« Pod Save America

“Fox News-addled automatons.”

2019-03-07

Congress launches investigations into Donald Trump that could lay the groundwork for impeachment, Democrats decide against allowing Fox News to host a primary debate, and five potential Democratic contenders decide against running for president in 2020. Then John Legend joins Jon Lovett in studio to talk about his new song and mini-documentary series that features the stories of activists and community leaders. Also – Pod Save America is going on tour! Get your tickets now: crooked.com/events.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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are, you sure, is a broker. Jerry, is the smartest way to hire friends the pod get to try it for free. You go to ziprecruiter dot com, slash cricket, grab a pencil computer or phone and write this downziprecruiter dot com, slash cricket got it grab a pencil, pencilziprecruiter, dot com, slash cricket, Welcome to POD save America on Jon Favreau, Papa John Lovett Interviews, John Legend, who is releasing a mini documentary series around his new song, features the stories of activists and community leaders. John was just in the office he's wearing a suit, which is the first.
It's never been worn and crooked media great interviews check it out. What is my real test for Mayor PETE was whether he's going to show up with a tie on and the fact that he didn't mean she's got a real shot in this election. That is a good test to get a lot of news to cover from the latest investigations into the president and his goons to the Dnc's. Rejection of Fox NEWS has offered to host a debate to the announcement of several Democrats that they won't be running for president, Also, a lysis book is out so here's the thing it's on sale go buy it. It is fantastic, will not be disappointed. Yes, we are asking you, as friends of the pod, to do yourself a favor and buy this book. It's really good. Alisa is great. We should support people Kalissa who put themselves out there in the most authentic way possible. It's full of great advice. You will laugh your ass off. You will be smarter. It's basically like for those of you.
Are fortunate to be very close friends. Alyssa like we are you get to experience that through the pages of this book? That's right! That's right! That's well put also your weekly reminder that this content can also be a video experience. Lucky you check us out scribe at Youtube: dot, com cricket media make Elijah happy all right. Let's get to the news This week, house, judiciary, Chairman Jerry Nadler, launched a massive investigation into Donald Trump by requesting documents from more than eighty people or entities in Trump's orbit, including the Trump organization In foundation Trump's inaugural Committee, the Kushner Companies Trump's, two thousand and sixteen campaign and transition teams, his cabinet, his legal team and his family they've also laid the groundwork to obtain Trump's tax returns. In the letter seeking documents from these people and organizations
The wrote that his committee is looking into quote a number of actions that threaten our nation's longstanding commitment to the rule of law, including allegations of obstruction of justice, public corruption and other abuses of power. Trump tweeted this week of the Democrats investigating him and his administration or stone cold, crazy. Eighty one letters sent to innocent people to harass them. They won't get anything done for our country and quote in which areas of these investigations are most interesting to you and do you think, as some have suggested, that Nadler is building a case for impeach, here is all of them, a sufficient answer. Like do, I have to pick among my favorite trump crimes- you'd, you do not have to pick, but for the purposes It would be helpful if we help vibrating with hylian personally most interested in the inauguration, because there is this amazing fact that Trump spent a massive amount,
money in an incredible amount of money was spent at his own hotel and uh certainly over rates for an inauguration that was attended I, as you may remember, not as many Sean Spicer would like us to believe. So We spent a lot of time and there's been a lot of you know Basically, every investigative reporter in America and the world has been digging into a lot of these other areas of inquiry, but the it feels like the creation is one where there is a lot for us to learn a lot for Congress to learn through these requests. Yeah the I would say political staffer in me the the communications. Staffer is most interested in all. Of the areas that involve potential corruption by Donald Trump, his family, his businesses etc, because I do think one of the most powerful arguments against Trump in two thousand and twenty will be this man enriched himself in office, while your wages didn't move what you couldn't afford. Your health.
And yet Donald Trump just kept, making himself richer and richer by breaking the law. So I think that is very fruitful territory for the Democrats to explore the part of me. That is just honestly curious about what the fuck has happened in the twenty sixteen election and after that is interested in no they've tried to subpoena or that they're trying to look into the conversations between Trump and remember. There were no us printers and in some of them- and there was no see staffers, there's no White House staff that was just Trump and Putin chatting it up, and I think there's like one interpreter on the side, for some of the conversations so trying to get those conversations is very interesting and and uh and and the money laundering too, as well. As you know, Adam Schiff keeps saying that he thinks that there's a potential
Russia was laundering money through the Trump Organization and that sort of been a rumor that we've heard from the very beginning. You think it's possible that when all of a sudden, a guy who called himself the king of debt, He would always borrow to buy. Building was all this and taking large cash payments from all attacks in Russia that there might be something suspicious about that perhaps perhaps stand so yeah that those are the ones you know. I don't know if those move the needle electorally, but I'm certainly curious to find out what the hell happened there. What do you think about the impeachment question? You asked I think the people who say he The groundwork for impeachment have a good point. When you look at the land, but now they're used. He talks he's focusing on abuse of power obstruction,
These are the same areas that cost Congress to drop articles of impeachment for both Nixon and Bill Clinton. So there's a precedent there of Congress attempting to impeach a president over these high crimes and misdemeanors, and so does seem like by lumping them all together. Now, there's of laying out. You know what what he's looking into he's also said that he believes the president has committed obstruction of justice that he believes the president has been implicated in crimes. You know at the same time now there is also said I want to do this carefully. I think that, in order to make the case. Each men and bring charges of impeachment in the house. We have to convince normally our own side, but some Republicans that this is worthwhile endeavor, which seems like in wishful thinking to me. But you know, I guess that's what you have to say. What do you think yeah
that's right, and I think it also says a lot about, where we are. You know two plus years into the Trump administration that the mere fact that Congress is doing its most basic constitutional duty of oversight, is framed in the question of whether it's a path to impeachment right. This, you know, Axios, had a our It was a series of conversations with reporters. They sort of sum this up is to be. I see everything that Trump has been involved in all the things that now there's asked for documents about what the Judiciary Committee other committees are looking at represents one of the three greatest little scandals in american history, along with Nick and Watergate, and then the teapot dome scandal It's sort of shows the gravity of this. That It seems very much like Trump is committed, offenses that fall into the political definition of impeachment, but you need to prove those things you need to be able.
Case, but they're also just doing their basic duty to ask questions and hold hearings on what the administration is doing. It just happens to be one of the primary activities of this Stration is crime, adjacent activities, and so therefore, oversight tends to dip into the impeachment conversation yeah. Well, that leads to my next question. I mean what do you think of now? There's approach here, there's been some: concern criticism that sending so many requests on so many different issues at once could feed into Trump's witch hunt. Bullshit. Do you have any concern about this. No and like yeah like could you sit around and do theater criticism for weeks on and about like, would it be smarter to do them one at a time and do a drip drip drip or what, if you requested, It's about crimes on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and ultimately any of that matters. For two reasons we are both
assuming how closely the american public is going to say this election pays attention to the correspondence habits of Jerrod Nadler. And we are also somehow thinking that if now there were to approach this differently, Trump would take a different response, and that is simply not the case. Trump is This is a witch hunt before there was any oversight, he's going to call it presidential. Under all scenarios, and so this is fine. I don't think I don't know that better than another approach, but it's totally fine and if we're worrying about the cadence of correspondence related to potential presidential crimes were worrying about the wrong thing. I mean also Now, there's initial request is for material that was already provided to other congressional committees or federal investigators. He's not doing a ton of real in just yet so the idea that he sent out eighty letters or letters, Haiti, people and entities just for information.
