The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Beef Justice

Programming note: We won’t be publishing a newsletter on Thursday or Friday. We’re leaving you with some stories here to read and discuss for the rest of this week, and will be back in your inboxes on Monday, November 26. Happy Thanksgiving! —Elaine Godfrey Today in 5 Lines Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts rejected President Donald Trump’s criticism of the federal judge who ruled against his attempt to restrict asylum-seekers at the U.S.-Mexico border, saying there are no “Obama judges or Trump judges.” Trump reportedly told the White House counsel in the spring that he wanted the Justice Department to prosecute Hillary Clinton and former FBI Director James Comey.… Read More

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Trump Isn’t Crazy to Question Mike Pence’s Loyalty

Is Mike Pence loyal to Donald Trump? It’s a question that’s apparently been on the president’s mind of late. Last week, The New York Times reported that Trump has been privately asking aides whether they think the vice president’s loyalty can be counted on—repeating the question so many times that “he has alarmed some of his advisers.” What’s behind this line of inquiry? Speculation abounds, both inside the White House and out. Is Trump thinking of dropping Pence from the 2020 ticket? Is he worried about Pence’s role in the Mueller investigation? Or is he just asking because, as the Times notes, he’s been thinking about replacing his own chief… Read More

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House Democrats Don’t Know What to Make of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

She came into Washington like a wrecking ball. Just on Saturday, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez announced that she will be working with progressive activists to bring primary challenges against some of the more conservative Democrats in Congress, her own soon-to-be colleagues. This was after she joined a protest in the office of Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and after she’d spent a week doggedly documenting congressional orientation on Instagram for her followers and clapping back at her many critics on Twitter. There are, in other words, several early indications that Ocasio-Cortez will do things differently than the typical legislator, acting as a bomb-thrower and agitator in the People’s House. It’s something her… Read More

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The Military Has Become Trump’s Favorite Prop

Nearly four years ago, my colleague James Fallows wrote a cover story in The Atlantic labeling the United States a “chickenhawk nation.” Americans today “love the troops, but we’d rather not think about them,” he wrote. “The American military is exotic territory to most of the American public. As a comparison: A handful of Americans live on farms, but there are many more of them than serve in all branches of the military.” If those trends were apparent at the start of 2015, they are visible in crisp, high-definition detail in the Trump era. Nearly two years into his term as president, Donald Trump has yet to visit American troops… Read More

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Trump’s Yearning to Prosecute His Political Enemies

The president of the United States reportedly tried to use the full force of the country’s law enforcement apparatus to prosecute his political enemies—and Justice Department veterans are calling it everything from “incredibly” alarming to “flat-out un-American.” The disclosure by The New York Times on Tuesday that President Donald Trump had told the White House counsel he wanted the Justice Department to prosecute Hillary Clinton and former FBI Director James Comey offers a new window into the extent to which Trump perceives the law-enforcement community as his “personal entourage,” said Elliot Williams, a former high-ranking Justice Department. The counsel, Don McGahn, who has since left the administration, told Trump he… Read More

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Breaking: Senior leadership at B.C. legislature put on administrative leave

B.C. solicitor general Mike Farnworth dropped a bombshell at the legislature this morning by announcing that the Clerk of the legislature Craig James and Sargeant-at-Arms Gary Lenz have been put on administrative leave pending an investigation. No specific reason was given. Both James and Lenz were escorted out of the legislature. Holy moly. That’s the entire senior leadership of the legislature, the non-partisan managers of the building. Gone. Never seen anything like this. — Rob Shaw (@robshaw_vansun) November 20, 2018 Clerk Craig James is escorted out of the building. Says he has no idea what the allegations are about. Nobody has told him. pic.twitter.com/lgVaU6BBkI — Rob Shaw (@robshaw_vansun) November 20,… Read More

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The Eerie Parallels Between Trump and the Watergate ‘Road Map’

Nearly 45 years ago, the House Judiciary Committee concluded that President Richard Nixon’s contact with high-level Justice Department officials overseeing the Watergate investigation, detailed in a 62-page “road map” of evidence collected by prosecutors between 1972-1973, amounted to an impeachable misuse of executive power. Half a century later, the FBI’s former top lawyer, Jim Baker—a close friend and associate of fired FBI Director James Comey—is laying out parallels, albeit subtly, to President Donald Trump’s interactions with the law enforcement officials who have been investigating him and his campaign team since July 2016. In a piece for Lawfare published on Monday, Baker used the newly unsealed Watergate road map to show… Read More

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