FEATURING CHRISTINE GRIMALDI - Using every single vote at their disposal Senate Republicans on Thursday passed a bill by a one-vote margin to strip reproductive healthcare providers, including Planned Parenthood, of federal funding that covers family planning services. Because two female Republican senators, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski voted against the bill, Republicans had to scramble to get enough votes, and brought in Georgia Senator Johnny Isakson who was recovering from back surgery, to vote for it. Still missing one vote, Vice President Mike Pence was required, for the second time in the Trump administration's short-lived tenure, to break a tie. Now, the bill will go to Donald Trump for his signature, effectively overturning a protection put in place under President Barack Obama that allowed federal funds to be used toward cancer screening, contraception and annual gynecological exams for low-income American women. Find Christine's work at www.Rewire.news. Christine Grimaldi, Federal Policy Reporter
FEATURING BASSEM YOUSSEF - Former Egyptian President and dictator Hosni Mubarak has been released from military hospital after 6 years of incarceration. His freeing is the most potent indicator yet of how Egypt's 2011 Arab Spring revolution has come full circle. The current regime has many of the hallmarks of Mubarak's own rule, including the persecution of dissidents. My next guest was the victim of such persecution, when he was forced to flee his home for the 'crime' of political comedy. Bassem Youssef's upcoming speaking events: Tuesday, April 4 at 8pm - Zellerbach Hall, Bancroft Way at Dana Street, UC Berkeley Campus. Tickets available through the Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall, at (510) 642-9988 and at www.calperformances.org. Thursday, April 6, 8pm - Book Soup Presents an Evening with Bassem Youssef, "The Jon Stewart of the Arabic World" Freud Playhouse at UCLA, 245 Charles E Young Dr E, Los Angeles, CA 90095. Event
FEATURING DAN SCHULTZ - After Congressional Republicans swiftly voted to end digital privacy rights for Internet users by overturning an Obama-era set of rules, many Americans are up in arms. Now, Internet Service Providers can sell your online viewing habits to the highest bidder. Some have responded by raising money to buy the Internet browsing histories of those members of Congress that voted for the controversial bill. Others, like my guest, have some tech solutions up their sleeve. Developed in just hours, a new program, still in its infancy, aims to help users create "Internet Noise" to confuse ISPs and ad sellers. You can use Internet Noise by clicking HERE. Dan Schultz, Senior Creative Technologist at the Internet Archive, former winner of the Knight News Challenge, and a Knight Mozilla Fellow, graduate of the MIT Media Lab, creator of Internet Noise.
FEATURING CARLI STEVENSON - The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on Judge Neil Gorsuch's nomination to the Supreme Court on Monday, and then on Friday April 7th his nomination will head to the entire Senate for a vote. Gorsuch was nominated to the court by Donald Trump after Republicans blocked Barack Obama's nominee Merrick Garland. Gorsuch's ultra-conservative record would make him a formidable ally on the court to the extremist right wing. Most, but not all, Senate Democrats have decided to filibuster the nomination. If there is a unified Democratic front, Gorsuch will not be confirmed to the nation's highest court under the current rules. The GOP-dominated Senate would have to change the rules to a simple majority confirmation vote. Now, progressives have embarked on a variety of creative methods to pressure the dozen or so Democratic senators who are undecided on whether or not to filibuster the
FEATURING MANUEL LEMA AND DIANA MARINO - The Trump Administration has asserted that it is prioritizing the deportations of undocumented convicted felons. But the ramping up of immigration enforcement has deeply impacted ordinary workers. One brutal example is the targeting of factory workers at Tom Cat Bakery in Long Island, New York. After an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security, the bakery threatened the largely immigrant workforce with mass firings if they were unable to produce papers. Rather than give in, the workers decided to get organized and are now participating in resistance actions. Find more at www.brandworkers.org. Manuel Lema, a worker at Tom Cat bakery, Diana Marino, Brandworkers Lead Organizer.
FEATURING LYNN K. HALL - In early March a story broke that rocked the foundation of the Marine Corps when it was revealed that thousands of US Marines were sharing nude photos of their female colleagues in a secret Facebook group. The group, calling itself Marines United, has now been outed but many of its members have gone on to join other online groups to continue the photo sharing. Many of women whose photos were being shared were active duty soldiers and were being identified by their names, locations, and ranks. The scandal is part of a culture in the US military that encourages the exploitation of women and often manifests itself as sexual assault and rape. Rape in the military is far more common than in the general public. Now, one survivor of multiple sexual assaults has written a book about her experiences. Lynn K. Hall, a crisis counselor and
FEATURING MARY ANNE HITT - Donald Trump attempted to fulfill a major campaign promise this week when he signed an executive order undoing President Obama's signature set of climate policies called the Clean Power Plan. Flanked by a cadre of male coal miners and cabinet members, Trump signed an order that is extremely broad, aimed at the renewable energy initiatives and fuel efficiency of cars and appliances in Obama's plan. Trump aims especially to revive the dying coal industry in the US. The question is, can he actually carry out this backward-looking set of ideas, especially given that the science on climate change and air pollution is extremely well-established? Find more at www.SierraClub.org, or go to www.beyondcoal.org, and follow Mary Anne on Twitter @maryannehitt. Mary Anne Hitt, Director of Sierra Club's Beyond Coal campaign.
FEATURING ERNESTO FALCON - Just days after the US Senate voted along strict party lines to undo the Obama-era guidelines on protecting Internet privacy, the House followed suit on Tuesday. The votes, which came so swiftly that privacy advocacy organizations had barely any time to mobilize their supporters against it, will now enable Internet Service Providers to sell your online browsing habits for profit. Donald Trump is expected to sign the measure into law, despite the huge public support that exists for preserving privacy. The vote was taken in such a way that it prevents the Federal Communications Commission, where the Obama-era guidelines were initially put into place, from reviving privacy protections in the future. Find more information at www.eff.org. Ernesto Falcon, Legislative Counsel with the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
FEATURING RUY TEIXEIRA - Americans are under severe stress about the nation's political outlook. The American Psychological Association's survey of nation-wide stress found that people began worrying about the presidential election as far back as the middle of last year. By January stress-levels were extremely high with, "more than half of Americans (57 percent) report[ing] that the current political climate is a very or somewhat significant source of stress." The survey also found that, "Two-thirds (66 percent) say the same about the future of our nation, and nearly half (49 percent) report that the outcome of the election is a very or somewhat significant source of stress." Those who monitor social media avidly suffer from greater stress than those who don't. It's enough to lead to many of us into a deep pit of despair. But, my guest thinks that our mass pessimism is misplaced and could do real harm to
FEATURING MELINA ABDULLAH - A twenty-eight year old white man from Baltimore who police say traveled to New York with the intent of killing black men, has been charged with two counts of murder as an act of terrorism. According to news reports, James H. Jackson told police he had a, "long-standing, visceral hatred of black people," which prompted him to board a bus and head to New York City. Jackson spent 3 days in the city looking for victims after finally confronting a 66-year old black man named Timothy Caughman. Jackson has admitted to fatally stabbing Caughman with a sword. At the same time as this story broke, reports swirled in social media about 14 black girls going missing in Washington DC on a single day. While the report was since debunked, a town hall meeting to address the on-going epidemic of missing black and brown children drew hundreds