1 Episode results for "Sarah Florus"

Will the Mueller Report Shift Public Trust in American Institutions?

The Takeaway

33:33 min | 2 years ago

Will the Mueller Report Shift Public Trust in American Institutions?

"Trust. You are now on the inside. I like to call circle trust trust. You don't use big words. You don't understand news consumers have gone into their corners for who do you? Trust of a plenty. Amount of money. Trump what we have to begin to do is look to ourselves but given up why and trusting in? This is the takeaway. I'm Tanzania Vega. And trust is on our minds today special counsel, Robert Muller's investigation into Russian interference in the two thousand sixteen election is over and President Donald Trump and Republicans are claiming victory Democrats on the other hand are pushing for the Justice department to release the full Mullah report because as of now we've only seen the attorney general summary. But what about you now that the special counsel's investigation has wrapped up? How are you feeling about our country's institutions? Here's what you had to say. Gene, oregon. Miami. This is Greg Johnson from mililani Hawaii. It's reassuring to know even for those of us that don't like Trump that they're still fair impartial and honest forms of our government. I no longer trust the major media outlets which hype the collusion myth for two years. And now, they're unfold Jedi institutions only work when we have a balance system where divisiveness and money don't get to. I'm absolutely convinced. If there's no truth in politics are lower for my trust any way of government ever since the war gate case, which I lived through the first time in my seventy seven years. I don't have faith in the system, and that lack of faith has been growing in nineteen fifty eight the Pew Research Center found that about seventy three percent of Americans said they could trust the federal government all or most of the time. But in two thousand seventeen just eighteen percents at the same. Things. Don't look much better. When it comes to public confidence in the media last year, Georgetown, University assess the public's confidence in twenty major institutions, and here's what they found. Democrats ranked the press seventh out of twenty Republicans place the media dead last joining me now to add some context to those numbers as Margaret Sullivan media columnists at the Washington Post. Welcome back, Margaret, thank you very much Tenzin a-. And also with us is Huck a law professor at the university of Chicago Z's. Thanks so much for being with us aren't phones evil. So let's start with you. As is the completion of the mullahs report and example of our country's institutions working properly, and what I would love if you could explain here is the difference between procedure and politics. I think the Miller report is going to be a missed opportunity and Thames of rebuilding trust in our institutions. The Miller report was intended to establish the truth of whether that was Russian interference. In the two thousand sixteen election, and whether members of the Trump campaign, we're involved and we've seen both of those things which would doubts it by the president have been established. By by the Miller reports the reason I say it's going to be a missed opportunity is that the policies in response to the investigations completion has aimed not just at vindicating the president. But at costing doubt upon the motives, if those who sought the investigation in the first place, and that I think is going to further erode trust in both the media that reported on the Muller investigation and also in the FBI and the Justice department are key Lauren fulsome institutions, Margaret, I want to bring you in here. Because yesterday as the report or should I say the summary of the report was being debated online fella game of telephone. We had the report itself, which no one's actually seen than we had a summary of the report, then that summary was then interpreted by people who are interpreting the interpretation, what do you think of how the major national media? Outlets covered the investigation and is conclusion with the usual flaws and foibles of the news media. I'm afraid I think that when the summer when when attorney general bars summary of the report was disseminated. It was jumped on, you know, there was so much anticipation. What does the overall Muller reports say that the summary was probably accepted with too much credulity in the initial hours and resulted in some headlines that the major news media outlets have been backing off from ever since, you know, the idea that President Trump was completely as he says, you know, completely and totally vindicated and exonerated is actually not the case the report, even according to bar does say that in terms of obstruction of Justice. It does not exonerate him. I mean, that's one of the few things that we know for sure because it's a direct a quote from from the report, so. So I think that you know, as always in the initial moments after a breaking news event. We don't always nail it down and get it. Right. And then it sometimes takes a little time to sort it out. But meanwhile, it's being interpreted and touted politically, and that's an issue. And also one thing that's come up a couple of times here, including in your column is how much the public was interested in this report, and in this story, and I tend to think that the bar should not be necessarily us. The media being told what to report on based on what people find