Putin to Expel Americans

Monday, July 31, 2017Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 8.59.07 AM

Good Monday morning, 
Here are some of the stories making news in Washington and politics today:
— The First Draft Team
White House Memo

Sage Advice From the ‘Gold Standard’ of White House Chiefs of Staff

James A. Baker III, center, in 2013 in Brussels. He served as chief of staff for Ronald Reagan and George Bush.

James A. Baker III, center, in 2013 in Brussels. He served as chief of staff for Ronald Reagan and George Bush. Andrew Testa for The New York Times

When a new White House chief of staff takes over, the smart ones check in with James A. Baker III, the only man to have occupied the office two different times for two different presidents and is widely considered to be the gold standard.
Mr. Baker has plenty of advice from running the White House during Ronald Reagan’s first term and again at the end of George Bush’s presidency, but it usually boils down to this: You can focus on the chief, or you can focus on the of staff. Those who have focused on the of staff have done pretty well.
On Monday, as John F. Kelly takes over Mr. Baker’s old corner office with the fireplace and patio, he assumes probably the hardest job in Washington other than president. Any chief of staff must find the tricky balance between serving the president and managing the building, between being an adviser and being a boss — tasks all the more challenging in President Trump’s faction-filled White House.
Mr. Baker’s advice is aimed at those who become too full of themselves, acting as a quasi prime minister, as his successor Donald T. Regan did before making the fateful mistake of hanging up the phone on Nancy Reagan. Reince Priebus, tossed aside by Mr. Trump on Friday after six months, faster than any chief has been pushed out before, may have gone too far the other direction. He never fully gained control over the West Wing, presumably because he was never empowered to do so.
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Right and Left: Partisan Writing You Shouldn’t Miss
Read about how the other side thinks. We have collected political writing from around the web and across ideologies.
From the Right
• Stu Burguiere in Medium:
“I have no problem criticizing Trump, I do it all the time, but the failure of Obamacare repeal is mainly the fault of Congress.”
Mr. Burguiere, who is a head writer and a producer on “The Glenn Beck Radio Program,” argues that the failure to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act rests squarely on the shoulders of Republican leaders who have perfect cover to pass conservative legislation. Not only will Mr. Trump “sign anything” Republicans put in front of him, he’s provided legislators a week full of stories to distract the news media and the public from criticizing the health care bill. It’s one of the “inadvertent benefits of having a tweeter-in-chief.” Read more »
From the Left
• Scott Lemieux in The Week:
“I have never been happier to have been dead wrong.”
Mr. Lemieux is proud to have been wrong in his assessment of Senator John McCain of Arizona. He joined others on the left in mocking Mr. McCain “for harshly condemning a process he cast a decisive vote to continue.” Now that Mr. McCain’s vote was one of three Republican votes to secure the defeat of the “skinny repeal” bill, Mr. Lemieux won’t hesitate to admit he was wrong about the “maverick” he criticized just a day earlier. Read more »
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