The successful State of the Union, combined with good economic news and a politically clever immigration proposal, might be heralding a significant change in Donald Trump's political fortunes. We talk about that, and the latest in the Russia-memo mess, on this week's final podcast. Give a listen.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Welcome to the commentary magazine podcast today is Thursday February. First, twenty in team, I'm jump it's the editor of commentary, these seventy three year old, monthly of intellectual analysis, political probity and cultural criticism. From a conservative perspective, join us a commentary magazine there. Com would give you a few free weeds. Ask you to subscribe After that, one thousand nine hundred and ninety five for a digital subscription, two thousand nine hundred and ninety five for an all access subscription you're beautiful monthly magazine in your mailbox eleven times a year with me as always senior editor agreement- hello, Abe, hello, John
associate editor, no Rossman High Noah High John sadly, grimacing and clutching his hands together in you know, in tragic for recently. Cigarette quit sort of a worry hygiene poor guy. Look in the worse for wear, but you know I it's a great thing that he's doing, and so we should all support him and said good thoughts his way. Thank you. Welcome now. Couple nights ago, jump delivered his first day. The union does the fact that it is impossible for any. By give him credit for anything except those people who give him credit for everything the speech has to be accounted a wild success. So forty five forty six million people watched it just like
under Obama's number in his first say the union, and turning to the poles afterward. Seventy two: seventy five percent of people. I had a favourable impression of the speech, including democratic who made up If I perceived the audience and forty three percent of them said they liked it and independents lighted by very large margin. So markedly Trump managed in in his first major national moment in several months to terminate exactly hidden in the park by them, but he, but he had a pretty big night and in policy terms there was only one major issue that he had planted a see them planted the flag on that we should talk about which is immigration. So, as I understand it
What we have here is. The most remote workable turn about in my in political history may be since George H, W Bush these taxes? After saying that, in our view, there would be no new taxes, tromp effectually offered amnesty to one point: eight million people until then I've amnesty. That is a path citizenship for people who are here illegally. That is something that, if you had, if I had said to you in August September, twenty fifteen, as he was making his way that he would be a bee president and b that major immigration policy proposal would be an amnesty for Nearly two million people. You have said that I was insane but that, but that is exactly what we did in X, change for changes in policy. Anybody want too
kept some of the changes in policy. I just want to know quickly that the alt right crew that was so prominent in twenty sixteen, you must feel it feel or what the word cocked, while they called him Amnesty dawn, bright part called him amnesty dawn. In fact, so there He they, they do feel Cox, while it's more than just the one point a right. It's also there's a family reunification element to it. So immediate nuclear family. You can bring over your wife and your children, but there is the trade off in that is to cut down some of the current quote chain: migration, legal migration migration, which is the amounts to almost forty to fifty percent of America's legal migration? So I got a backlog
couple million people who are still in the process of being legalised who have gotten into the country through this process. But that would be cut moving forward. And that is what is the biggest stumbling block it seems and on. The left is that they are not willing to entertain the idea that we should cut these these levels of immigration, because it amounts to something else. These every. If you talk to them long enough to say three: basically race, ok, but you know here's the amazing thing. No, you point out effectively to absorb echo the IRAN deal but effectively the terms of this immigration deal would not really kick in for close to a decade, because of everybody who is in the pipeline using current methods of legal immigration, so that the lowering of legal and illegal immigration numbers would only really start taking place in the middle of the next decade toward the end of the next decade, and of course, laws can change between now and
the law that is passed now can be superseded by another law. Democrats take over Congress so, This happened as he's made this proposal and the worse and has been for Democrats and liberals to act as though what he has done here is constable and beyond the pale and The question we need to ask ourselves is twofold, one of which is. Is this a good deal and second Are they making a rational calculation about what they need from their own voters in their own base, as they haven't? Twenty teen or are they in some fashion now at risk? of committing suicide by you know like the charge of the life repaid going
only six hundred them going into this valley of death in which they are. They are going to hold the docket people hostage. The dreamers hostage to a fancy full to a change in immigration policy, that is not in fact current immigration policies on fact, particularly popular. While I have some thoughts here. First of all, I think the White House made a really smart not over at reaching when they basically one the shut down strategy. Democrats shut down the government over Dhaka, Miss Calhoun, horribly, had the back off their charge, and then the White House came back with another counter offer and it was a pretty reasonable counter offer they they moved toward the democratic opposition in the number of people who would be offered citizenship that this legal status and they is the amount of money that they want for the border barriers both borders by about five billion dollars to the tune of twenty billion dollars. That could have asked for a lot more
that's on train migration again and by the way this is yet that has become a racist term over the course of the last two weeks alone when that happened. But apparently that is a racist term, it's very hard to keep up with which terms or racist or not. But this is a opening gesture. And democratically really silly not to counter office? And I don't think they're going to them down trumps in a pretty good position with immigration reform, you can drag hawks across the line, even if they don't like it as he's, got credibility on the issue and educating the public. I think on the extent to which America's legal immigration, like almost half of American legal immigration is bound up in family reunification programmes, I'm a dove, and I thought that was really high, and I didn't know that I don't think a lot of people know that. So I really feel like a devil Democrats. Invite education that we're gonna have over a debate about immigration reform. It's not gonna returned to their benefit. While I also think the idea
if the idea among Democrats are among the activists. Democrats is that you look. We you can't work with him, no matter what there's? No there's no good faith opening offering you there's nothing to work with. I think this could be an opportunity to nip that end and not go down that road, because, even if you can, if you can flirt with that kind of attitude and and still get away with Success in mid terms, which is of law, is still obviously an open question anyway for the long term, letting the act of his base sort of. DR, and shape your understanding of of politics? It is going to be a loser. I also, I would
did I very strongly with no enable both said, I think, from an ideological or philosophical point of view and another in a couple of really good piece on this, that I would commend your attention tat, the chief among them Damon links in the week who argue that much like their counterparts in Europe. The Democrats are moving toward this world view, which wants to do away with borders
altogether and suggests that the free movement of people across borders is a matter that is increasingly beyond debate, in other words its its illegitimate to try to democratically deliberate over how many we want or who we want admit on what basis, and that is a crazy. I think position to take. First of all, politically because of the dead, the counter punch that he saw in twenty sixteen from voters in the? U S and also voters across Europe where people want to assert control over their sense of of sovereignty over who they want to admit that it is perfectly legitimate and perfectly within the bounds of liberal democracy? see for voters from time to time to want to reduce it. Numbers. I say this is an immigrant.
