Donald Trump has been busy issuing executive orders, with his move to ban immigration from a number of Muslim countries perhaps the most controversial. Mike and Jay look at this, as well as President Trump’s orders that froze government hiring, stopped foreign aid to groups providing abortion counseling, withdrew the US from the Trans Pacific Partnership, ordered the construction of a Mexico border wall, imposed a lengthy ban on lobbying for Trump appointees, and reshuffled the National Security Counsel to remove the Director of National Intelligence and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, while adding Trump advisor Steve Bannon.
The Guys also talk about vote fraud – only because President Trump refuses to let it go – and answer listener mail, some of which was in support of Jay, after a number of listeners criticized him for being not anti-Trump enough.
This week we catch up on listener mail, answering some great questions, including:
- What’s up with Jay’s unwillingness to criticize Donald Trump?
- Why does Mike support better relations with an awful regime like Cuba?
- Where do you Guys get your facts from, anyway?
This week the Guys start by discussing the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States. His inauguration speech was dark, depressing, and hyperbolic by normal presidential inaugural address standards, but Jay argues it was actually pretty restrained for a Trump speech. Mike and Jay also look at Trump’s historic unpopularity, the Democrats who skipped the inauguration, and the Women’s Marches held in protest of the Trump presidency. After that, they talk about the latest in Senate confirmation hearings and debate the wisdom of President Obama’s record number of commutations, including one for whistleblower / spy Chelsea Manning.
This week, Mike and Jay talk about the legacy of President Barack Obama. They discuss what presidential greatness means, whether ‘great’ presidents are something we should even hope for, Mike’s four-point criteria for measuring presidential success, Obama’s ‘Top 10’ achievements (according to Mike) and his biggest failures (according to Jay).
This week’s show starts off with Mike getting all misty-eyed about President Obama’s farewell speech. Unsurprisingly, Jay wasn’t quite so choked up. Mike contrasts what he sees as the grace and eloquence of the outgoing president with the decidedly different style of President-Elect Donald Trump, who recently held his first news conference since winning the election. Mike and Jay talk about Trump’s claim that CNN is fake news, his ethics plan, and his response to unverified allegations that his campaign may have been in collusion with the Russian government. Then it’s on to a look at Senate confirmation hearings of two of President-Elect Trump’s key cabinet nominees: Rex Tillerson and Jeff Sessions. Finally, the Guys talk about the Republicans ‘full speed ahead’ plan to repeal Obamacare, and the perils of trying to quickly replace it.
Mike interviews Pat Rosenstiel, from National Popular Vote, an organization working to ensure that the winner of the national popular vote for the presidency actually becomes president, something that hasn’t happened in two of the last five presidential elections. Mike and Pat discuss:
– how the system can be changed without a Constitutional amendment
– if this is a case of liberal sour-grapes
– how a national popular vote would affect campaigning
– whether NPV would make presidential election winners more legitimate
– the prospects for reform
This week, Mike and Jay start off by talking about the intelligence community’s now-released report on Russian hacking, which concluded that not only did the Russians attempt to influence the presidential election, but that they favored Donald Trump. The report was met with bipartisan acceptance in Congress, and even the President-Elect admitted that the Russians played some role (though he added that it had no effect on the election – a disputable claim).
After that, the Guys talk about the ongoing Trump transition, including the latest Trump appointments, his call to have Congress initially fund the Mexico border wall, the kickoff of the 116th Congress – including a very sketchy move on ethics that the House overturned after public condemnation – how Obamacare is likely to be repealed and whether it will be replaced, and how the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (one of Mike’s favorite federal regulatory agencies) is making TransUnion and Equifax pay for defrauding consumers.