FROM Russell Berman
Heavy weather from the Gulf Coast to Washington, DC The worst rainstorm in American history will still be racking up billions in damages when Congress gets back from its summer recess on Tuesday. With less than a month left to raise the debt ceiling and pass a spending plan, as late as Tuesday President Trump threatened a shutdown if there's no border-wall money. Even if he backs away, the government could see its credit downgraded as emergency relief for victims of Harvey massively ups the ante. We hear about the upcoming political storm between the White House and Capitol Hill.
Cutting, squeezing, trimming -- and spending President Trump wants to cut government — except for Social Security and Medicare. At the same time, he wants to put people to work. So, a new infrastructure program might appeal to the Democrats, but Republicans say the money's not there without cutting those sacred entitlements. As Trump begins work on a so-called "skinny" budget, he finds himself bound by vague campaign promises that may turn out to be contradictory. Don't forget major cuts for wealthy taxpayers. We look at early efforts at assembling a financial puzzle — even when the pieces don't fit.
Minority Optimism and the American Dream The August jobs report is out. Unemployment is down to 5.1 percent, but far fewer jobs were created than expected—and the stock market is reacting. But some Americans are bullish on our country’s future: minorities. A recent poll shows that blacks and Latinos are far more optimistic about the “American Dream” than their white counterparts. Which might seem counterintuitive, given the heightened racial tensions in America.
Janesville and the 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. On this Memorial Day rebroadcast of To the Point, we hear what’s happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.
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.