FROM Heidi Przybyla
Are Congress' Extreme Politics Eroding Our Democracy? After the 2010 midterm elections, magazine writer Robert Draper saw big change was in the wind as Republicans prepared to use their new majority in Congress as the "point of the spear" against President Barak Obama. He embedded himself on Capitol Hill and interviewed 300 people, including 50 members of Congress, some as many as 15 times. The result is the new book, Do Not Ask What Good We Do , a title taken from a discouraged Congressman in 1796. With public approval at 14 percent, is this Congress more dysfunctional than those of the past? We speak with Draper and others.
Are Congress' Extreme Politics Eroding Our Democracy? Even some long-time Republicans are calling the current Congress the most dysfunctional since the Civil War. Public approval is 14 percent -- up from nine. What do Tea Party members have to do with it? Are they idealistic Mr. Smiths lost in Washington or another group of obedient servants to special interests? Are both parties helping plutocrats hijack the government, despite the priorities of most voters? How does this Congress compare to those of the past when it comes to addressing the urgent problems that face the American people?
In Janesville, WI, Middle America meets the new American dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn't prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. We hear what's happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.
Truth and Lies in Trumpland Donald Trump is using mis-information like no President has before him. It's an unprecedented challenge to the news media, and a potential threat to democracy. We hear how the "leader of all the people" is dividing Americans and confusing the rest of the world.