Tag: government funding

Background Briefing: September 23, 2021


Is McConnell Bluffing Over Not Raising the Debt Ceiling?

We begin with Senator McConnell who is blocking Police reform, Tax reform, Immigration reform, Voting Rights, Economic stimulus and the January 6 Commission and is now vowing not to cooperate on raising the debt ceiling ahead of the September 30 deadline, even after entreaties from former Republican Secretaries of the Treasury Paulson and Mnuchin. Joining us is James Galbraith, Chair in Government/Business Relations and a professor at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin who served in several positions on the staff of the U.S. Congress. The author of Inequality: What Everyone Needs to Know and, most recently, Welcome to the Poisoned Chalice: The Destruction of Greece and the Future of Europe, we discuss the brinkmanship underway with the normally uncontroversial and bipartisan raising of the debt ceiling that changed under Gingrich in the 1990’s and has been a weapon of choice for the Republicans even though at the end of the day it is usually found to be bluff and bluster.


Reaction to Our Ambassador to Haiti Calling U.S. Treatment of Haitian Refugees “Inhumane”

Then we look into the resignation of the U.S. envoy to Haiti Ambassador Foote whose letter protesting what he calls the “inhumane” treatment of Haitian refugees on the Texas border with Mexico has the White House and the State Department on the defensive. Joining us is Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Garry Pierre Pierre, who left The New York Times in 1999 to launch The Haitian Times, a New York-based English-language weekly publication serving the Haitian diaspora. We discuss how Haiti’s problems have come to the U.S. and it is time for the U.S. to get serious about helping the poorest country in the hemisphere.


The Border Patrol as America’s Most Out-Of-Control Law Enforcement Agency?

Then finally we speak with Sarah Turberville, the director of the Constitution Project at the Project on Government Oversight where she coordinates public education and advocacy efforts on matters relating to habeas corpus, surveillance and immigration. She has an op-ed at the Los Angeles Times, “Abusing migrants while on horseback? That fits with the Border Patrol’s long history of brutality” and we discuss why the Border Patrol was singled out as America’s most out-of-control law enforcement agency.