FROM Robert Blendon
Polarization Poisons Healthcare Debate Healthcare is one of the issues citied as most important by potential voters of both parties. Presidential candidates all trumpet their plans. But Democrats and Republicans sound as if they're in different worlds. One side advocates "universal healthcare" while the other warns against "government interference" and "socialized medicine." In last night's Democratic debate, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama had a nasty exchange about whose healthcare plan covers the most people. In his campaign, Republican Mitt Romney has moved away from a comprehensive healthcare plan he signed while Governor of Massachusetts. Comparisons between the US and British medical systems made by Rudy Giuliani in radio ads about his battle with prostate cancer have been attacked as inaccurate. Are candidates' plans as different as they sound? When the election finally is over, what are the chances of bridging the gap? Will necessary compromise fall victim to political polarization on Capitol Hill?
Further revelations into Russian involvement in 2016 election Last week's failure to "repeal and replace" Obamacare was an early setback for the Trump Administration. There may be long-term danger of a different kind in multiple investigations into ties with Russia among campaign workers, the White House staff and the Chief Executive himself. We look as some of the threads they're following.
Trump's travel ban and the long-term agenda The Trump Administration's revised travel ban may be good news for some visa holders and others, but it's still being challenged as unconstitutional. Some reporters call it the beginning of a long-term effort to change the demographic make-up of the United States.
America's top diplomat faces challenges in Asia Whatever happened to America's "pivot to Asia?" That's just one of the questions left hanging since Rex Tillerson's first trip there as Secretary of State. Is the Trump Administration hoping to change Foreign Policy or maintain the status quo?
Political appointments and the reshaping of the judiciary President Trump has the chance for a long-term impact -- not just on the US Supreme Court, but on the entire federal court system. And his nominees are likely to get the support of a massive spending campaign by donors who don't have to reveal their names. Can President Trump "pack" the federal court system?