We begin with a new poll that finds the overwhelming majority of Trump supporters believe he is honest and trustworthy and will keep his campaign promises. At the same time they do not believe the mainstream media with 78% of Trump voters believing that news organizations regularly produce false stories. Ben Schreckinger, who covers national politics for Politico, joins us to discuss his latest article at Politico Magazine “Trump’s Fake War on the Fake News”, and the paradox that while Trump’s lies are working with cynical perfection on his base, he also wants the approval of the mainstream media that he demonizes as he spends a lot of his time obsessing over how he is covered and how his underlings like Sean Spicer are performing on his behalf. We will also look into the trickle down nature of the culture of lying in the White House that has junior staffers routinely lying to the press just for fun.

Then we will gauge the reactions to the highly touted but thinly supported tax cut and tax reform proposals announced at the White House yesterday and assess the impact of the tax cuts on the deficit with Frank Clemente, the Executive Director and co-founder of Americans for Tax Fairness. He joins us to explain how getting rid of the estate tax and the alternative minimum tax while cutting the corporate tax to 15% will benefit Trump and enrich him, his family, his friends and members of his cabinet.

Then finally we will get an update on the deteriorating situation in Venezuela where the son of a top official in the Maduro government made a heartfelt appeal to his father on video begging him “to end the injustice that has sunk this country”. Jennifer McCoy, a professor of political science at Georgia State University and author of “The Unraveling of Representative Democracy in Venezuela” and “International Mediation in Venezuela”, joins us to discuss plans for an intervention by the Organization of American States that may come too late as this heavily-armed country is poised to descend into violent chaos.

Background Briefing

How Trump's Lies Work For Him

The Impact of Trump's Tax Cuts

Venezuela Poised to Descend Into Violent Chaos

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the White House trumpeting the biggest tax cut in history which will add bigly to the deficit by allowing the top taxpayers to call themselves pass-through corporations reducing their tax rate down from 39% to 15% which is the new corporate tax rate Trump is proposing. Dean Baker, the co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research and author of “Rigged: How Globalization and the Rules of the Modern Economy are Structured to Make the Rich Richer”, joins us to discuss how these so-called “tax reform” proposals are the same old tax cuts for the rich that are supposed to magically spur the economy and create jobs, as well as his latest article at Common Dreams “Donald Trump’s Big Tax Cut…For Himself”.

Then we will examine the tweet storm from Donald Trump following a ruling by a federal judge in San Francisco that blocked his executive order targeting sanctuary cities. Kevin Johnson, a Professor and the Dean of Public Interest Law at the University of California, Davis joins us to discuss Trump’s latest attack on the federal judiciary that include a personal attack on the judge who issued the nationwide preliminary injunction as well as an attack on the 9th Circuit which did not make the ruling that Trump mischaracterizes as a gift to criminal gangs and cartels when in fact the judge ruled Trump’s order will likely violate the Constitution by depriving a jurisdiction of funds unrelated to immigration.

Then finally we will get an update on the just-concluded meeting at the White House by U.S. Senators invited there for an unusual briefing on North Korea by the Secretaries of State and Defense, the Director of National Intelligence and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. Sung Yoon Lee, a Professor of International Affairs at the Fletcher School of Diplomacy at Tufts University, joins us to discuss whether this was a photo-op for Trump or an opportunity to learn what strategies are to be employed following a sixth North Korean nuclear test which is expected soon.

 

Background Briefing

Trump's Biggest Tax Cut in History... For Himself

Trump's Latest Attack on the Federal Judiciary

What Came Out of the Unusual White House Briefing of Senators on North Korea

SHOW NOTES

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With the House Intelligence Committee in shambles after what appears to be deliberate sabotage by its chairman Devon Nunes, we begin with the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation into Russian meddling and possible collusion with Trump in the 2016 election which is moving at glacial speed. Tim Mak, a senior correspondent at the Daily Beast, joins us to discuss his reports that there are no qualified full-time staff members of the seven working part-time on the Senate Russia inquiry and that “no interviews have been conducted with key individuals.”

