Day: January 30, 2024

Background Briefing: January 30, 2024


The Plutocratic War on the New Deal and American Democracy

We begin with a do-nothing legislative branch deliberately crippled by Trump who has his lackeys in the Senate like Ted Cruz and in the House like the new Speaker Mike Johnson killing a deal on the border on Trump’s orders to hurt Biden while impeaching the head of DHS as theatre and distraction leading one to wonder whether there is such a thing as “the national interest” anymore in the GOP. Joining us is Caroline Fredrickson, a visiting professor at Georgetown Law and a strategic councilor on democracy and power at the Open Markets Institute. She served as the director of the ACLU’s Washington legislative office, and, during the Clinton administration, as special assistant to the president for legislative affairs. In 2021, she was appointed a member of the President’s Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States. The president emerita of the American Constitution Society, her books include The Democracy Fix: How to Win the Fight for Fair Rules, Fair Courts, and Fair Elections and we discuss her article at The Washington Monthly, “Elon Musk’s War on the New Deal—and Democracy.”


With “End Times” Christian Zionists Supporting Israel’s War, Could Trump be the Antichrist?

Then we look into how the sick and distorted “End Times” theology of Christian Zionism is driving US support for Israel’s war on Gaza because in the evangelical Christian worldview, the 1948 creation of Israel was a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy, and made Palestinians the “enemies of God,” since they are the enemies of Israel. Joining us is Jonathan Kuttab, an international human rights attorney, co-founder of the Palestinian human rights group Al-Haq, and co-founder of Nonviolence International. A Palestinian who grew up as a conservative evangelical Christian and continues to be a believer in the faith, we discuss his article at Al Jazeera “Why Do Evangelical Christians Support Israel.”


How Layoffs at Newsrooms Will Impact This Year’s Elections

Then finally we assess the impact on coverage of this year’s elections from the rash of layoffs of journalists at The Los Angeles Times, TIME and Business Insider while hundreds of staffers at Condé Nast, Forbes, The New York Daily News and others are protesting with walkouts over cuts. Joining us is Christian Dyogi Phillips, a Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Southern California whose research is focused on the intersection of race, gender and immigration in American politics. She is the author of Nowhere to Run: Race, Gender and Immigration in American Elections.