Tag: shutdown

Background Briefing: January 28, 2019


Billionaires Toying with Presidential Politics

We begin with the latest possible entry into the 2020 presidential race with the former CEO of Starbucks Howard Schultz indicating he might run as an independent. Ryan Cooper, a national correspondent for The Week where he has an article “The Mueller Investigation is closing in on Trump” joins us to discuss how the latest billionaire to toy with presidential politics will impact what promises to be a crowded field of Democratic hopefuls running for president in 2020. We examine what Ryan Cooper called “The presidential delusions of Democratic billionaires” in an article he wrote at The Week back in June and assess the likelihood that the lifelong Democrat Howard Schultz will drain votes from the Democrat running against Trump in 2020, assuming Trump is still in office and not in jail, rewarding him with another term. We assess whether billionaires can buy the presidency and whether money is the most important factor in presidential races since Hillary Clinton outspent Trump 2 to 1 while the alleged billionaire did not spend his own money as promised but instead the Reality TV celebrity attracted $5 billion’s worth of free media. And with the possibility of over 20 candidates throwing their hats in the ring, we separate the workhorses from the show-horses and those angling for the vice presidency from those aiming for the top slot.


Not Negotiating with Trump is Paying Off for Pelosi

Then, with Speaker Pelosi’s office confirming that Trump’s State Of The Union address scheduled for tomorrow, Tuesday will not take place, we look into how much Nancy Pelosi is in the driver’s seat as a chaotic presidency and a craven Republican Senate lurch from one Trump-manufactured crisis to another. Eric Schickler, a Professor of Political Science at U.C. Berkeley and author of “Investigating the President: Congressional Checks on Presidential Power” joins us to discuss how Pelosi’s strategy of not negotiating Trump is paying off as we await the next government shutdown and emergency declaration Trump has promised for mid-February.


Trump’s New Low-Yield Nuke is Being Manufactured

Then finally we speak with Hans Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists about the announcement by the National Nuclear Security Administration that a new low- yield nuclear weapon ordered by Trump is being manufactured. We assess the dangers of having a more usable 5 kiloton nuclear warhead deployed on a Trident missile and the folly of the Trump Administration abandoning the INF treaty with Russia.