Background Briefing: June 12, 2023

An Overwhelming Majority of Republicans Think Trump Should Serve as President if Convicted and That the Indictments Are Politically Motivated

We begin with the latest CBS News poll that finds 80% of Republicans saying that if Trump is convicted he should be able to serve as president with 76% saying the indictments are politically motivated. Joining us to discuss whether it is possible for Trump’s supporters to be told the truth and accept it is Dr. Allen Frances, a Professor Emeritus and former Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at Duke University. He is the author of the award-winning international bestseller Saving Normal and the reference work Essentials of Psychiatric Diagnosis and his latest book iTwilight of American Sanity: A Psychiatrist Analyzes the Age of Trump, now out in an updated  paperback version.


At War With the Rule of Law, Trump is Calling For a Right Wing Rebellion

Then as Trump escalates his war against the rule of law and calls on his armed followers for a right wing rebellion against the “Deep State”, we look into the precarious nature of political stability in America should Trump lose again or go to jail. Joining us is Sean Wilentz, Professor of American History at Princeton University whose books include The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln, The Politicians and the Egalitarians and his latest book, No Property in Man: Slavery and Antislavery at the Nation’s Founding.


Why the PGA – Saudi LIV Merger Will Not Happen

Then finally we assess whether the merger between the PGA and the Saudi LIV Golf tournaments will ever happen now that a US Senate probe was launched on Monday with Senator Blumenthal asking for documents from the PGA and LIV which the Saudis have been zealously resisting. Joining us is Matt Stoller, the research director at the American Economic Liberties Project. He was a Senior Policy Advisor and Budget Analyst to the Senate Budget Committee and also worked in the US House of Representatives on financial services policy, including Dodd-Frank, the Federal Reserve, and the foreclosure crisis. His latest book is Goliath: The Hundred Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy, and he writes the monopoly-focused newsletter BIG where his latest article is “The Saudi-PGA Tour Golf Deal Isn’t Going to Happen.”