AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Russell Berman

Russell Berman is a senior associate editor at The Atlantic, where he covers political news. He was previously a congressional reporter for The Hill and a Washington correspondent for The New York Sun.
Results 161-170 of 287

The Governor Who Forgot How to Veto a Bill

July 23, 2015 “I’m finally learning how to play the game of a politician,” Maine Governor Paul LePage told reporters in late May, moments after he declared, in a fit of pique over a stalled proposal to cut income taxes, that he would veto every single bill written by a Democrat that passed...

Is This Obama's Moment for Criminal-Justice Reform?

July 10, 2015 The U.S. locks up more of its citizens than any nation in the world, and far too many of them are African American and Hispanic men imprisoned for non-violent drug crimes. The sad state of the criminal-justice system has become, over the last decade, a crisis lamented with nearly equal...

Republican Defenders of the Confederate Flag Derail a Spending Bill

July 9, 2015 National Republican leaders have been eager to put the debate over the Confederate flag behind them. But on the same day that South Carolina finally voted it off its state capitol grounds, the flag somehow managed to bring down a $30 billion spending bill in Congress. It’s hard to understand...

Decision to Put a Woman on the $10 Bill Sparks Unexpected Backlash

June 24, 2015 The $10 bill announcement by Treasury Secretary Jack Lew last week was intended to set off both a celebration and a great national debate: For the first time in more than a century, the portrait of a woman would grace a major denomination of U.S. paper currency, and the government...

Where Republicans Went Wrong With the State Budget in Kansas

June 22, 2015 Last Tuesday in Topeka, Governor Sam Brownback of Kansas signed a $15 billion state budget that squeaked through the Republican-dominated Legislature after an unprecedented, 113-day session—more than three weeks longer than the 90 days called for under state law. The governor simultaneously signed a pair of bills that raised $384...

Republicans Try to Rein In the Census Bureau

June 9, 2015 Why does the government want to know how many toilets you have in your home? It might seem like a silly question, but it is now central to a dispute between congressional Republicans and the Obama administration over the kinds of questions that the Census Bureau can ask in its...

Congress Can't Solve the Infrastructure Crisis

May 20, 2015 Congress does many things poorly, but there are few issues it has handled worse in recent years than providing funds for transportation and infrastructure. That’s not a point you’re likely to hear either Democrats or Republicans contest. On Tuesday, the House passed a two-month extension of the Highway Trust Fund,...

Obama's Police-Reform Proposal is Missing Key Points

May 19, 2015 President Obama’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing released its final, 116-page report on Monday after six months of work. And the boldest proposal made by former Attorney General Eric Holder was nowhere to be found. The study included dozens of recommendations for local law-enforcement agencies and the Justice Department...

De Blasio's America?

May 12, 2015 When Bill de Blasio takes the microphone on the Capitol steps Tuesday afternoon to unveil his progressive version of the Republican “Contract With America,” he’ll be continuing an odyssey that most people in politics find puzzling. Why is the mayor of New York, after less than a year-and-a-half on the...

Lynch Announces Justice Department Probe of Baltimore Police

May 8, 2015 Baltimore asked for a Justice Department investigation into its police practices, and now it is getting one. Loretta Lynch, just five days into her tenure as attorney general, announced on Friday that she was launching a formal inquiry into whether the Baltimore Police Department has engaged “in a pattern or...