Today's Liberal News

Adam Serwer

Why Was Alito Flying the Flag Upside Down After January 6?

There may be an insurrectionist justice on the Supreme Court, perhaps two. The New York Times reported yesterday that 10 days after a violent mob ransacked the Capitol in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election and keep Donald Trump in power, an upside-down American flag flew outside the home of Justice Samuel Alito. At the time, Trump supporters were using the upside-down flag as a symbol of their belief in Trump’s lies that the election had been stolen.

How Hur Misled the Country on Biden’s Memory

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First impressions stick. After a big story hits, the initial conclusions can turn out to be wrong, or partly wrong, but the revisions are not what people remember. They remember the headlines in imposing font, the solemn tone from a presenter, the avalanche of ironic summaries on social media.

The Supreme Court Once Again Reveals the Fraud of Originalism

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It was always unlikely that the Supreme Court, with its right-wing majority, would uphold Colorado’s ruling throwing Donald Trump off the ballot merely because he tried to execute a coup after losing the 2020 election. As the unanimous per curiam ruling issued Monday overturning Colorado’s decision suggests, a Court made up of nine liberal justices may not have done so either.

The Supreme Court Has Itself to Blame for Texas Defying Its Orders

Ulysses S. Grant once said that the Confederate cause, the defense of chattel slavery, was “one of the worst for which a people ever fought, and one for which there was the least excuse.” Texas’s embrace of neo-secessionist rhetoric in defense of letting children drown in the Rio Grande belongs somewhere on that same list.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott is engaged in a number of legal battles with the Biden administration over immigration.

The Unwitting Trump Enablers

The collapse of Republican resolve in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s attempt to overturn the 2020 election on January 6, 2021, and Trump’s continued designs on power have together ensured that conservatives find it necessary to downplay or dismiss those events as much less than what they were: an assault on American democracy.
This much was predictable. In the immediate aftermath of the attack, my colleague David A.

Disqualifying Trump Is Not Antidemocratic

In the short weeks since the Colorado Supreme Court threw Donald Trump off the ballot on the grounds that he is barred from office for engaging in “insurrection or rebellion” under the Fourteenth Amendment, the apologists for a man who tried to overthrow the constitutional order by fraud and then force have become pious apostles of democracy.
Republicans and conservative media figures have criticized the decision as “an attack on democracy” and “pro-tyranny.

Disqualifying Trump Is Not Antidemocratic

In the short weeks since the Colorado Supreme Court threw Donald Trump off the ballot on the grounds that he is barred from office for engaging in “insurrection or rebellion” under the Fourteenth Amendment, the apologists for a man who tried to overthrow the constitutional order by fraud and then force have become pious apostles of democracy.
Republicans and conservative media figures have criticized the decision as “an attack on democracy” and “pro-tyranny.

The Colorado Ruling Calls the Originalists’ Bluff

The Colorado Supreme Court has left the justices of the United States Supreme Court in the very uncomfortable position of having to prove that they have the courage of their stated convictions.Yesterday, Colorado’s high court ruled in a 4–3 decision that former President Donald Trump, because of his attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election, is disqualified from appearing on the ballot in Colorado, based on Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Expelling George Santos Was a Mistake

George Santos, the former Republican representative from New York, seemed like he stepped out of an episode of the HBO political-comedy show Veep. His reality-TV antics and ostentatious fabrications about his life, and the criminal allegations swirling around him, made him a surreal character in an already surreal Congress.

Don’t Equate Anti-Zionism With Anti-Semitism

On October 7, the Islamist militant group Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip, killed more than 1,400 people in Israel. Israel responded with military operations that have killed several times that number of Palestinians in Gaza, a territory described by Human Rights Watch as an “open-air prison” as a result of an Israeli and Egyptian blockade. In both cases, most of the casualties are civilians.

Trump Didn’t Go to Michigan to Support Autoworkers

There’s an expression reporters use, that you’ve “reported yourself out of a story.” That is, you had a hunch or a tip about something, but when you checked the facts, the story didn’t pan out. Sometimes, though, reporters stick to the narrative they’ve decided on in advance, and they don’t let facts get in the way.The United Auto Workers union is striking for a better contract.

A DeSantis Speech Too Dangerous to Teach in Florida

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis does not often find himself attempting to deliver a unifying message, but in the aftermath of the killing of three Black Floridians by an alleged white supremacist in Jacksonville last week, he tried.“What he did is totally unacceptable in the state of Florida,” DeSantis said during a speech at a vigil for the three victims, A.J. Laguerre, Angela Michelle Carr, and Jerrald Gallion, last Sunday.

They Are Still With Him

Come November of next year, Donald Trump might be elected president of the nation whose democracy he attempted to overthrow. Although it’s early, Trump is polling strongly against his successor, President Joe Biden, despite having been indicted for state and federal crimes, including a conspiracy to keep himself in power after his 2020 election loss.

The Roberts Court Draws a Line

In rejecting the independent state legislature theory, a thoroughly right-wing Supreme Court sent the message that it will not simply accept whatever ludicrous partisan legal theory its comrades in the conservative legal movement come up with. At least, not every single time.

