Don’t Worry, Congressional Darling – POLITICO

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THE DRAMA IS NOT THE DRAW – The Extremely Online recently frothed in excitement over the setbacks of “Don’t Worry Darling,” a thriller starring Oscar nominee Florence Pugh and pop star Harry Styles that was beset by reported private squabbles that came to light in the public. Things got stranger when the film premiered at the Venice Film Festival, which inspired a torrent of jokes as its cast sought to project calm.

“Everyone went into the movie with the best of intentions,” an unnamed source told People of the production, calling the resulting furore “hard to navigate.”

Which raises a valuable point about the 117th Congress: the relative power of drama. As Washington wraps up a legislative session that featured a violent siege by Donald Trump supporters on its third full day, a “don’t worry honey” level tension lingers within the ranks of both parties.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her octogenarian lieutenants remain mum on their future, though many Democrats assume that a loss of the House majority this fall will send them into retirement. Across the Capitol, Joe Manchin’s outsized influence in the 50-50 Senate is still high and still polarizing on the left.

And within the GOP, there’s always a question about how big of a majority Kevin McCarthy needs to safely sweep Pelosi’s gavel next year — not to mention the specter of Trump’s thinly-masked plans to stand. represent in 2024. Senate Republicans are monitoring their own periodic power play between the minority leader and the campaign weapon leader.

But the vast majority of people who followed every twist of Pugh’s apparent sourness on his own director, and that director’s shaky story about a deceased cast member…and the video that online commentators seemed to be saying shows Styles spitting on co-star…win’ Actually, don’t show up to see ‘Don’t Worry Darling’ in theaters. If they did, the film would bring in “Top Gun: Maverick” style returns at the box office.

People who buy a ticket will see “Don’t Worry Darling” because they’re Styles superfans, or because they want to support a woman in the director’s chair and a young female star who is famous on Instagram… or because they are simply looking to distract themselves with a little entertainment. What may prove most toxic to film revenue isn’t the drama – it’s the middling to bad reviews that pour in.

And there’s the lesson for Democrats and Republicans as the midterms draw ever closer: Most voters won’t make their choices based on the theatrical skirmishes that have dominated this Congress, from Manchin against the Progressives. to Mitch McConnell versus Rick Scott. What will matter more than anything else are direct views on the ruling party’s agenda and to what extent that party can market itself as better than the alternative.

Some voters may simply show up to respond to current economic conditions, seeing a connection between government assistance and their daily lives. With the exception of races where contestant misdeeds really come to light, the drama garners more online interest than votes.

So even as our Sarah Ferris reports that Democrats are vowing this fall to avoid unforced errors and what one lawmaker called “uproar” — and as our Senate reporters catalog GOP attempts to cool its own internal feud – lawmakers on both sides can rest assured that little will resonate outside the Beltway.

Maybe they can relax and watch a movie. “Don’t Worry Darling” opens September 23.

Welcome to POLITICO Nightly. Connect with news, tips and ideas at [email protected]. Or contact tonight’s author at [email protected] or on Twitter @eschor.

— West Virginia Governor Jim Justice signs abortion ban into law: Republican Gov. Jim Justice today signed into law a law banning abortion at all stages of pregnancy, making West Virginia the second state to enact a law banning the procedure since the June Supreme Court ruling. United States revoking its constitutional protection. The bill will take effect immediately, except for the criminal penalties, which will take effect in 90 days, he said. Justice described the legislation on Twitter as “a bill that protects life”.

— Migrants arriving in Marthas The vineyard will be moved to Cape Cod: The approximately 50 Venezuelan migrants who were airlifted from Florida to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, on Wednesday were flown to Cape Cod today, where they will have access to food, shelter and emergency services, according to a statement from the office of Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker. The migrants will be brought to an emergency shelter at Joint Base Cape Cod in Barnstable County, Massachusetts, which served as an alternative medical care site during the Covid-19 pandemic, and a refuge for displaced Louisiana residents in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

BAD PASS – The Pentagon has made administrative changes to how it handles Taiwan policy, a change that lawmakers and former officials say sends the wrong signal to Beijing as the Chinese military ramps up drills around the autonomous island, written Lara Seligman.

The move – which places the Taiwan portfolio under the office responsible for China policy – could provide a new line of attack among opponents of President Joe Biden who claim he is weak on China. .

The changes come as officials grow increasingly concerned about Beijing’s aggression against Taiwan, particularly after a crisis erupted in the Taiwan Strait in August after China launched unprecedented military drills. , including sending missiles over the island, in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taipei.

“Anything that dilute America’s focus on helping Taiwan defend itself is a very bad idea,” Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) told POLITICO. “Pushing Taiwan back into a China-dominated portfolio sends the wrong signal to Beijing”

The Department of Defense says the move is a bureaucratic change designed to increase internal efficiency within the agency’s political shop.

Welcome to “Radar Sweep,” a new section of POLITICO Nightly that will hunt down notions of corners of the internet that might not make daily headlines.

GAMBIT ACCEPTEDCompetitive chess is rocked by a bigger scandal than it has been in decades. World chess champion Magnus Carlsen, the sport’s most famous player, lost a match under bizarre circumstances, withdrew from a tournament in St. Louis and then hinted that his opponent – a young 19-year-old popular on Twitch named Hans Moke Niemann — may have cheated. Now everyone in chess is getting petty on both sides, and the old dramas within the island community are coming back. Nitish Pahwa has you covered with everything you need to know about the sordid Slate scandal.

‘REAL WAKANDA’There has never been anything like South Fulton, Georgia in the history of the United States of America. On the southwestern outskirts of Atlanta, it is a mostly suburban municipality with a population of approximately 108,000, nine out of ten residents of which are black. Of the places of its size, it is statistically by far the blackest.

A hundred years after hundreds of thousands of rural black people began to change the contours of national politics by migrating to better jobs and lives in cities, then suburbs, across the country, existence and l The autonomy of this five-year-old city child would appear to be the welcome culmination of a long evolution from powerlessness to power.

But South Fulton is torn.

Its mayor, Khalid Kamau — a gay, Christian, socialist, self-proclaimed “black nationalist,” former film student, flight attendant, bus driver, Black Lives Matter organizer — says he wants to create a “real Wakanda,” a city that is “black on purpose”. But he clashed with the progressive, integrationist, and generally more moderate politics of Atlanta’s black elite shared by much of the rest of South Fulton’s local government. And now he’s accusing the city of hiding public records. He tried to fire the city attorney. He reiterated his request to hire a therapist for the city.

Michael Kruse, Brittany Gibson and Delece Smith-Barrow traveled to this strange and singular capital for our latest episode of “The Next Great Migration” where they began to hear whispers of a next great migration. Because while South Fulton’s rulers debate questions of identity, most of its residents wonder whether they should stay in a town that promised economic prosperity and security, but instead provokes political strife.

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