FROM Joe Wippl
How Much Spying Is Too Much? President Obama has told German Chancellor Angela Merkel he didn't know her cell phone was tapped by America's National Security Agency and that he's put a stop to it. All government leaders know that nations spy on their friends as well as their enemies, but they also know the key is not to get caught. Now, due to revelations by former contractor Edward Snowden, America's National Security Agency is being called "out of control." The NSA says that everyone does it, but that may not catch on. Some indignant members of Congress are demanding reform. Has eavesdropping technology outrun the law? Have revelations about the past damaged diplomatic relations with the powerhouse of the European Union? Is the biggest problem the spying or the leaks that revealed it?
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.