Background Briefing: July 15, 2021


Kremlin Documents Show How Putin Put Trump in the White House

We begin with the explosive new story published today by The Guardian, “Kremlin papers appear to show Putin’s plot to put Trump in the White House” which is based on documents from a January 22, 2016 meeting in the Kremin of Putin’s National Security Council at which it was decided to sow “social turmoil” in the United States by helping elect Trump who the Russians considered to be an “impulsive, mentally unstable and unbalanced individual who suffers from an inferiority complex.” Joining us to discuss the documents and where they might have come from is Scott Horton, a professor at Columbia Law School and a contributing editor at Harper’s in legal affairs and national security. We look into the most likely source being Oleg Smelenkov who was a top aide to the Deputy Foreign Minister in the Kremlin and was exfiltrated out of Russia when Trump was elected because of fears Trump would tell the Russians about this valuable spy the CIA had inside the Kremlin. As for why the leak happened now and not four years ago, Scott speculates that the CIA was intimidated by Trump and only now with top Pentagon officials going public about what a danger Trump was and still is to our national security, have they been shamed into revealing that this gift to Putin that keeps on giving, is a traitor. 


The Left Should Push Biden on Infrastructure

Then we look into the growing possibility that the $579 billion Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework bill which 11 Republican senators signed onto will collapse under pressure from Republican dark money groups or that the Republicans are simply stringing the Democrats along which was what they did to Obama with the Affordable Care Act. David Karpf, a professor in the School of Media and Public Affairs at the George Washington University and author of The MoveOn Effect: The Unexpected Transformation of American Political Advocacy, joins us to discuss his article at The Washington Post, “The left is pushing Biden to spend more. It’s a sound strategy.” 


Miami as the Exile Capital of the World Where Cubans, Haitians and Venezuelans Cook up Plots

Then finally we speak with Ann Louise Bardach, a PEN USA Award-winning journalist described by the Columbia Journalism Review as “the go-to journalist for all things Cuban and Miami.” She joins us to discuss how Miami has become the exile capital of the world with Cuban, Haitian and Venezuelan exiles cooking up all finds of plots while the refugee crisis from these countries worsens and will likely have a detrimental effect on Democrats trying to win the key state of Florida in the next elections.