The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Secretary of Interior Design

Today in 5 Lines

Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model, filed a lawsuit on Tuesday to be released from a 2016 agreement requiring her to stay quiet about her alleged affair with Donald Trump. And a New York court ruled that a defamation lawsuit filed against Trump by Summer Zervos, a former contestant on The Apprentice, may go forward.

In a press conference, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, “should be allowed to finish his job.”

A package thought to be Austin-bound exploded at a FedEx facility in Texas. Officials said they believe the blast is connected to the other recent explosions in the Austin area.

Two students were injured after being shot by a gunman at Great Mills High School in southeast Maryland. Authorities identified the shooter as 17-year-old Austin Wyatt Rollins.

During a congressional hearing, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson defended his purchase of a $31,000 dining set. “I left it to my wife, you know, to choose something,” Carson said.

The Race We’re Watching

Voters in Illinois are headed to the polls to cast their ballots in primary elections across the state. They’ll choose candidates for November’s gubernatorial race, which is turning out to be one of the most expensive in U.S. history. A host of Democrats, including former Governor Pat Quinn, is vying for Illinois’s open attorney general’s seat.

We’re also keeping an eye on the Democratic primary in Illinois’s 3rd congressional district, where seven-term Representative Dan Lipinski, a conservative Democrat, is being challenged by the much more progressive political newbie Marie Newman. The GOP primary in the state’s 16th district could also prove interesting: Republican Representative Adam Kinzinger has spoken out against Trump and as a result, …read more

Source:: <a href= target="_blank" title="The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Secretary of Interior Design” >The Atlantic – Politics

Why Won’t the White House Call Russian Elections Corrupt?

The White House again offered a puzzling response to foreign policy regarding Russia on Tuesday, refusing to criticize the voting that reelected Vladimir Putin by a landslide on Sunday.

Asked whether the White House deemed the election “free and fair,” Press Secretary Sarah Sanders offered this deflection:

In terms of the election, there we’re focused on our elections. We don’t get to dictate how other countries operate. What we do know that is that Putin has been elected in their country, and that’s not something that we can dictate to them how to operate. We can only focus on the freeness and fairness of our elections, something we 100 percent fully support, and something we’re going to continue to do everything we can to protect to make sure bad actors don’t have the opportunity to impact them in any way.

This statement is misleading where it isn’t simply beside the point, and confusing in both cases. The question is not whether the U.S. has the ability to dictate to other countries how to run their elections (though there is a certain irony in Sanders making this comment 15 years to the day after the U.S. invaded Iraq to install democracy, in a war the president supported). The question is whether the U.S. can and should label unfair and repressive government when it sees it.

There’s little question that the Russian election was not free and fair. The government barred Putin’s leading opponent from running. Putin’s margin of victory—nearly 77 percent—is practically unheard of in contested elections, and apparent ballot-stuffing was caught on video in multiple places. The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe concluded that the election “took place in an overly controlled legal and political environment marked by continued pressure on critical voices” and that “restrictions on the …read more

Source:: The Atlantic – Politics

The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Miranda Warning

Today in 5 Lines

During a speech in New Hampshire, President Trump unveiled his plan to combat the national opioid crisis, which includes a proposal to impose the death penalty on some drug dealers. “If we don’t get tough on the drug dealers, we are wasting our time,” Trump said.

The Supreme Court denied a request from Republican state legislators to block the implementation of a revised map of Pennsylvania’s congressional districts.

Actress Cynthia Nixon, who played Miranda on HBO’s Sex and the City, announced that she will challenge New York Governor Andrew Cuomo in the upcoming Democratic primary.

A device triggered by a tripwire exploded in Austin, Texas. It was the fourth explosion this month, leading authorities to believe they are dealing with “a serial bomber.”

A woman in Tempe, Arizona, died after being struck by a self-driving Uber car. The company said it has suspended testing of its self-driving cars in several cities.

Today on The Atlantic

McCabe Was Just the Beginning: Republicans have accepted the Trump administration’s justification for firing the deputy FBI director, despite Trump’s public attacks against McCabe. What will happen if Trump fires Special Counsel Robert Mueller? (David Frum)

NIFLA v. Becerra: The Supreme Court is considering a case that could set guardrails for how blue-state governments regulate pro-life groups’ messaging—and how forthright those groups have to be. (Emma Green)

Back in 1908: The last time the GOP was divided over tariffs, the leader of the party was William Howard Taft, the anti-Trump. (Jeffrey Rosen)

Follow stories throughout the day with our Politics & Policy portal.

SnapshotAustin Police Chief Brian Manley speaks at a news conference for the latest bombing in Austin, Texas. Jon Herskovitz / Reuters

What We’re Reading

An Undercover Investigation: Channel 4 News secretly filmed senior executives at Cambridge Analytica—the data …read more

Source:: <a href= target="_blank" title="The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Miranda Warning” >The Atlantic – Politics