Then as White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer tries to reassure Trump’s base that “priorities have not changed,” we will look into President Trump’s backing down on his repeated campaign promise to build a wall along the border that Mexico will pay for which was supposed to be funded in this week’s spending bill. Sonia Nazario, who won a Pulitzer Prize for her 6 part investigative series “Enrique’s Journey” which is now a best-selling book, joins us to discuss her article at the Los Angeles Times, “How to Secure the Border. Spoiler alert: A Wall won’t do it.” We will discuss how much cheaper solutions will help solve the problems that a $20 billion wall will certain not do.

Then finally, as the general in charge of US operation in Afghanistan refuses to dispute claims that Russia is sending weapons to the Taliban, we will examine the charges and what evidence might support them with Marvin Weinbaum who served as an analyst on Pakistan and Afghanistan for the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research. He is a professor emeritus of political science at the University of Illinois and a resident scholar at the Middle East Institute and the author of The Future of Afghanistan and we will assess whether there are other reasons why we appear to losing America’s longest war other than the possibility of perfidious behavior by Putin.

Background Briefing

Is The Senate Intelligence Committee Also Dysfunctional?

Cheap and Effective Alternatives to Trump's Border Wall

Is Russia Arming the Taliban?

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We begin with the first round of presidential elections in France and go to Paris to speak with Richard Robert, the Executive Editor of the Paris Innovation Review who knows some of the candidates personally.  We will discuss the peculiar affection that three of the four leading candidates Melenchon, Fillon and Le Pen have for Vladimir Putin and the possibility that France may go back to the 1930’s and end up with a choice between a communist and a fascist in the next round. We will also analyze the reasons why the French appear to be less afraid of Russia and the east and more afraid of the south in terms of immigration from the Middle East and Africa.

Then, because the youth vote in key to this election since youth unemployment is at 25%, we will speak with Clemence Penard, a 21 year-old law student at the Pantheon-Assas University in Paris who studies criminology, sociology, international law and politics.  She joins us to discuss the sophisticated campaign outreach by Marine Le Pen and Jean-Luc Melenchon with the fascist candidate employing a good ground game and the Communist exhibiting the most tech-savvy use of holograms, YouTube and video games with a Robin Hood theme of stealing from the rich to give to the poor.

Then finally we will examine the impact of the global demonstrations in yesterday’s March For Science in support of science and in protest of the Trump Administration’s denial of climate change, disregard for facts and budget cuts on research for medicine and for monitoring global warming. Lawrence Krauss, the director for the Origins Project at Arizona State University and Foundation Professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration, joins us to discuss whether in standing up for science and against junk science, the demonstrations in the nation’s capitol and across the country and around the world will have any impact on the Trump Administration.

Background Briefing

Could France End Up With a Choice Between a Communist and a Fascist?

The Youth Vote in the French Election

The Impact of the March for Science

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with more heated rhetoric from the White House and accusations of “alarming ongoing provocations” from a country that the Secretary of State just said “has the potential to travel the same path as North Korea and take the world along with it”.  That country, Iran, is the same country which the Trump Administration on April 18 just certified as abiding by the nuclear of 2015, the same Obama deal that Trump promised to tear up. Joining us to try to make sense of the flip-flopping and incoherence of Trump’s Middle East policy, which is headed up by his son-in-law who has no government or diplomatic experience other than being in New York real estate, is Mansour Farhang, a professor of international relations at Bennington College. He resigned as revolutionary Iran’s first ambassador to the United Nations when Khomeini’s regime refused to accept the U.N.’s recommendations to release its U.S. hostages.

Then with Attorney General Jeff Sessions poised to revive Nancy Reagan’s “war on drugs” prioritizing his personal obsession against marijuana over the very real problem of a nation-wide opiate addiction scourge, we will speak Norm Stamper, a retired Seattle police chief and advisory board member of Law Enforcement Action Partnership, a drug policy advocacy group. The author of “To Protect and Serve: How to Fix America’s Police”, he joins us to discuss Sessions’ coming war on legal marijuana.

Then finally we will discuss President Trump’s threat to kill the Affordable Care Act by taking away subsidies to insurers as a way to get Democrats to negotiate changes in the 2010 health law.  Wendell Potter, who was chief spokesman for CIGNA and head of corporate communications at Humana before becoming a senior analyst on healthcare at the Center for Public Integrity  joins us in the studio to discuss this cruel and callous tactic designed to make Trump’s prediction that Obamacare would “explode”, come true.