So in that? That brings me to the philosophical point, which is that that that itself is deeply illiberal, the fact that they'd they want to take it off the table and all for what liebig it's at the behest of a of an active space. That's that's losses. Mind in some way. Okay, so the devil's advocate would say that is a very good argument for twenty slash. Twenty that is say that it was. Immigration is a national issue and a national election day. That's our skewing themselves so far, the left that they are gonna make tromp envy and the Republican Party look more reasonable bike Harrison with a policy that is that looks to cut legal immigration by a substantial numbers. However, we're going into a mid term election, so the difference between mid term elections and national presence
Elections- is about forty thirty to fifty million voters, depending on how you, depending on the year so The voters who come out mid term elections are the base. I mean you still you bill, but it's much more of a base driven election, then than a presidential election year and the question is: is this is what the democratic face really want, that? What we know is that the republican base- which is why Trump has done this- the republican base, is happy startlingly with a deal to help the dreamers two hundred and eighty five. Seventy five to eighty percent issue across the country and people are sympathetic to the dreamers.
Aka doc. That's what I mean this is so there's a dog is a little led, let's separate, so let us give it a very capable, happily well. They're they're not really do sing populations. There are the people who filed papers to be to serve get into the process of the system as people who were brought here as minors, and then there are people who did not find the papers out of fear or laziness or whatever trump deals with them, both as the same thing. That's how we get to one point: eight million- that is anybody. The person who was brought here as a minor by parents within a certain time within a certain time frame until I think two thousand and seven I'm not sure I think its two thousand and seven as extension, was to twenty tense as they can when the twenty two okay, so anyone there is considered a dreamer whether they filed the papers and twenty fourteen or they didn't
so yeah, I'm in the people who are really up on the issue, can separate out these two populations. But I think in general, in our people aren't going to so Republicans are. Actually it turns out safe being nice to the dream. Remarkably, like being nice to the dreamers but giving them a path to citizenship which is certainly the most horrible thing you can ever possibly do? According to the restriction? Is right, but so the question that arises is the Democratic Party is like panting its flag on the idea that you can't deal with Trump the white Supremacist Racist, who is wing at immigrants, and maybe that's good for twenty times. Oh it's! Maybe it such an emotional issue and you want to drive every possible person that you can who is in the democratic base to go to the polls and convince african Americans, for example,
that they have a stake in this. Because of the racism angle, that, if he's a white supremacist against Hispanics, is a white supremacist against lacks also, and we saw in the Alabama special election, disproportionate black turn out, got Doug Jones Elect over. Why more like something like twelve percent above the actual number of african Americans, of it that there too, six, the electorate was twenty six percent black in our Twenty nine percent of the turnout was black, which is effectively a twelve percent turnout growth, so if they can do that and if they can do that in twenty eighteen in the mid terms, drive that
I end of minority turn out to the poles. It will be very helpful for them. I don't think any of us a very sympathetic to the democratic opposition here, so we're not really stating, in anything other than a varies cynical electoral approach. So let me try to play devils Advocate and stated in terms that I think a Democrat would agree with Donald trumps S. Whole nations comment reveal the extent to which he views immigration from certain parts of the world, predominantly brown parts of the world as being sub optimal and undesirable when compared to places like Norway, which is a place as more white people. The extent to which they are interested in driving down family reunification programmes, which make up almost half of America's immigration policies, demonstrates how this this immigration policy is an effort to widen the country is what they really believe and whether or not you think that
zionist or true, where just something that you ve is they ve concocted in their heads in their little circles that are obsessed with race. This is what they believe if you believe that debating with somebody who believes that, in coming to a middle ground, is a moral hazard right. Ok, so let's get to that point about debating, because a babe alluded to this so effectively thus become the democratic opposition that trump it is illegitimate to negotiate with Trump on most things, but in particular on immigration, because he's bad he's, evil he's immoral, he's criminal he's terrible right. Ok! So when I look at this- and I think ok, what model are they train to use in the. We won't even talk we're not even going to put our fingerprints on any of this, so the model that they're using, I think it's the Republicans in two thousand and nine slash two thousand and ten cuz- remember there
and decided that nobody was voting for anything that Obama put up. So what's the difference, ironically, the republican position was was possible because the legislation that was up was going to pass. That is Say Democrats had veto proof with George, had a veto proof that view of Democrats had sixty seats for Europe to the house on a judge, anti majority citizen sent gigantic majority in the house. They could pass. Did pass legislation that will so republic. Made the decision. They work in a vote for anything so that they could not give a bipartisan gloss and cover to Obama by saying that his policies had supported both parties. That was a position from electoral weakness.
