For the next month, The DC Diary will be written by a rotating cast of Spectator editors. Today’s author is Teresa Mull.
A divided nation is better than the alternative
In the wake of the Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v. Wade and nearly fifty years of legal abortion, liberal Americans are desperately calling on their congressional leaders to “do something!” The Democrats’ scrambling answer is to “codify a woman’s right to seek abortion into federal law,” and Chuck Schumer has announced the Senate will take a vote on the matter next week. The consensus, though, is that the cycle will continue for Senate Democrats. NPR notes that just as we witnessed with their attempts to overhaul “voting rights, police reform, climate change, and spending,” when it comes to making abortion a legal right, the Dems just don’t have the votes.
Another consensus is that the leaked draft decision on Roe will divide our country even further. “America’s Blue-Red Divide Is About to Get Starker,” the Atlantic predicts. Politico magazine labels the impending abortion decision “A New Milestone in the Sundering of America,” writing, “In a post-Roe nation, the borders between red and blue states will feel suddenly much harder.” My colleague Matt Purple writes today about the culture war that is likely to come following Roe, as this decision could be “just the beginning of a larger revolution in how we think.”
Writing for the New York Post, Douglas Murray offers a different perspective by celebrating our nation’s very ability to be divided ideologically. Though Murray notes the numerous, radical ways in which the First Amendment is increasingly under attack by the left, its continued existence ensures — for now — our ability to speak freely, to debate things, and to arrive at truths. A nation that’s allowed to be divided and still find ways to function is better than the alternative — in which free expression is not only forbidden, but punishable.
Then again, these premonitions of a deeply divided country may all amount to naught, as it appears America will emerge more evenly red after the November midterms.
Bipartisan climate change talks heat up
Build Back Better crashed and burned, but elements of the $1.7 trillion social spending package survived and are reinventing themselves for a second career. Tax credits for so-called “clean energy” was a key BBB component now taking center stage in bipartisan climate change talks that the Hill reports involve “a group of about a dozen lawmakers … meeting three times in two weeks to try to work out a deal that could get 60 votes in an evenly divided Senate.”
Environmental impact tariffs, promoted by Senator Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, would require countries that import to the US to pay for the emissions they produce in making products.
“Right now the current system incentivizes countries like China and India and Vietnam to not pay attention to emissions because you can produce a good cheaper by not paying,” Cassidy said. “But if we had a border carbon adjustment, it would help our workers, help our industry, incentivize them to do it right. This is about national security. Right now, we’re losing jobs, we’re losing industry and China’s economy’s getting stronger. A carbon border adjustment reverses that.”
White House announces new press secretary
Jen Psaki, with an uncharacteristic display of something bordering on mirth, introduced Karine Jean-Pierre as her replacement White House press secretary. Jean-Pierre is the current deputy press secretary, and her other credentials include being the first black and openly LGBQT woman to take to the podium as press secretary. Jean-Pierre, 44, has already published a memoir, which she lovingly dedicates to her partner Suzanne Malveaux, who just so happens to be a CNN reporter.
Psaki will have to “circle back” to us on where she’s headed (rumors all but confirm she’s landed a commentator position at MSNBC), but her successor should be prepared for the most difficult rigors of the job: Jean-Pierre was Kamala Harris’s chief of staff during her failed 2020 presidential campaign.
What you should be reading today
Matt Purple: Abortion and the culture war to come
Charles Lipson: Ukraine is going to win
Amber Athey: The Murdoch funding left-wing disinformation
Douglas Murray, the New York Post: A divided America is united in its freedom to debate those differences
Michelle Goldberg, the New York Times: The Death of Roe Is Going to Tear America Apart
Emma Loop, the Washington Examiner: As diesel prices soar, small trucking businesses struggle to stay afloat
President Biden Job Approval
Disapprove: 52.7 percent
Net approval: -10.2 (RCP Average)
North Carolina Senate Republican Primary Race
Budd: 53 percent
McCrory 29 percent
Walker: 8 percent
Eastman: 6 percent
(Trafalgar Group (R))