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Democrats are wrong to give up on rural America

United States | LexingtonPoliticians like Jared Golden show they can win its supportMaine’s 1.3m citizens are divided into just two congressional districts. The first is small, since half of Mainers live along the coast around Portland, a fizzy entrepot of lobster-and-scallop mousse and vegan doughnuts. But the second district, which stretches north...

America’s government is buying vulnerable homes amid rising flood risk

United States | Responding to floodsSome flood-prone places are being fortified, others abandonedThe very year Bernadette Davis bought and remodelled her home in Lake Charles, in 2016, it was flooded. A nearby canal—what locals call a coulee—overflowed when a storm dumped up to 31 inches (79cm) of rain on parts of Louisiana. It flooded again the next...

A new ranked-choice voting system hampers Sarah Palin’s hopes

United States | Alaska’s choiceWhat happens when second preferences come into playThere are few parts of America where the migration of salmon is a political issue. Alaska is one of them. On August 16th voters in America’s largest, wildest state went to the polls to elect their sole member of the House of Representatives, a seat vacant since the death...

America tussles over a newly fashionable constitutional theory

United States | The Supreme Court“Originalism” is pushing the law to the right. Could it be a tool for progressives?In 1987, the last time the Senate voted to reject a president’s pick for the Supreme Court, a constitutional theory seemingly went down with the nominee. Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan’s ill-fated choice, told senators that judges should be...

In New York, once-friendly neighbours now battle it out

United States | Primary pugilismSeptuagenarian incumbents take on each other and a young challengerAl smith, a New York governor, unsuccessfully ran for president in 1928 with the campaign song “The Sidewalks of New York”, a popular tune but one with a peculiarly local theme. Its chorus includes the lyrics: “East Side, West Side, All around the town”....

A push for more space for America’s farm animals is thwarted

United States | If pigs could flyLobbying and litigation frustrate efforts to improve conditions for chickens, pigs and calvesMeat production in America can be a controversial topic. The country has one of the highest meat-consumption rates per person in the world. For many the availability of cheap ribs, steaks and bacon is almost a basic right. But...

Merrick Garland is not naive about political violence

United States | A paranoid styleHis work on the Oklahoma City bombing may offer clues about his investigation of Donald TrumpAmerica’s attorney-general has reason to be haunted by its latent capacity for political violence. Merrick Garland was a senior official in the Justice Department on April 19th 1995, when a bomb exploded beneath a federal building...

Liz Cheney is vanquished by Donald Trump

United States | Why oh WY?Wyoming’s primary voters choose fealty to the former president over defending democracyIT WAS A scenic spot for a swansong. Liz Cheney (pictured), who lost the Republican primary election for Wyoming’s lone congressional district on August 16th, gave her concession speech from a ranch near Jackson. Framed by the Teton mountain...

Liz Cheney, Donald Trump’s strongest Republican critic, is ousted from Congress

United States | Why oh WY?Wyoming’s primary voters choose fealty to the former president over defending democracyIT WAS A scenic spot for a swansong. Liz Cheney (pictured), who lost the Republican primary election for Wyoming’s lone congressional district on August 16th, gave her concession speech from a ranch near Jackson. Framed by the Teton mountain...

Liz Cheney, the former president’s strongest Republican critic, is ousted from Congress

United States | Why oh WY?Wyoming’s primary voters choose fealty to Donald Trump over defending democracyIT WAS A scenic spot for a swansong. Liz Cheney (pictured), who lost the Republican primary election for Wyoming’s lone congressional district on August 16th, gave her concession speech from a ranch near Jackson. Framed by the Teton mountain range,...

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