The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Better Call Paul

President Trump’s former campaign chair, Paul Manafort, along with his business partner, Rick Gates, were indicted on 12 counts.

Paul Manafort leaves Federal District Court in Washington on Monday. (Alex Brandon / AP)

Today in 5 Lines

In a dramatic escalation of the Russia investigation, President Trump’s former campaign chair, Paul Manafort, along with his business partner, Rick Gates, were indicted on 12 counts, including money laundering and conspiracy against the United States. Separately, a former Trump campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos, pleaded guilty to lying to federal agents about his efforts to get “dirt” on Hillary Clinton from Russian officials. Despite Papadopoulos’s plea, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders insisted Monday’s indictments were not related to the Trump campaign and called instead for further investigation into the potential misdeeds of Clinton. A federal court issued a preliminary injunction on Trump’s transgender military ban, temporarily halting its enforcement. And the FBI is investigating the Puerto Rican power authority’s decision to award a $300 million infrastructure-rebuilding contract to Whitefish, a small Montana energy firm.

Today on The Atlantic

  • A Grim Foreshadowing?: Democratic lawmakers urged Republicans to support Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation in light of Monday's indictments. (Russell Berman)

  • Dear Republican Lawmakers: It’s usually wise for a politician to lay low during controversies, writes David Frum, but when it comes to the Russia investigation, keeping quiet is dangerous.

  • A Dire Situation: Puerto Ricans are facing numerous challenges in providing and accessing adequate health care, creating nothing short of a crisis. (Vann Newkirk II)

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


Paul Manafort makes his way through television cameras as he walks from Federal District Court in Washington. Alex Brandon / AP

What We’re Reading

Who Is Rick Gates?: On Monday morning, President Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, surrendered to the FBI. His 45-year-old protégé surrendered alongside him. (Eileen Sullivan, The New York Times)

All Access: Over bottomless wine and rounds of golf, Tim Alberta gets to know an “unchained” former House Speaker John Boehner: a liberated retiree still wrestling with his political legacy. (Politico)

The Great Deregulator: The Trump administration and Republican-controlled Congress have made significant strides in deregulation—something that hasn’t gotten a lot of attention, but is keeping the business community very, very happy. (Gerald F. Seib, The Wall Street Journal)

The Vultures: Puerto Rico’s unsustainable borrowing resulted in massive amounts of debt. Now, the people benefiting from the island’s misfortunes are responsible for advising the territory on its finances. (Sheelah Kolhatkar, The New Yorker)

Over 40 Days of Darkness: Here’s how the blackout caused by Hurricane Maria compares to other major blackouts in U.S. history. (Umair Irfan, Vox)

Goodbye, Janet: President Trump is expected to name Jerome H. Powell as the next chair of the Federal Reserve, replacing current chair Janet Yellen. (Maggie Haberman and Binyamin Appelbaum, The New York Times)


Twelve-Counts, Count ‘Em: Aaron Blake annotated the 12-count indictment against Paul Manafort and Rick Gates. (The Washington Post)

Question of the Week

It’s been a busy news day, but fortunately, Halloween is almost upon us. Take a break and tell us: If you had to dress as a political figure—alive or dead—who would you be? And why?

Share your response here, and we'll feature a few in Friday’s Politics & Policy Daily.

-Written by Lena Felton (@lenakfelton), Taylor Hosking (@Taylor__Hosking), and Elaine Godfrey (@elainejgodfrey)