FROM Noah Bierman
All pomp and circumstance with Trump's declarations? Republicans hold the White House and both houses of Congress, and President Trump says big things are happening. But, so far, they’re not. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. The tax bill he calls “ahead of schedule” hasn’t even been sent to Congress. His declaration of “Infrastructure Week” was more pomp and circumstance than the major bill-signing it appeared to be.
What a "Speaker" McCarthy Would Mean for California Republican Congressman Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield made it official today. He wants the Speakership, when John Boehner gives up the job at the end of next month. McCarthy said today he wants to "lead the fight" for conservatism and heal the deep divisions in the Republican caucus. Noah Bierman covers Capitol Hill for the LA Times .
Which Party Will Control the Senate? There's no doubt the Republicans will still run the House after next week's election, but control of the Senate has both parties biting their nails. With Mitt Romney in the White House, his party would run two branches of government, bolstered by a sympathetic Supreme Court. If Barack Obama is re-elected, a Democratic Senate might be a buffer against the Congress, with a chance of making the Court less conservative. Razor-thin, increasingly nasty campaigns are being fought out over abortion, the role of government, party loyalty and bipartisanship. We hear about crucial races still too close to call.
A Soldier's Mysterious Death in Afghanistan Ciara Durkin served in a finance unit in Afghanistan. Her family was first told she died "in action." Now the Army says she was killed by a single gunshot near a church. Sometime before she was killed, the Massachusetts National Guardswoman told her family that if anything happened to her, they should press for an investigation. Now, both Massachusetts Senators John Kerry and Ted Kennedy are demanding to know what happened, and an Army liaison has been with the family every day. Noah Bierman reports for the Boston Globe .
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
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.