Background Briefing

Syria, Then North Korea and Now Iran as Enemy Number One

Jeff Sessions' Coming War on Legal Marijuana

Trump's Cruel and Callous Tactic to Make Obamacare "Explode"

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We begin with the firing today of Bill O’Reilly, Fox News’s top rated anchor which was announced in a letter to staff by Rupert Murdoch and his sons James and Lachlin. Dan Cassino, a professor of political science at Farleigh Dickinson University and author of “Fox News and American Politics: How One Channel Shapes American Politics and Society”, joins us to discuss the accumulating accusations of sexual harassment that continue to emerge even after The New York Times revealed settlements with five women who were paid a total of $13 million. This prompted at least 60 advertisers to boycott O’Reilly and Fox and, with the O’Reilly scandal on top of the Ailes scandal, apparently the message finally reached Rupert Murdoch that serial sexual harassment is not only bad, it’s bad for business.

Then we will look into the snap election called for June 8 by Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May in the hope that she can increase her majority to get through the next two years of the “Brexit” transition out of the E.U. The author of “Brexit: Why Britain Voted to Leave the European Union”, Harold Clarke, a Professor of Political and Policy Studies at the University of Texas, joins us. He is co-investigator of the British Election Study and a visiting professor at the University of Manchester and we will discuss the likelihood that the U.K’s. opposition Labour Party will suffer even greater loses that they did in the last election.

Then finally we will speak with Christopher Arndt, who serves on the board of the Natural Resources Defense Council and is the author of a new book “The Right’s Road To Serfdom: The Danger of Conservatism Unbound From Hayek to Trump”. He joins us to discuss the “freedom fraud” foisted on America by the Koch Brothers and the authoritarian strong-man conservatism that drives the American Right today which run counter to the principles of liberty that conservatives and libertarians espouse.

Background Briefing

Fox News' Top Rated Anchor and Serial Sexual Harasser Fired

A Snap Election in Britain

Authoritarian Conservatism and the Koch Brothers' "Freedom Fraud"

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the fraud-ridden and rigged referendum in Turkey that the Europeans and half of the Turkish population are disputing, but nevertheless, the President of the United States gave it his blessing and called Turkey’s new dictator Erdogan to congratulate him on his “victory”. Turkish-born Asli Bali, the Director of the Center for Near Eastern Studies and a professor of law at the UCLA School of Law, joins us. We will discuss the possibility that Trump is either acting out of ignorance, amateurism or cynicism in undercutting the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the Council of Europe who have disputed the vote and complained about the un-level playing field, and the educated and urban half of Turkey who are now under the thumb of a repressive and illegitimate regime bent on further eroding their democratic rights, the freedom of the press and Turkey’s secular traditions.

Then on this last day to file income tax returns, we will look into Donald Trump’s continuing refusal to release his taxes as he and House Speaker Paul Ryan prepares a “tax reform” package that will benefit billionaires, hurt the poor, con the middle class and blow up the deficit. Edward Kleinbard, a Professor of Law at the University of Southern California who served as Chief of Staff of the U.S. Congress’s Joint Committee on Taxation, joins us to discuss the Democrat’s demand that Trump reveal his taxes before the tax code is overhauled with changes that will further enrich Trump and his family.

Then we will get an update on the special election in Georgia where the Democrats are pinning their hopes on an upset victory in a Republican district which could be seen as an early rejection of the Trump administration before its first one hundred days. Andra Gillespie, a professor of Political Science at Emory University who worked as an analyst for Democratic pollster Mark Mellman, joins us to discuss the results that require 50% plus one vote for an outright win by Jon Ossoff the Democratic challenger, otherwise there will be a June 20 runoff that could favor the Republicans.

