President Trump is expected to sign an executive order Tuesday to dismantle a slew of climate rules put in place by President Obama. The executive order marks the first step to undo President Obama’s Clean Power Plan to limit power plant emissions. The rule was seen as a critical element of the U.S. pledge to cut emissions as part of the 2015 Paris Agreement. Trump’s executive order is also expected to scrap regulations limiting methane emissions and open up the door for more coal mining and fracking on federal lands. For more, we speak with Rebecca Solnit, one of the nation’s most celebrated writers, who has spent years writing about climate change. She’s the author of more than 20 books, including, most recently, "The Mother of All Questions."
In 2007, the New Haven City Council and mayor agreed to adopt the first municipal ID card in the nation. The move sparked fierce backlash from federal immigration authorities. Forty-eight hours after the Board of Alders approved the new ID cards, ICE conducted the largest raid in the history of the state, sweeping across immigrant neighborhoods, kicking in doors and arresting 32 people. For more on how the community fought back against the illegal raid, we speak with Michael Wishnie, clinical professor of law at Yale Law School, where he oversees the Worker and Immigrant Rights Advocacy Clinic.
Texas U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew Austin said in open court that federal agents had alerted him that ICE would be targeting the area of Austin, Texas. The raids would be retribution for Travis County Sheriff Sally Hernandez’s new policy that limited cooperation between local and federal authorities. For more, we are joined by Austin City Councilmember Gregorio Casar. When he first won election in 2014, he was the youngest councilmember in the city’s history.
The Trump administration has unveiled its latest attempt to target sanctuary cities that are refusing to help federal agents detain and deport undocumented immigrants. On Monday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said the Justice Department would withhold billions of dollars in grants to law enforcement agencies in sanctuary cities. In response to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and others vowed to defy the order and remain sanctuary cities. For more, we speak with Helen Gym, longtime community activist who was recently elected to the Philadelphia City Council.
The Trump administration has approved a permit allowing TransCanada to build the Keystone XL pipeline, which would transport 830,000 barrels of crude every day from Alberta’s tar sands to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast for export. TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline would cross the Yellowstone River, as well as the Ogallala Aquifer, the largest freshwater aquifer in the United States. Trump’s approval of the Keystone XL pipeline is a reversal of the Obama administration’s decision to halt the project in late 2015 following massive, sustained resistance from Native Americans, farmers, ranchers and environmental groups. For more, we speak with Bill McKibben, co-founder of 350.org and author of several books, including "Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet."
Details are emerging about U.S.-led coalition airstrikes that are believed to have killed over 200 people in a single day in Iraq. The U.S.-led coalition has admitted launching airstrikes on March 17 targeting a crowded neighborhood in Mosul. They are among the deadliest U.S. airstrikes in the region since the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. According to some reports, one of these strikes destroyed houses where hundreds of people were taking refuge amid the city’s heavy fighting. Up to 80 civilians, including women and children, may have died in one house’s basement alone. This bombing is just one of an onslaught of U.S.-led coalition airstrikes in Iraq and Syria that has killed as many as 1,000 civilians in March alone, according to the journalistic project Airwars. For more, we speak with Chris Woods, founder of Airwars, a nonprofit group that monitors civilian deaths from international airstrikes in Syria and Iraq.
On Friday, House Republicans failed to muster enough support to pass the GOP healthcare plan, which some call Trumpcare. In response, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has announced he will soon introduce a bill to create a single-payer healthcare system. Several progressive groups are backing a single-payer system, including the Working Families Party, the Progressive Campaign Change Committee, CREDO, Social Security Works and National Nurses United. For more, we speak with Dr. Steffie Woolhandler, co-founder of Physicians for a National Health Program. She is a professor at CUNY-Hunter College and a primary care physician. She is also a lecturer at Harvard Medical School.
Under President Obama, House Republicans voted more than 50 times to repeal or rewrite the Affordable Care Act. But on Friday, the House couldn’t muster the votes needed to pass its own healthcare law, which some call Trumpcare. Just minutes before the vote was scheduled, President Trump pushed House Speaker Paul Ryan to pull the legislation. The bill was opposed by every Democrat, as well as many members of the ultraconservative House Freedom Caucus and some moderate Republicans. For more. we speak with Dr. Steffie Woolhandler, co-founder of Physicians for a National Health Program. She is a professor at CUNY-Hunter College and a primary care physician. She is also a lecturer at Harvard Medical School.
