FROM John Micklethwait
The America presidential nominee and the Russian strongman Donald Trump admires Vladimir Putin for what he calls "strong leadership" — especially compared to Barack Obama. The President says "strong leadership" means cronyism, corruption and censorship, while healthcare, education and the economy are in decline. But polls show many Republicans, once warned by Ronald Reagan about an "evil empire," now look more kindly on Russia under Putin’s iron-fisted control. W e talk with a reporter who interviewed Putin for two hours. What did he say about Donald Trump? What about trying to manipulate American voters? As Trump sings praises for Russia's leader, how strong is the appeal of Putin's authoritarian style to American voters?
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?
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.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?