Democrats or not electrically week. Now they have forty eight votes in the Senate. They can filibuster anything that is filibustering. They can put holds on people, they can block things. I can do this, so when they decide they want to throw a monkey wrench into things. The monkey wrench that they can throw is that nothing will ever get done and if Trump makes reasonable proposals about certain types of things and the democratic base is demanding. The Democrats do not the republic, inability to say that they are, they are the hold up right so and about, try this when the Republicans gottman the majority in the house and basically vomiting anything done from twenty ten onward right. There would say, they're holding me up and they're, not I'm gonna sign executive orders and all of that The fact is that here already
an immense amount he had passed for gigantic pieces of legislation totalling two point: seven trillion dollars in new spending Republicans have done almost nothing. I mean that they voted judges. They do this, but there's one bill right: the taxpayer. That's the only thing tromp can say I put forward this proposal on the dreamers they're. Not even gonna talk to me. They won't even talk to me who's, the unreasonable person here proper spent a year being the unreasonable personally american politics, but that can shift if he makes proposals that are popular endemic I'd say you're too disgusting for me even to open a mouth to that's. Can that could overtime be a very potent Why I, as when Obama said, if Republicans could at least say look, you got to you Obamacare, you got Dodd Frank. You got the nationalization of the auto industry and who cut
the stimulus package. You ve your will on this country we're here to stop you, before you do anything else. That's the deal Red line is we can't deal a trump even though he won the presidency and the Republicans or a majority of the House and Senate? I think that's a little crazy yet, and I think that, where the democratic go down that road, the media would actually taking issue with him. A lot of major media is liberal, but they're, not necessarily activist in that way and they're not gonna wanna keep seeing the stories and and talking about Trump coming off, as as the adult in the room will protect We, after the shutdown we saw this tone change on the weekend, shut down to what it was like a week ago or something but it was hey, wait a minute like well. What's their plan here right, what's their strategy really understand what it is they want? Like you know, and as such
by Monday, and because Democrats are much more driven by the media in some way them Republicans are. I think they were very soon rattled by the fact that that you know all of their effective. You know supporters of the people that they look too. Be fair and impartial observers of their behaviour of their that that they weren't. Looking baron people were like questioning what on earth there. Endgame was rattled them wildly. Am I you think so? You're sense, I mean need, never admit it, but I think you're probably correct in I. You get the sense from true believers that they really think something was accomplished here, Madam struggling to remember now what they think. That was
It was probably just all by covering, but in general you I mean, I think they probably understood that they overplay their hands, particularly because we got reports after the fact that people like Joe Mansion were threatening to not run for reelection and basically hand the Republicans, Asia and Easy women West Virginia in in November. So you got the sense that they that they definitely went too far with this thing, but its government shut down is always going too far your neck. Supposed to go to the shutdown you're only supposed to go to the brink and if we get to the ship and have already lost, but the base loves the shut down. The base drove the Republicans to shutdowns the democratic base drove the demo hats to shut down this time, and we are nine days away from another potential shut down by the way. So we don't know, what's gonna happen there and the question is: has how has the Trump White House will get to the Russia stuff,
later, but has the Trump White House, in some sense, legislatively or in Washington terms after a year of calamity or mere year of calamity? Has it found its sea legs in understanding how to push use, pillar issues as a wedge too, to force people into cast hard votes on unpopular issues, which is what competence political organization understands, but that they never seem to really understand. I want to think about this from the point of view of the message that the Democrats send to the sixty three million or, however many
people who voted for Trump, some significant chunk of whom represent a kind of voters who voted for for a bummer, certainly in two thousand and eight, and does an end if those people are were willing to vote for a bombing away and then switched eight years later to Trump. It suggests that they would be up for grabs, and if the Democrats treat the ended, they supported in some some very enthusiastically as illegitimate as beyond. Debating do they not essentially spit in those people's faces are certainly slap in the face or whichever you want to think about, and what, with again, I think that would
I understand that the implications of that are different for two thousand and eighteen and two thousand and twenty, but I'm trying- I guess I guess I'm thinking about twenty twenty and the anger that would kind of be stoked if they constantly treat their man that those voters, man the way they do, she's, really there man. If if, if he's really there, man they're, not gonna, get them back, and I don't think that I think we its possible to really overestimate how many voters went from Obama to tromp I mean they went for about. They went from a woman, a trump in certain, very specific geographical areas that have had our inflections
yeah, but there weren't that many of them as the point, but his his popularity is rising among independence and internet slightly get lightly. Ok, though, let on a rest and eighty five, but but independence or not sympathise with that kind of absolutist position right, although an independent, the the meltdown of independent support for Republicans was this. Are you two thousand nine of aggressive meltdown, particularly Molly independence, but serve Republican, suburban, Republicans right so that you know you have this thing where Democrats were outperforming wildly and then after a time will actually start winning races. They had no business winning because suburban Republicans were fleeing from them in record numbers, particularly, I imagine women because they found Trump distasteful. So the question is whether Trump can somehow win them back on both policy and just general, better news. I mean he aid,
Here's the reality of the window for big legislative she meant to happen is closed. We are in primary season. That's over. They got tax code reform by the skin. Other teeth, nuthin big, is getting and when he eighteen, we may see a darker piece of legislation and by we I mean Dhaka, now dreamers we might see some sort of compromise there, because letting them go back into the shadows or be deported would be the worst possible outcome, but it's not guarantee that's gonna happen. More indicate. Not that we're gonna come a writer. This deadline, or maybe even cross it before we get some sort of a compromise, the notion here that we're gonna find some sort of a big legislative kumbaya over immigration? Reform of all things strikes me as really optimistic.
