Day: January 13, 2021

Background Briefing: January 13, 2021


10 Republicans Joined Democrats in a 232 to 197 House Vote to Impeach Trump

We begin with today’s vote in the House to impeach president Trump for a second time by 232 to 197 which featured a determined Nancy Pelosi calling on members to stand up for democracy and the rule of law with a rebuttal from Republican Jim Jordan who Trump is awarding the presidential medal of freedom, blaming “cancel culture” and the liberals for attacking free speech. While what happened last Wednesday was not about free speech but about actions inspired by incitement, actions that involved the looting and vandalizing of the capitol with the intention to hang the Vice President and assassinate the Speaker. And the murder of a capitol policeman along with computers and files stolen and feces and urine left behind on the marble floors. Yet most House Republicans, with the exception of 10, stuck with Trump. Michael Gerhardt, Distinguished Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of North Carolina and author of Impeachment: What Everyone Needs to Know, joins us to discuss what is likely to follow the impeachment in the House since there will be no immediate trial in the Senate on Friday after Leader McConnell, who is apparently open to convicting Trump, let it be known that he will not call the Senate back into session.


The Sudden and Spectacular Fall of Donald Trump

Then we speak with Jeremi Suri. Distinguished Chair for Leadership in Global Affairs at the University of Texas where he is a professor of history and public affairs. The author of The Impossible Presidency: The Rise and Fall of America’s Highest Office, he joins us to discuss the sudden and spectacular fall of President Trump and whether a fast-tracked impeachment without hearings and investigations, could set a dangerous precedent. 


De-radicalizing the Republican Party

Then finally we speak with Tim Naftali, a Clinical Professor of Public Service and History at New York University who is currently a presidential historian at CNN and was the first director of the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum. He joins us to discuss the contrast between the Republican leaders who convinced Nixon to resign and the current Republican leaders who are only now criticizing Trump after it is too late.