That's already been handed over is not like he's, you know, bringing out the subpoena Canon just yet, and an also like, like you said, like there have been a lot of walking crimes in potential crimes. This has been the most corrupt administration, potentially history like and the only the only reason it's odd to people that suddenly Ali is doing so. Much oversight is because Republicans not only did zero oversight over the last two years. They did everything they can. They use their positions to protect trump at all costs, so yeah, of course, is doing some oversight now yeah it it's just worth noting. Is you think about the scope of this, which is why higher requires a response like this, which is that Trump's business his found his campaign. His inauguration, his transition and his administration are all under criminal investigation from multiple entities, and so A lot of work to do, and also, I think, would make one other point. There's no time like the present. It is the first week of March. There is. We got there, only
many days in a congress and the let's get going here. I will, I will also say it is not like democrats- are just picking controversies at random. Here like this is not some partisan witch hunt when all of these investigations are happening because federal prosecutors non nonpartisan, independent, some of them, probably fairly conservative in the FBI, prosecutors and FBI agents have found potential wrongdoing in potential criminality. In all of these areas, the inaugural committee, the the Trump business, the kushners companies, all of it all of it started because of lawn
horsemen. None of it happened because Democrats said: oh we're going to go on a fishing expedition right, like it didn't start in any kind of partisan way whatsoever. There's just this problem of viewing the job of getting to the bottom of presidential, abusive power, presidential corruption and presidential criminality through this political lens of how does this affect a subset of voters in the suburbs outside of Cleveland right? It's just it's just a dumb way of looking at it, but it's the only filter by which the press can do it. But if we're going to apply a political filter this, what is the greater risk for Democrats? Put aside responsible with the constitution responsibility? democracy just general congressional oversight? What is the bigger political risk for Democrats? Is it over overreach in investigating trump, too hard or under reach in not investigating
it is almost certainly the latter. If Democrats were to run all up and down the ballot all across the country, arguing that they were going to be a check on the corruption of the Trump administration in Washington and they were going to be a are a co, equal branch did investigation and then they did not do that. That would have massive put affects much more so than how many people Jerry now request: correspondence from on a single day right and just from a political perspective. Two we know from the last two years that when the news is about Donald Trump, when it's about what Donald Trump has done wrong potential crimes, anything else that you know Democrats do better. Trump does worse. Right like this is going to be. We know be talking about this throughout this whole episode like this is going to be a race and a campaign about how to keep Donald Trump. Wrongdoing criminality, whatever
in the news more than Trump and the Republicans, can keep Democrats in the news. That's what this is about for the next two years, and so these investigations, because Trump actually has committed both doing according to federal prosecutors. You know, that's that's what this is about, so one person who wasn't included in the document request is a trump we found out from CNN this week that her father personally pressured former chief of staff. John Kelly and former White House Counsel, Don Mcgahn to grant her a top secret security clearance against their recommendation and the recommendations of other White House and national security officials when they refused Trump's request from granted the security clearance self. This comes only a week after the New York Times reported. The trump did the same exact thing for Yvonne, because husband, Jared Kushner Dan, based on our experience with security clearances. In the has how big of a deal is this? It's a giant deal it's a it's. It is a huge deal now
I mean, let's stipulate for the purposes of fairness which we try to aspire to hear, but is that that truly has the power to do that like that is a central power to grant to classify things on, classify things to grant security clearances that great security clearances, but zinc it is. I can't tell you how unusual it is not only just for the presidencies themselves to get involved, but for political folks at the White House to come anywhere near a conversation that happens with career officials in the White House Security Office in the intelligence committee, depending on the level of security clearance. You would never touch it for just for the very appearance
now. It also suggest that there is something I don't know what it could be, but something that is very alarming in Ivanka Trump's background investigation. That would that would cause them to recommend no on this question, and that is a very worthy, a field of inquiry for Congress to find out what that was like what was it. That said, we are not going to give a senior advisor the president and essential daughter, security guards at that. That person is too big a risk to have access to the nation's most important and most closely held secrets like so what is that is a bit she? Why don't summer for forms like we know, Jared Kushner did on multiple occasions did are there? Are I used to foreigners that you did not disclose. Are there right relationships that are with our security risks that we need to be aware of like what? What what is? It is a huge question I don't know there will ever know the answer to it by I'm willing to bet that someone
It's probably an Adam Ships Committee is trying hard as hell to find out The other thing we know is that she lied about this right. I she was asked. In an interview you know I think a year ago or a time ago, did you did your father have anything to do with you getting a security clearance and said absolutely not So, as usual, there was something done song by someone in the Trump orbit or Trump, and then they lied about it, which is basically been the pattern since the very beginning politico reported last night that House Democrats are wary of targeting Trump's children in these investigations. They're worried about the quote optics of going. After Ivanka Don Junior and Eric, I mean what should they be the worst part of the pieces like if you read through the peace sort of at the bottom. It's like basically they're there. Okay, potentially investigating Ivanka, because she does work in the White House, but so
but they're a little more wary about the children who aren't working the. So it's like no one's going after Eric, because Eric doesn't really matter. No one's going after Tiffany after bearing so are they. The Democrats think that, to be worried about them going after you know personally sympathetic figure, Don Junior like what all right, let's people, what are we doing? First, let's? Tiffany and Barron from the adult children, one who run the service still run these or if anybody gets case decided to work in the White House. That was a right way. She made she decide and Once you decide that, then you are, as to all the responsibilities, the risks of being a the government's after anyone else, and so you don't there's no there's. No presidential daughter exemption, do government oversight or criminal investigation. I'm sorry! This is not how second Don Junior and Eric. Frankly,
running a business that Trump has refused to divest from a business. It is very clearly profiting at an absurdly Diane, most likely unconstitutional level from the President from Donald Trump's position as President States, the fact that foreign do you want to influence Trump are going up and renting blocks of rooms at his hotel? The fact T Mobile was about to be involved in a very important merger discussion. They all censored spending a lot of money at the Trump hotel and so of course, if they were to separate them. If Trump is separate from this business, if they go off and other things then yeah, maybe there be an optics issue but they're running a bit, that seems to at least on the from the outside in He part of a major presidential corruption scandal. So, yes, they should be investigated. No, we should not, worry about it. That is an absurd thing to worry about. Don Junior is ensnared in multiple federal investigation. What what are we doing Don Junior held a meeting with russian intelligence,
he sent emails about it and then, when asked about it by the New York Times, he released a statement dictated by his father lying about the purpose of that meeting. Repeatedly like it is one you can't. If you were to decide you're not going to ask Don Junior and Ivanka, then you might as well pack up go home. You're not really do anything and it's just Sometimes I think we demi Politicians generally Democrats most particularly exist in some world of like pundit concern. Mad libs, like yes, when when we're talking about Jenna and Barbara, or Sasha Malia Obama or Chelsea Clinton, or I think in this Is Baron or Tiffany Trump have no involved? There were children bearing a child tiffany, older, but has no involvement in what's happening. Yes, there. Children should be protected from public scrutiny, and congressional investigations are but once you decide to work in the White House or run a business that profits from the presidency, you are
immune to that, and there is not a political risk to it. It is I mean it's like, let's just think about this, for two fucking seconds people before we decide to spout off our concerns. The politico think we said this last week about Democrat: are just have an inner monologue, just like think twice talk to a Democrat before you call. The political reporter in just expresses stupid can fear in the back of your mind what is going on in the hill, like what I It's been going on for the last like in three decades, but it's like don't open your mouth when the Politica reporter in the Washington Post for the New York Times. For you stop communications directors. Stop your directors. Stop from. Saying this shit to reporters in the hallways. Just stop. You can get a chance to answer their final answer. I it was great to lots of members of Congress answer question. You should do that, but you have to just
