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    The Problem With the Whistleblower System

    “I don’t think that [Edward] Snowden was a patriot,” Barack Obama said in 2013 after the former NSA contractor leaked revelations of mass surveillance to a small group of journalists. Obama’s argument then—one that has been made many times since—was that Snowden had legal channels available to him to address his concerns, which would have protected the classified information in his leaks and, by extension, U.S. national security. In particular, Obama said, Snowden could have made use of formal whistleblower procedures within the U.S. government. “I signed an executive order well before Mr. Snowden leaked this information that provided whistleblower protection to the intelligence community,” Obama said. “So there were…

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    We’re Now in the Hot Zone for Impeachment

    Few Democratic leaders have seemed less eager to impeach President Donald Trump than House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. She’s warned that the public doesn’t want it and the Senate would never go for it. But a rolling series of disclosures may force her to recalculate the politics. A report in the Wall Street Journal today, quickly confirmed by other major outlets, introduced an explosive new twist to a story that already had the trappings of one of the biggest threats yet to Trump’s presidency. The fresh details about Trump’s apparent effort to strong-arm Ukraine into investigating his political rival Joe Biden may have irreversibly pushed the president into the impeachment hot…

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    The Atlantic Daily: Trump at the Modi-eo

    We’re trying something new with The Atlantic’s signature politics newsletter. Comments or questions? Send us an email anytime. Were you forwarded this email? Sign yourself up here. We appreciate your continued support for our journalism. Today in Politics India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi hugs President Donald Trump after giving a joint statement from the Rose Garden on June 26, 2017. (Kevin Lamarque / Reuters) This weekend, Donald Trump will do what he does best: Fire up a crowd at a MAGA (or KAG) rally. But this one is different. Most of the expected 50,000 rallygoers won’t make the trek to see the president of the United States, they’ll be there…

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    DHS Is Finally Going After White Supremacists. It’s Not Going to Be Simple.

    Kevin McAleenan took the El Paso shooting personally. The acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security had visited the city more than a dozen times. He recalled in an interview yesterday that among his first thoughts were the safety of the DHS workforce, which numbers some 4,000 people there, many of them Hispanic. The shooter’s motivation quickly became clear, with 22 people dead in a Walmart and an online manifesto attributed to the shooter citing an “invasion” of immigrants. “This,” McAleenan recalls thinking, “was an attack on all of us, on our family.” Speaking to The Atlantic more than six weeks after the attack, he had an “El Paso…

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    A Step Toward Blowing Up the Presidential Voting System

    The 2016 presidential election pitted the two most disliked candidates in the history of public polling against each other. In the race between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, millions of Americans found themselves forced to vote for a major-party nominee they plainly couldn’t stand or to risk electing the candidate they hated even more by casting their ballot for a third-party contender. For the first time next November, a slice of the American electorate will have a way out of that lesser-of-two-evils scenario. Under a law set to take effect in 2020, Maine will become the first state to adopt ranked-choice voting in a presidential election—a method in which people…

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    The Atlantic Politics Daily: Just Keep Swimming

    We’re trying something new with The Atlantic’s signature politics newsletter. Comments or questions? Send us an email anytime. Were you forwarded this email? Sign yourself up here. We appreciate your continued support for our journalism. Today in Politics Only one of these candidates remains in the Democratic presidential race. (The Atlantic) Why aren’t the minnows getting winnowed? The realization among some of the Democratic presidential candidates that eh, maybe this isn’t going to work out has led to a great winnowing in recent months (from Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York to Washington Governor Jay Inslee to Representative Seth Moulton of Massachusetts, who may have gotten more coverage dropping out…

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    Imagine If Obama Had Done This

    For a man who once characterized Donald Trump as a “race-baiting, xenophobic, religious bigot” worthy of being ISIS’s “man of the year,” Lindsey Graham took a rather tame jab at the president recently. The Republican senator, now one of Trump’s top allies in Congress, argued on Tuesday that the Iranian government had detected “weakness” in the president’s “measured” decision in June to call off retaliatory military strikes against Iran, which emboldened the Iranians to execute “an act of war” by attacking oil facilities in Saudi Arabia. But it was just enough to stir up @realDonaldTrump. Fast and furious came the counter-tweet: “No Lindsey, it was a sign of strength that…

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    Trump’s War on Blue America

    Across a growing number of issues, from immigration to taxes to health care, President Donald Trump is harnessing federal power to constrain—and even punish—the blue states outside of his political coalition. One recent move escalated that offensive: Yesterday Trump tweeted that the Environmental Protection Agency will revoke a federal waiver that California received from former President Barack Obama to set its own standards for reducing vehicle emissions, a key contributor to climate change. No previous president has attempted to revoke a waiver granted to California since the state was granted the unique authority to set its own emission rules under the Clean Air Act of 1970. (The EPA is expected…

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    The Democratic Debates Aren’t Pleasing Anyone

    Just as the final question was being asked at the most recent Democratic debate, a 2020 campaign manager walked through the spin room, full of reporters trying to figure out what smart analysis to summon, and worked up all the fake excitement of a parent en route to a children’s birthday party: “Just 35 days until the next debate!” That was one week ago. But for all the news coverage, the debate has more or less already been forgotten—even by those who were paying the closest attention in the first place. The campaigns and the press have moved on. And any voters who actually watched all three hours don’t have…

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    The Atlantic Politics Daily: Pet Issues

    We’re trying something new with The Atlantic’s signature politics newsletter. Comments or questions? Send us an email anytime. Were you forwarded this email? Sign yourself up here. We appreciate your continued support for our journalism. Today in Politics (Brian Snyder / Reuters) The Democrats running for president may be done playing nice. But for the candidates’ dogs, the competition may be even more ruff (sorry). The enthusiasm with which candidates trot out their animals seems to reveal an underlying assumption that American voters care as much about policy as pets. Public reaction to the Obama family’s dogs, Bo and Sunny, seems to suggest pets can be tied up in complicated…