Well, so it turns out that there's a bad, so the republican bad is that the Republicans can make Hey on immigration going into twenty eighteen by look by appearing to be reasonable on the dreamers while pushing you know, policies that are actually reasonably popular with the Americans as certain types of anti immigration policies. Democrats are calculating that the chaos that might be created by a failure to act on the dreamers and the horrible position in which the Dhaka recipients and others will be placed after March Fifth, when Dockers, risk when there were sending of Dhaka, happens as as a matter of fact, I think that as a locker recipients, the six hundred seven hundred thousand people who were legal status and jobs and are working and around your shadow, everybody else, I'm telling right so
My point is a democrat colleague, aside from I think, knows very well put description of the convictions of the Democratic Party in relation to these matters, but they are also calculating that this will redound to their benefit. Otherwise they would do any. They would move Heaven and earth to make sure that you know a deal would be better for them than than the alternative, and you can make the case on the conviction point that a deal is better for them than the alternative, because it's like I mean I'm gonna use an absolutely horrendous. I won't use the analogy I am thinking of, but it's like you know, there's a boat and the boats about to sink in their two thousand people on the boat and you set and you bring a and you bring. You know a craft to decide about that. Can save eight hundred of them. But that you can't, but one thousand two hundred and twelve, the other one thousand two hundred have to drown or the first eight hundred and get on or whatever. So do you let the hook you let all mm round cuz you're going to take the eight hundred. I mean that is the these. Are
we'll choices at its terrible that we ve gotten even into this position. But the question is: who bears the moral responsibility you know end and in the end I think you you just it's going to be very hard. Democrats to say that if Trump puts his hand out and says he wants a million eight dreamers on a path to citizenship. And they say well because of the other things were not going to. Let that happen, it's not about Democrats either by the way we are people, Jeff Lakelet with just darker and maybe six billion for the border ya know I agree. Look. I know I've no fixes the chain migration to very complicated. The point is that meantime the Libyans just think they looked and they settings unpopular is in the mid. Thirties are of a high thirties unpopular. Is this really handled healthcare terribly in everything? And it was
just be like this forever and right now, particularly on the tax. Could we have today the Atlantic FED saying that if the conditions of today hold until the end of the first quarter, the first quarter, growth in the United States in twenty team will be five point. Four percent so Democrats, none of whom voted firm. Any part of the tax bill are gonna, be staying there. You know, and they are gonna- do not have a good story to tell about how they tried to block this. If, if the number is that large now could, but it could be worse, on the bad things could happen in February may be the calculations off. It was was four point, one percent until two days ago, and now it's five point, two or five point four it was a great quarter. Last quarter. Wasn't that's last quarter so here by the way that helps if the court,
The coming off is unexpectedly small and then you, you have really reasonable grow fear. The jump from the previous quarter is gonna, be better I just think that yell signs again aside from the hesitation that the white houses and and the hill into our like getting our are playing politics better than they were last year. Things aren't static and even the Trump administration can learn- and you know I Democrats were not prepared for the skill with which Republicans handled the shutdown- and I don't think they're prepared for the skilled at the Trump White House has shown in relation to the immigration model that they showed on the look if you got a seventy five percent favorability rating on his speech, a lot of that is because of the immigration proposal, which is really the only proposal in the speech. Other stuff was
very vague. And you know you have no idea what the hell he was talking about half the time, but I was going to have an infrastructure plan, but he didn't say what it was and they were going to make family leave and there. But he didn't say how they were. Do it all of that. The immigration thing was ten minutes in this speech. I was a long speech, but that's a lot of time has to be said. I think it is the beginning of this period of somewhat writing the ship seems to have started with with these of official split with ban, and you know what the with its declaration of camps Things have gone somewhat steadily better for the White House since Michael of save the nation one. Oddity is the tone, of the stable. If you compare the tone of the state of the union to his inaugural address, say it was worse strong. We have all these great people. Look at these fantastic things that people do, and you know we're going,
roaring back and we're doing this that we have that moved this and we're not gonna. Let the North Koreans gotta, as opposed to american carnage in this country, is descended into a pit from which it's going to be very hard for us to recover granted, so he's take wouldn't run more apt comparison between that and the joint session. I don't remember What he said in the light of that kind of my point action at this. As you know, it is a very cosmetic temporary effect. I think a lot of people have an impression of Donald Trump based on his tweets in what we heard, the news that he's this wild maniacs prone to fits of rage and when he delivers a speech, that's relatively reasonable, that it is
exceeds expectation. That's happened on more than one occasion. I just think totally. This speech was very interesting, like it's an wasn't a great speeches by what some people, the writer saying, but this decision to like hammer on the hero stories- and you know- and the sad stories in the sobs stories in the real american stories had a very potent effect over time over the course of the speech that this is a speech which he was paying tribute to America in some fashion. As opposed to saying that America was a ball and racial and criminal tinderbox and ate, it was delivered against a ban
drop of what we just said really fairly good economic news. You also see on the on the foreign front. Things are relatively ok in Iraq and Syria. That part he's, because we ve handed Syria over a lot of decision making about Syria to them to the to the Russians and the Iranian, and it is unfortunate, but on the whole it we're not going through a period of intense ISIS activity, either in the so called homelands devices or or in in the western homelands, so put all that together, plus the optimistic town, and I think it wasn't just a matter of the fact that the fact that for a product, the fact that we have low expectations from him and then he comes and delivers, he delivered against the optimistic and positive background right. Well, I mean you know, he's president. If things are relatively okay, relatively calm
skipper benefit from that, which is that a lot of people? I think in this country who were revile him and despise him find it almost impossible to believe that that reality isn't suspended in his case, just because he so gross you know, but of course the other thing is that he's been tweeting a lot less a lot less. A lot lot lot lot less I mean I don't know, he's pray. You know he Blake was silent almost all week, for example, like I have, I have the terrible feeling like a change anymore, of course, of club at me. I'm just saying today that he, you know people than say forever, stop doing. Stop tweeting, stop tweeting! Stop treating you know it's like the that. You know that the three percent of people who
we love, you love it and then ever drives everybody else crazy. So maybe you should stop and maybe again you now. The fact that he's got better news around him is cheering them up and making it less necessary for him to come and let off steam. Whether he's definitely cherry based on his appearance today, energy of irretrievably was billions but we're about to enter into a very different new cycle. We are, I dont, know Guerrilla bank redounds to the president's. Well, we will get to that soon, as a great wall tells us about our new advertiser. Man creates so giving you guys to chop. It's for Valentine's day is so boring surprising, with a heart shaped box of Delicious beef jerky, the ultimate snack, fro, Deasey, I give you will introducing man creates dotcom. The only place to fund also gives guys love. This isn't some
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There was a swing of between three and six points overall in aggregate of the so called generic ballot, which is, would you prefer a republican or Democrat to be? You know to represent you to vote for in twenty eighteen? That number, which was in double digits for Democrats in December, sank to about six to seven to eight points in January, and there were poles in the past week that have it one pole. A two percent democratic advantage. So the question is: is something significant going on here with dramatic shift here, larger question his
If Democrats, you need two and twenty four seats to take the house and need a Threeg seed gain or to seek. I can't remember how the numbers work here, but to take. The Senate sends a very hard thing for the Democrats pull off because of whose up how many seats they have to defend Burma. Democrats in Republican states in the Senate, but just take the house honestly seriously. If Democrats can't win in twenty eighteen can, when twenty forces in the house and taken told the house and twenty eighteen, the self destruction of the party over the course of this decade will have reached merely it will will have been complete, that is, they ve lost more than a thousand seats state, federal and local. They lost control of house than they lost him.
