The Slatest for Jan. 31: What Residents of the Texas Border Town at the Center of the Immigration Debate Really Want

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Greg Abbott is fighting Joe Biden over a small border town’s community park—and the Supreme Court is refereeing. As a result, Eagle Pass, Texas, has become the center of a national uproar over immigration, the 2024 election, and the hierarchy of law in America. It’s turned life there upside down, too—Molly Olmstead spoke to some residents about how they really feel about the whole thing.

Plus:

• In case you missed it, Mark Joseph Stern wrote about how GOP governors have been invoking the Confederate theory of secession to justify the conflict with the feds at the southern border.

• Pedro Gerson identifies the trap that Democrats are falling into yet again on immigration.

• Amicus breaks down the constitutional crisis that the battle for the Texas border may be creating.

On Monday, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued a landmark opinion declaring that abortion restrictions do amount to sex-based discrimination. One of the state justices “condemned Alito’s error-ridden analysis, and repudiated the ‘antiquated and misogynistic notion that a woman has no say over what happens to her own body.’ ” Dahlia Lithwick and Mark Joseph Stern share their takeaways about the court’s rejection of Dobbs.

E. Jean Carroll, wearing a black turtleneck and cream coat and dark sunglasses, smiles at the camera in a photo taken after she left the courthouse after her win.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

E. Jean Carroll’s lawyer understands women of her age—and, it turns out, that mattered. Lithwick spoke to Vanity Fair correspondent Molly Jong-Fast about why it ultimately took an 80-year-old plaintiff to hold Trump accountable in court.

The Fulton County district attorney, who brought charges against Trump and 18 co-defendants over alleged 2020 election interference, is mired in scandal herself. What Next spoke to former federal prosecutor Ankush Khardori about what might be next for the case.

Joe Biden playing with puppets of Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photos by Sean Rayford/Getty Images, John Medina/Getty Images, Patrick Smith/Getty Images, and Getty Images Plus.

What do Taylor Swift, Travis Kelce, and the Super Bowl have to do with Joe Biden and the election? Hoo boy. Heather Schwedel unpacks the right’s latest conspiracy theory, and Ben Mathis-Lilley considers the ideological impulses behind it.

Sure, “it was amusing for a while to watch celebrities squirm in trying to say the right thing when asked about being a nepo baby,” Joe Berkowitz writes—but the idea has outlived its usefulness. He argues that it’s time to find a new way of talking about class and privilege.

a GIF of Jared Kushner with a patchy beard. Then his clean-cut hair is replaced by a shaggy mullet and a trucker hat that says "MERICA"
Photo illustration by Slate. Photos by Instagram/Ivanka Trump and Getty Images Plus.

There’s a problem with Jared Kushner’s new dirtbag beard. Molly Olmstead has the solution.

Plus: Greg Olear considers the strange alternate reality of Ivanka Trump’s Instagram feed.

… much like the army of journalists ensuring that “the youth-culture-to-adult-attention pipeline is shorter than it’s ever been,” as Sam Adams puts it. He takes a look at why Gen Z helped make Suits the most streamed show of 2023.

Thanks so much for reading! We’ll see you back here tomorrow.