The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Torn Flake

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

Written by Elaine Godfrey (@elainejgodfrey)

Today in 5 Lines

  • President Trump ordered the FBI to conduct an additional investigation into Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. The Senate Judiciary Committee made the request following demands from Republican Senator Jeff Flake and other senators.

  • Earlier in the afternoon, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted along party lines to advance Kavanaugh’s nomination to a full Senate vote, but Flake warned that he wouldn’t vote to confirm Kavanaugh without an FBI investigation into the allegations against him.

  • Trump signed a $854 billion spending bill that averts a government shutdown.

  • Facebook announced that a security flaw could have exposed the data of almost 50 million users.

  • The House Intelligence Committee voted to release the transcripts from its now-completed investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Today on The Atlantic

  • A Massive Ripple Effect: Whether or not Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court, the “civic wounds” of Thursday’s hearing will endure for decades, writes David A. Graham.

  • ‘The Confirmation of Trumpism’: Adam Serwer argues that Brett Kavanaugh is a fitting champion for the GOP in the Trump era, when both norms and decency have been disregarded.

  • Just the Facts: The Senate Judiciary Committee had all the resources it needed to reach a factual conclusion about the allegations against Kavanaugh. Why didn’t they? (Caleb Mason)

  • A Revelation: Kavanaugh’s anger during his testimony on Thursday was quite familiar, writes Quinta Jurecic: “It was the anger of a person who seemed to be just discovering the unfairness of the world.”

Recommended Reading


Senator Patrick Leahy, left, and Senator Chris Coons, right, are seen inside the anteroom during the Senate Judiciary Committee meeting on Capitol Hill. Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

What We’re Reading

A Partisan Warrior?: Brett Kavanaugh’s “angry and vengeful tirade” during Thursday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing should disqualify him from serving on the nation’s highest court, argues Matt Ford. (The New Republic)

On the Other Hand: Of course Kavanaugh is angry, writes Rich Lowry: “How is a person who maintains his innocence supposed to react when a political party will credit any allegation against him?” (The National Review)

Sealed Fate: The Trump administration found that the average temperature on Earth will increase by 7 degrees by the year 2100—and used it to justify increasing greenhouse gas emissions, according to a draft environmental-impact statement. (Juliet Eilperin, Brady Dennis, and Chris Mooney, The Washington Post)


Final Answer?: There was one striking difference between the testimonies of Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accusing him of sexual assault. (Alvin Chang, Vox)