The Senate than they lost control of the presidency and the Governorship Governorship thirteen governor ships, they control. Sixty six of ninety nine state legislate teachers, I'm in the numbers are insane and if they can't would twenty four, how seats when you know like it, conventional off year for almost any party since, the name is, you know their game would be somewhere around thirty, particularly with president whose approval ratings are in the thirties for most of his tenure. So far I mean they party basically will have turned into a local regional party. Who was that one in one fifty seven counties of the thirty three hundred counties in the United States in twenty? Sixteen? That was enough to secure sixty five million votes for Hillary Clinton. Fifty seven counties go. Some way these cattle
nobody in them, but think about that. So if they can't improve on their position in the house, they are going to be. I mean the existential condition of the Democratic Party will be so partners, so anyway, just an interesting thing I shot. I have always well for a long time. I've been the wave sceptic, now, we may end up eating crow. Here one were doing the post November. Twenty anything show when midterms have happened, but I still. On the whole. The reason I have been a wave sceptic is because I cannot see how the Democrats have moved beyond same substantive and ideological issues that dog Hilary Dana fast forward today, in the sense that what what does the parties stand stand for beyond a opposition to which, which is a relatively new phenomenon?
more long standing, a series of identity, politics, pitches, too narrow groups. You know this this for women, that for African Americans and that for but not no sort of cohesive one Sean Vision, if you will that's, been missing from the democratic narrative from the democratic pitch, the american people and action. Dont, despite all the calamities and a sort of degradations and all the bad elements of the Trump Administration and the man from which we ve talked about, and I can see that they all exist, how they can, how the aid, if and how they can manage, to put together a vision to the fore, the country that some democratical equivalent of Amerika great again and as the sill still nothing on the horizon? I I've been
before and I could be wrong again, but I see no reason to revise my opinion that democratic. I do very well in twenty eight human terms, for a variety of reasons. One Europeans are allergic to United government. They have a tendency to vote against it to the president's first mid term, always cuts against him. Three democratic recruiting has been set attack killer. They have warm bodies everywhere. If there is a way of going to benefit from it, for the democratic committees have been knew very well in fundraiser, but democratic candidates, individual We have very well in fact, compared to twenty ten they're doing about twice, as well as an amount them on a number of candidates who raises much as five thousand where's for their races so much better than Republicans and twenty ten and dumb for you. As part of a generally that takes a lot of committee. Chairmanships is right, we're seeing more retirements this year than are historically average and people just don't like being in a minority
receiving Germans, not just people who are loose or just not interested in not being chairman, they mark as their term limited in their chairmanships, but also people like Drake Addy, who isn't term limited, but just hates politics now apparently wants to get out of a god, bless him well, yeah, but I understand their number retirements- are, are really significant, so you're, now defending open seats, which is harder than defending incumbents Republicans, are gonna have to trio's resources, which means they can put them where they belong alot of just technical stuff. That is instead, you sort of systemic and institutional, but which will make it a lot harder for Republicans to maintain the majority in the house. Ok, so that was our era. That was our little love disposition and is is the wave Also, you know that the mammoth pull that you're assigning, where that is where the gender balance drunk a lot. The number of people who support the tax bill went up by twenty,
points, because oil I do by the democratic as it were, a bright or yes, so look will see what happens. I mean Oh and another thing is that real economy has been really good for a year. Once been noticing the Republicans our are in control, the government, so maybe this tax bill helps cement and public mind that that this is a republican economy and you should be thanking Republicans at the ballot box. Maybe, but it hasn't yet right. Ok, so the the the the dog that is about to bark. That's already been barking of note has embarked. Is the memo the famous memo, Evan Newness, memo alleging that impropriety, vast improprieties and the behaviour of the FBI in its and its use of the foreign intelligence.
Surveillance, surveillance act and the courts that allows that allows America to surveillance Americans on the grounds that they might be agents of a foreign power. So the news today is that barring some unforeseen thing happening later today, which could happen because anything can happen as with honey. Oh, this member will be released tomorrow with various blackouts and as we call them reductions which are those black lines that have all the information that will actually make it part, would make it possible to make to see whether or not the memo is full of it or is real description. Quality. All of this being said. So the memo says that the Justice Department pursued and the FBI
pursued a warrant against Trump unpaid adviser Carter, page based on information supplied to it by the fusion GPS hired am I sit x and my six agent Christopher Steel about Carter, page and because Republicans think that these that the dossier compiled by steel is spurious and ridiculous, which I think a lot of it is that anything that might have come.