ruminate off of stream of consciousness about, let me tell you is it is. Let me tell you, I have been a because it also gets. You know, brownie points with reporters you're, not like this much closer to making some sort of political power list, because you decided to express some deep seated concerned about potential political blowback to investigating the senior adviser to the president. Come on people. I have an optics concerned. Who should I talk to? Should I tell to my staff. Should I talk to my colleagues should I know you know what I'll dial up politico, that's a great way to express my optic concerns about politics, what the fuck people, so in response to the announcement of these new congressional investigations, Trump called now. There's request quote the greatest overreach in the history of our country instead of doing interest. Instead of doing healthcare they want to play games? How effective do you think the Trump republican response about presidential harassment is? and do you think there's any risk of democratic overreach,
I know that we are not that worried about the concerns expressed about you know now, there's approach here to sending all the letters, but is there, anything. The Democrats could do that. We would be worried about in terms of overreach. We shouldn't be too dismissive of there being at least some entrance message that Democrats are so focus investigating trump that they're not doing the things that the american people care about. That if they were not so obsessed with Trump maybe we have an infrastructure bell or we can pass another tax cut, the class or I don't know something else- that Trump cares about the american people like, which is a very, very small slice of the Venn diagram, but that is an argument that has worked in the past is the argument that Bill Clinton used in nineteen. Ninety six, it's what he used to fight back against KEN Starr, an impeachment in the late 90s, so there I mean there's precedent for this working, but I don't think change. What Democrats do right? We have to
gage the argument. We should just run away from it and as long as we stay focused on very legitimate lines of inquiry, around criminality and corruption and abuse of power will be fine if we start doing which I can't imagine, whatever happened, sort of the sort of crazy stuff that Republicans did in the 90s, where they were convinced. That a Vince Foster, who was a a Clinton administration attorney who killed himself had been killed in as in some sort of plot to cover up the whitewater scandal and are you? the person who currently has Elijah Cummings jobs that have the Oversight Committee fire a gun into a water. I want to try to prove that it was not a self inflicted gunshot would like. If we start,
doing that crazy ship, which is not going to happen. So it's sort of like worrying about snow in the summer. It's not a real concern, but as long as we stay focused on the things that matter to people and the things that are obviously legitimate lines of inquiry that I we should not be worried about this yeah. I mean I think that Democrats have to take great care to always connect these investigations to peoples lives. Why is this investigation matter to your life right? So it's like. We can talk all of security clearances and it seems very distant to people, but the reason that this is a problem is because Trump is jeopardizing our national security he's allowing potentially and his staff for allowing sensually. Foreign powers that are hostile towards us to have left, change over US government officials and that could damage our national security. The reason we care about corruption is because Trump is wasting
taxpayer dollars he's enriching himself and his friends at your expense he's not doing anything for you, but he's making off. Okay right, it's like. I do think that we have to really make sure we are drawing direct lines from these investigations to people's lives and what matters to people I so I think and there's a danger of it's not over reach right, there's, just a danger of sort of looking like you're focused on getting trump and not looking like you're focused on you know, defending protecting an advocate on behalf of the american people? So I do think there's like a messaging challenge, but I don't think I think you're right like that. Doesn't that shouldn't stop democrats from doing their responsibility to you know, conduct oversight, which is what they promised to do in the twenty eighteen elections and one because of it, at least in part. That's so on that note, the New York Times ran a story on Wednesday. The talks about quote a month of stumbles for democratic leaders and basically
talks about how the House Democrats have had a hard time breaking through lately. Last week they passed a gun control bill. No one really noticed this week. They're passing a voting rights Ethics reform bill, no one's really talking about it. They almost a resolution to the Senate to end our military involvement in Yemen, but the Republicans turned it into an semitism resolution, everyone is arguing with each other today, still about you, Omar's comments there supposed to be a vote on the floor of the house today for another resul resolution condemning anti Semitism and hate and bigotry in all its forms. It's been quite a mess this week can Democrats do to not only back on message but to stay on message in the future break through the cycle with their message and stick together, at least in public. This is not a problem that is unique to the Trump era or even this particular month. It is yeah.
Almost always impossible to get extensive. Average for legislation passed how, by one body of Congress in the minority I mean they're, publicans and congressman when are from two thousand eleven to two thousand and fifteen, had the house, but not the Senate, Obama was president. They passed all time they were constantly passing terrible bills and we actually wanted to get more attention because they were so odious and unpopular, but no one notice, no one the press really only will cover things that they think have a chance of becoming law in that way and so like it's, not surprising that, even though this passage of gun the legislation for the first time in a very long time, was a very big deal and showed you how far the the ball has moved. The politics of gun control laws, but the fact that it
move far enough means it's going to get a little attention, not enough, and so we're just. This is not a uh. It's not particularly some of the problems I I do have a way to disentangle, like sort of a couple different things like there's three questions and they're like how do we get more attention for the things that we did right? How can we stay on message and then how do we stop fighting with each other? So on the first one like I, I laid out the problem there. I do think that We can be more creative right, the New York Times the tv cable tv stations, the Washington Post, are not going to give sufficient
coverage. We need to the staff that the Democratic House is doing other than Russia, investigation, oversight, stuff. So just the passage of legislation. So we have to think that there are better, better, more extensive ways to communicate, then simply just holding a press conference of the Capitol press corps in an expected them to carry that message to the voters that care. So that means your whole press from members of Congress, which I'm sure many of them are doing. It means thinking about alternative media methods to do or how working you reach people on who you know care about issue and are interested in hearing you know, have to go through a cynical press filter the water surface, specific ways to do it. Who were the voices on social media, whoever for her influencers, who have a following that you can get get them to amplify the. So you just have to think critically. You have to work more. You have to I think more creatively and work harder than you've ever had before in the past. To get this message out and even then it's very very hard
how do we get on message? It is related to your third question of how do we stop fighting with each other and I think the- I think there is there's to disagreements in our caucus as there should be, because I think, healthier because we don't all believe the same thing. It's not a bunch of you know Fox news, addled automatons, who are funded by the Cook brothers. Like there's, we are that has a oc and no more conservative members who won in very red districts, that's, who we are and if we're going to have majorities, then we're going have to have diversity of opinion. That's a fact, but I think we, We should try to have our disagreements. Allow the resolution for disagreements to be dictated by bad faith, criticism from Republicans right so yeah. This dispute
tween, Ilhan Omar in a number of other members in the caucuses is spilled out in getting a ton of attention. An in part. The response to the Democrats have put forward is things the way they are approaching. This, I think, is based on this naive belief that they are two past this congressional twenty four hours before they're supposed to pass their most important signature piece of legislation. The hr won the electoral reform and democracy bill that somehow, if they do that than the right in trouble, stop accusing all Democrats Metasomatism Semitism, and that is not even wrong- headed, and we have to think instead of trying to satisfy a group of bad faith, critics and cynical pundits and reporters. We should think about how to turn the subject back to Trump. Yeah that watching this play out- and you know, but in Tommy, talked about this
parts of the world and they really dug into it. So I encourage everyone to go. Listen to that episode and we're not going to sort of rehash everything here, but watching this episode unfold this week and just sort of last day after day after day made me think like we're going to be dealing with more of these episodes between now and two thousand and twenty a lot more, I mean I said Barrow tweeted this morning like because the government's going to get nothing done, Trump's not going to get anything done. It's divided government like these controversies, will take up a disproportionate share of the media coverage between now and the twenty twenty election, and I think that is exactly right, I don't know that Democrats have figured out a way to sort of handle these controversies, or at least like downplay them or move past them. In sort of an efficient way right, like I Let's see why everyone could have just like you're right, Republicans are always going to launch bad faith attacks like we should. Respond based on what they say, but we should respond
based on what we believe and I feel like every member can do that on their own without then also attacking every other member or talking about it. I mean there's this story in and is basically the same as the New York Times story about, like you know, it's the Democrats in disarray story and at one point they have ordering from inside the caucus meeting and Jan Schakowsky, just yelled everyone she's uh, congresswoman from Illinois. She just yelled, everyone stop tweet everyone stop tweeting, which is you know? That's that's, that's the answer, never tweet, but it does seem. Once these controversies erupt, then everyone feels like they need to have their takes like everyone's a pundit now, whether you're an actual pundit or a voter or a member of Congress ever just going to like take take opinion, opinion and suddenly we're like drowning and takes and opinions on this controversy about Anti Semitism. You know
