FROM Ken Gross
Will Ethics Reform Bill Clean Up Washington? After a series of scandals led to fines and imprisonment of lobbyists and members of Congress last year, the new Democratic majority promised reform. This week, after closed-door debates and compromises, the House passed an ethics bill by a vote of 411 to 8. The Senate takes it up next. Provisions include bans on gifts and limitations on travel provided by lobbyists, disclosure of "earmarks" and reporting by lobbyists who raise $15,000 or more by "bundling" smaller donations from various people.
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?
Will the Senate write a healthcare bill in secret? While Democrats and Republicans argue White House relations with Russia, another question is being decided behind closed doors: who gets help buying health insurance and who doesn't? We hear how the pros and cons are being shrouded in secrecy.
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?
Venezuela spirals into economic and political chaos Venezuela, a country whose potential for prosperity is unmatched, finds itself on the verge of civil war. What sustains the repressive government? With time running out, guest host León Krauze looks at what the international community can do to pull the country from the edge of collapse.