Out of It- deserves to be considered spurious and ridiculous, and that, if and from what I can tell, the allegation is that this was the entirety of the reason that the face a warrant was Sir secured for Carter Page and therefore this proves that the FBI was putting its finger on the scale trying to dig up any dirty could on trumped, get Hillary Clinton elected. How- and this is no is big thing How this interferes with the ongoing narrative about Robert Mueller, the special prosecutor and whatever information he may be, collecting on this behaviour of the Trump campaign and the Trump White House is actually far from clear, as if you discredit the memo you described, the Vice ornaments Carter page
While it may suggest that the FBI was behaving badly, it doesn't say thing about Mahler himself, who came on in June. Of twenty seventeen doesn't say a thing about rod, rose and sign the Debbie Churchill who came on in mid march of seventeen doesn't say anything about whatever information is being gathered like a big story yesterday so now? What can you tell us a little bit about the big story, a story about how pigs around nine o clock last night, the New York Times dropped a story indicating that more Carrillo, the legal spokesperson, who were the legal team. Running Donald Trump, who resigned over the summer, was going to test before the Mueller probe. That hope picks a long time. Aids Donald Trump and communicate patients director in the White House, had drafted or had intended to obstruct justice. Railway, so There was the trunk tower meeting on June sixth
led by a russian lawyer. Vessel nets Gaia and upon manifold guard cushioned error and Donald Trump Junior, among others, at which we are told they hoped to get dirt on Hillary Clinton from the Russians. Ok, then, the story breaks a bet that the New York Times has the story. In July of twenty seventeen story breaks or the dear tonnes has it. They contact that people who are abroad and Trump on air force. One dictates something for dollar from junior to release, saying This being the White House was to talk about adoption policy in Russia, com, Oh, oh, who is apparently, I think, he's on the plain that we may not have been on the plane says wait, a minute. Don't do! That is actually what happened. As, if that's what happened? Don't do that and Hicks said
Arnold Juniors emails will never see the light of day and from what we can tell after that corral decided he needed to get the hell out of Dodge that he was not going to. He was not going to be in a position to defend this when it sounded to him as though they were up to no good, not another. They were just lying to the to the press. Ass, which is not a crime, but given the fact that Robert Meal or had already been engaged and was looking at this question of russian collusion conspiracy that Corral oh, was at some point: gonna have to talk to Mueller as a representative of trumps legal team and say what that you know he had been told by hope. You know he was gonna have to some
Square, the circle that the meeting had only been about adoption, so he quit. So we find out last night that he's ready to tell Mueller what he knows about this. The story says wait a minute. Some people are baffled because lying to the York Times is not a crime. But there are unknown details about the about the Trump Tower meeting. All we know is what the Trump people told us what vessel Nets guy said, which is that she went to talk about the so called Magnet Ski ACT, which I won't get into an from people say that it was so boring. Jared walked out, he was annoyed and they were all annoyed. And then the question is
anything else happened did vessel. It did. Donald Trump Junior take vessel escapes me, tromp was anything else talked about, were they looking to get, we are told they were looking to get. Information on Hilary from Russia doesn't mean that vessel and sky had it. We don't know why they had a meeting with her in the first place. We know there was brokered by this very strange british pop music promoter named goldstone. Otherwise we don't know nothing so while the right is consumed with the memo. Liberals and the media are consumed with what going on in Russia probe now what wins here? I don't think anything went honestly. I don't guess the intention, pretty cynical about this whole thing. I think that there is what we
understand is from I mean a lot of people who are coy about this thing. But what they want to do is to demonstrate that them, the Miller probe, is illegitimate because it is working from information gleaned from a face, a warrant that was obtained virtually exclusively as a result. This dossier, which was compiled by are bad opposition research, guys and funded by the Democratic Party. That's the effort. We effort is to dissolve the meal, the Miller probe and to liberate Donald Trump from this cloud. That's hanging over. There won't be honest about that, but I will be when I think that it's gonna happen is that you're gonna get a memo that is partisan and is Frank Terry, and that is under assault by the FBI, literally under assault they're, saying that this thing not it just, doesn't tell the whole story. It is designed to tell part of the story and the notion that this vice a warrant on Carter, page was obtained just from this dossier and not from his own behaviour, is absurd Carter, page was FBI ring broke up of Russia's
during a twenty fifteen, of which Carter pages name was involved. Who was beings by russian assets and twenty thirteen the campaign approved his trip to Moscow and twenty sixteen where he meeting with russian officials and presenting himself as a russian asset for higher I mean anybody who was a sentient, human being and twenty. Sixteen. Those Carter page was a problem and was presenting himself as of as little guy who is willing it is to submit himself to his bosses wishes and his bosses wishes were apparently to seek some sort of a rapprochement with Russia. So, yes, he looked he was a problem and he caught the eye of foreign intelligence assets. Ok, but politics politics, so The narrative is trump. The narrative from certain quarters is that the trumpet that the molar is squeezing Mueller is getting closer. Mueller is approaching the center of the investigation. Mueller straight talk to trump
I will try to talk to him. Is it possible that the his lawyers will allow trying to talk to Mahler if all interests and perjury trap form And their squeezing they're getting closer and are getting closer and- and you know he sweating, and he knows it's coming in and blah blah blah. And then this is a kind of Deus ex mark enough for everybody who dislikes tromp is that somehow this investigation met mysteriously is going to magically get him to bash? Ok, it's not gonna happen, because unless they prove that you know he and Putin were like sitting in a room cackling together over how they were you know, screw.
