FROM Thomas Kaplan
GOP budget proposal paves way for massive tax cuts In a party-line vote – except for Rand Paul of Kentucky, Senate Republicans passed the framework for a budget last night, but a detailed spending plan will come later. The objective was to protect a massive proposed tax cut from a Democratic filibuster. Thomas Kaplan, who covers Congress for the New York Times , says the move paves the way for a massive tax overhaul.
Is It Time to Retreat from the Sea? Forget spending billions in tax dollars to rebuild coastal developments destroyed by Superstorm Sandy. New York's Governor Cuomo says he has a better idea. Buy up vulnerable properties, restore the beaches to their natural condition, and enjoy a publicly owned resource until the inevitable happens again. The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office doesn't go that far, but it is warning that climate change is one of the highest risks to financial stability. Are the beaches the first place to prepare for the consequences of climate change? Where will it happen next?
New York State Passes First Gun Bill Since Newtown Last night, New York’s Republican-controlled State Senate approved new gun controls by a vote of 43 to 18. Today, the Assembly—led by Democrats—is expected to go along and Governor Cuomo is ready to sign the package into law.
Gay Couples Rush to Exchange Vows in New York In New York, a bruising, multi-year legislative battle ended last month when the State Senate approved same-sex marriage by a narrow margin, instantly doubling the number of Americans who live in states where gay and lesbian couple can wed. Couples from all over the state, as well as a hundred from other states, rushed to wed Sunday. Over a thousand ceremonies were celebrated in New York City alone, where temperatures were high, but the mood was even higher. After an 11-year engagement, one couple wed beside Niagara Falls, a minute past after midnight. Thomas Kaplan reports on politics for the New York Times .
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.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Trump's 'America First' goes missing abroad In the Middle East, President Trump is changing some policies of the Obama Administration—and reversing his own campaign attacks on Islam as a religion that "hates us." We hear about his visit to Saudi Arabia and what's at stake for the rest of his foreign excursion.