AUTHOR ARCHIVES

David A. Graham

David Graham is a senior associate editor at The Atlantic, where he oversees the Politics Channel. He previously reported for Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, and The National.
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Trump’s Emergency Declaration Is a Test for Senate Republicans

February 15, 2019 There was a climactic moment Thursday afternoon as Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced on the Senate floor that President Donald Trump would sign a compromise deal on border-security funding, but would also declare a national emergency to try to build his wall. What happens next will be a test of...

Trump’s End Run Around Senate Cabinet Confirmation

February 4, 2019 President Donald Trump said in an interview Sunday that he prefers to have temporary Cabinet secretaries, suggesting that the current, unsettled state of the executive branch is likely to stay in place, though it puts him at odds with the U.S. Constitution. Trump conducted the interview with CBS’s Margaret Brennan...

How Seriously Should the World Take Trump’s Venezuela Threat?

January 29, 2019 On Monday, as Donald Trump’s administration ratcheted up its pressure on the Venezuelan regime of Nicolás Maduro, the White House wanted Maduro to know that sanctions on the state-owned oil company, PDVSA, might not be the end of the road. “Look, the president has made it very clear on this...

Analysis: The Shutdown Leaves Trump’s Base Cracked

January 28, 2019 On Friday, President Donald Trump announced a deal with Democrats to reopen the government, ending the longest shutdown in U.S. history. The deal was a concession to reality: Trump was not winning the battle over the shutdown in public opinion, he had not persuaded Democrats to fund the wall he...

Donald Trump's Pattern of Deference to the Kremlin Is Clear

January 15, 2019 When Donald Trump gives interviews, it’s usually to Fox News. When he gives interviews to Fox, it’s usually to the channel’s opinion side, not to tougher questioners like Chris Wallace or Bret Baier. But there he was Sunday night, talking to the normally friendly Jeanine Pirro and receiving what he...

James Mattis’s Final Protest Against the President

December 21, 2018 Secretary of Defense James Mattis is resigning over conflicts with President Donald Trump concerning American policy overseas—the highest-profile official to quit the administration over disagreements of principle with the president. In a resignation letter, Mattis laid out a series of differences with Trump, who he said deserved to have a...

Analysis: Why Trump Can’t Find Anyone to Be His Chief of Staff

December 10, 2018 Donald Trump is, infamously, not the sort of man used to getting no for an answer. And while the frequent demurrals from candidates for administration jobs must have started to accustom the president to rejection, Nick Ayers’s decision not to take the White House chief-of-staff position must still come as...

Analysis: John Kelly Couldn't Fix the Trump Presidency

December 10, 2018 White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, who served as Donald Trump’s top adviser for more than a year but repeatedly clashed with the president, will leave the administration “toward the end of the year,” Trump said on Saturday at the White House. Kelly’s departure comes amid reports that the...

The US Military Is Trump’s Favorite Prop

November 21, 2018 Nearly four years ago, my colleague James Fallows wrote a cover story in The Atlantic labeling the United States a “chickenhawk nation.” Americans today “love the troops, but we’d rather not think about them,” he wrote. “The American military is exotic territory to most of the American public. As a...

Analysis: Nielsen Isn’t the Issue With Trump’s Immigration Policies

November 13, 2018 President Donald Trump’s postelection purge is poised to continue apace. First, the frequent Trump target Attorney General Jeff Sessions was unceremoniously ejected from office. Now, according to The Washington Post, the frequent Trump target Kirstjen Nielsen, the secretary of homeland security, is likely to be fired in the next few...