On Politics: The Biggest Stories of the Week

From the debates to Iran, it’s been a busy week in American politics. Here are some of the biggest stories you might have missed (and some links if you’d like to read further).


The Democratic National Committee revealed which 20 candidates would be in the first two debates in Miami this month. Steve Bullock, Seth Moulton and Wayne Messam will be left out.

They didn’t make the cut, in part, because they failed to reach 1 percent in three qualifying polls. Their exclusion illustrates the challenge of using polls at this early stage to make sense of the race, let alone to decide whom to include in a debate.

Joseph R. Biden Jr. will share the stage with Bernie Sanders on one night, and Elizabeth Warren will face off against Beto O’Rourke on another. Though there are prominent candidates on both nights, it seems clear that Ms. Warren will be in a good position to command the first evening.

Additional Reading

The U.S. Has Turned Up Pressure on Iran. See the Timeline of Events.

Roadside Blast in Niger That Hit Americans Shows Growing Threat, Officials Say

‘Flying Object’ Struck Tanker in Gulf of Oman, Operator Says, Not a Mine

The deal to avert tariffs on Mexico, which Mr. Trump announced with great fanfare, consisted largely of actions on immigration that Mexico had already promised to take, according to officials from both countries.

But Mr. Trump asserted on Sunday that there were undisclosed aspects to the deal. The Mexican foreign minister contradicted him the next day, saying there was no secret immigration agreement between his country and the United States.

The president’s increasing confidence that tariff threats can help him accomplish his goals sets up an even more tumultuous period for businesses, consumers and foreign countries.

Additional Reading

Mexico’s National Guard, a ‘Work in Progress,’ Deployed to Curb Migration

A Drama of Trump’s Own Making Ends With a Familiar Hero

Mr. Trump declared that he would accept Russia’s help on a campaign if it were offered again, saying it would be no different than meeting with the queen of England. Republicans joined Democrats in condemning the statement.

Congress clashed with Mr. Trump over efforts to investigate how a citizenship question was added to the 2020 census, as a House panel recommended that two cabinet members, Attorney General William P. Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur L. Ross Jr., be held in contempt.

Voters in Virginia cast ballots in primary elections on Tuesday, selecting nominees for a November election that will see Democrats try to strengthen their grip on the state’s politics. See the results here.

Abortion is often cast as a clear, crisp issue in Washington, with Republicans and Democrats clustered in opposite corners. But the public’s views are often muddled and complex: Surveys find that many voters struggle with its ethical and moral perplexities.


Today’s On Politics briefing was compiled by Isabella Grullón Paz in New York.

Is there anything you think we’re missing? Anything you want to see more of? We’d love to hear from you. Email us at onpolitics@nytimes.com.

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