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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.
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‘Dozens’ of Whistleblowers Are Secretly Cooperating With House Democrats

April 4, 2019 Tricia Newbold set an important mark when she became the first official currently serving in Donald Trump’s White House to take accusations of wrongdoing to Congress—and to put her name publicly behind them. But Democrats on Capitol Hill say that beyond Newbold, a small army of whistleblowers from across the...

The Senate Votes for More Stalemate

January 24, 2019 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The shutdown will go on. Competing proposals to reopen the federal government each garnered majority support in the Senate on Thursday afternoon, but both failed to secure the necessary 60 votes to break an impasse that has dragged on for more than a month and cut off pay for 800,000...

There’s a Slim Chance the Senate Will Vote to End the Shutdown

January 24, 2019 Federal employees on the verge of missing their second consecutive paycheck should not get their hopes up about the pair of dueling votes to reopen the government that will take place in the Senate on Thursday. Both proposals—one representing President Donald Trump’s proposed trade of $5.7 billion in border-wall funding...

Nancy Pelosi’s Power Move on the State of the Union

January 17, 2019 The latest casualty of the partial government shutdown might be President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in a letter to the president on Wednesday, suggested that the annual speech before Congress be postponed or scrapped altogether in light of the legislative impasse that has...

The Impact of the Government Shutdown Is About to Snowball

January 11, 2019 The partial government shutdown that began during the quiet of the holidays is about to become the longest in the nation’s history. And on Friday, it will start truly hitting home for hundreds of thousands of federal employees: For the first time, their scheduled paychecks will not arrive. The missed...

Why Federal Workers Still Have to Show Up Even If They’re Not Being Paid

January 9, 2019 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Eric Young is the president of the union that represents the approximately 30,000 employees of the Federal Bureau of Prisons who are working during the government shutdown. Young’s members, scattered at 122 facilities located in largely rural areas across the country, aren’t being paid and don’t know when their next...

Why Unpaid Federal Workers Don't Just Strike During a Shutdown

January 9, 2019 Eric Young is the president of the union that represents the approximately 30,000 employees of the Federal Bureau of Prisons who are working during the government shutdown. Young’s members, scattered at 122 facilities located in largely rural areas across the country, aren’t being paid and don’t know when their next...

Will the Government Ever Reopen?

January 7, 2019 The longest-ever shutdown of the federal government lasted 21 days. To hear President Donald Trump talk on Friday afternoon, that record—set at around this time 23 years ago, during the Clinton administration—could soon be demolished. During a two-hour meeting that both parties acknowledged was contentious, the president told Democratic leaders...

An Awkward Beginning to Democratic Control of the House

January 3, 2019 This was not how Democrats expected, much less hoped, to begin their new House majority. After the blue wave crested, ever so slowly, in November, the start of the 116th Congress on Thursday loomed as a moment of potential drama, a Constitutionally-mandated deadline for the party to decide whether to...

Democrats in New York Are Ready to Deploy Their Newfound Power

December 26, 2018 NEW YORK—How blue can New York go? The Empire State has an understandable reputation as one of the nation’s foremost progressive bastions, having cast its presidential vote for a Democrat in each of the past eight elections—a longer streak than any large state in the country, including California. But for...