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Background Briefing: February 11, 2020

 

The Incoming Results from New Hampshire

We begin with the latest results from the New Hampshire primary as the first results come in now that the polls have just closed. John Nichols, The Nation magazine’s Washington correspondent and the host of the Next Left podcast and co-author of the forthcoming book The Fight for the Soul of the Democratic Party: The Enduring Legacy of Henry Wallace’s Anti-Fascist, Anti-Racist Politics, joins us from New Hampshire.  We discuss the early departure of Joe Biden from New Hampshire as he heads for South Carolina to campaign in a state where he is expected to do better and assess the chances of tonight’s final results narrowing the field of Democratic hopefuls to a least five. And while for some reason Tulsi Gabbard is still in the race, along with Tom Steyer who has spent heavily in the state but is polling at 3%, it appears that Amy Klobuchar might be the surprise upset in New Hampshire after her campaign purchased the front fold “wrap ad” of today’s main newspaper in the state, The New Hampshire Union Leader and she could end up in second place. With Bernie Sanders leading in the polling averages and Pete Buttigieg not doing as well as expected, tonight’s results could place Elizabeth Warren fourth and she has already criticized Biden for “abandoning” New Hampshire while Biden is urging people to look at a damaging video of Michael Bloomberg talking about his “stop-and-frisk” policies as New York’s mayor.

 

Barr Has Turned the DOJ Into Trump’s Law Firm

Then we examine the brazen way the Attorney General of the United States, William Barr has turned the Justice Department into a private law firm representing a sole client, Donald J. Trump. No sooner had Trump tweeted out his displeasure at the sentencing his friend and political operative Roger Stone is facing, Barr has his lackey the new U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia overrule the DOJ line prosecutors all four of whom quit, to recommend that neither Roger Stone or Mike Flynn do time in prison. Rebecca Roiphe, a Professor of Law at New York Law School whose work examines the country’s tradition of prosecutorial independence and the president’s power to control the Department of Justice, joins us.

 

Voting Should Be a Right But It Is NOT Guaranteed in the Constitution

Then finally we speak with Thom Hartmann, the host of the nationally and internationally syndicated talk show “The Thom Hartmann Program” who is a New York Times bestselling author of thirty-two books, the latest of which is The Hidden History of the War on Voting: Who Stole Your Vote – and How to Get it Back.  With Trump poised to cheat in November with help from the Russians, Hartmann challenges every last one of us to fight for our fundamental right as American citizens to vote – a right that is NOT guaranteed in the Constitution.