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Vann R. Newkirk II

Vann R. Newkirk II is a staff writer at The Atlantic, where he covers politics and policy.
Results 1-10 of 41

How Alabama's Election Laws Keep Moore on the Ballot

November 15, 2017 Why can’t Alabamians be rid of Roy Moore? The abundance of allegations against the Republican nominee for the state’s open U.S. Senate seat are damning. There’s the November 9 allegation from Leigh Corfman in the Washington Post that Moore, the former Alabama Supreme Court judgel, sexually abused her when she...

Federal Probe Into Puerto Rico Power Scandal Expands

November 3, 2017 A second federal contract with a company hired to rebuild Puerto Rico’s all but collapsed power grid is coming under scrutiny, drawing the attention of federal investigators and even members of Congress even as most of the hurricane-ravaged island remains without power. The news of a second faulty contract is...

Puerto Rico's Dire Health-Care Crisis

October 30, 2017 It’s been over a month since the last of Maria’s Category 4 hurricane-strength winds swept over Puerto Rico, but there is still damage yet to come. The darkness is persistent. Power and clean water are still tenuous and reliant on generators and outside aid. Contamination threatens basic necessities for dozens...

New Storms Set Back Relief Efforts on Puerto Rico

October 11, 2017 SAN JUAN, P.R.—The hurricane is long gone, but it’s the regular storms that are now providing some of the biggest challenges to relief and recovery in Puerto Rico. On Tuesday, heavy rainfall from a tropical wave affected most municipalities, which face flash-flood watches through Wednesday night. While a brief reprieve...

The Trump Voter-Fraud Commission's Data Problem

September 13, 2017 “Election Fraud is rampant!! California has 11 Counties that have MORE VOTERS than registered voters!!” reads one of the most recent public comments submitted to the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. “I have personally witnessed voter fraud in California,” reads another comment. An earlier comment claims that “many [voters]...

How to Build Hurricane-Proof Cities

September 12, 2017 Almost exactly 117 years ago, a Category 4 hurricane made landfall on the barrier-island city of Galveston, Texas, with the storm surge and winds destroying at least half of the residential areas and killing at least 6,000 people. The September 8, 1900 catastrophe was one of the most destructive and...

The Looming Superfund Nightmare

September 12, 2017 The line between the acts of God and human acts has always been too blurry for our comfort. And the distinction between the two has perhaps never been less meaningful than it is now, with the Atlantic basin churning out an unprecedented slate of storms that have threatened areas across...

Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands Coordinate with FEMA in Preparation for Irma

September 6, 2017 Hurricane Irma is a monster. After the storm reached Category 5 intensity Tuesday morning, the National Hurricane Center says it became the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic outside of the warm waters of the Caribbean or the Gulf of Mexico. And even as the Gulf region of the...

Hurricane Harvey’s Public-Health Nightmare

September 3, 2017 For the thousands of people traveled through Harvey’s flood waters to Houston’s George R. Brown Convention Center, safety was not yet at hand. Although delivered from the worst of the storm, the packed masses were one of the loci of another brewing problem, one that officials expect might last a...

What's the Real Goal of Trump's Voter-Fraud Commission?

July 26, 2017 The Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity had its first official meeting last week, launching its agenda amid widespread controversy about Vice Chair Kris Kobach’s request for all 50 states’ individual voter data, and while facing seven federal lawsuits related to that request. Although the stated mission of the group,...