Magazine February 11, 2019, Issue

Crisis Politics

President Donald Trump attends a Cabinet meeting on day 12 of the partial government shutdown at the White House in Washington, D.C., January 2, 2019. (Jim Young/Reuters)
What it takes for presidents to use emergency powers successfully

President Trump has painted himself into a corner by prematurely threatening to invoke emergency powers to deal with the problem at the border. Rather than creating political demand for a solution he is uniquely positioned to offer, he has invited scrutiny of his methods and motives from the outset. As a result, he has taken the lion’s share of the blame for the impasse over the border wall and the resultant shutdown, with his approval ratings slipping. He may yet manage to wriggle out of this political trap. He and Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell have a viable plan to

In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners


The Week

The Week

Maybe “But there’s no one on the job at the IRS!” isn’t the best anti-shutdown messaging.


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