because of you know one sentence from Ilhan Omar: it's like you two weeks ago, not even two weeks ago, the government found a white supremacist white nationalist. Who had stocked an unbelievable amount of ammo weapons, and we had a kill list of prominent Democrats. Prominent media figures and, like there wasn't a day's worth of discussion about that, I didn't see, statements from any of the presidential candidates. I didn't see it talked about a lot on the news. I didn't see anything about it. This person was going to commit mass murder on an unfathomable scale. Ok, and we didn't talk about it. There's and it's just one person out of many there's been like a rise of right wing anti semitic. You know white nationalist groups over the last couple years, something we're not talking about, but these controversies? You know Ilan Omar makes a statement, and suddenly it's like we're on like day six day. Seven of this like what and every presidential candidate is releasing a stay
But now everyone is weighing in. We got resolutions on the floor like what are we doing it really important not to be dismissive of like There's a lot of bad faith criticare from Trump from the tree, very, not he's very fine people, Jim Jordan who tweeted Tom Steyer's name with a dollar sign like six minutes ago, Kevin Mccarthy who accused Bloomberg and Soros of trying to buy the election at the end. But there are- You know there are people who are concerned about what was said in good faith concerns about it like we're not trying to be dismissive of those and those should be dealt with. The problem is when you're trying to satisfy the bad faith argument and I Ryan's piece on cricket this morning- that I think we both tweet it out. It was really worth the read about how you handle these things. Were you can. Handle business within your own house and family without conceding the argument to the other side, who have been
amplifying, and I semitic forces for a very long time and trying to benefit from anti some politically from anti semitic sentiment in this country in very explicit and very dangerous ways. Yeah, I mean it to me. This is all about proportion right. Like you know, Mars, a member of Congress, and she should be more careful and how she phrases her critique of Israel, which is entirely legitimate. If she wants her critique Israel if she wants to critique a pack if she wants to critique our policy towards his well how policy works. That is all very legitimate shouldn't get attacked for it, but you have to be careful when you when you're a member of Congress to make sure that you are not, you know saying things that could be construed as Anti semitic by you know: people operating in good faith, not the back people right like, but that is that that should be viewed as an ice for what it is, which is ice
related incident of someone saying something they shouldn't have said you know, and then we can all move on. But the fact that it has reached the point or putting resolutions on the house floor and we're talking about for seven days is absurd and there has got to be a way for us to handle controversies in a good faith way and move past them as a party an remind pull that in you know less than two years now we are going to be face collection were Donald, Trump is on the ballot and the only way that he can win again is if his opposition isn't unified. That is it. If the opposition is you if we're all there together for all standing there together and we all get to the polls he's going to lose. If not, if we are divided, We are arguing with each other if we are focusing on the many controversies every day between now and November, he's gonna have another four years in office. That is what we're dealing with right now and I think it's like it would be worth while for everyone does that sort of take a step back and focus on
I think, there's one other take away from this FED apply to twenty slash twenty. Which is. This is the v fault, What was originally said and that how it's been handled within the democratic caucus over the last six days, six days last ten years, which is how long it's felt but it also speaks to a larger challenge for our democratic nominee, which is yeah in a social media, digital ad powered press world. These are the things that the stories and that generates outrage on both sides are the most financially valuable to news organizations. So there is an economic by Tord stories like this or even if the network hello. This perfectly this would have been. A disproportionately large story because it generates outrage and engagement and therefore
it's more traffic generates more ad dollars, so it's doubled and tripled down upon and so we've talked about this. Before with this speaks to the need of whoever our democratic nominee is to have the city. Two can be to communicate to the american people outside of the traditional media ecosystem, but just mean that person should not do engage with social media. They should but should be able to find other ways to talk to the public, whether it's through social media through advertising through other means only way in which to get to get. Your message out is through cable tv, the New York Times political or we going having the conversation the Trump wants us to have because he benefits there is a actual advantage to Trump's message in the outrage, fueled online press system, and so we can move outside of that we will be able to tell story american people that is told on art.
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keep dreaming and make it a reality with airspace, Howard Schultz, he should just make a website says: I'm president now and stop his stupid campaign yeah and then to himself he's solved. Polarization and his consultants can make it in working on that go to squarespace dot com. So it's good for free trial. When you write a line to the offer code cricket to save ten percent off your first purchase of a website or domain keep Dreamin, but make it a reality with the website from workspace. Alright speaking to the outrage machine, let's move on to one of our favorite topics, Fox NEWS This week, Jane Mayer wrote a blockbuster story in the new Yorker about the symbiotic relationship between the network and Donald Trump. The article out in detail how Fox is evolved into a propaganda arm of the White House to the point where former Fox Prez bill shine is now the White House, deputy chief of staff. Whilst making literally millions of dollars in severance payments from his former employer, where he was accused of covering up sexual harassment,
among the newsy or parts in mayors, peace Trump was tipped off to questions in one of Fox is presidential debates in twenty fifteen by Fox executives, uh, this reporter had the stormy Daniels story before the twenty sixteen election but executives killed it and then demoted her Trump ordered his or economic adviser, Gary Cohn to push the Justice Department to block the atm time, Warner, merger to punish CNN an benefit fox and Trump has told people signs, loyalty scores to Fox is on air personalities on a scale from two. Ten Sean Hannity, of course gets a ten Brett Bear gets a six and Steve Doocy host of Fox and friends he gets at twelve. Then he gets a twelve out of ten uh. Then what did you think of the story? And will it change the way anyone thinks of Fox NEWS
Well, I thought the story was incredible, not none of it the general thrust. The story not surprising. We have known this for a very long time that is a republican propaganda machine masquerading as a news organization to get access to our airwaves But Jane Mayer, who is a american media treasure who was one of our best reporters did found, proof points that prove this. An after reading that story on Monday, I thought to myself. Well, this is. This, isn't just like a bunch of democratic hacks, like Francis Twenty about how bad fox this isn't broke about complaining about it, media matters, presenting actual facts and prove to people, but because they're funded from the last it will be dismissed, is Jane Mayer, one of the most respected reporters in all of the world, showing that.
Journalism is not done at Fox, as it is commonly thought of the fact. He sat on a major scoop to help their chosen candidate. That's not, handy. That's not Tucker Carlson, that's not Laura Ingram. That's not the white nationals. Variety hours John Lovett calls it that's the news: division, Brett, Brett, Baer who is held up for some fucking unknown these all these reporters. I think, because he's affable guy goes cocktail. Parties is some market journalism gets A6, six on a loyalty scale from President States, and thought to myself. Well, this is it. It's finally happened that You know we've seen that transition and how people, how the broader world thinks about Fox for Sanjay Mehra, send it no but John, I was wrong. I was very wrong. Oh no, this is the this Truth comes out Monday, uh on Wednesday, the Democrat National Committee announces that Fox NEWS, not one of the media outlets hosting two thousand and twenty democratic primary debate. Chairman Tom Perez said in a statement of the Washington Post. That quote
recent reporting in the new Yorker on the inappropriate relationship between President Trump, his administration and Fox NEWS, has led me to conclude that the network is not in a position to host a fair and neutral debate for our candidates. No shit Trump is already in response threatened to not appear in debates in the gen election that on other networks which hey dipshit at the general election, no one network, because the debates broadcast everywhere. So your only option is to drop out of the debates. If you want so anyway, I see Tom statement. I see the Democratic National Committee's decision, I'm like yeah, obviously, obviously we're not going to have Fox news host a primary debate for the Democratic Party they haven't host one in like ten years or something two thousand and four more. It didn't happen in sixteen ok. So almost fifteen years, it's gone by now, since Fox NEWS is hosted
memory debate? I don't know why the Democratic Party was considering offering them to host one in the first place if we had it for the last fifteen years, but anyway, I thought it was pretty common sense. It wouldn't have a network whose business model is based on spreading disinformation and whipping up outrage, an xenophobia and racism among Donald Trump's base. I thought it. Pretty common sense that we wouldn't say well. We only have so many debates to offer host for and yeah we're not going to have fox, be one of those hoes. 'cause, there's a ton of other media organizations out there and activist organizations in different groups who could ask our candidates very tough, but fair and illuminating questions, so that our voters can decide who they want, as their nominee seems pretty normal, that Fox NEWS wouldn't be one of those places. But then I would have been a because then we see journalists, Jonathan Allen, we saw it from Zeke Miller from the AP saw.