interesting versus news. What how do we figure that out? I mean, if they're not interested are we doing too much? So, you know, these things don't need to be mutually exclusive. We don't need to say we're either going to cover an important government investigation or we're going to cover affordable housing, you know, healthcare and the economy, we can actually do both. It is a question of of priority. I think you can make a reasonable argument. That we the media have paid far too much attention to the Mahler investigation. It's been very important, and certainly very interesting. But it probably should not have been the huge preoccupation that it has been to the exclusion of other things as we mentioned at the top of the show, a Georgetown University confidence poll, why do you think our public trust in our political leaders so low I mean, we saw of course, they were partisan splits. Democrats felt held the president tight slightly higher esteem than Republicans did. But at the end of the day, what is going on just to responsibly that migrants at fest that remembers that the president douse head that that was Russian interference with the election and the molar establish though that doesn't seem to be a trivial, and it goes to this question of how trust has been declining in the United States. I think that this to prices at what the first is a distinctly American one in which you have one political posse since the nine thousand nine hundred. Describing the federal government asked the source of the problem rather than as a potential solution to important public policy problems forty years if that kind of anti-government rhetoric has had deep effects on both sides of the partisan isle. The second dynamic, which is global rather than distinct to the United States. We've is that since at least the financial crisis of two thousand and two thousand and nine we've seen in excel arising sense that government doesn't said the general body of people, but Roth R protects the interests of economic and political elites, and that sense of disenfranchisement in Thames at weather government, protecting you has had an important corrosive influence upon people's identification with government and market. I wanna I wanna just ask you turning pivoting a little bit back to the media's role here in how it really impacts our trust in the government and political figures one thing that is concerning to me is how many people get there. News from cable news, full disclosure. I've worked at CNN in the past. But what's interesting is? How more political operatives are being hired by news outlets? Blurring the line. I think between what's actual news in what political punditry how do we fix that? So one of the things that I always like to say in these discussions is that we need to be a little bit careful when we talk about the media what on earth does that mean? And what does it mean in the minds of people who are being asked about their trust in the media? Are we talking about cable news? Are we talking about the New York Times Saturday Night Live, you know, something else or some amalgamation of these things? So we need to be really careful about that. You know, when CNN hired of a recently, Sarah Florus who had been Jeff Sessions spokesperson until very recently and called her political editor I objected to that. I I mean, I can imagine putting someone like that on the air as talker as a as an opinionated. But when you say. Say they're a political editor who you would imagine would be directing coverage. I think that's a problem. They have changed that sense. But you know, you're right. There's always been a revolving door and the lines do get blurred. It'd be interesting to know it as things, but I do think that that's part of what what erodes trust as your thoughts on that. And also, do you think that where do we go with what impact will this distrust in institutions play going forward? I don't think it'd be distrust in institutions has going anywhere tickly as long as we have one political party that plays the called of governmental distrust, ASA key move in. It's rhetorical. Also. And I fully agree with market that we ought to treat different parts of the media differently. That was a study about ten years ago and the American comics revue, which countries leading economic review that showed that being exposed to Fox News shifted people's partisan preference about. Two or three points on one hundred point spectrum. Right. And it and it showed this by an interesting mess. Logical device. That's not relevant here that that finding I think is tremendously important because it demonstrates that capacity off a news network that is all Kanye's around partisan principles to shift the understanding of the public in ways that are entirely predictable. And I don't think that you would see any effects of that kind with all the full GMs off of media outside of cable news, including I would add things like bright ball or internet based on uses. Yeah. I mean, you know, we we we have a lot of work to do in the media, but one of the most important roles, we have is watchdog journalism and accountability journalism. And I think the more we stress that and tell our story to the public the better off will be and the more we can rebuild trust. As do you think? Either party. Here has any. Incentive to rebuild public trust in the country's institutions. And sadly, we've got a minute left for that deep question. The problem is is that the Democrats have procedure and the Republicans for their