All posts in the ‘ The Atlantic ’ Category


The Atlantic »

Progressives Have Short Memories

December 4, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

A bitter irony underlies Kamala Harris’s exit from the presidential campaign. She lost, in part, because she couldn’t forthrightly defend her record as a prosecutor. She couldn’t forthrightly defend that record because party activists deemed it insufficiently progressive. They portrayed her as complicit in the unjust incarceration and killing of… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

Cory Booker Blew It

November 27, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Near the end of the latest Democratic debate, Cory Booker did something unusual for a presidential candidate: He admitted that his campaign was in trouble. “I have not yet qualified for the December stage,” the senator from New Jersey confessed, “If you believe in my voice and that I should… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

The GOP Won’t Disavow Trump, but Nikki Haley Has Another Strategy

November 15, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Nikki Haley has a theory about the post–Donald Trump GOP. It’s that Republicans will want to move on from Trump without repudiating him. They’ll want a candidate who promises healing without accountability. Haley auditions for that role in her new memoir, With All Due Respect. A former South Carolina governor… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

When the Staff Can’t Tell the Candidate What’s Wrong

November 13, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

What the Ukraine scandal reveals about Donald Trump is by now well known: He elevated his political interest above the national interest and demanded foreign interference in an American election. What’s received less attention is what the scandal reveals about Joe Biden: He showed poor judgment because his staff shielded… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

Elizabeth Warren Couldn’t Be Luckier

November 8, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Imagine you’re Pete Buttigieg. You had the best October of any candidate in the Democratic presidential race. On September 15, you trailed Joe Biden in Iowa by more than 20 points and both Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders by at least 10. Kamala Harris was beating you, too. Now, by… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

The Utter Emptiness of Trump’s Populism

November 5, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

President Donald Trump is a big fan of Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party, which, like him, demonizes immigrants and the press. Trump traveled to Warsaw to meet the party’s leaders less than six months after taking office, before he visited Britain, Germany, or France. In September 2018, one day… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

Democrats Are Hypocrites for Condemning Trump Over Syria

October 18, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

On Tuesday night, the Democratic presidential candidates vied with one another to offer the harshest condemnation of President Donald Trump’s abrupt withdrawal of American troops from northern Syria. Joe Biden called it “the most shameful thing that any president has done in modern history … in terms of foreign policy.”… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

The Two Psychological Tricks Trump Is Using to Get Away With Everything

October 7, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Last Thursday, Donald Trump said something that, on its face, seemed inexplicably self-defeating. Already under attack for having asked Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden, he publicly asked China to do the same. This time there was no whistle-blower forcing Trump’s hand. Having already transgressed the once-sacrosanct principle that foreign powers… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

Trump’s Fantasy World Got Him Into This

October 3, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

If Donald Trump and his supporters weren’t so fond of conspiracy theories, the Ukraine scandal would never have unfolded as it did. In a now infamous July 25 phone call, Trump pushed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to look for evidence that the cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike had hidden the Democratic National… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

The Audacity of Desperation

September 25, 2019 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Nancy Pelosi’s decision to launch a formal impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump is not just a hinge moment in his presidency, and in the relationship between the executive and legislative branches of government. It is a hinge moment in the history of the Democratic Party. The era of Democratic caution—which… Read the Rest »