Reed Levin (//; born September 21, 1957) is an American lawyer, author, and the host of American syndicated radio show The Mark Levin Show. Levin worked in the administration of President Ronald Reagan and was a chief of staff for Attorney General Edwin Meese. He is president of the Landmark Legal Foundation, has authored six books, and contributes commentary to various media outlets such as National Review Online. On September 1, 2015, Levin was named Editor-in-Chief of Conservative Review.
Mark Reed Levin, one of three boys, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and grew up in Erdenheim as well as Elkins Park, Pennsylvania. His father, Jack E. Levin, is the author of several books. He graduated from Cheltenham High School after three years in 1974. After high school, Levin enrolled at Temple University Ambler including summer classes and graduated with a B.A. in Political Science in 1977 at age 19, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. Levin won election to the Cheltenham school board in 1977 on a platform of reducing property taxes. In 1980, Levin earned a J.D. from Temple University Beasley School of Law. Levin worked for Texas Instruments after law school. He is Jewish.
Beginning in 1981, Levin served as an adviser to several members of President Ronald Reagan's cabinet, eventually becoming the associate director of presidential personnel and ultimately chief of staff to Attorney General Edwin Meese; Levin also served as deputy assistant secretary for elementary and secondary education at the U.S. Department of Education, and deputy solicitor of the U.S. Department of the Interior.
He practiced law in the private sector and is president of Landmark Legal Foundation, a public interest law firm founded in 1976 with offices in Kansas City, Missouri and Leesburg, Virginia.
Levin has participated in Freedom Concerts, an annual benefit concert to aid families of fallen soldiers, and uses his radio program to promote aid to military families. Levin is also involved with Troopathon, a charity that sends care packages to soldiers serving overseas.
In 2001 the American Conservative Union awarded Levin its Ronald Reagan Award. He was awarded the inaugural Citizens United Andrew Breitbart Defender of the First Amendment Award at CPAC in 2014.
Levin began his broadcasting career as a guest on conservative talk radio programs. For many years, he was a frequent contributor of legal opinions to The Rush Limbaugh Show, where Limbaugh referred to him on-air as "F. Lee Levin," a tongue-in-cheek reference to the defense attorney F. Lee Bailey. He was also a contributor to The Sean Hannity Show and eventually got a radio slot of his own on WABC, initially on Sundays beginning in 2002, then in the timeslot following Sean Hannity in 2003. Cumulus Media Networks began syndicating The Mark Levin Show nationally in 2006.
Levin is known for his frequent use of the pejorative "moron" and "puke" for people he opposes. Hannity has nicknamed Mark Levin "The Great One". Levin and Hannity remain frequent contributors to each other's programs. He is a leading conservative commentator, ranked 4–6 position nationally among talk radio programs, with a minimum of 7.75 million total weekly listenership according to Talkers Magazine.
Men In Black
Levin authored the 2005 book Men In Black: How The Supreme Court Is Destroying America, in which he advanced his thesis that activist judges on the Supreme Court (from all parts of the political spectrum) have "legislated from the bench." In a review of Men in Black, Commentary magazine's Dan Seligman wrote that Levin asks readers "to identify with 'originalists' who look to the text of the Constitution and the intent of its framers, and to reject the 'activists' who construe the Constitution broadly and are more concerned with getting to their own 'desired outcomes'." In her review of Men in Black, Slate magazine's legal correspondent and journalist Dahlia Lithwick wrote that "no serious scholar of the court or the Constitution, on the ideological left or right, is going to waste their time engaging Levin's arguments once they've read this book."
Rescuing Sprite: A Dog Lover's Story of Joy and Anguish
Rescuing Sprite: A Dog Lover's Story of Joy and Anguish is a non-fiction work written by Levin in 2007 about his experience of rescuing a dog named Sprite from a local animal shelter.
