John Light

John is TPM‘s Prime editor. His writing has also appeared at The Atlantic, Mother Jones, Salon, Slate, UN Dispatch, Vox, Worth, and Al Jazeera, and has been broadcast on Public Radio International. Before joining TPM, John was a producer for Bill Moyers and WNYC, and worked as a news writer for Grist. He grew up in New Jersey, studied history and film at Oberlin College, and got his master‘s degree in journalism from Columbia University.

Articles by John

Hello Prime subscribers. 2019 started off in a big way: A government shutdown, a new House majority, ambitious Democratic legislation (which almost certainly won’t get through the Senate), and the start of the nearly two-year-long presidential campaign that arrived regardless of whether or not we were ready for it.

Here’s what happened in Prime over the last week and during the holidays.

  • Josh Kovensky has your guide to how the Democrats plan to get Trump’s tax returns, and the weird history behind that plan (think Tea Pot Dome scandal).
  • 2018 showed the difference between GOP claims of mass voter fraud and election fraud that actually happens.
  • At Trump’s Cabinet meeting this Wednesday, a former Boeing executive and a former oil industry lobbyist — the new acting heads of the Departments of Defense and Interior — took their seats alongside the other lobbyists and industry heads who run the executive branch. Matt Shuham has the details in his Trump Swamp primer.
  • Sam Patten, the D.C. lobbyist who pleaded guilty to acting as an unregistered foreign agent in August, is cooperating with the D.C. U.S. attorney’s office, Mueller’s office, and other law enforcement agencies. So the fact this his latest status update this week was filed under seal is a big deal.
  • Florida’s felons got their voting rights back — but that doesn’t mean they’ll vote, writes Allegra Kirkland.
  • The Trump Tower Moscow Letter of Intent that surfaced last month raises new, key questions, writes Josh Marshall.
  • The next stage of the Mueller probe could involve Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Israel, Iran and Syria. Here’s why.
  • The worst things the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau did in 2018.
  • And…. the worst things the EPA did in 2018.
  • Democrats are kicking off the year with a package of ethics and campaign finance reforms that good government types have long championed.

Democrats assume control of the House today with an obvious, pressing priority: Ending the partial government shutdown that has closed nine government agencies and has some 800,000 federal employees either at home or working without pay. After that, however, Democrats plan to turn to House Resolution 1, a package of ethics and campaign finance reforms that good government types have long championed.

Read More →

The Trump administration has summoned eight congressional leaders — the top two Democrats and Republicans in both the House and Senate — to the White House for a “briefing” on “border security.” Here’s more on that and other stories we’re following. (Updated.)

Read More →

Casting about for a last-minute gift idea for a news-obsessed friend or family member? Perhaps a TPM gift subscription — providing access to daily, members-only articles, and supporting the work we do — would brighten their holiday season.

Consider it.

Earlier this month, Tierney Sneed reported from Washington, D.C.’s federal courthouse that staff were “doing everything they could” to “make sure a secret case believed to be related to special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe stayed secret.”

We still don’t know much about that legal dispute, beyond that an unknown foreign company is fighting (and has been losing its attempts) to quash a subpoena which may come from Mueller.

But, Tierney Sneed reports this morning, the case has arrived at the Supreme Court. Read more here.