The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: And Then There Were Nine

Andrew Yang is the latest to qualify for the next round of Democratic debates this fall. Plus: Aung San Suu Kyi was once a human-rights icon—Ben Rhodes on what happened.

Aung San Suu Kyi looks at the camera while Barack Obama looks at her in the background. They are sitting in the Oval Office.
Myanmar's State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi meets with U.S. President Barack Obama at the Oval Office in 2016 (Carlos Barria / Reuters)
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What We’re Following Today

It’s Thursday, August 8.

‣ ICE agents raided several food-processing plants in Mississippi yesterday, detaining at least 680 people in the largest immigration raid in a decade. Images spread on social media showing tearful children awaiting word on their detained family members.

‣ Nine candidates have now qualified for the fall Democratic-primary debates (the latest to do so: Andrew Yang, after polling at 2 percent in a Monmouth University poll in Iowa).

Here’s what else we’re watching.

(Arinze Stanley)

Fall From Grace: When the human-rights icon Aung San Suu Kyi met former President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in November 2012, she embodied hope—after surviving years of house arrest, Suu Kyi was expected to lead her country through the trauma of military dictatorship and into a future of democracy. But in the years since, Suu Kyi has become part of a government that has curtailed civil liberties, stifled political freedom, and carried out what some UN officials have called ethnic cleansing, writes Ben Rhodes, former deputy national security adviser to Obama. What went wrong?

Amazing Grace: In an address at the Mother Emanuel AME church in Charleston, South Carolina, the Democratic 2020 contender Senator Cory Booker reflected on the threat of white-supremacist violence and race, after a mass shooting in El Paso, Texas. Edward-Isaac Dovere spoke with Booker after the speech, sharing the candidate’s thoughts on America’s Disneyfied history.

+ Listen to the full Radio Atlantic interview, and subscribe to the show here.


(Brian Snyder / Reuters)

Joe Biden walks through the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines.

Ideas from The Atlantic

A Lynch Mob of One (Ibram X. Kendi)
“Today’s one-man lynch mob is easier to stop. But it is harder to prevent than the old lynch mob of many. That is the disheartening news, the racist progress in all of this slaughter.” → Read on.

The Best Democratic Health Care Plan (Matt Bruenig)
“Among the candidates polling in the double digits, three have offered actual health-care proposals (as opposed to vague statements) … To understand any of that, however, you have to understand how insurance works right now.” → Read on.

What Else We’re Reading

Trump pressured his alcoholic brother about his career. Now he says he has regrets. (Michael Kranish, The Washington Post) (🔒Paywall)

Yes, we limit liberty when there’s evidence of a threat (David French, National Review)

Harry Reid has some thoughts about what his party should do should it return to power (Sam Stein, The Daily Beast)

Tulsi Gabbard’s daredevil act (Christopher Cadelago, Erin Durkin, Daniel Strauss, Politico)

About us: This newsletter is a daily effort from The Atlantic’s politics writer Elaine Godfrey, with help from Christian Paz. It’s edited by Shan Wang.

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