Woke Is Just Another Word for Liberal

The conservative writer Bethany Mandel, a co-author of a new book attacking “wokeness” as “a new version of leftism that is aimed at your child,” recently froze up on a cable news program when asked by an interviewer how she defines woke, the term her book is about.On the one hand, any of us with a public-facing job could have a similar moment of disassociation on live television. On the other hand, the moment and the debate it sparked revealed something important.

Why Is Biden Attacking Democracy?

Give President Joe Biden democracy, self-rule, and statehood for Washington, D.C. But not yet.Yesterday, Biden announced that he would not veto Congress’s override of a new criminal code for D.C. passed by its city council. “I support D.C. Statehood and home-rule—but I don’t support some of the changes D.C. Council put forward over the Mayor’s objections—such as lowering penalties for carjackings,” Biden tweeted.

The FBI Desperately Wants to Let Trump Off the Hook

The way conservatives tell it, the Federal Bureau of Investigation is a hive of anti-Trump villainy, filled with agents looking for any excuse to hound the former president with investigative witch hunts. But the thing to understand about Donald Trump’s legal troubles is that they exist not because federal agents are out to get him, but despite the fact that the FBI is full of Trump supporters who would really like to leave him alone.

Why Fox News Lied to Its Viewers

Fox News lies to its viewers. Its most prominent personalities, among the most influential in the industry, tell their viewers things they know not to be true. This is not accusation, allegation, or supposition. Today, we know it to be fact.Early in the Trump era, news organizations were torn over whether to refer to Donald Trump’s false statements as lies, because it is difficult to know an individual’s state of mind, to know what they know.

The Psychological Test of Japan’s Finale

This is an edition of The Great Game, a newsletter about the 2022 World Cup—and how soccer explains the world. Sign up here.Japan beat two World Cup champions, Germany and Spain, on its way to the knockout stage. But the Samurai Blue will go no further, defeated on penalties by the 2018 finalists Croatia after more than 120 minutes of play, including the first shootout of this year’s tournament.

The Cursed Goal

This is an edition of The Great Game, a newsletter about the 2022 World Cup—and how soccer explains the world. Sign up here.Yesterday, the FIFA-ranked No. 2 team in the world, Belgium, exited the World Cup after a narrow victory over Canada, a loss to group winner Morocco, and a scoreless draw with the 2018 finalists Croatia.But it was not just that it went out, but the way it went out that is torturous for Belgium fans.

Ghana’s Grudge Match

This is an edition of The Great Game, a newsletter about the 2022 World Cup—and how soccer explains the world. Sign up here.When Ghana meets Uruguay tomorrow, the Black Stars will be out for redemption—or vengeance, depending on how you look at it.Twelve years ago in South Africa, Ghana were on the verge of becoming the first African team to make it to the semifinals of a World Cup, the first in the tournament’s history to be hosted by an African nation.

The Sport of Short Kings

Updated at 7:38 p.m. ET on November 16, 2022This is an edition of The Great Game, a newsletter about the 2022 World Cup—and how soccer explains the world. Sign up here.In August, the Argentine footballer Lionel Messi scored the first bicycle-kick goal of his long, decorated career, and the internet thought it was hilarious.

Star Wars Gets Political

This story contains spoilers for the entire Star Wars franchise, including the Disney+ series Andor.In the eighth episode of the Star Wars prequel series Andor, the mysterious art dealer turned Rebel leader Luthen implores the extremist fighter Saw Gerrera to unite with other factions against the evil Galactic Empire.“Aren’t you tired of fighting with people who agree with you?” Luthen pleads with Gerrera. “There’s no chance any of us can make it real on our own.

Republicans Have Only Themselves to Blame for Their Alaskan Defeat

Updated at 4:50 p.m. ET on September 1, 2022.Mary Peltola was declared the winner of Alaska’s special congressional election last night, defeating the former GOP vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin. A Democrat hasn’t held the seat in 49 years, and Peltola will be the first Alaska Native elected to Congress.The election was the first in Alaska to utilize ranked-choice voting, a system adopted by the state’s voters in 2020.

If It Were Anyone Else, They’d Be Prosecuted

Among the documents disclosed in a Justice Department filing last night in the case involving former President Donald Trump’s possession of classified documents is a striking photograph, one showing documents marked secret and top secret strewn across the floor of Mar-a-Lago.When the search of Trump’s home by the FBI was first announced, conservatives howled that the former president was a target of political persecution.

Conservatives Believe Trump Is Above the Law

A former president’s home was raided by federal law enforcement yesterday, reportedly over possession of classified documents. Although prosecution of former heads of state has occurred in other democracies, a form of government in which ostensibly no one is above the law, it has never happened in America, a place that did not even punish the leaders of a rebellion in defense of human bondage.

Is Democracy Constitutional?

Every American child in public school learns that the U.S. political system is one of checks and balances, in which the judicial, executive, and legislative branches constrain one another to ensure that no one branch of government exercises too much power. One pending case before the Supreme Court asks: What if they didn’t?In Moore v.

Don’t Forget That 43 Senate Republicans Let Trump Get Away With It

During former President Donald Trump’s second impeachment, even when Republicans insisted that the assault on the Capitol was an unfortunate consequence of heated rhetoric, most did not attempt to defend Trump’s conduct on the merits. Instead, they relied on the absurd technicality that the president was no longer in office, and therefore could not be convicted.