What The Fuck Just Happened Today?

Today's essential newsletter. Logging the daily shock and awe in national politics. Read in moderation.
by @matt_kiser

Site updated:

1/ Jeff Sessions confirmed as Attorney General, capping a bitter and racially charged nomination battle. Sessions survived a near-party-line vote, 52 to 47, in the latest sign of the extreme partisanship at play as Trump strains to install his cabinet. No Republicans broke ranks in their support. (New York Times)

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2/ Republicans vote to rebuke Elizabeth Warren for impugning Sessions's character. In an extraordinarily rare move, Mitch McConnell interrupted Warren’s speech in a near-empty chamber, as debate on Jeff Sessions’s nomination, saying she had breached Senate rules by reading past statements against Sessions. (Washington Post)

3/ Appeals Court panel appears skeptical of Trump’s travel ban. The appeals court judges seemed taken aback by the assertiveness of the administration’s position, which in places came close to saying the court was without power to make judgments about Trump’s actions. (New York Times)

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4/ House Republicans voted to eliminate the only federal agency that makes sure voting machines can’t be hacked. In a little-noticed 6-3 vote, the House Administration Committee voted along party lines to eliminate the Election Assistance Commission, which helps states run elections and is the only federal agency charged with making sure voting machines can’t be hacked. (The Nation)

5/ Trump invites sheriff to "destroy" Texas state lawmaker who opposes asset forfeiture, a practice by which law enforcement can seize the cash and property of individuals suspected of committing a crime without a guilty verdict. Proponents of the practice argue that allows law enforcement to effectively combat terrorism and the drug trade, while opponents, including some conservatives, argue that it allows police to seize assets without due process. (Politico)

6/ Leaks suggest Trump’s own team is alarmed by his conduct: an impulsive, sometimes petty chief executive more concerned with the adulation of the nation than the details of his own policies ― and quick to assign blame when things do not go his way. (Huffington Post)

7/ Yemen withdraws permission for U.S. antiterror ground missions after the raid, in which just about everything went wrong, killed several civilians, including children. It was an early test of Trump’s national security decision-making. The White House continues to insist that the attack was a “success.” (New York Times)

8/ US military to rent space in Trump Tower. Military support for a president, including the military staff assigned to keeping the "nuclear football" nearby, requires close proximity to the commander in chief, which is why the Pentagon needs to rent a more expensive space closer to the penthouse where Trump resides when he's in New York. The floors available to rent cost about $1.5 million a year. (CNN)

9/ Trump faults media while lying about murder rate. Trump has suggested that the national news media suppresses bad news about violence. He has implied that this is for ideological reasons. (CNN)

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10/ Democrats to plot anti-Trump strategy in Congress and at the polls. Democrats are thinking about how to capture the fast-growing wave of resistance to the Trump administration, as seen at congressional town halls, congressional offices, and airports since Trump was sworn. Trump is polling poorly across the country but stronger in swing seats. (Washington Post)

11/ White House weighs terrorist designation for Muslim Brotherhood, targeting the oldest and perhaps most influential Islamist group in the Middle East. Officially designating the Brotherhood as a terrorist organization would roil American relations in the Middle East. (New York Times)

12/ Spicer: Nordstrom dropping Ivanka Trump's line is "direct attack on Trump". Spicer told reporters during his daily press briefing that the decision – which Nordstrom said was a result of poor sales, not politics – was because of the clothing company's displeasure with Trump's executive orders and his policies. (Talking Points Memo)

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13/ Republicans push carbon tax at White House. A carbon tax, long favored by economists as the most straightforward way to address climate change, could gain traction as part of a broad tax overhaul. (Bloomberg)