A battle over the death penalty is brewing in Florida, where Orange-Osceola State Attorney Aramis Ayala has announced her office will no longer seek the death penalty in any murder cases, including in the case of Markeith Loyd, who is accused of murdering his pregnant ex-girlfriend, Sade Dixon, and Orlando police officer Debra Clayton. Ayala’s announcement sparked immediate backlash from the police union and Florida Governor Rick Scott, who called on her to recuse herself from the Loyd case. When she refused, Scott signed an executive order removing her from the case and reassigning it. Now Ayala, the first African-American state attorney in Florida history, has been receiving death threats, including from local government employees. We are joined by Angel Harris, assistant counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.
We feature an extended excerpt of Senator Al Franken (D-MN) grilling Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch during his Supreme Court confirmation hearing about the so-called frozen trucker case of Alphonse Maddin. Gorsuch ruled it was right for Maddin to be fired after he disobeyed a supervisor and abandoned the trailer that he was driving, because he was on the verge of freezing to death. "It is absurd to say this company is in its rights to fire him because he made the choice of possibly dying from freezing to death or causing other people to die possibly by driving in an unsafe vehicle," says Sen. Franken. "It makes me question your judgment."
As confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch wrap up and Senate Democrats vow to filibuster his nomination, we look at Gorsuch’s ruling in a case known as the "frozen trucker." Truck driver Alphonse Maddin was fired after he disobeyed a supervisor and abandoned the trailer that he was driving, because he was on the verge of freezing to death. We speak with Robert Fetter, the attorney who represented Maddin in his wrongful termination lawsuit.
As President Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan face a showdown with Republicans, both moderate and conservative, on whether to repeal Obamacare, the party has been scrambling to rewrite the legislation in order to appease members of the right-wing Freedom Caucus and win its passage. The latest version of the bill strips away provisions that would require health insurers to provide basic services including maternity care, newborn care, emergency services, mental health and addiction treatment. The Democratic Caucus has been united in opposition to the bill, which is projected to leave 24 million fewer people insured by 2026 than under Obamacare. The bill also includes over $275 billion in tax breaks for wealthy Americans. We are joined by John McDonough, professor at the Harvard School of Public Health. He is the former executive director of Health Care for All in Massachusetts, which played a key role in the passage of the 2006 Massachusetts health reform bill, which was known as Romneycare. He later became a top aide to the late Senator Ted Kennedy and worked on the development and passage of the Affordable Care Act.
One of the more mysterious parts of the Mercer family’s political orbit is Cambridge Analytica. The data firm claims it has psychological profiles of over 200 million American voters. The firm was hired by the Trump campaign to help it target its message to potential voters. The Mercers have bankrolled the company and placed Steve Bannon on its board. We speak to The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer.
Years before backing Donald Trump, the Mercers helped support the congressional campaign of Arthur Robinson, who attempted to oust Rep. Peter DeFazio. Robinson made for an unusual candidate. He is a climate change denier who speaks about the positive effects of nuclear radiation. Robinson runs the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, which stores some 14,000 samples of human urine. Robinson has said he is trying to find new ways of extending the human lifespan. The Mercers funded Robinson’s campaign and institute. The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer reports the Mercers also pushed to have Trump name Robinson as his science adviser. Jane Mayer writes about Robinson in her new piece, "The Reclusive Hedge-Fund Tycoon Behind the Trump Presidency: How Robert Mercer exploited America’s populist insurgency."
We look at Robert Mercer, the man who is said to have out-Koched the Koch brothers in the 2016 election. The secretive billionaire hedge-fund tycoon, along with his daughter Rebekah, is credited by many with playing an instrumental role in Donald Trump’s election. "The Mercers laid the groundwork for the Trump revolution," Trump’s chief strategist Stephen Bannon said. "Irrefutably, when you look at donors during the past four years, they have had the single biggest impact of anybody, including the Kochs." Before Bannon and Kellyanne Conway joined the Trump campaign, both worked closely with the Mercers. The Mercers bankrolled Bannon’s Breitbart News, as well as some of Bannon’s film projects. Conway ran a super PAC created by the Mercers to initially back the candidacy of Ted Cruz. While the Mercers have helped reshape the American political landscape, their work has all been done from the shadows. To talk more about the Mercers, we speak with Jane Mayer, staff writer at The New Yorker. Her latest piece is headlined "The Reclusive Hedge-Fund Tycoon Behind the Trump Presidency: How Robert Mercer exploited America’s populist insurgency." She is also author of "Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right," which just came out in paperback.
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