FROM Bill Corcoran
America's National Parks under Pressure From Maine to California, America's most popular government program is in trouble, just as vacation season gets under way. Some 300 million people visit national parks, monuments and other federally protected places every year. Despite increased appropriations, almost 400 of these may cut services to meet increasing costs, and managers at 12 of the most highly visited facilities say they can't meet their budgets. Meantime, Congress has told the Department of Energy and Bureau of Land Management Congress to speed approval of "energy corridors" to bring gas and electricity to the booming Southwest. On this archived edition of To the Point, will Yellowstone, Bryce Canyon, Shenandoah, and Acadia offer travelers what they expect? Do energy corridors threaten protection of parks and other public lands for future generations?
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 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?
What is Trump's plan for Middle East peace? On his first foreign tour, President Trump has promised "peace" between Israel and the Palestinians. Are there any details for re-starting talks that have been stalled for the past three years?
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.