Liberty and Tyranny
Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto was released on March 24, 2009, and became a #1 New York Times best seller for eleven of twelve weeks, as well as No. 1 on Nielsen's BookScan. It came in at No. 2 on Amazon.com's list of bestselling books of 2009. The book includes discussion of a variety of issues that, according to Levin, need to be addressed in the United States. In Liberty and Tyranny Levin repudiates the use of the term "progressive" to describe "modern Liberals" and instead argues a proper term should be "Statist." Liberty and Tyranny has sold over one million copies according to Threshold Editions, the book's publisher. Former federal prosecutor and fellow National Review Online author Andrew C. McCarthy wrote of Liberty and Tyranny in The New Criterion: "Levin offers not so much a defense as a plan of attack" against "America's Leftist ascendancy." Other reviewers critiqued the book as "analysis utterly useless in understanding more than half of the American political landscape" while charging "Levin resorts to the same old misinformation to sell his brand of conservatism."
Ameritopia: The Unmaking of America was released January 17, 2012. In Ameritopia, Levin discusses the origins and development of both the modern day conservative and liberal political philosophies, the latter of which he refers to as "statist," through the works of some of the leading figures in American history. Included are commentaries on works by Plato, Sir Thomas More, Thomas Hobbes, Karl Marx, John Locke, Charles de Montesquieu and Alexis de Tocqueville.
Jeffrey Lord, writing in the conservative American Spectator, called it "...historical X-ray vision in book form." Praise for the book came from PJ Media who reported, "That Levin wrote this book now demonstrates not only his passion for the United States, but his awareness that he is a statesman defending natural law at a pivotal moment in human history." On the other hand, The Atlantic's review criticized the book's argument that statism is based on utopianism, and a review by Professor Carlin Romano in the Chronicle of Higher Education called the book "disastrously bad from beginning to end."
The Liberty Amendments
The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic, a book that suggests eleven new Constitutional amendments, was released on August 13, 2013. The book debuted at #1 on The New York Times Best Seller list in all three categories for which it qualified. Hans A. von Spakovsky of National Review called the book "required reading for conservative bloggers." Meanwhile, The Guardian said the book "contains some radical notions about a complete overhaul of the US constitution, but to debate the specifics of their merits is to ignore the larger insanity of the project" while noting "the ludicrousness of his specific 'fixes' and the near-impossibility of achieving them." In the Washington Times, Tenth Amendment Center Executive Director Michael Lotfi criticized Levin's idea as "the bullet to a loaded revolver pointed at the Constitution." Also in the Times, Richard Rahn wrote "If "The Liberty Amendments" can help foster a national debate about which corrective actions, including constitutional amendments, are needed to increase liberty and prosperity, Mr. Levin will have performed a great national service." Hoover Institution fellow David Davenport wrote in Forbes that Levin's book used "weak arguments." Also in Forbes, Ralph Benko credited Levin with "notably and nobly proposing to change the rules of modern politics and governance."
Plunder and Deceit
Levin's most recent book Plunder and Deceit: Big Government's Exploitation of Young People and the Future, was released on August 4, 2015. As of September 23, 2015, Plunder and Deceit has been Number 1 on the New York Times Nonfiction Bestseller List for five weeks.
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- Alasdair Denvil. "5 Kinds of Political Name-Calling We Should Recognize This Election Cycle". The Blaze.
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- Freedlander, David (October 19, 2013). "Radio's Mark Levin Might Be the Most Powerful Conservative You Never Heard Of". The Daily Beast. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
Hannity discovered him then, too, and stuck him with the nickname "The Great One," which is now used by Palin and nearly everyone who talks about him
- "The Top Talk Radio Audiences, February 2014". Talkers Magazine. Talk Media Inc. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
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- Hans A. von Spakovsky Archive Latest RSS Send (September 4, 2013). "Amendments for Liberty | National Review Online". Nationalreview.com. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- Ana Marie Cox. "1776 and all that: the mysterious appeal of Mark Levin's originalist fantasy". the Guardian.
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- "Mark Levin is wrong: A lawless gov't, not the Constitution, needs nullified | Washington Times Communities". Communities.washingtontimes.com. December 27, 2013. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- Davenport, David. "Mark Levin Makes A Strong Conservative Case With Weak Constitutional Arguments". Forbes. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
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- Walters, Ian (August 5, 2015). "BOOK REVIEW: 'Plunder and Deceit'". The Washington Times. Retrieved August 10, 2015.