From all kinds of other put Jack Shafer in Politico, saying water Demo, right so afraid of. Why are they afraid of tough questions from Fox NEWS? This seems like a huge mistake for Democrats. This is going to play into you, know trumps worst instincts and he's going to attack the press more because of that he's going to attack the good out. What's more and all this bullshit- and I am just I don't know man- I I I thought that this far into the Trump administration this far after twenty seen this far into Fox NEWS, transforming from a conservative outlet to one that is basically just pumping disinformation into the ether and real. Hurting our democracy? As a result, I would have thought that journalists, good journalists who do good, would have understood what this is all about, and I am clearly mistaken
I don't know why it is mindboggling. I have been raging like a lunatic for two days now and let's just like, let's separate a few things here right, one is this argument that somehow Democrats are voting tough questions, the implication of that report. Yes, they don't know that is that Jake Tapper from CNN I think, as the toughest questions, probably if anyone in journalism to to both parties, is somehow not as good a questionnaire as Shep Smith or Chris Wallace that Lester Holt or L, king or some of these other people are not going to ask Democrats have questions. That's insane, that is a stew ' walking way to think about it. If you would think before you tweet, you would understand that fending facture, insulting the rest of the journalist by using that argument. Second, there's argument that somehow this is in doing
so Democrats are hurting journalism, and we are giving aid and comfort to Trump's argument that there is fake news. Okay, that is stupid. Democrats. Are not stopping fox from doing their job, foster there's going to be invited to cover the debates. I'm willing to bet that fox we even get to set up their camera positions and they'll probably can have their set there and all the other things they get to do they get to report on the debate, the democratic decided, it was not going to uh huh how Fox NEWS to make a lot of money off of their debate and since I don't know, maybe Fox read the incredibly offensive conspiracy theory about yes rich, a slain Dnc staffer in the twenty sixteen election that Roger Ailes gave the who's, the Trump that Fox NEWS, executive, work at the White House that Trump Kaiser is work at Fox. They decided they were not going to reward. That behavior Democrats are. I'm not giving it to Breitbart. Is that somehow offensive and for all of
people who were just screaming about what a problem this is. I don't hear one single one of you you John Allen, not you anyone else complaining when the working till nine debates in twenty sixteen give a single one to MSNBC, where they afraid to take the questions. Rachel Maddow, no one oh, but like this, bad for journalism that Republicans ought to MSNBC. It is so fucking stupid and what these reporters are doing is tweeting, without thinking to trying to virtue signal to their republican sources that they're, somehow both It's friendly. Journalists like it is just embarrassing, because five does more damage or the professional journals journalism? The does the Democrats. They are. You turn on all they do is take the reporting from serious news organizations in the middle, but also on the left and the right. Dismiss it and call it fake news and they have actuated this myth that
mainstream news organizations are in Cahoots with Democrats. They have, they have done this and to defend them is to just a lack of self preservation for your industry. It is so frustrating and I scream about this for hours? I mean they frankly well and it's like honestly, don't just ask plus you know we're a bunch of liberal democratic activists like it's, not just Democrats and understand what is wrong with Fox NEWS, like Ask John Weaver Former, you know he's a republican staffer, Jennifer Rubin was in John Mayer's piece talk about this. She was a conservative commentator. Greta Van Susteren, who was on Fox NEWS, was talking about engineers are like everyone on both sides. Pretty much gets what's going on at Fox NEWS. I think reporters view Fox news as like. That's the conservative media outlet and there may have been a time when Fox NEWS first started, but it was in fact a conservative media outlet that
conservative viewpoints on it that time has long passed. There's no conservative ideology coming out of Fox NEWS. What it is is it's disinformation every everyday fox. NEWS through the opinion part of the network and by the way, a lot of the news part of the network, including some of the guest they have on we'll, say that Hillary Clinton is a criminal that Robert Muller in the in the so called deep state engage in a coup against the president that we shouldn't trust that you know the american law enforcement officials are after Don Trump that there's a fuckin' invasion at our southern border lie
after lie after lie that are designed to scare people that are designed to make people angry incites hate, it could incite violence. It is a very dangerous institution right now and they're doing this eyes wide open. This is what they want to do. They're covering up stories for Donald Trump they're, only saying the good things about Donald Trump they're, covering up bad news forum. I mean like this is not. This is not a conservative news organization. This is a propaganda arm of the White House. This is the closest thing we've, as Jane Meyer says. This is the closest thing we've ever had in this country to state run television I mean, and it is degrading democracy every single day that it's on the air by spreading this information and reporters who are trying to like uphold the values of a free press and get at the truth should be particularly concerned that there's a network out there. That's spreading disinformation when
trying to do their jobs. They should be mad about it. I don't understand it's really. My bucket I'd like to take another shot at another part of the argument of stupidity we've for the last two days. One is how are Democrats ever going to win over fox viewers if they don't go on Fox right, yeah, okay, now a couple of things: As far as I know there, nothing that, Hibbits Fox viewers from having remote control that enable them to change the channel to watch debates on other channels. Two when the Republicans DIS, that's to Miss NBC after lost the popular vote in five of the last seven elections. I don't remember a bunch of call wags, saying well how but it's going to get the M s N b c viewer like what is it? What is the why are they scared of taking questions from Rachel Maddow like no one said that and here's the other thing
Hannity, who has the most watched program on that network gets three million viewers. There were one hundred and twenty eight million voters in the twenty. Sixteen do you think the three million Sean Hannity voters are the people going to difference. So we have two reach voters who live in the towns were foxes in Walmart station. Absolutely do we have to reach people who have the same profile as the three million people watching on Hannity. Yes, do we have to broaden the reach of the party to reach into more rule. And urban areas. Yes, with the idea that the only way to do that is to offer Fox he television to patron the democratic primary is so simple minded that it blows the mind like there are ways to reach the voters we need without putting imprimatur of legitimacy on Fox news and
giving them more money to then use to try to destroy democracy in this country, because that is what a debate is. It is a profit making enterprise for a news network, and I mean the Democratic National Committee made the right decision in frankly, this whole is stupid. Even if they had given them a debate. It wouldn't have happened because Democrats were decided not to go to a debate 'cause. They didn't want to do exactly what we just said. And we know this because that's what happened in two thousand and eight when the Democratic National Committee gave Oxford debate, then, it was reported that Roger Ailes would refer Brock Obama, as Obama Bin Laden, and we decided to cancel the couple democratic, cancel the debate and they did not happen. We had. We have wasted all of our time and decided to the many cursive decided to reveal to the to the country? Just how find the bubble and simple minded they are. It is very frustrating if yeah it. If you are a voter, who only gets your news from Fox NEWS, it's your only
source of news. You are not voting Democrat. If you are one of the voters who gets your news from Fox but also many other outlets. Then you are potentially a democratic voter, but in that case you can find the debate on any of the other news channels that you watch. It's really that simple. There are Democrats and independents who watch Fox news for sure, but those people who are watching Fox NEWS or also exposed to a whole bunch of other media if they're, actually up for grabs vote when your in sconce in the Fox news bubble, and that is the only thing that you watch we're, probably not getting your vote and we all have relatives. We have friends, we have family members who have fallen into this trap and weeds and like and that's why a lot of people are rates like I we I have seen what Fox NEWS has done to people in my life. They have changed their political persuasion because of the disinformation that is pumped out of that network. It is a key
answer on democracy. Alright, let's talk about two thousand and twenty. This was the week where a bunch of people decided not to run for president I'm returning general Eric holder wrote in an op ed in the Washington Post on Monday. That he'll remain focused on his work to fight partisan, gerrymandering, Oregon, Senator Merkley who's, quite progressive, announced on Tuesday that he'll focus on running for re election to the Senate and former York City, mayor, Michael Bloomberg, and at this week that he'll be spending his time and money over the next two years: fighting Trump's reelection election, fighting climate change, Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton reiterated this week that she won't be a candidate in two thousand and twenty paving the way for a nasty trump tweet and a Clinton response tweet, that included a mean girls gift because we're all living in twenty sixteen forever and also as we were, recording breaking news, Sherrod Brown, shared brown from Ohio- has also decided that he will not be running for president oh really so yeah have. I just made
