FROM David Harsanyi
Divided Republicans and the Politics of Abortion There won't be a government shutdown this week, but there may only have been a postponement — as the fight continues over Planned Parenthood . At a hearing today, the group's president said, " Deceptively edited videos " are being used to support "outrageous accusations" about abortion and fetal tissue. Republicans insisted the organization does "bad things" with federal money, while Democrats renewed their charge of a "war against women." With GOP leaders under siege in both houses, the business of government could again become hostage to politics — possibly before the end of this year.
How Likely Is Another Government Shutdown? Congress has roughly 10 working days until the deadline to pass a budget — with time out for Jewish holidays and a speech by the Pope. The Iran nuclear deal, the Export-Import bank, the Highway Trust Fund, the debt limit and military spending are all waiting for action. But a single issue may get in the way, with tea party Republicans defying their own leaders unless Planned Parenthood is de-funded. If betting on politics was legal, the Washington Post says it would tell readers to, "Put some money on the government shutting down on October 1."
The flight bumping heard around 'round the world Recent video of a passenger forcibly removed from a United Airlines plane is a worst-case example of what's happened since consolidation into just four US-based carriers. Management seems to be tone-deaf to a decline in service — and even abuse — of passengers.
In Janesville, WI, Middle America meets the new American dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn't prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. We hear what's happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.