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?
The President and America's infrastructure: Bait and switch? President Trump's $1 trillion infrastructure proposal may not be what it seems. We look at the prospects for much-needed improvements in roads, bridges and airports.
Nationalism's appeal on both sides of the Atlantic Nationalism, Populism, concerns about immigration and outright racism are part of election campaigns from the US to Europe. We hear how today's election in Holland reflects the recent past and may forecast the future.
The 'deconstruction' of the administrative state President Trump has failed to fill high-level positions in important agencies — and some people he has named want to phase out the agencies they're supposed to lead. We look at the possible consequences for delivering services and providing security — and at top aide Steve Bannon's plans for "deconstructing the administrative state."