Barr Testimony, Immigration, Venezuela, Trump Sues Banks

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Mike & Jay open the show by talking about Attorney General William Barr’s testimony before the Senate and his refusal to testify before the House. Mike says that although he initially gave Barr the benefit of the doubt, it’s now clear that Barr is more interested in carrying water for the president than serving as an impartial arbiter of the law. Jay disagrees, feeling that Barr has been forthcoming with Democrats, who he believes are subjecting Barr to scrutiny for strictly political gain.

Next is a look at the Trump administration’s recent request for $4.5 billion dollars in emergency immigration funding as well as administration proposals to charge fees to asylum seekers and deny them work permits. Mike argues that while emergency funding is needed, it should be focused on hiring more immigration judges. Both Mike and Jay agree that there are potential problems with denying asylum seekers in the country work permits, and that if a fee is charged to asylum seekers, there should be a waiver process in place to ensure that those in clear danger are not prevented from seeking asylum.

After that is a discussion of the crisis in Venezuela, after the failure of opposition leader Juan Guaido’s attempt to oust President Nicolas Maduro (who many people, including Jay and Mike, see as illegitimate). Mike is very wary of US military involvement given the sad history of the United States in Central and South America, while Jay counters that it’s important to keep the military option on the table as well as to respond if the Russians or Cubans stage a significant military intervention of their own.

The show closes with an analysis of the Trump Organization’s lawsuits against several banks to prevent them from turning over Trump’s financial documents to Congress. Mike says that the law on this is clear – Congress has the right to these documents – but that the Trump strategy is to delay until after the 2020 elections. Jay doesn’t disagree, but feels that Congress’ legitimate investigatory authority might be somewhat more limited than Mike views it as being.

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4 thoughts on “Barr Testimony, Immigration, Venezuela, Trump Sues Banks”

  1. About Mike saying he’s used to being right, I remember Jay et Mike being on record about whether Hilary would run for president in 2020!

    1. If I recall correctly, I said she wouldn’t run and Jay said she would. ?

  2. I was really hoping to get an open discussion about politics without someone on the left NOT doing something so simple like name calling. It’s not here on this podcast. My LAST/FINAL podcast was when the guy on the left called Mitch McConnell a despicable person. Really? You had to go there? Are we adults or teenagers? The man on the right side just chuckled uncomfortably and went on. Your opinion of Mr McConnell had ZERO to do with the conversation but YOU, as a true lefty, you have to attack inside the discussion.

    1. Let’s, for a moment, set aside the ludicrous hypocrisy in trying to chastise a “true lefty” for attacking someone with insults when the leader of the Republican party, the sitting President, takes giddy delight in hurling pathetic, frequently vulgar insults at anyone he momentarily disagrees with. Let’s ignore too, your own impulse to start denigrating someone with labels.

      Mike (the “true lefty”) made it clear – not only in frequent discussions of McConnell in the past, but even in the context of this discussion – that he is not insulting Mitch McConnell himself. McConnell could be a lovely person in his personal life (I have my doubts, but who knows?)

      What was/is despicable is McConnell’s flagrant, shameless history of naked political opportunism and hypocrisy. Passionately wringing his hands in agony over Democrats supposedly not respecting the spirit of procedure when in opposition, only to then even more egregiously violate those laws himself when in power, and gloat about it. Offering mealy-mouthed obfuscation and distraction when asked to account for his contradictions. Even his two-faced endorsement of his own President. As a representative of the people and his party, McConnell has made it clear that he is despicable. Indeed, the curious irony of your outrage is that McConnell has celebrated his own duplicity and exploitation of the rules as being worthy of celebration. He likes being despicable. He sees it as a legitimate means of pushing his legislative agenda.

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