Background Briefing: May 18, 2022


The Need to Focus on Ending the War in Ukraine Over a Push For Victory

We begin with concerns that not enough attention is being paid to exploring ways to end the war in Ukraine as the focus appears to be more on helping Ukraine win and driving Russia out of the country it has tried to conquer and occupy. Joining us to discuss what kind of compromises might be possible to avoid escalation and a lengthy war is Charles Kupchan, a professor of International Affairs in Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service who was director for European Affairs on the National Security Council during the Clinton administration and spent the last 3 years of the Obama administration as Special Assistant to President Obama for National Security. He is the author of Power in Transition: The Peaceful Change of International Order, and How Enemies Become Friends: The Sources of Stable Peace, and his latest, Isolationism: A History of America’s Efforts to Shield Itself from the World. We discuss his article at The Atlantic, “Ukraine’s Way Out: Strategic prudence argues in favor of pocketing successes rather than pressing the fight and running the tantamount risks.” 


The Results of Yesterday’s Primaries in Pennsylvania

Then we examine the results of yesterday’s primary races in the key state of Pennsylvania which has an open senate seat the Democrats hope to pick up in November. Joining us to discuss how candidates Trump endorsed did compared to others who tried to out-MAGA Trump is Dr. Terry Madonna, a Senior Fellow for Political Affairs at Millersville University who has written extensively about voters and voting behavior and founded the Keystone Poll in 1992, the oldest survey produced exclusively in Pennsylvania and was the pollster for the Philadelphia Daily News.


The Competition to be the Furthest Out on the MAGA Fringe of Trump’s GOP

Then finally we explore further how the Republican party is in a competition with itself over which candidate is the furthest out on the MAGA fringe in Donald Trump’s GOP and speak with Lloyd Green, an attorney based in New York who was opposition research counsel to George HW Bush’s 1988 campaign and served in the Department of Justice from 1990 to 1992. A contributing writer at The Guardian, we discuss his latest article, “The Republican primaries are a tug-of-war between rightwing and even-righter-wing.”