Background Briefing

Trump Praises a Dictator on Stealing an Election

Show Us Your Taxes Before So-Called "Tax Reform"

Results in Georgia's Special Election

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with Donald Trump’s recent discovery that dropping bombs and threatening war distracts the public and the press from the inquiries into collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians and the many questions yet to be answered about Trump and his team’s financial ties to oligarchs close to Putin. Scott Horton, a professor at Columbia Law School and a contributing editor at Harpers in legal affairs and national security, joins us to analyze the latest explosive revelations from the former British MP Louise Mensch who claims intelligence sources say that Carter Page went to Moscow with a videotape of Donald Trump offering Putin a change in U.S. policy to Russia in exchange for his help in hacking our election.  We will investigate this and other claims that General Flynn was compromised by the Russians and coordinated with Putin to have fake news created by the Russian state fed into the campaign to hurt Hillary Clinton and help Trump.

Then we will get a further analysis of the narrow victory in Sunday’s referendum in Turkey with European election monitors questioning the legitimacy of the results while the winner, Turkey’s new dictator-for-life President Erdogan, admonishes them imperiously with “Know Your Place”.  Nicholas Danforth, a senior policy analyst for the national security program at the Bipartisan Policy Center joins us to discuss his new report from the Bipartisan Policy Center “Dark Cloud of Illegitimacy Hovers Over Turkey Vote” and Trump’s call congratulating Erdogan which undercuts the European case against Erdogan.

Then finally we will examine alternatives to the collision course the U.S. is on with North Korea as its regime warns that thermonuclear war could break out at any minute. Adam Mount, a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress who is the project director at the Council on Foreign Relations independent task force chaired by former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Admiral Mullen and former U.S. Senator Sam Nunn, joins us to discuss their new report “A Sharper Choice on North Korea: Engaging China for a Stable Northeast Asia”.

Background Briefing

Explosive Revelations of Trump's Collusion With Putin

Trump Congratulates Erdogan on His Illegitimate Victory

Alternative to the Collision Course We Are on With North Korea

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the looming nuclear showdown between the U.S. and North Korea as Pyongyang gets ready for Saturday’s “Day of the Sun” celebration of the birth of Kim Il Sung, the grandfather of the current North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. With a U.S. carrier task force heading for Korean waters and Donald Trump tweeting that Kim is “looking for trouble” and that Trump would “solve the problem”, we will speak with a former CIA officer Donald Gregg who was Vice President George H.W. Bush’s national security advisor and United States Ambassador to South Korea. He joins us to discuss the “full range of options to remove the threat to the American people and to our allies and partners in the region” that General McMaster has said President Trump asked for and whether there will be another North Korean nuclear test or missile launch accompanying Saturday’s celebration.

Then we will examine the conservative pipeline to the Supreme Court, the title of a New Yorker article by Jeffrey Toobin that profiles Leonard Leo, the executive vice president of the Federalist Society who has succeeding in getting John Roberts, Samuel Alito and now Neil Gorsuch on the Supreme Court. Caroline Fredrickson, the President of the American Constitution Society, the progressive alternative to the Federalist Society, joins us to explain how Leo, a zealous foe of abortion, has built the farm team of judicial nominees and reared a generation of originalists to turn the American judiciary as far to the right as possible.

Then finally we will get an update on Saturday’s marches across the country and around the world on Tax Day, April 15, and speak with the organizer of the Los Angeles Tax March, Delia Brown, an artist and activist who is demanding Donald Trump release his tax returns. She joins us to describe both the serious side of the demonstration with Congressmen and celebrity speakers, and the fun side with a giant inflated chicken with a Trump hairstyle and golden beak and claws that appropriately is made in China, which will be joining the march.

Background Briefing

The Looming Nuclear Showdown With North Korea

The Right Wing Anti-Abortion Pipeline to the Supreme Court

Calling Out Don the Chicken on Tax Day

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with an analysis of the motives behind President Trump’s bombing of the Syrian airbase and the mixed signals coming from his administration with his U.N. Representative Nikki Haley advocating regime change saying that there can be no peace in Syria with Assad in power while Secretary of State Tillerson says there is no change in U.S. policy with destroying ISIS still the main objective. Thomas Wright, a fellow and director of the Project on International Order and Strategy at the Brookings Institution and author of the forthcoming book “All Measures Short of War: the Contest for the 21st Century and the Future of American Power” joins us to discuss the E.U. conference of reconstructing post-war Syria that was meeting in Brussels when the chemical attack occurred raising doubts about whether the billions pledged will be forthcoming.

Then we will examine how much the bombing of Syria distracted attention away from the inquiries into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. Mark Lowenthal, the President of the Intelligence and Security Academy who was the Republican Staff Director of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, joins us to discuss the damage that Devin Nunes has done to the House Intelligence Committee and how much it will impact the Russia investigations going forward.

Then finally, following the cruise missile attack on Syria, with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria declaring that “I think Donald Trump became president of the United States last night”, we will look into the cheer-leading in the press that has accompanied Donald Trump’s use of military force against the Assad regime and speak with Eric Boehlert, a Senior Fellow at Media Matters for America and author of “Lapdogs: How the Press Rolled Over For Bush” and “Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press”. He joins us to discuss the unusual praise for Trump coming not just from the expected sycophants at Fox News, but from many of the anchors on MSNBC such as Rachel Maddow and Brian Williams who are normally critical of Trump.

Background Briefing

Mixed Signals Coming From the Trump Administration

How Much Did Bombing Syria Distract Attention From the Russia Inquiry?

Cheerleading in the Press For Trump's Bombing of Syria

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the shakeup on the National Security Council and assess how much or how little President Trump is engaged in the presidency or whether it is simply a business opportunity for him and his family. Dr. Rachel Kleinfeld, a senior associate in the Democracy and Rule of Law Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace who was formerly with the Foreign Affairs Policy Board, the advisory body for the U.S. Department of State, joins us to discuss how Trump, who seems to prefer visiting the campaign trail to reminisce about his victory in the Electoral College while blaming Obama for everything that goes wrong, is now faced with some real decisions in foreign policy that do not lend themselves to bluster and hollow threats.

Then we will examine the wrangling going on at the U.N. Security Council where expressions of outrage by the U.S., France and the U.K. over the Assad regime’s use of poison gas on Syrian citizens are falling on deaf ears as Russia’s U.N. representative tries to argue that a bomb accidentally blew up a hidden rebel supply of poison gas. Dulcie Leimbach, a fellow at the Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies at City University of New York and founder of PassBlue.com which covers the U.N., joins us to discuss the collective alarm and dismay amongst diplomats at the U.N. who cannot believe Trump is president and have no idea what his administration is up to.

Then finally we will speak with Erwin Chemerinsky, the founding dean and professor of law at the University of California, Irvine School of Law who frequently argues before the Supreme Court. He joins us to discuss the political power plays underway with the expected filibuster by Senate Democrats against the Gorsuch nomination on Thursday followed by the “nuclear option”, then the promised vote on Friday to confirm Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.

Background Briefing

Trump Faces Real Decisions on the World Stage

Outrage at the UN Over Assad Gassing Children

Power Plays Underway With Gorsuch Vote

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the revelation in the Washington Post that in early January the notorious mercenary Erik Prince, the brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, took part in a clandestine meeting in the Seychelles Islands with a confidante of Putin’s in an effort to establish a back-channel between the Trump White House and the Kremlin. The author of “Licensed to Kill: Hired Guns in the War on Terror” and a biographer of Erik Prince, Robert Young Pelton, joins us from Kabul, Afghanistan to discuss the reckless amateurism and freelancing that characterizes the chaotic vacuum inside Trump’s all-but-absent foreign policy with the blind leading the clueless as all sorts of opportunists and ideologues come out of the woodwork to make America great again, to make money or in Erik Prince’s case, make war.

Then we will look into the brazen depravity of the Assad regime in Syria which just used what appears to be Sarin gas against Syrian civilians then later targeted hospitals and clinics treating the over 100 survivors and medics attending the wounded. An expert on Syria, James Gelvin, a Professor of History at UCLA and author of “The Arab Uprisings: What Everyone Needs to Know”, joins us to explain Assad’s mindset and his belief that in spite of condemnations from the West, he will get away with killing his own people and destroying his country.

Then finally we will examine the breakdown of democracy in Hungary and Poland as populist leaders in both countries attack constitutional courts and other checks and balances while turning public media into a propaganda arm of the government. Peter Kreko, a visiting Fulbright Scholar at the Center for Global and International Studies at Indiana University and the Director of the Political Capital Institute in Budapest, Hungary, joins us to discuss the reversal underway in what were models of democratic change after the fall of Communism in Eastern Europe.

Background Briefing

Erik Prince's Secret Back-Channel Between Trump and Putin

The Brazen Depravity of the Assad Regime

The Dismantling of Democracy in Hungary and Poland

SHOW NOTES

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We will begin with the looming showdown in the U.S. Senate now that it is clear the Democrats will filibuster the nomination of Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court and in return Mitch McConnell, whose finger is itchy on the trigger, will go nuclear and blow up the Senate rules eliminating the filibuster.  A 21 year veteran of the Senate, Jim Manley, who served as a senior advisor to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for six years and before that served for 12 years as an aide to the late Senator Ted Kennedy, joins us to discuss the recognition that it no longer makes sense to pretend that normal business can be conducted with the Trump presidency. He argues against going along with the Republican charade pretending their Supreme Court nominees are not judicial activists like John Roberts who promised to uphold precedent then made radical changes to increase corporate power and perpetuate Republican rule while restricting worker’s rights and weakening political competition.

Then we will speak with Aziz Huq, a Professor of Law at the University of Chicago and a former clerk to Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. He joins us to discuss the difficult and dismal choices facing Senate Democrats and the increasingly phony nature of Supreme Court confirmation hearings in which candidates now say as little as possible in as many words as they can muster.

Then finally with Donald Trump’s lavish praise in a White House greeting for the Egyptian military dictator General Sisi who overthrew the country’s first freely elected president in a coup, we will examine Trump’s disregard for human rights and the throttling of a free press and the filling of prisons with political opponents. Mokhtar Awad, a Research Fellow in the Program on Extremism at George Washington University who specializes in Islamist and Salafist groups and insurgencies in Egypt, joins us to discuss his article at Politico “What Trump Should Ask Sisi” and whether this new era of transactional politics with bring about the peace that both leaders promised today.

Background Briefing

McConnell Can't Wait to Blow Up the Senate

The Dismal Choices Facing Senate Democrats

Trump's Lavish Praise For Egypt's Military Dictator

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the warning about high-level decision making by former Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld that there are “known unknowns” and “unknown unknowns”, and discuss the current decision maker-in-chief who does not know what he knows and does not know what he doesn’t know. Steven Nadler a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin, joins us to discuss the scary fact that Donald Trump is ignorant of his own ignorance. We will examine the ignorance of not just Trump but also of his supporters who he once proudly complimented saying “I love the poorly educated”, and the change in American politics since the arrival of Sarah Palin as a candidate for high office to assess the extent to which any kind of meritocracy is a play anymore in our politics or do people vote for someone they want to have a beer with rather than someone who is competent, knowledgeable and experienced.

Then we will look into today’s testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee and speak with Jacob Heilbrunn, a Senior Editor at The National Interest and author of “They Knew They Were Right: The Rise of the Neocons”. He joins us to discuss the White House’s increasingly tortured denials about their collusion with Devon Nunes, the Chair of the House Intelligence Committee to effectively drive the House investigation into a ditch and whether the Senate investigation will be able to pick up the pieces.

Then finally we will speak with national security reporter Ali Watkins who covers the Senate Intelligence Committee for BuzzFeed News about the surprising testimony of Clinton Watts, a senior fellow at the Center for Cyber and Homeland Security at George Washington University who testified that Russian hacking and fake news is still influencing our politics and that Trump parroted Russian fake news and was susceptible to being fed fake news.

Background Briefing

Trump is Ignorant of His Own Ignorance

Tortured Denials of White House Collusion With Nunes

Senate Testimony That Trump is Fed Russian Fake News

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the warning from former Vice President Dick Cheney that Russian meddling in our election “in some quarters, that would be considered an act of war” and the concern expressed by the top Democrat on the Senate intelligence Committee that White House meddling in Congress’ Russia investigation is not helping to lift the cloud of suspicion hanging over the Trump administration. A veteran investigator and staff attorney with the Senate anti-trust subcommittee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Jack Blum, joins us to discuss why Trump has not done anything to lift the cloud of suspicion over his legitimacy since it was revealed by all 17 U.S. Intelligence Agencies that the Kremlin interfered in the election to help elect him. Instead Trump and his aides have doubled down in denials that later prove to be flimsy if not false.

Then, with Trump’s evisceration of Obama’s efforts to deal with climate change in killing the Clean Power Plan, we will speak with Victoria Herrmann, the Managing Director of The Arctic Institute, a Gates Scholar at Cambridge University, and a National Geographic Explorer. She joins us to discuss her article at The Guardian “I am an Arctic researcher, Donald Trump is deleting my citations” and the dire consequences to the planet that Trump’s reversal of the already too-little-too-late efforts to stop global warming will be.

Then finally we will examine further the Trump Administration’s attack on the centerpiece of Obama’s environmental legacy and speak with a former Special Assistant to the Director of Civil Enforcement at the Environmental Protection Agency, Peter Fontaine. He joins us to discuss how this reversal of direction of efforts to combat global warming will impact the employees of the EPA and the younger generation who will have to live the consequences.

Background Briefing

Why Trump Will Not Clear the Air on Russia

Killing the Clean Power Plan and Censoring Science

The Impact of Trump's Reversal on the EPA

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We begin with the announcement today by Attorney General Jeff Sessions that the Trump Administration will withhold $4.1 billion in DOJ grants unless some 300 American communities can certify that they are not so-called sanctuary cities and counties. Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, the Executive Director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice in Boston, who is the first to sue the Trump Administration on behalf of sanctuary communities, joins us. We will discuss how the issue of state’s rights comes into play in this case when the Federal government is trying to impose its will and muscle smaller communities that want to uphold the law for all citizens into adopting policies that will result in minority communities not cooperating with local police.

Then we will assess whether Devon Nunes, the Republican Chair of the House Intelligence Committee, is trying to sabotage inquiries into the Trump Administration’s alleged ties to Russia or if he is just a dumb guy put in charge of overseeing intelligence. David Halperin, a former counsel to the Senate Intelligence Committee joins us to discuss the desperate and clumsy attempt to give Trump cover with so-called “intelligence” that Nunes was given by the White House the day before he showed up there again to hand the target of an investigation “evidence” that Trump claims exonerates him.

Then finally we will look into the extent to which Trump can sabotage Obamacare, which after the Trump-Ryan repeal and replace plan blew up, a chastened Paul Ryan reminded us is now the law of the land. An expert on health policies, James Morone, a professor of Political Science and Urban Studies at Brown University and author of “The Heart of Power: Health and Politics in the Oval Office” joins us to discuss whether Trump can make his claim that Obamacare will “explode” a reality.

Background Briefing

Suing Sessions on Behalf of Sanctuary Communities

Is Devon Nunes a Saboteur or Just Dumb?

Can Trump Make Obamacare "Explode"?

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We will begin with the terrorist attack on Westminster Bridge and the grounds of Britain’s Parliament House that left 4 dead and 20 injured and speak with Nafeez Ahmed, the editor in chief of Insurgeintelligence at medium.com who is a weekly columnist for Middle East Eye and the author of “Failing States, Collapsing Systems”. He joins us from London to discuss the likely suspects and the motives behind today’s attack which appears to fit into the pattern and the overall strategy of ISIS which is to drive a wedge between Muslims living in Europe and the rest of the populations in order to sow division and religious and racist animus.

Then we will speak with a veteran CIA officer Robert Baer who is currently the national security affairs analyst on CNN. He joins us to discuss the latest revelation from the Associated Press that Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort offered to help Vladimir Putin advance Russia’s interests in a $10 million a year contract he signed with a Russian oligarch who is a close ally of Putin. We will discuss the growing evidence that treason was committed by Trump’s top campaign official and his former National Security Advisor in what was an electronic equivalent of a Pearl Harbor attack by the Kremlin on American democracy itself.

Then finally we will assess the likelihood of the passage of the Ryan and Trump healthcare bill that was supposed to be voted on tomorrow. We will examine whether if it fails to pass in House, could that be seen as the beginning of the end of the Trump Administration since the emperor, who threaten wayward Tea Party Congressmen, would appear to have no clothes and no clout with his own party in his first effort to get a bill passed. Abbe Gluck, a Professor of Law and Director of the Solomon Center for Health Law and Policy at Yale Law School, joins us to discuss the stakes involved in the Republican repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act.

Background Briefing

A Terror Attack on the UK's Parliament

Did Manafort and Flynn Commit Treason?

Will Failure to Pass the Health Care Bill Be the Beginning of the End of Trump?

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the testimony today before the House Intelligence Committee by FBI Director James Comey and the Head of the NSA Admiral Rogers into on-going investigations into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. James Henry, the author of “Blood Bankers”, who is an expert on offshore and pirate banking and kleptocracy, joins us to examine questions that focused on the money trail between the Trump campaign and the Trump Organization and Russian oligarchs that seemed to indicate that is where the investigation is perhaps heading, as well as the definitive rejection by both Rogers and Comey of the explosive charge Trump made that Obama had wiretapped him which he has yet to retract or apologize for given Trump’s accompanying smear of Obama who he called “a bad (or sick) guy!”.

Then we look into the apparent death of the long-held notion that partisanship ends at America’s shores, which was on display today as members of the House Intelligence Committee appeared to be operating in two different universes, with Democrats probing reports of possible collusion between Trump and the Russians while Republican Congressmen went to extraordinary lengths to shift the focus onto leakers and press reports. Loch Johnson, Regents Professor of Political Science at the University of Georgia who served on the staffs of both House and Senate Oversight Committees, joins us to discuss the raw partisan nature of the probe that nevertheless established that there is an on-going investigation into collusion between Trump and the Russians and that there was no factual basis to Trump’s claim that Obama wiretapped him.

Then finally we discuss the other major hearing today before the Senate Judiciary Committee into the confirmation of Donald Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court Judge Neil Gorsuch. Garrett Epps a Professor of Law at the University of Baltimore School of Law and author of “American Justice 2014: Nine Clashing Visions of the Supreme Court”, joins us to discuss his article at The Atlantic “Gorsuch’s Selective View of Religion”.

Background Briefing

FBI Director Comey and NSA Head Admiral Rogers' Testimony

The End of Bi-Partisanship in National Security

How Democrats Should Question Judge Gorsuch

SHOW NOTES

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We begin with the latest White House absurdities in their tortured efforts to find a way out from under the outrageous charges Trump made against Obama that are left hanging until Trump either backs up his smear with some evidence or apologizes to his predecessor. A former veteran senior staffer, Mike Lofgren, the author of “The Deep State: The Fall of the Constitution and the Rise of a Shadow Government”, joins us to discuss his article at Bill Moyers.com “The Deep State 2.0: How President Trump’s fake populism bails out the 1 percent” and the topsy-turvy political climate we are in with liberals who have always opposed the CIA are now counting on them to provide evidence to impeach Trump, while conservatives who have always hated the Russians are now making excuses for Putin.

Then we look into the racist rants of Republican Congressman Steve King, who after tweeting his support for the racist candidate in the Dutch elections saying that Americans “can’t restore our civilization with someone else’s babies”, doubled down by arguing “Hispanics and the blacks will be fighting each other before” they become a majority over whites.  A 25 year teacher in Iowa’s public schools, Patrick Kearney who currently serves as the Facilitator for Teachers Leadership the Johnston Community Schools, joins us to discuss his article at The Huffington Post “Steve King Is Exactly Who You Think He Is. His Constituents, Not So Much”.  We assess whether Nancy Pelosi’s call to the House leadership to strip Congressman King of his committee chairmanship will be heard.

Then finally we examine the mounting Republican opposition the Paul Ryan’s American Healthcare Act that has prompted the White House to send Vice President Pence and the head of HHS over to Capitol Hill to try and shore up some support for a bill already opposed by the AMA, the AAARP and the American Hospital Association. Dr. Susan Wood, Professor of Health Policy and of Environmental and Occupational Health at George Washington University’s School of Public Health and Health Services, joins us to discuss how the CBO report predicting a massive increase in the number of uninsured is impacting key Republican senators.

Background Briefing

"The Deep State 2.0"

Congressman King's Latest Racist Rant

Mounting Republican Opposition to Paul Ryan's American Healthcare Act

SHOW NOTES

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