Day: July 9, 2019

Background Briefing: July 9, 2019


Trump and Epstein’s Similar Taste in Very Young Women

We begin with the similar tastes that Trump and his former friend Jeffrey Epstein have in very young women following Trump’s denial today of his close relationship with the accused sex trafficker at the same time as he hedged on his ritual praise of his labor secretary who is doing such a great job, the same Alex Acosta who made the sweetheart deal to get Epstein off on a slew of charges in Florida for sexual assault and sex trafficking of minors. Nina Burleigh, National Politics Correspondent at Newsweek whose latest book is “Golden Handcuffs: The Secret History of Trump’s Women”, joins us to discuss how many rich and powerful men are sweating at the moment since the feds seized so much incriminating evidence in their raid on Epstein’s Manhattan mansion which might contain blackmail material Epstein was keeping on his rich friends after they availed themselves of the girls and young women Epstein was offering up to them for sex.  With Bill Clinton denying he had ever been to Epstein’s private island and had only used his private jet for humanitarian trips to Asia and Africa, and Trump stressing he “wasn’t a fan” of Epstein despite having been a frequent visitor to his Manhattan home, we will assess whether Epstein will rat out his powerful friends and make a plea deal to lessen a very long prison sentence he is facing, or will all the sordid details come out in open court where the young girls, now grown women, will have their chance at justice that was delayed, no longer denied.


Will Trump’s Lawyer Barr Make Sure His Client Is Not Embroiled in the Epstein Case?

Then we examine why Attorney General Barr reversed himself today after having recused himself yesterday from the Epstein case and whether, since Barr is now acting as Trump’s personal attorney, he will make sure that the president is not embroiled in the looming child sex scandal coming to light. Bill Yeomans, a Professor of Law at Columbia Law School who served 26 years in the DOJ including as acting Assistant Attorney General, joins us to discuss this and whether Barr, acting on Trump’s orders, can find a way to get the citizenship question back on the census in spite of the Supreme Court’s recent ruling against Trump.


Pompeo Seeks to Re-Define Human Rights

Then finally we look into the formation of new human rights commission at the State Department by the Secretary of State which Pompeo has stacked with religious conservatives headed by a zealous anti-abortion activist with the apparent intention to shift the U.S.’s focus from traditional concerns about human rights violations and regimes that engage in human right abuses to narrow the focus to so-called religious freedom and to oppose gay rights on the basis of traditional family values. Rob Berschinski, senior vice president for policy at Human Rights First who served in the Obama Administration as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, joins us.