With voting machines, Republicans about voting him out of office, and twenty eighteen and Democrats have to win the house. Go back to the issue by commanding enough numbers to impeach him and then have enough of a standing in the centre. Have a strong enough case for him to be removed. That's the only way. This is gonna happen. Muslim, dining m. Is President Mozart conduct the president. He may refer charges if he has anything to refer others, but directly back to the mothers been enough preamble about this thing. Now from
all sides of it, a whisper campaign for the most part to polarize it. If you believe the memo you're on one side of this issue or another side, there are very few open minds about the same anymore: the f B. I does seem to suggest that woods in the memo is true, but that it is missing some critical information that would be exculpatory for the agents or group of agents that are seen as having used shoddy politicized information. So if you know it does not say that the claims statement does not say, the claims made in men are false or incorrect, or what have you? It says there are critical emissions and a lack of backed, and there are lots of people who are on of the view that that this was there is some sort of of conspiracy between police
Open minded, FBI, agents and- let's be honest, bureaucrats are not be on politics at all, but that doesn't answer me. I buy this point of view, but they're at their claim is that there was a conspiracy are seeing in that statement essentially a week admission that the essence of the of the memo is true that the FBI may be relied improperly on what is unquestionably a sword dodgy dossier. There are all sorts of other kind of associations going on and issues that are questions that are in place. This doesn't touch on and there is no point,
sat correctly. There were numerous other basis for a suspecting russian interference with with the twenty sixteen election and be to be at least concerned about Trump campaign collaboration with it. Nevertheless, all of this, I think for a lot of voters has muddy the waters. They see FBI agents, exchanging cute texts with each other, making fun of the of of of side. They see FBI agents, exchanging tax about the fact that boy we wouldn't want to indict Hilary, because when she becomes presidential punish us they'll see that they relied on a dodgy dossier, drawn up by a sketchy british spy put all those together, and I think that the waters, are a lot more money now than they were a few months ago, when Mahler first appeared on the scene as this clean guy who's gonna,
gets the bar, but it's weird that Mahler as the one in trouble or that were that a rod rose and sign the debutante general is the one in trouble with Trump or that the FBI directors Mahler comes in and in six weeks he fires Peter struck the guy who wrote those texts he's out of the he's out earned by the way last night, more texts, and he completely supported getting this Clinton information out until October twentieth, which sort of defeats the narrative purpose of painting him as a secret slippery, Inside the F b I working on Clinton's behalf where the whole thing is crazy gazelle we have, as we have various we have various long term officials of the FBI. We have Andrew cave the deputy director. Apparently sat on the, not the information that Anthony Wieners computer had whom abandons emails on it, including classified emails from Hilary
right found out that late September. He sat on it. Then, in the last week of October of twenty sixteen a story comes out in the washing in the Wall Street Journal that the caves wife got an enormous donation from Clinton bag. Man, Terry Mccall enough for a relatively minor, very local, Virginia electoral positions as they stand Senate, but I mean like half of it offers, which is a huge amount of money and because that information comes out. Basically, I think whatever it was, that the cables doing sitting on the winner email stopped call me found out about the weary males. The issue is a letter on October twenty a thing we have to reopen the investigation to Hillary Clinton females. The event that I think a lot of us think is the thing that ultimately help to get Donald Trump elected right. So
We have weird behaviour that needs to be examined investigated and you know if Mikhail was slow, walking and import piece of information he just because he finally was forced out this week from the FBI. That's not sufficient, I mean if he was attempting to obstruct justice. You now be for political reasons like we know he should do that should be investigated and studied. How this connects them off her- I don't know, but here's why, in a sense, a sort of doesn't have to in order for it to be successful for four for the White House, the white, as has the envy advantage in this sort of war of conspiracy theories because They don't have to tell a story that connects up at every point they have did. They have to sort of convey this overall impression of a deep state were
ink in combination with with the media working against the administration working against the president, but where but Mahler on the other hand, does have to tell you he's he's a pole. He's of hell he's holding two rows of legal standard here. He's gotta tell a cohesive story. If, if, if he's too, to conclude that Donald Trump Didn really care. It can't be simply that this looks bad tat, looks bad over here. Do as a series of Iceland bracelets a classic defence, its classic defence bar strategy right, in other words, the prosecutor has to lay out the facts of the case, and the purpose of the defence is
create reasonable doubt and have the jury say well, there is there is not sufficient evidence to convict of the they don't have to tell it caught. They don't have to tell a counter narrative. All they have to say is that this witness lie is a liar. This witness, you know, acted in bad faith. This witness you can't trust, and that part of the story, you know is a bum story and their. Therefore, if the public opinion is the jury, if a sufficient number of people in the jury, actually the jury dealings, One person says: ok. Well, I don't believe the government side this the case I am running out of a more comprehensive indictment of how Devon Nunez has conducted himself. Then what you just described. This is hopefully Sabine, because he serving as trumps as everyone to events attorney when their purpose of his four formerly He was now unrecognised position. On the ages PS the eye
today the house, like many, I intelligence was to get to the bottom of this of what happened in twenty sixteen He is pursuing precisely the opposite strategy. His design is to make sure you never get to the bottom of twenty sixteen, because it could reflect poorly on this presidency. If your interested and good government- and I am if you're interested in getting to the- item of what happened with an masking. How we got makes Linz name in the paper when he was so Dublin Foreign Surveillance, Jeff sessions, the stuff that Devon Newness was supposed to be for and he's one of the few advocates who seems actually care about this stuff Democrat, certainly down. Then you should be furious with this guy because he has completely mishandled and your cause and good governance. So I think in the end, what we have here is a is a clear decision on the part of the republican or enough the ruling party and the White House to say they're coming at Trump, with whatever they can wear anything they can throw it in emigrants. RO at him, and it would be unilateral disarmament not to fire backs
create a counter narrative. We go after the memo. We say that the Russians were actually suborning Hilary or you know Hilary was being supported by the Russians, and this is all a russian intelligence. Hilary Hilary is the one who is run by the Russians and paper Stress, though, that Melpomene Europe right propose serious though that may be, and it is preposterous and anyone who is listening to me say this, who does not understand that that is preposterous is a crazy person, and that includes friends of ours who think this its prosperous. But it's it's enough to throw. To muddy the lens? You know what it is. It's that there's a month like Hilary I'm, I just want to stipulate. I murmured Dana wrote a whole book about how would be a horror of Hilary begin present United States, but It was not a russian agent and her campaign was not born. The Russians and twenty fifteen and twenty sixteen, because some hired fusion gps ino.
