The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Acosta’d

A federal judge ruled that the Trump administration must reinstate the CNN correspondent Jim Acosta’s press pass.

The CNN journalist Jim Acosta arrives at the White House after having his press pass restored. (Evan Vucci / AP)

Written by Elaine Godfrey (@elainejgodfrey) and Olivia Paschal (@oliviacpaschal)

Today in 5 Lines

  • President Donald Trump told reporters that he has finished writing answers to questions from Special Counsel Robert Mueller, and said he wasn’t “agitated” by the probe.

  • A federal judge ruled that the Trump administration must reinstate the CNN correspondent Jim Acosta’s press pass, but did not explicitly rule on Acosta’s claim that his First Amendment rights had been violated.

  • Trump said he will nominate Andrew Wheeler, a former coal lobbyist, to be the next administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. Wheeler has been acting administrator since Scott Pruitt resigned in July.

  • Republican Representative Mimi Walters conceded to Democrat Katie Porter in California’s Forty-Fifth Congressional District, bringing the total number of seats gained in the midterms by Democrats to 37—and continuing Democrats’ delayed gratification.

  • Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa announced that he will cede his position as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and instead become chair of the Finance Committee, replacing the retiring Utah Republican Orrin Hatch.

Today on The Atlantic

  • Do Something: The midterms brought a wave of politicians into power who care about counteracting climate change. Now they need a plan. (Robinson Meyer)

  • Put the Civility Back in Civil: No matter how despicable their views, targeting someone’s private life to protest their beliefs is taking civil disobedience too far, argues Peter Beinart.

  • Golden Oldies: Trump posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to, among others, Babe Ruth and Elvis Presley, a nod to MAGA nostalgia. (David A. Graham)

  • Lean Away: As the Facebook scandals keep coming, Sheryl Sandberg’s advice to “lean in” rings hollow, writes Olga Khazan: “Being a feminist doesn’t mean always behaving ethically.”

  • ‘A Girl Who Struggles’: The criticism of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s choice of outfits is tedious and predictable, writes Megan Garber.


A couple wears masks while walking through smoke and haze from California wildfires at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco. (Eric Risberg / AP)

What We’re Reading

The Missing Link: Taylor Sappington was arguably a perfect Democratic candidate for his newly red Ohio district. So why did he lose? (Alec MacGillis, The New York Times)

Why a Ballot Is Tossed: As votes continue to be counted in the too-close-to-call governor’s race, here’s a look at the very different standards certain Georgia counties have for counting or rejecting absentee ballots. (Christopher Ingraham, The Washington Post)

Beto’s Back: Except now he’s a Nordic blogger. (Katy Waldman, The New Yorker)


Does She Have the Votes?: Here’s where every House Democrat currently stands on whether Nancy Pelosi should lead the caucus. (JM Rieger, Kevin Schaul, and Reuben Fischer-Baum, The Washington Post)

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