The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: California Ablaze

Multiple wildfires have engulfed California. The Camp Fire in Northern California is now the deadliest wildfire in modern California history, with 29 confirmed dead.

Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP

Written by Madeleine Carlisle (@maddiecarlisle2) and Elaine Godfrey (@elainejgodfrey)

Today in 5 Lines

  • Multiple wildfires have engulfed California. The Camp Fire in Northern California is now the deadliest wildfire in modern California history, with 29 confirmed dead. The Woolsey Fire raging in the southern part of the state has forced 265,000 people to evacuate in Ventura and Los Angeles counties.

  • Mississippi Democratic Senate candidate Mike Espy criticized his opponent Republican Senator  Cindy Hyde-Smith after a video emerged of her joking about attending a “public hanging.” Espy and Hyde-Smith will enter a runoff on November 27, and if Epsy wins he will be the state’s first black Senator since Reconstruction. Hyde-Smith has not apologized for her comments.

  • A Florida judged ruled against Senate candidate Rick Scott’s lawsuit alleging voter fraud in Broward County. In Georgia, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacy Abrams filed a lawsuit on Sunday to block two counties from rejecting absentee ballots with minor mistakes, potentially pushing the election into a run-off.

  • Arizona’s Senate race has not been called, but Democratic candidate Kyrsten Sinema’s lead over Republican Martha McSally has widened.

  • Police officers responding to a shooting early Sunday morning in Midlothian, Illinois shot and killed the 26-year-old black security guard, Jemel Roberson, who was on duty at the bar. The Cook County Sheriff’s office has launched an investigation into Roberson’s death.

Today on The Atlantic

  • California, Ablaze: Three of California’s five largest fires on record have occurred in the last three years. The worst is likely yet to come. (Robinson Meyer)

  • ‘Institutionalized Terror’: What happens when a nation ends birthright citizenship? Jonathan M. Katz looks at a case study of one country that did: The Dominican Republic.

  • Trump 2020: Despite the the Republican Party’s recent losses in the House, here’s why President Trump has a good shot at being reelected. (David A. Graham)

  • Shame on Amazon: The company's 14-month performative bidding war for its second headquarters is not only disgraceful, but should be illegal, writes Derek Thompson.

  • Remembering Matthew: As America struggles to confront bigotry, Matthew Shepard's legacy remains pertinent, writes Megan Garber.


Firefighters battle the Woolsey Fire as it continues to burn in Malibu, California, U.S., on November 11, 2018. (Eric Thayer / Reuters)

What We’re Reading

A Lesson in Kansas: Democrat Laura Kelly beat Trump-aligned candidate Kris Kobach in the Kansas gubernatorial race last Tuesday. How Kobachlost could be a playbook for how Democrats can defeat Trumpism. (Jane Mayer, The New Yorker)

The Forgotten Culture War: American conservatives were once staunch opponents of pornography. Now it’s a rapidly growing industry—with few adversaries. (Tim Alberta, Politico)

The Rise of E-Carceration: Michelle Alexander writes that the current trends of criminal justice reform toward dependence on algorithms and electronic monitoring risk building a new system “more dangerous and more difficult to challenge than the one we hope to leave behind.” (The New York Times)

A Star Is Born: Who Is Dan Crenshaw? The Republican Congressman-elect who appeared on SNL over the weekend is a rising star in the Republican Party. (Dan Zak, The Washington Post)

What a Wall Can’t Stop: As the Trump administration pushes for more border wall, the amount of smuggling tunnels running under the U.S.-Mexico border has only increased. (Sarah Troy, High Country News)


Think Locally: Republicans still control large swaths of state politics. But Democrats made headway in the midterms. (Emily Badger, Quoctrung Bui, and Adams Pearce, The New York Times)

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