I know when, when we, when we lost you for a second, and we had to call you back Michael Michael, let me know- and of course my wife is texting me too, because she used to work for shared What's your take on all these announcements that they're not running for president, it's so funny because that's the norm thing. That happens usually there's a large group of potential candidates. People who have who are thinking about a possibly have thought we do it one day in the life or who are sort of talked about as good candidates and most of them end up not running, and if you do the opposite problem, where every who anyone thought might ever possibly ride was getting in the race, and in some ways. Not running is a harder decision than deciding to run an you really are sort of in some ways, closing off a path to yourself, it takes a lot of uhm awareness both of your political situation, maybe your family situation etc to decide that. The odds are too long. The sacrifice
two great for to do it, and I think so you know. Actually you know what I mean. These people for making this is, and I am a little disappointed. I will say that I shared Brown is not running I've. We know we have a seizure at a lot of the spy cast you. You know you are, as you know, for very long time and that he would have added interesting that he was someone who, like there's people who have very low likelihood of winning and people who have a shot. I think she would have had more of a shot that potentially the other folks. We discussed look. Shared brown has near impeccable per get progressive credentials and, as a very progressive senator won Ohio Multiple times a state that has been slipping away from Democrats, and you know we got crushed in Ohio in twenty eighteen and share it still one and he won not by just you know, emphasizing populist economics only in sort of ignoring
Lynn Cultural issues. He won as a proud progressive across the spectrum and I think there's a lesson in that and how shared one for other Democrats and shared with someone on the trail As he was on his dignity of worked or who you know is like here's, my view of Medicare for all I think we should lower the age to fifty five, and I should we should take it one step at a time, and I think that's what can get past and I'm not going to just take a position, because I think that's the position you're supposed to take to appease. You know a certain activists I'm going to do. What I think is right, because I'm focused on trying to you know help improve people's lives and
That's what it is, if you like that great, if you don't like that, that's fine and whether you agree with that or not like good for him for or for saying something like that, you know, and for and for standing strong on what he believes. Yeah I mean the the race is probably a little bit less of for not having insurance perspective in there, but it seems we have and how many I'm pretty positive, that sure does with the top of most peoples potential vice presidential nominee list yeah. How big of a deal do you think it is that Bloomberg going all in to beat Trump, since he has. Since he's a man of means, is that a a Howard Schultz allusion? It was not. It was not yeah. I think that's what Howard Schultz wanted to call people who, when he he Oh, I forgot about that. There was people with means, but either way it's still good. I look
Bloomberg has become one of the most important players in progressive and democratic politics. You know he played a very important role and helping Democrats have great success in two thousand and eighteen. He has done tremendous amount on climate and I'm pushing gun safety legislation both trying to elect candidates who fight for gun safety legislation and pushing things at the state and local level, and surrounded by a lot of smart people, and, if he's, I think what he has talked about doing is potentially have a real impact and hello like I would love to live in a world where all campaign three two publicly financed, are funded at the grassroots, with contributions under like five hundred dollars or something. But we don't live that way and in this election different sixteen which we forget is that all the river,
Can billionaires, sat out the presidential election last time and now flush with giant tax cuts from Paul Ryan and Donald Trump? They are going to be massive players, and so the Democrat is going. To get swamped in money. Now it doesn't mean they're going to lose. Money is not everything but they're going to get swamped and if Bloomberg is out there strategically deploying resources in smart ways. It is going to be very helpful, and so I am grateful that he that, even though he decide
The running man sitting on the sidelines yeah I mean one hundred million dollars in two thousand and eighteen is not nothing. That's what he spent to help elect Democrats, so good for Bloomberg for doing that, and again, not just politics to like you know he is beyond coal campaign, helped retire like half the coal fired power plants in this country. He wants to get rid of all of them in the next couple years. He wants to make sure that we are, you know one hundred percent renewable energy, clean energy economy, so good for him. I'm glad he's, I'm glad he's still in the fight. Finally, you know, I've talked in the past about how the concept of electability has basically lost all its meaning. Well, there's an excellent Buzzfeed piece this week by Molly, Hensley Clancy titled democratic voters want electability, but that doesn't mean they want a centrist for president in the peace she writes
the vast majority of democratic voters, aren't thinking about electability in terms of ideology, geography or electoral margin. According to interviews with more than fifty democratic voters in early primary state, Far from tying electability to centrism, Amar or moderation, voters said they cared about rhetoric personnel. Energy and momentum when deciding if a candidate could win many other they were looking primarily for someone who spoke specifically to the concerns of working class people, some at a fighter who could Perry Trump's rhetoric just two out of the fifty said they were looking for a political, moderate, so then these voters are largely separating electability from ideology, which is something that no political London has ever done. Is that do you think? That's tentative how most voters think I think, as you point electability is this term. That means nothing because no one knows what it means and you I can't it is only electable if they win, and so it's like a reverse engineered thing, where John Key,
it was not electable, but Rock Obama was Hillary. Clinton would like to, but Donald Trump was, but we have no idea what exactly. That means and it it does not take into consideration context. It does not take into consideration the larger electoral forces or the economy or anything else, it it like. We will say this one thousand times between now and two thousand and twenty is that most voters are not ideological. Electable Democrat and one of the most electable people in modern american history. Is Barack Hussein Obama, it Anti WAR Democrat from the south side of Chicago via Hawaii and Indonesia, with a father from Kenya, That is not. There is no model where suggest that's the most electable candidate, and so the ability of to inspire people and at that, while at the time seeming, inclusive and honest and decent, is how you win elections and that's what that's what our most electable candidate will be not necessarily be what we know.
They fall on some sort of ideological spectrum, as dictated by a group of people who check marks on twitter, and it's not to say that each of these candidates doesn't need to come up with an argument for why they are the most electable candidate against Donald Trump. And in Obama did that he had and electability argument. Two thousand and eight remember, you know he would say, like my opponent, in the general election won't be able to say that I was for the war in Iraq right like I will have that different, so he he basically said he was likable, because he would offer a contrast between himself and republican nominee. By saying he was the only Democrat who was against the war. He also said, like you, know my opponent able to say that I took lobbyist, money or PAC money, because Obama was unique and and swearing off lobbyist, money back in two thousand and eight and so there's different ways to present your argument for being the most electable candidate. That's not like! Oh you know, I can go after moderate, centrist voters,
which is which is sort of the stereo type. You know, electability, is not a reason in of itself to run for president likely candidates who knew themselves is most electable lose because if you don't see it or anything other than winning, then you're going to be a terrible candid you have to stand for something and look if you are people, I am not arguing that voters should pick try to pick the most electable candidate. They should pick the candidate that inspires them. They inspire them. Through their life story, their personality, their policy positions, their speeches, whatever it is, the candidate you feel the most strongly about is the one you should do in the hope- is that we will pick we like the the and who comes out will be the most likeable Democrat, whether that I have to be Trump is a question that remains open. But if you can't go, through the very long and complicated process of winning the nomination. Then you're, not the most electable candidate right, like
you didn't run a good enough campaign to win and therefore not just going to win the primary you're not going to get a container the general, and so I think, that lesson from this is one we have to stop putting d see pundit based or twitter. Most views on the voters who will decide the election. Twitter, Xenopol, Twitter, something Twitter of Primary Twitter is not America, and the things The democratic voters, care about are going to be different than the things that make up the conversations in DC or make up the conversations on twitter and we should allow, research in what voters tell us to guide that conversation, not what we want that conversation to say based on our previous experience or the or where we hang out in our lives. Yeah, I mean it is an interesting question. You know, given the predictions about electability are often wrong and they're almost always freighted.
