The Angle

The Angle: The Bread and Circuses Edition

Slate’s daily newsletter on the Senate, impeachment, avocado toast, and Céline Dion.

Fantasyland: Due to vague comments from former GOP officials, including Jeff Flake, a belief has spread that there are a lot of Republican senators who actually want to impeach Trump and would vote to do so were the process conducted by secret ballot or some other possibly opaque means. But Dahlia Lithwick thinks this is all poppycock and explains you shouldn’t be fooled.

It’s still happening! We’ve got a packed week of public impeachment hearings, folks. Jeremy Stahl looks ahead to tomorrow’s, when EU ambassador and alleged quid pro quo assistant Gordon Sondland is set to testify, and lists five things the diplomat needs to clear up about the Ukraine story when he visits Congress. And William Saletan debunks a new party-line defense of the White House being put to the test: that Trump’s conversations were merely for the purpose of testing the Ukrainian president’s commitment to his anti-corruption promises.

It costs, like, $2: Republican reelection campaigns are playing on the same tired culture-war tropes, pitching themselves as necessary heartland antidotes to the latte-sipping, avocado toast–munching elite libs. But not only is this hypocritical—so many of these guys went to expensive colleges—it also inadvertently shows off one of Republicans’ glaring electoral weaknesses, as Ben Mathis-Lilley notes.

Courage: The latest from album from Céline Dion is the “crowning achievement” of her comeback, writes Carl Wilson. The Canadian pop idol has long been on the scene, but her 12th English-language album goes to places she has never before publicly tread: Namely, she is “reborn as a swearing, drag-loving queer icon.”

For fun: Praising the greatest trombone part in Broadway history.

Justice for the low brass,