I may let loose my kind of conservative animal spirits It's the sense that that it's a culture or again- and I say this as someone who voted- I voted for Hilary ok, I was never trump driver, but it but that there is a sense of instead like institutions of the media of academia and others, locking step so aggressively against someone who was ultimately voted and by the american people and and the memory that, for example, right before the twenty twelve election, the the Obama IRS. Now, whoever you want to blame for that, whether it goes to the White House or whether it's tops with whatever her name was Lois Lerner prevented groups that would have affected the outcome of the election from obtaining nonprofit status.
All of that is gives a sense that there is no neutral position of of a Saint Lee bureaucrat who's going to get to the bottom. It's all war, it's all This is the unanimous visiting our very little dark vision, but that's how I think the trumpet illustration, I think, do Nazism, my former colleagues who would you would consider Nunez media allies. That's how they think- and I kind of at some dark core part of me- kindest sympathise with witwer, where they're coming from, because the institutions seen in sometimes they seemed just so tipped against servants, populous libertarians and others. I do believe that one of the ways in which norms are shattered and institutions are destroyed in the United States is when people of
whoever party in whatever administration or whatever political tendency say I get to do, acts because they did it first and sometimes they didn't do it first. The people who think that have talked themselves into the fantasy that it was done to them When it wasn't, but that you now, I'm not gonna sit here and let them use tools that I'm gonna deny myself, since tools are so effective and their evil and they need he stopped by any means necessary. This is the danger of this view is that semantically. This is how inst many institutions deserve to have lost their standing with Americans. They were corrupted their corrupting. If the FBI is a nest of evil political corruption, it should be exposed right if it is almost certainly isn't, but if it were would be deserved. However, we have gone in this country in the space of a year and a half from the Democrats, believing in north,
number of twenty. Sixteen that the that a Trump loving FBI. Destroy the Hillary Clinton campaign to we're in February. When he eighteen and it has now become the axiom of leading figures in the Republican Party, that the FBI they nest of liberal seeking to get Hillary Clinton and Democrats elected? Ok, this Mirror image, is a significant philosophical points out part of the danger that is being imposed not towards democracy and not to our republic, but to our understanding of ourselves as a free people and and how rational discourse is pursued costs times we will lose elections because they have the word I have worse ideas, and then that is usually why it happens and the US the search for these phony reasons you know Russia did it the f B. I did it. Commie did it. You know this one didn't that one did it when Hillary Clinton
but the democratic nominee. Probably anybody else could have beaten trumpet, including Bernie Sanders, and right now, what Trump is doing to the FBI should not be and because this is the leading federal law enforcement agency and it discrediting what's do what he needs the FBI? What what does this country gonna do? What it means, the FBI's, impenetrable integrity, unimpeachable and Greedy for some, you know Orton purpose when both parties have how committed themselves to the notion that it's entirely conditional? Whether or not you say good things about the end, origins, community or about the law enforcement, Whenever, depending on whether or not they back you politically, that is Banana republic stuff, where ever
The thing is politicized down to who is like how the military for runs or how long enforcement runs in its incredibly dangerous, and that's why Devon newest so shocking? That's why this republican lunacy madness of at the FBI, is, disgusting. The affairs not above criticism, Ruby, Ridge, wake, others all kinds of things for which the hand you have set of Stephen half filled the handling of all sorts of things, it's a group of people and they do and they too bad things, and individual people like Andrew Mackay may do bad things but to take down. You know a pillar of this government. You now so he's been around from us a hundred years and was cleaned after its misuse by its first director. In this way is just terrifying. I think they wanted when the world women. Once again, I swore reg agree with everything you say it's like. I mean the the problem with the situation you describe in where
you should have start spiral down once people say? Look, they did it so we're gonna. Do it the temptation to to do that is that we're never gonna win again. Unless we do that, we we ve been playing by the rules and if we continue to pay by the rules? We we, It will be nowhere. So we after an order in order to have any future, we need to break the rules. Allow us further and say that this is the the ultimate problem with populist nationalism. Is that the ology. If not an ideology ology, it doesn't many ideological routes. It is basically a sentiment and when its captured pricked by a particularly dogmatic individual, it can be used for a lot of evil, Selwyn People's sort of conflate nationalism with patriotism.
A lot of republicans are ten servitors tend to do that. I think they ve missed the fundamental problem with it's sort of shiftlessness and cynicism that the fact that it so amorphous and that it can be acted at american institutions and usually is directed and institutions that are domestic as they have a pretty tendency to constrain the dogmatist. It's right and we we fail. We we come to a position in which we have the left has spent forty or fifty years taking down. One for some agencies are coming up with philosophies that say that one forcing agencies are dangerous and horrible and white supremacist them hate, blacks and do this and the other thing, and then that's all over with somehow and trunks and says I love law enforcement, except I want to destroy the FBI, so you get it. He meant was a particular kind of law enforcement in a particular kind of role in a particular kind of area right, but that the police shop
the signal. Again again, we have an entirely conditional understanding of what people those who are actually most of them, not the ones who are saying offices why most of them are, you know like they take out a job in which they, certain points may well have to face the possibility of sacrificing their life, and you know lived there there that what they do is treated is garbage by the President of the United States. I think that just powerful and and by the other party, because who spent more time talking about the evils of want for the last seven years? over the last sixty years of age really, but I mean really alive, you know anyway, so without a crushing morality, we're back suppressing veracity. We will bring this podcast to an end. John ports for a reward,
Marine, gives a candle.
Transcript generated on 2019-12-12.