You know racial and gender stereotypes right like a white man is, is going to be more likable right, like this. There's all this bullshit out there about electability, but how should democratic voters think about picking the right person to run against Trump, knowing that when you, Give you a lot of these voters. They say I just want someone who can be Trump, but also what that means to each individual. Voter is quite different. Right, and it's also like I will try that whole question. I think I've read about this, for the whole question would be stupid We know, which is, Obviously you want can be, can be. That's like stakes. What what's like? What's the point? No one picks can't be drunk, because what the the are we doing but you're right how people interpret what that means. Is we different for everyone, and so
it? It is not particularly instructive of how voters will choose right just because they want the most electable candidate me there's a certain model of candidate based on policy positions or appearance or background or whatever else that will dictate that it just means that they want to win the election right. I mean I do it in using like in this piece. There was someone there's a guy. I interviewed who said that you know he's leaning. It's Kamala Harris and he said she represents someone who can win. I think her ethnicity and the fact that she's, a woman is a great contrast to the fellow we have in the office for lack of a better way of saying it. I think seeing her across the debates-
in him will make him pee his pants and I'm okay with that CJ those funny, but it's like that, is that that man is approaching the race with electability in mind, but his notion of electability is Kamel. Harris offers the best contrast to Donald Trump. So I do think it's interesting that for like electability can be important to voters, but what they decide is electable is is, is vastly different across different kind of people, and I do think like as if your concerned about who can actually be trump. You should think about like who do I want to debate stage with him right who, when Trump attacks and says something horrible about the person, how are they going to react? How is that person going to handle adversity on the campaign trail right? The first time, something something bad happens, whether it's from Donald Trump or analysis I mean for Barack Obama sort of a defining moment in the eight race was after the Reverend Wright tapes came out. How did he respond to that right? That was a real crisis in our campaign and do you respond to that by you know doing
interviews and trying to ignore the issue and move on and being afraid of it, or do you do what he did, which is like get? You know, write an entire speech about race relations in America meant deliver that which is a very honest sort of greedy speech that he deliberate and I think I'm figuring out as you're looking at the candidates like who can really who has that extra gear when the going gets, tough and Donald Trump attacks in the Republican, Super Pacs attack or something in their past comes up or you know whatever might have who can really stand up in a way that is authentic and real, an honest with people, and can you know and can stand up that way like? I think, that's that's, probably an important consideration. Yeah. I think we know what it takes: mathematically to win the White House based on the Electoral college, which is you have to at the same time excite the democratic base and turn out new voters. People who've,
I doubt the process before inspire them to get involved and persuade a number of voters who are in the middle. Also me there in the middle in this ideologically, I mean that they were Obama. Voters in twelve became trump voters, and sixteen or Romney voters in twelve became clean and sixteen you have to be able to inspire and persuade either or you lose it Yes, that is the Math Electoral College, were you need Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and some combination of states to get to two hundred and seventy, they're going to like? Should you could actually choose between those two? But it's not, and so I can. I do not know who the candidates will be able to do that passed, but you want to find someone who has the most probably appearing inspiring message. Yeah I mean when I asked our our friend David plus this way back when when I was doing the wilderness, he said you know, you need a candidate who is going to inspire young kids to work twenty four hours a day. So
in days a week because they're so inspired by this person and that person can still compete anywhere. Talk to anyone go to places that you know, Democrats might not usually go, and you need someone who can do both of those things and that's what he said way back when and you know we'll see we'll see who can who can measure up. Okay. When we come back, we will have John, it's view with John Legend HI there Mereka is brought to my policy. Yes, this month March. Madness will distract millions of Americans from their jobs and family. I got the a bracket. Yes, so my blanket, you know what dilemma over. I was thinking about this yesterday. Now we finally have a tv remember. Last year we didn't have a tv anyway. Now we have multiple use, multiple, this bad boy. But now or is it me that patriot,
the team in such a climate. How can a humble life insurance company, like policy genius, hope to get their message across by using lots? Gonzaga they're, very good even though they know, as much about B Ball's it does? Well again, I giving surprised trench into these ads. Are here it goes policy geniuses. He waited to buy life insurance online they've assembled. Dream team of insurance companies and put them in one place for you to compare once you apply. The team policy genius will handle all the paperwork and red tape. No commission sales agents, no hidden fees, just the perfect, assist from a whole squad of The peas well lu How are you that's what it says? Are you man, this ad hoc, not exactly a verbal lay up, not a slam. Dunk huh aka aka what everything basketball, NBA Nba Jam in policy genius doesn't just make life insurance easy. They all make it easy to find the right home insurance, auto insurance or disability insurance there quadruple threat, which is a basketball term. We just made up so
the life insurance unnecessary roughness make a fast break. The policy just calm down here- quotes in minutes, but don't travel too far. You know policy, comparing life insurance is a lot easier than listening to this ad, probably was swish, see what yes, a switch or was it Swoosh Lovett solutions? What Nike does that's the Nike thing I notice forbade am that's what it said. I said: switch at the exact moment. They wrote swish for you. Wild Ann is always positive is brought to you by the cash that brought you by the cash out fast as any of these way to pay people back or how to be able to pay. You back pod saves the code Spencer. Is the code Spencer isn't reels the code five dollars goes to you. Five dollars goes to planned Parenthood Action fund, which will help planned parenthood facilities all across the country. Anyone else got anything to say about the cash app. We love it. It's a slam, Dunk John Swish, swish swish goes the dynamite with the cash
he is an Emmy Grammy, Oscar and Tony Award winning Musician and the founder Free America campaign to transform America's criminal justice system. His new song is preach any also releasing a documentary series on Youtube called can't just preach that shares the store community leaders and activists. The first episode out now features Sabrina. Fault in the mother of Trayvon Martin John Legend, hello, John welcome back to pod. Save America had to be back. So, let's start with this. You want an academy award for Glory yeah Lady Gaga, s one academy award for the song shallow. Yes, have considered combine forces capturing that magic and doing a duet with Bradley Cooper, a song called shallow glory shall glory that could be cool. That is fine. U, n, Brad yeah at piano, I was so impressed with Brad's turn as as a as a singer, you know, yeah we were at a party together, and he was telling me that he was going to do this. Film and uh
you're going to have someone sing for you and looked looked me on like How dare you? How dare you there is a There and impressive there is as you can rely on more than how many actors just want to be sing How many singers want to be actors, I think, is more actors that want to be singers and vice versa, but I think most actors, do sing, because you know there's musical theater, obviously, and if you're you know, drama club or whatever in high school, you probably gonna Some. And so most actors really comedians to Monica median sing uh John. I do not saying I hit puberty and cried on stage during performance of the wizard of OZ, and that was it alright. Right. So in your new song preach you talk about turning off your phone 'cause, it hurts your chest, not literally. It's all metaphor
metaphorically, but I think a lot of people feel addicted to their phones right now, not sure whether they're getting a lot out of it. You feel that way. Well, I think it's in the back and for sometimes you're like really into it, and you want to catch up on the news. You want to listen to pop save America, our love it or leave it sure- and you know, there's there's all this information and entertainment on your phone and then also it's like. Sometimes you want to shut it off, because there's so it's bad news and if, if All the news is being aggregated on these sites, on social media. It can Garage is probably more bad news than there was before, but we just have a place, we can concentrate it all right and you know it just makes you feel like everything's bad all the time, so you've actually got involved
in a prison ever way around issues like a moment for which was just a big victory in Florida. Huge victory store voting rights to people convicted of crimes, yes, and our next. Our next video in our series of features, Desmond, Mead and does not meet, was the leader of that organization for Rights, restoration coalition. That was the main driver behind that amendment happening at such a huge victory. I think we shouldn't you don't underestimate how important that might be for two thousand and twenty having one point. Four any more eligible voters in the Elect in Florida, and they should have always been there, but I'm glad made it so that they are able to be there now. What did you learn from that victory as your continued works around sake, know prosecutors and local district offices. Well, I think the bottom I think you guys learned it as you were doing and doing your work here in California trying to flip the house, and I think
it learned that you know we're in a moment right now where we can take advantage of the enthusiasm that we have. We can take advantage the the backlash to Trump's awfulness can take advantage of all these things, and mobilize the electorate to make some real change happen and as best rating as the news can be. We have reason optimism, because a lot of these things that we fought for in the last few years have, only one and we see the differences we see. The difference is when we Watch these hearings on television and we have a house that will actually hold the White House accountable. That is a huge difference and that's because of organizing that's because of people running for office. That previously might not have that's because some people voting at higher rates and they had in the past. All these things happened because we put in the work- and that makes me optimistic so as much as we get frustrated by the news as much as we get frustrated by you know what seems like a
complete Shitshow in Washington, have to realize that this work putting in, is actually paying off. So what are you watching right now? You know you just you can try to get people to pay attention to district attorney racism. Are there any individual state or local prosecutor races that you're really paying attention to well I just did a fundraiser for Kim Fox is running for reelection in Chicago she's running for state's attorney in Chicago and she's, been doing a lot of work to hold the the office more accountable, doing a lot more work when it comes to collection and data analysis been really Reacting with the activists in the community to make sure they're there accountable. So I think she's great and we're going to support her again and then one of the things we're looking at that's, not a district attorney's race, but is important on the state and local level. Is the criminal justice so in New York we've been, working with lawmakers there trying to make sure they do the right thing when it comes to Bell where
or I'm in other issues that I think will be important for criminal defendants in New York. You know you've talked about be. Bar by people like Harry Belafonte and Paul Robeson. I think that musicians, celebrities who get involved in activism? Sometimes they get a bad rap. Sometimes they deserve a bad rap for not taking it seriously. You are somebody who is your voice and establishing credibility. What have you learned about that about being somebody who is for primarily known as a performer, trying to sort of prove that you're not just doing on a large that you're actually trying to get involved and use your platform to actually make change. I think we have to be humble about what we know, what we don't know, and I I think we have to be really good at listening to activists good at listening to people who are really affected by these issues. So I speak. A lot people who were formally incarcerated. I speak a lot with people who have been
getting in the criminal justice reform area for a long time and so humble about what I know and what I don't know, and also really good about making sure we uplift. The that are really out there during the war. On the ground and so I feel like my position as someone who has fame and and has a platform where people see what I post listen to what I sing or listen I say I try to make sure I lift up other people's voices when I have the opportunity to do so. So Thank you. Melody is key when celebrities get involved in these things. As much as we are stars, we were famous, we are heard by a lot of people. I think we have to make sure we use our platform especially in these issues. Where we're not experts, we have to use our platform to uplift the experts. So I want to talk about.
