Alabama shakes

Dec 13, 2017

Once a Long Shot, Democrat Doug Jones Wins Alabama Senate Race. That’s the headline from Alexander Burns and Jonathan Martin of The New York Times. Yes, “The Senate seat held not long ago by Jeff Sessions is now held by a Democrat,” tweets Liam Stack. As Dan Beucke notes, “It was touch and go for Moore.”

Here’s your roundup of coverage: From Josh Dawsey and Ashley Parker at The Washington Post, Heeding Bannon in Alabama election, Trump gambles and loses. Tweets Rob Garver, “That's going to leave a mark,” of this quote from Josh Holmes, longtime adviser and former chief of staff to Mitch McConnell: “If you take the five best consultants in politics and tell them to lose the Alabama Senate race, I’m not sure they could do it.”

Dartunorro Clark of NBC News invites you to Meet Doug Jones, Alabama's first Democratic senator in 25 years. Gabriel Debenedetti and Alex Isenstadt of Politico offer 5 takeaways from Alabama's startling special election. And, as Maggie Haberman of The New York Times reports, the White House Girds for Fallout From Trump’s Alabama Failure.

At The Atlantic, Vann R. Newkirk II points out that African American Voters Made Doug Jones a U.S. Senator in Alabama. He writes, “I previously noted that Alabama is one of the hardest states in the country to vote—especially so for black voters, and that voter suppression efforts could have had strong effects on black votes. Tuesday night’s returns are all the more remarkable because of the surge of turnout that appears to have taken place in spite of those very real barriers.” As Michael Harriot of The Root puts it, You're Welcome, White People: Alabama's Black Voters Just Saved America.

From Mike Cason of The Birmingham News, Recount in Alabama Senate race unlikely to help Roy Moore win, according to Secretary of State John Merrill. And the Editorial Board weighs in: Listen up America, Alabama has spoken.

And finally, of course, The Onion: Roy Moore Retires From Politics To Spend More Quality Time With Someone’s Kid.

That’s a spicy editorial

The USA Today Editorial Board is “really not mincing words,” as Vera Maria Bergengruen says. In Will Trump's lows ever hit rock bottom? they write, “A president who would all but call Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand a whore is not fit to clean the toilets in the Barack Obama Presidential Library or to shine the shoes of George W. Bush,” adding, “Donald Trump, the man, on the other hand, is uniquely awful.” “Brutal,” says Humberto Sanchez. Also worth pointing out, “This is not a newspaper known for its spicy editorials,” tweets Ben Simmoneau.

* long, ragged sigh *

Virginia Smith is reacting to Patrick Redford’s piece in The Concourse, Rich People Demolished L.A. Weekly To Build The Future They Want For Journalism. He tweets, “I wrote about the L.A. Weekly and the grim future of journalism under rich people.”

And then there’s this: “CNN says Sarah Sanders threatened reporter @Acosta that she'd pull access if he asked Trump about Gillibrand tweet,” tweets Michelle Boorstein. She links to the story by Erik Wemple of The Washington Post, CNN’s Jim Acosta cites access threat from White House’s Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

Meanwhile, Reuters is reporting that Two of its journalists have been arrested in Myanmar, according to a government spokesman. And as Sewell Chan of The New York Times reports, the Number of Jailed Journalists Hits Record High. His piece refers to the report from the Committee to Protect Journalists, Record number of journalists jailed as Turkey, China, Egypt pay scant price for repression.

Putting on the brakes

CNN’s Thomas Kaplan, David Shortell and Ariane de Vogue have the scoop as Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley urges Trump to reconsider controversial judicial picks. In other words, “It appears a 27-year-old ghost hunter's quest to be a federal judge is in serious doubt,” as Adam Goldman tweets. Adds Maud Newton, “You know how outrageous the judicial picks are when Grassley is trying to put on the brakes.”

BuzzFeed’s Zoe Tillman has more scoop in Trump Is Suddenly Facing A Significant Republican Roadblock For Two Of His Judicial Nominees. Tweets Kate Nocera, “.@ZoeTillman ~scoopoclock~ Brett Tally called the White House and offered to withdraw his nomination last week.” 

Spotted: Pig

Your sexual harassment story of the day comes from the “Super creepy scene at the Spotted Pig, a celebrity haunt in Greenwich Village,” as Patrick LaForge tweets. Julia Moskin and Kim Severson of The New York Times have the report: Ken Friedman, Power Restaurateur, Is Accused of Sexual Harassment. Tweets The Times, “Numerous women have accused Ken Friedman, an owner of NYC’s Spotted Pig and other restaurants, of sexual harassment.” “There are quite a lot of layers of awful to this story,” says Willy Blackmore, and boy, are there. For example: “Among employees and industry insiders, the third-floor space has earned a nickname: ‘the rape room.’” “Wow everything about this is exceedingly gross,” says Wells Dunbar. Tweets Ryan Teague Beckwith, “Spotted: Pig.” 


“Time for some Game Theory, y’all.” Charles Johnson links to Twitter’s plans to make threads nicer. The gist: “Twitter is formalizing the tweetstorm format by adding a plus button in the composer tool,” tweets Michael Sheetz.

Your holiday reading list

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” tweets Max Chafkin. That’s right, it’s time for JealousyList 2017, Bloomberg’s fifth annual roundup of the best stories it didn’t write this year. Tweets Stryker McGuire, “A terrific compilation of excellent #longform journalism to read over the holidays. Enjoy.”

Guess what else it’s time for? The 2017 Hater’s Guide To The Williams-Sonoma Catalog. Drew Magary’s annual guide for Deadspin’s Adequate Man is the surest sign that “It's officially the holiday season,” tweets Adam Shinder. Erin Russell’s review: “This gets better every year.” Savor every word.

And a few more:

About the author

Nashville-based writer, marketing communications consultant, and all-around word nerd. Usually covered in dog and/or cat hair.

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