party. And it's hard to see how the nation ends up winner in that contest. You know? I I don't think that that's at the top of anybody's agenda is is rebuilding trust. I think that we're really backed into our our partisan echo chambers. I think the the parties have their priorities, which are political ones. And I don't really see anybody thinking about that very hard. What about the ads I'm thinking, for example, CNN came out with an ad campaign. A television ad campaign. These are not cheap. These take a lot of time. Do those you have any impact. Or is this just there? There's too much gapped assume at this point. I mean, I think it's useful for media organizations to tell their stories to say this is what we're about. We're trying to get to the truth. We are fact-based. This is our job. Our job is not to prosecute crimes, but to uncover facts, I think. The more we can take people behind the curtain. I don't know if you can do that in an ad campaign with an apple and an orange or whatever it was. But you know, I think saying that we're about facts is helpful. These hug is a law professor at the university of Chicago. And Margaret Sullivan is a media columnist at the Washington Post and the former public editor for the New York Times. And we thank you both so much for your time. Thanks for having us. While the department of Justice has closed the book on Robert Muller's investigation. The democrat controlled house of representatives is ramping up its investigations into the Trump campaign, the president's business and his inaugural committee. Republicans on the other hand are rallying behind the president who says he's been exonerated. So how will this new narrative affect the politics of the Democrats agenda? Well, Representative Eric swale. Well, is a democrat representing this part of San Francisco Bay area in the US house of representatives. And he's a member of the house intelligence and judiciary committee, congressman swallow. Welcome to the takeaway, thanks for me on. What are your thoughts on attorney general bars letter? Do you see bars letter as a quote unquote, exoneration that could slow down the houses, aggressive, investigatory agenda? I do not, and as you pointed out, this is the far opinion. And we want to see the Muller report the bar opinion is four pages long. And it describes with just eighty four words from Bob Muller's report an investigation that took almost two years had twenty eight hundred subpoenas five hundred search warrants thirty seven indictments and six guilty pleas. So I imagine there's a lot more that we are not yet seeing and I don't think we can reach any conclusions until we see all of the underlying conduct that Bob Muller reviewed. Let's talk about that congressman because on MSNBC yesterday. You said, quote, I stand by what I said about seeing evidence of collusion, if he meeting the president has a problem with that he consume me, congressman, whatever. Is there of that claim? Well, you have a president who went on stage and said after the Russians were undermining us and interfering in our campaigns. He said Russia, if you're listening, you'll be rewarded if you hack Hillary Clinton's emails, his sons, his son took a meeting with the Russians where they offered dirt on Hillary Clinton his national security adviser after the president was elected told the Russians to not retaliate with sanctions, and that we would actually ease the sanctions against them. So you see evidence of collusion. I will accept Bob Muller's findings that that evidence does not reach the proof beyond a reasonable doubt standard, which is the highest standard in the law, but proof beyond a reasonable doubt is not a more likely than not standard. It's much much higher than that. And so I think we should still be concerned if there's conduct by the president and his team that was a willingness to work with the foreign adversary like the Russians, and we should see all being heavy Democrats put. Much faith in Muller or have they relied too much on speculation of collusion versus waiting for the report itself, which I'll remind our listeners once again, none of us have actually seen. No, we were concerned that the campaign the transition in the president were drawing uncomfortably close to a foreign adversary like Russia, and we just wanted the Muller report to follow all the evidence. And and it did. And so we we achieved that and that's a good thing for the country. Now, we need to see what evidence he did find it. Again, there's a difference between being a non colluding criminal, which is all we know Robert Muller has said about Donald Trump, and whether there is conduct of wrongdoing that the president is team engagement what the Russians that we already know just from what's been publicly reported in. What has ultimately been acknowledged by the Trump team that they did take actions that most people would consider wrong in their dealings with the Russians. The Democrats and many other folks are pushing for the full Muller report a couple of questions for you on that is that a viable strategy for the public is at grant. Or is it grandstanding? For the Democratic Party. It's important for national security. So we we have on the intelligence committee a national security mission out to protect against any counterintelligence threats. Meaning are there US persons who are compromised by foreign adversary? We wanna see that piece of the Mola report. Because again, we already know that Russian agents were meeting with Trump officials we want. So we