Something that to the news right now. You've said you have no reason not to believe Michael Jackson's accusers in the document that just came out. We've grappled with the work of living artists like Woody Allen like R Kelly you've been outspoken about R Kelly questions around working with artists, like that enriching artists, credibly accused of serious crime, You know we're not talking about Michael Jackson, who's gone, and I think it now becomes a question about the art itself and the Muse itself yeah and it's hard, I think, especially with Michael, because his music irreplaceable, it's not like. There's you know, yeah other something that from that moment, that captures that moment in a way that Michael's music does. But I think every individual is probably going to have to grapple as a listener as a consumer as someone who can decide whether or not to play a certain song in their house or at parties or whatever it is, I think everybody is going to have to decide on their own, what what's too much for them and it all right after you watch that documentary it was. It gave me a nightmare
first night I watched it was just like a really tough thing to watch and hearing the the graphic tales of of what they're alleging it was just a difficult and- and you know I think, everybody's going to have to decide whether that's too much for them. You know, does art exists and amazing and beautiful, and it still is music- doesn't stop being amazing. But you know people have to decide whether they can separate them. You know, I think, that the sequences of rewarding artists, have done bad. Things gets swap in this conversation, but the music itself, Michael Jackson, is gone yeah that exactly so, he won't profit from you streaming his songs. Now, right I mean it's family will, but they it's not their fault. He did what he was left to do, and so you know people have to decide just how do
field right. How does it make you feel to listen to someone if you think they might have done the things that they accused of? How does it make you feel? And if, if it's still okay with you, then you know, I think, that's an acceptable thing to think. But you know it's it's it's gonna be two: for some people. I think at a certain point, long from now the musical just be the music yeah people won't know about. Michael. I read a good article. That said part of the reason why people feel the need to cancel these artists in mute. These artists is because they they've gotten away with it in the justice system and if we felt like they had faced any consequences in the justice system, I think we fill the need as much to punish them on our own, because you know we would felt like They had some accountability for their actions and so the reason why people feel the need to mute Well then, cancel people and all this stuff is because they feel like this is their only recourse, because the justice system is failed to hold them accountable, but it's
a practical thing to where you don't want to give money. Yes, I'm here will turn around and use that money to silence people in her absolutely absolutely and if you're, giving them money giving the more power to, like you said, silence, people and to evade justice. Let's about twenty and twenty. You know we try to not be totally directed by we're, focusing on yeah we're focusing. Local district attorney race is we're focusing on making sure when they were doing all of that good work presuppose who you like I really haven't decided and- and I I open, I'm like really going to pay attention to people are saying- and I I take care about how people perform on the stage. I want to see them in debates. I want to see them deal with controvert, I want to see them deal with their past record and how they answer. Questions about that, and I I'm not really going to predict how that will turn out
because I really don't know I've supported some of these. For Senate before, like comma and Cory, Booker and care Gillibrand and and and know several other folks. Obviously I supported Obama and Biden and if Biden runs, you know, I will have supported him in the past, but you know I want to see how these folks perform, and I I want someone to be progressive, but I want them to be a progressive that can win in that. Can make an uh an inspiring appeal to the people, an can capture the public imagination and all those things that candidates do and so we'll see. So a lot of these candidates have been grappling with parts of their past that that are more conservative than where the party is right. Now that's been gilibrand on issues like guns and immigration. It's been true of Booker around. Wall Street and members company. That's true, Connellan issued on criminal justice reform,
It seems to me a lot of what we're seeing right now, our candidates trying to prove they're actually as progressive as their platforms I think my advice to all of them would be, if you done some things in the past but you don't agree with now. Just explain: why explain why you were there then an explain how you've evolved, and I think people just I need to be honest, and they want you to be reflective and they want to be inspiring and she say what you're going to do now. What are you going to do now? What will you fight for Now- and I think there's no reason to office. Jade or try to you know kind of I about you know what happened before. Just be honest about where you were and beyond, about your progression since then. It's fine people change, but we want you to be authentic and in discussing what led you to change yeah. So before I let you go. You tell us a little bit documentaries that are coming out now.
And and why people should be interested in them. So I think, like we were, about before. There's a reason for us to be optimistic, and there are people out there doing great work that you know as much as frustrated with the news. We can be happy about some of these things and and see that things can really happen, and so we've been making videos trying to highlight examples of people out there making a difference. So can inspire more people to do it, and so The series is called can't just preach and me, and we include several community leaders who all of them is really have really responded to tragedy. Sabrina Fulton, of course, responded to Trayvon Martin being shot. Desmond, Meade, responding to his own incarceration and and the pain he do during that time in addiction and all the other things he was dealing with by creating this Florida rights rush asian coalition in and making amazing and in Florida, and we highly several other people doing the same thing, and then we also connect
doers in our listeners to opportunity them to volunteer. So we partnered with volunteer match to help people say you know if I care this issue and want to get involved in my community. Here's a way for me to do so. I'm last question: we took a photo together. Yes at a fancy party, yes and he did repeatedly omitted it out. Yes, by the fake news media, vanity, fair, and you saw that I had been cropped out here. So how did you feel well to me, it felt your pain, because all all all you saw me was this: look up my head and I I feel bad. You know that both of us to jails who who are it on both sides? Absolutely, and we were both, they omitted from the core of the photo an we both deserve better than that, and it didn't reflect the joy,
The conversation that we had was what I thought that was the worst part. I mean it was relaying the joy. Yes, that's the whole point of a photo to capture the joy. It was our favorite conversation of the night. It was a you know me you to read a road and Chrissy, and we had such great conversation, and it was just a shame that tragedy had to come out of that joy yeah. Now true, and it's a reminder that, like two steps forward, one step back on all of these issues, John Legend, thank you so much for being here, the song is preached. The documentary series is can't just preach check both out there, both fantastic great to have you
every day I wake and everything is broken. Turning off my phone just to get out a little bit in history is repeating turning off my phone 'cause, it's hurting in my chest, thanks John Legends for joining us today, and we will see you next week by everyone in violence is book by the book. So here's the thing go: get it by
Transcript generated on 2019-11-10.