KTEP - El Paso, Texas

Politics

Political news

This week in the Russia investigations: Big problems for Sessions, Bannon cut adrift and Republicans search for more weapons to fire.

Living on the edge

A lighthouse can stand safely on a barrier island one morning and then when a big storm blows through, be teetering at land's end by the next.

Following the heavy cyclone of news this week, dawn in Washington, D.C., on Saturday found Attorney General Jeff Sessions on the slippery sand — and that could also mean peril for Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller.

Authorities in Alabama are investigating a fire that destroyed the home of Tina Johnson, who accused Senate candidate Roy Moore of groping her in his office in 1991.

The fire at Johnson's home in Gadsden, