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FROM THIS EPISODE

Just four months before the November election, Barack Obama is an unknown quantity to millions of voters. Does he share the values of most Americans? What about campaign finance and wiretaps without warrants?  Does he represent a new kind of politics or more of the same? Also the Supreme Court issues several key rulings as its term winds down, and accomplishing an "impossible dream" will require trade-offs in Florida's Everglades.


Photo: Jeff Haynes/Getty Images

The Audacity of Hope

Barack Obama

Producers:
Gary Scott
Katie Cooper
Frances Anderton

Making News High Court Issues Key Rulings as Term Winds Down 5 MIN, 43 SEC

The US Supreme Court ruled today that the death penalty for raping a child is unconstitutional if the child is not killed. It also cut punitive damages in the Exxon Valdez oil spill from $2.5 billion to $507 million. David Savage reports on the court for the Los Angeles Times.

Guests:
David Savage, Los Angeles Times (@latimes)

Main Topic Obama: A Transcendent Figure or the Conventional Politician? 36 MIN, 51 SEC

Despite many months of campaigning and hours of TV exposure, Barack Obama remains a puzzle to millions of potential voters. Is he a high-minded idealist with the vision and the capacity to get America back on track, or another Machiavellian politician who just wants to win? We hear about core values, the flip-flop on public financing and fighting the unfounded rumors. Can he win over skeptics with his oratorical skills?  Is he in need of a Big Idea?

Guests:
Dorothy Wickenden, Executive Editor, New Yorker
Steve Kornacki, Salon.com (@SteveKornacki)
Matthew Dowd, ViaNovo (@matthewjdowd)
Glenn Greenwald, Salon.com (@ggreenwald)

Reporter's Notebook Environmentalists Elated by Crist's Everglades Conservation Deal 6 MIN, 15 SEC

Environmentalists say it's a deal so big it wasn't even on their agenda. But Florida's Governor Charlie Crist has agreed to spend $1.7 billion to buy out the US Sugar Corporation, which pollutes the rivers that feed the Everglades. Environmentalists call today's announcement "monumental." It won't happen without some tradeoffs. John Kennedy covers politics and state government for the Orlando Sentinel.

Guests:
John Kennedy, Tallahassee Bureau Chief, Orlando Sentinel

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