March 26 - Civil War Within the GOP; More Murders of Russian Whistleblowers; Trump No Longer is the Leader of the "Free World"

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We begin with the emerging civil war within the GOP after the failure of the party that controls the White House and the Congress to repeal and replace Obamacare which Republicans voted to do 60 times, campaigned on in the 2016 elections, and promised to get done as their first priority in the new Trump Administration.  Norman Ornstein, a contributing writer for The Atlantic and the co-author of the bestseller “It’s Even Worse Than it Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided with the New Politics of Extremism” now in an updated version “It’s Even Worse Than it Was”, joins us to discuss how much Paul Ryan is being blamed for the debacle that the businessman-in-chief and author of “The Art of the Deal” appears to be walking away from.

 

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Then we go to London to speak with Bill Browder, an American businessman who was the largest investor in Russia until he fell afoul of Putin and was refused entry into Russia. His lawyer Sergei Magnitsky was murdered by Russian government officials in league with organized crime and we discuss the assassination in Kiev of a member of Russia’s Duma who was close to the Putin inner circle and was about to testify against Yanukovych, the ousted kleptocratic former Ukrainian president who had Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort on his payroll.  We also examine the attempted murder of the lawyer representing Magnitsky’s widow who was about to testify about the laundering of stolen money through Cyprus banks.

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Then finally we speak with Ambassador Alexander Vershbow a distinguished fellow at the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security at the Atlantic Council who was the former deputy secretary general of NATO. We discuss the 60thanniversary of the treaty of Rome that foundered the European Union and the extent to which the Trump Administration has abandoned the leadership of what we call the “free world” now that the battle between Communism and capitalism is over and we are in a struggle between autocracy and democracy.

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March 23 - Gorsuch's Most Shocking and Revealing Ruling; Nunes's Clumsy Attempt to Give Trump Cover; Trump's Achievements So Far

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We will begin with the Senate Democrats vowing to filibuster Judge Gorsuch after nomination hearings in which he said as little as possible while insisting he is fair an open-minded. We will discuss Gorsuch’s most shocking ruling which Senator Franken tried to question him on and that is the case of the frozen truck driver, an appropriate subject of a day when Donald Trump had a photo-op with a bunch of truckers. Robert Fetter, a labor lawyer whose client was Alphonse Maddin, joins us to discuss how Gorsuch put corporate interests over the survival of a man freezing to death. We look into how six of seven judges sided with Mr. Maddin against TransAm Trucking who fired him for unhitching his trailer with frozen brakes to seek warmth and fuel for his truck in minus 27 degree Arctic weather. As opposed to waiting for a repairman who was three hours late and freezing to death. But one judge sided with the company who fired Maddin, which brought Neil Gorsuch to the attention of the Federalist Society and the Heritage Foundation and made him popular with the Chamber of Commerce, with all three promoting his Supreme Court candidacy for siding with business over regulation.

 

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Then we look into the extraordinary lengths that Devin Nunes, the Republican Chair of the House Intelligence Committee went to in trying to give Donald Trump cover for his lie that Obama phone-tapped him and extricate Trump from an impasse since Trump refuses to apologize to Obama for calling him “a bad (or sick) guy!” James Bamford, an investigative journalist specializing in national security issues and author of “The Shadow Factory: Inside the Ultra-Secret NSA, from 9/11 to Spying on America”, joins us to discuss the need for an independent investigation and his article at Foreign Policy “The Multi-Billion-Dollar U.S. Spy Agency You Haven’t Heard of”.

 

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Then with today’s delay of the vote on the Trump-Ryan repeal of Obamacare, Trump’s first piece of legislation now hanging by a thread, we will examine what he has achieved so far. James Goodwin, a Senior Policy Analyst with the Center for Progressive Reform joins us to discuss Trump’s successes so far via the Congressional Review Act which includes allowing mentally ill people to buy guns, big oil to pay bribes, the dumping of mineral waste into headwaters and the killing of bears and wolves in Alaska’s wildlife refuges.

 

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March 22 - 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?

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We begin with the terrorist attack on Westminster Bridge and the grounds of Britain’s Parliament House that left 5 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.

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Then we 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 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.

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Then finally we 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.

 

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March 21 - The "Charade" Before the Senate Judiciary Committee; Questions Gorsuch Did Not Answer; Will Threats From Trump and Warnings From Ryan Sway the "Freedom Caucus"?

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We begin with today’s hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the confirmation of Judge Neil Gorsuch to fill the Supreme Court seat vacated by the late Justice Scalia. Eric Segall, a Professor of Law at Georgia State University College of Law and author of “Supreme Court Myths: Why the Supreme Court is not a Court and its Justices are not Judges” joins us to discuss what he calls a charade in which Trump’s candidate for the Supreme Court is not required to answer any question that pertains to the broader political and social reality in which we all live, but rather is allowed to restrict himself to matters of legal precedent and procedure, wrapped in the majesty of the law inside a cocoon that insulates him from any real world impact that the Court’s decisions might have on the lives of everyday people.  

 

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Then Paul Collins, Director and Professor of Legal Studies in the Department of Political Science at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst joins us with Lori Ringhand, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and a Professor of Law at the University of Georgia School of Law. They are the co-authors of “Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings and Constitutional Change” and we discuss the important questions that were not answered about “dark money” from unknown benefactors being spent on Gorsuch’s behalf and the fact that he will be sitting in a “stolen seat”.

 

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Then finally we look into whether threats from Donald Trump and warnings from Paul Ryan will sway the 26 House Republicans who so far are refusing to get onboard the repeal and replace Obamacare bill that is supposed to be voted on this Thursday. An expert on health insurance markets and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, Dania Palanker, a Research Professor at the Center on Health Insurance Reform at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute joins us to discuss whether the bill will squeak through the House to face an even more uphill climb in the Senate. 

 

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March 20 - FBI Director Comey and NSA Head Admiral Rogers' Testimony; The End of Bi-Partisanship in National Security; How Democrats Should Question Judge Gorsuch

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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!”.

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Part 2

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.

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Part 3

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”.

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