The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Havana Change of Heart

President Trump announced renewed restrictions on trade and travel with Cuba, which had been eased under the previous administration.

Joe Skipper / Reuters

Today in 5 Lines

President Trump announced renewed restrictions on trade and travel with Cuba, which had been eased under the previous administration. In a reversal of his campaign pledge, Trump will leave in place the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program shielding undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children from deportation. Trump appeared to criticize Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Twitter, calling the Russia investigation a “witch hunt.” Jeronimo Yanez, the Minnesota police officer who fatally shot Philando Castile in 2016, was found not guilty of second-degree manslaughter. The U.S. will reportedly send nearly 4,000 more troops to Afghanistan.

Today on The Atlantic

  • A Pointless Mistake: Ben Rhodes, a former deputy national-security adviser for Barack Obama, argues that President Trump’s decision to reverse U.S.-Cuba policy has put the two countries “back into the prison of the past.”

  • Gone Phishing: Recent media reports detailing extensive Russian hacking attempts illustrate how easily American election infrastructure can be compromised—and how difficult it can be to spot once it’s happened. (Vann R. Newkirk III)

  • Trump Betrays His Voters: The president decided not to reverse DACA, an Obama-era program he vowed to end during his campaign. David Frum translates: “If you voted for Trump because you believed him about immigration, you got played.”

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


President Trump is seen on television as one person watches and others play chess, in Havana, Cuba. Reuters

What We’re Reading

Far From Flint: For students at Northwestern High School in Flint, Michigan, this year’s prom was “a chance to set aside anxieties about the city’s three-year-old water crisis, its poverty and its gun violence.” (Julie Bosman, Zackary Canepari, and Jessica Dimmock, The New York Times)

‘This Is Not a Drill’: Democratic lawmakers and activists have organized an effort to block the Republican health-care proposal, which is projected to increase the number of uninsured Americans over the next decade. But they’re struggling to get people to pay attention. (Benjy Sarlin, NBC News)

The Myth of a Peaceful America: Shootings targeting elected officials are rare in the United States, but, Emma Roller argues, “in American politics, as in American life, violence is not the exception, but the norm.” (Fusion)

The Happy Warrior Marches On: Vice President Mike Pence has been involved with almost every major decision coming out of the Trump administration. “This outsized stature, however, also threatens the harmony between Pence and his famously fickle superior,” writes Tim Alberta. (Politico)

Cheers Become Jeers: Donald Trump made his money as a B-list entertainer, cultivating a super-villain image that was hard to look away from. Getting elected was the biggest mistake he could have made for his image. (Lili Anolik, Vanity Fair)


Lawmakers in the Outfield: The Democrats won Thursday’s congressional baseball game at Nationals Park. Check out this gallery for scenes from the bipartisan tradition. (The Washington Post)

Question of the Week

June is “National Soul Food Month.” The cuisine, writes soul-food historian Adrian Miller, “has long been the foundation for home cooking in the White House.” This week, we asked you what dish—soul food or otherwise—you would request from the White House chef. For a complete list of readers’ creative food requests, visit our Notes section.

Donna Brazile, a political analyst and former interim chair of the Democratic National Committee, has a tasty menu planned out for her hypothetical stint in the West Wing. She’d request neck bones and gravy with green peas and a side salad, fried catfish with potato salad, and smothered pork chops with collard greens and cornbread.

And Katharine Moore is daydreaming about dinner and a show:

Sweet tea, pecan pie, and homemade wine … so I could have the Zac Brown Band serenade my guests in the State Dining Room. Pablo Casals was just the right man for the Kennedy administration, but crazy times call for a fiddle, not a cello.

Thanks to everyone who submitted responses, and stay tuned for next week’s Question of the Week.

-Written by Elaine Godfrey (@elainejgodfrey)