wanna know what was what existed that has not been publicly revealed, and that we should be concerned about and then as it relates to obstruction of Justice, again, no one in our country is above the law in the House Judiciary committee has a role to play to make sure that even if the president's appointed attorney general has cleared him of obstruction of Justice. He is not yet been cleared by a constitutionally, equal branch of government, the United States Congress. And so the rule of law still has to mean something in our country, and we can only fully hold the president accountable or clear, the president is the attorney general has if. We're able to see the full report in terms of being able to see the full report we understand that even if it's made public. There are some portions of it that could be redacted because they were Gregory testimony, they're sensitive, etc. But the big question, I have congressman is how will congress make it happen? So that the public does see this report what power does it have to make that happen. It's gonna happen. Tennessee know, the president is outnumbered. Now two years ago. I wouldn't be so confident, but the American people when they went to the polls in November of Oded to put a balance of power on what they saw were a number of abuses of power. And so we have a subpoena power that we didn't have before. And we have a judiciary that will back up. So the president is outnumbered. It's just a matter of. When will we see every word every sentence every comment every period? You've also appeared on a memo congressman issued Monday by President Trump's reelection campaign as one of six current and former government officials accused by the campaign of make. Being quote outlandish false claims without evidence your response to that memo. The only person who has lied about Russia is Donald Trump. And I challenge Donald Trump if he thinks I've made false statements Sumi, I'm confident that I'll win I'm also confident that he won't do it, and you can deduce from that what that means about his relationships with the Russians. Congressman we at the top of the show. We basically took a look at how the our listeners how the American public is feeling about the lack of trust in our institutions that includes us the media. And of course, you all in congress and in Washington, and whether trust in our democracy is really a strong and what we're finding is. They're not a lot of people who feel that way is your do. You think to digital processes are working right now. I think what we can do to earn the faith of the people. We represent is to scrub our government of dirty maps in thirty money. I think that will solve most of the issues whether it's in the judiciary in the legislative branch or the executive branch. If people have faith that their representatives come from districts that are drawn by independent commissions who don't have a stake in the outcome. And that the outside unlimited money that pours into our elections will become transparent. I think we can reach consensus on the issues that the American people want us to reach consensus on and I think you'll have a better more responsive government. I think those are the two most important things that we can do and we can do those quickly. And we did that in HR one the Voting Rights Act update that we passed we just like to see the Senate take action on man, I've got to ask you have signal that you are considering jumping into the twenty twenty election. You've already been to Iowa you've been to New Hampshire. Are you going to make it official? Are you? Running for president congressman while. Well, I'm very close Tanzi. Now, I believe that we need to bring the promise of America, which is a few work hard. You do better for yourself dream bigger for your kids to all Americans. It worked for me as the first my family to go to college. I see in too many places it's not working and the only way to bring it is having an agenda that goes big on the issues. We take on is bold in the way, we executed and does good once again getting rid of dirty money dirty maps, in the way that we go. Eric swallow. Well, is a democrat representing the San Francisco Bay area in the US house of representatives. Congressman thanks for your time. Was your. The New Jersey legislature was supposed to decide on a measure to legalize marijuana for recreational use this week, but Democrats could muster up the votes to pass it. So they pulled the Bill in two thousand seventeen New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy made legalization of cornerstone of his campaign and on Tuesday, the governor vowed to continue to push for a change in policy Senate president the speaker, and I along with countless others have worked in partnership and compromise on a Bill that will move the cause of social Justice forward. Change is never easy. It takes hard work, and it sometimes it takes letting go of long held opinions Justice may be delayed, but Justice will not be denied WNYC's, New Jersey. Reporter Karen rouse is with us to discuss where the state stands on recreational marijuana, and why race has been a sticking point. Karen, welcome to the takeaway. Thank you. So let's start with the basics. What is the state of pot in New Jersey? Today. What's legal, and what isn't so New Jersey has medical marijuana? That's illegal for about a decade, but they wanted to make recreational marijuana legal and the idea behind that are the stated purpose behind that has been that they want to address disparities arrests between blacks and whites and Brown people. So in New Jersey, according to the ACLU, the American Civil Liberties union black people are arrested at as much as three times or more the rate of white people for marijuana use low level possession or distribution. Even though usage rates are similar. So advocates have said that they want to legalize that take away the ability of law enforcement to target black people with these arrests. Of course, Murphy has also talked about this being a big revenue raiser and a job creator. So I was gonna ask him. I'd love if you could explain to us what the sticking points are for both parties on this issue. Because at first glance, given what you just described it feels like it could be something. That's good for business and for. Some sort of criminal Justice reform, if you will so how partisan of an issue has this become the division is not so much partisan as it is probably more on moral grounds. Because when you look at how it breaks down you have older black legislators, you have younger black legislators. You have some white legislators who are very much against this people have very deep personal beliefs long held beliefs personal convictions about this. And it's not something that they are easily willing to give up, you know. It's not less something where you can say. Like, hey, if you support me, you know, we'll give you something for your district. This is very personal to them. And it's interesting because you have that argument that this will be something that helps black people from those advocating, but then some of those older black legislators or those who are opposed they come from some of the most hardest hit urban areas in New Jersey places that have been hit hard by the war on drugs. And they see this as something that will create more harm to those neighborhoods that are. Already are hit with you know, alcohol or tobacco ads. They don't want to see cannabis businesses in their downtown. They feel like it will create more addicts. So there is a real split there. What about younger legislators are? They in favor of it is this more generational divide. I think as a whole, you know, the young people are a little bit more accepting, but I have seen younger legislators who are opposed to this now on the Republican side. You know, there is some opposition more on the tax issue. They feel like the taxes too high to really run out the black market, but other than that, I see more of this being a moral issue. The entire assembly is up for election November. So they're concerned about how their how their voters are going to look at this if they support it. So there are a lot of issues at play here in terms of the morality New Jersey's also state that that allows a certain amount of gambling. They're doing a lot of online gambling. So how does that morality play play out with the citizens? Of New Jersey. When I think the thing is, you know, if you're talking about gambling, you can just pick yourself up and go to the place where there is gambling. Whereas with marijuana legalization, it's really going to impact life. Whether you are a user or not, you know, there will be businesses that are setup marijuana cafes. For example in the downtown. There will be marijuana advertising. The Bill allows for that during certain hours on you know, your television. So it's something that people are concerned will more infiltrate their life. There's a lot of concern about young people. You know, we know that vaping is up among young people. There's this concern that making it legal sends the message to them that. Oh, it's okay to do it now that it's legalized and they're very much concerned about that. Karen governor Phil Murphy has called this or he wants to make this a quote, social Justice issue. What does he mean by that? I just say that that term is not really a neutral term a term. That's really been used by advocates of. Marijuana legalization folks, like the ACLU civil rights organizations use that term because they see it as an opportunity to mitigate the damage from all those arrests. You know, you get an arrest on your record. It's very difficult to get a job. It's very difficult to find housing and Murphy has framed this campaigns legalize marijuana is one that will sort of remove the discrimination the targeting by law enforcement. But you know, that's term that I've seen in the last couple weeks, you know, as this vote came closer yesterday. I've seen a lot of pushback on that. And some of it is from the black legislators who feel like this is not a social Justice. They feel like this is something that's going to harm their communities more. I'm speaking with WNYC's New Jersey reporter Karen rouse about the latest stumbling block for marijuana legalization in New Jersey. Karen, we need to talk about race of e Asli. Let's take a listen to governor. Murphy from a press conference, you were at the fact is given what we know. Now this week alone more than six hundred new Jerseyans, the more majority of home will be persons of color will be arrested for marijuana possession. And we'll have a criminal record that will hurt their prospects of getting a job or getting an education. Karen, this is something that we hear quite a bit, particularly when it comes to marijuana reform legalization that communities of color were disproportionately impacted continued to be disproportionately impacted by the criminality of things like marijuana, whereas white communities tend to sort of skate under the radar there. What's your response to that? While you know, the problem really Tanzi not is is not marijuana. It is that there seems to be some sort of targeting in the way the arrests are happening. There seems to be some sort of discrimination. That's playing out. That's the reason black people around people are being arrested at higher rates. And so, you know, one of my questions governor Murphy was what else are you doing to try to stop that close that gap is marijuana legalization the only way because this is a law enforcement issue. You know, I wanna know what other things are being done to address that. Karen rouse is the New Jersey reporter for WNYC and she's been covering the effort to legalize marijuana in New Jersey. Karen, thanks for being with us. Thank you tansy. Starting today bump stocks are illegal across the United States for those who don't remember bump. Stocks are the firearm attachment that allows semi automatic weapons to fire bullets in long rapid continuous bursts. They make guns even more powerful and deadlier bump stocks came under scrutiny after a gunman used them to kill fifty eight people from his hotel room in Las Vegas in the fall of twenty seventeen and in December twenty eighteen the Trump administration issued a rule banning the firearm accessory that law is now in effect. It's the first federal gun control of any kind in years, but enforcing the band will be a challenge Matt Vesey. Lagaan bros. Is a staff writer for state line and new service funded by the pew charitable trust. Welcome to the show, Matt it's a pleasure being with you. So how common are bump stocks. They're not very common. And that's what the challenge is going to be for law enforcement officials and others in the government. Who are looking to get rid of this device. There's about five hundred thousand nationwide, and that's just an estimate. There's no paper trail, and there's really no hard data on where or who has these devices, and how is the federal government actually planning to enforce this ban. If they don't know who has them in how many there really are. It's going to be an honor system. So like in other states that have tried to ban bump, stocks officials are going to rely on people turning it in themselves or destroying it themselves. And so if issues aren't really gonna know truly when the bump stocks are destroyed or not really people are gonna find out who has bump stocks. If there are massive gun arrests or there are unrelated domestic violence charges. Police come up pawn. These devices in homes, really it's going to be served as kind of a attack on charge, but a pretty hefty charge, regardless. It's it's going to be a felony. And Kerry quite a hefty punishment with it. Now, there's been some states that have already banned bump stocks after the Las Vegas shooting. How're those states doing and are those bands similar to the federal ban? So twelve states have passed their own bump stock bands, many of which happened after that horrific shooting in Las Vegas in two thousand seventeen but they also face their own challenges when I was reporting the story several months ago it had been a few months since New Jersey had implemented their bump stock band. And when I asked a police, how many people had actually turned in their bump stocks they responded with zero. So you know, it's been a challenge for for state. Authorities to say the least to round up these bump stocks to trust people that are struggling the property. But that's a tough ask when you're telling people to destroy something that they might have spent between one hundred eighty dollars four hundred dollars some states are trying to. To fix that. Through a incentive. They're going to pay you to turn in your bump stock in Washington state. They're paying citizens up to one hundred fifty dollars to turn in their bump stock and in Delaware. State officials are paying up to one hundred dollars for people to turn in their bump stock so they're giving a bit of a financial incentive. Let's the reaction been from gun rights activists than from gun control activists. I imagine it's pretty split down the middle to this yet. You know, what actually gun rights activists and gun control activists? Both acknowledged to me on separate occasions that it is going to be a challenge to enforce virtually unenforceable is what the gun right's activists told me another aspect other than than usual talking points around the gun debate, which second amendment advocates would say, you know, that you're taking away the rights. They would also say that you're taking away their property and that adds another difficult aspect to this. Matthey lag is a staff writer. For state line, Matt thanks so much. Thank you. And that's our show for today. We appreciate you for listening. I'm tansy Nevada. And this is the takeaway. We want you to be part of the takeaways listener response network Wilson, you of you text messages a week about topics. We're discussing on our show to sign up. Just text the word start to six nine eight six six standard data and messaging rates apply. And you can always text the word stop to opt out again tech start the six nine eight six six to join our conversation every day. You can also connect with us on Facebook Twitter and now on Instagram where at the takeaway.

president President Trump Democrats New Jersey marijuana United States congressman Robert Muller federal government Karen governor Phil Murphy CNN Margaret Sullivan attorney Muller Miller New York Times Washington Post congress Justice department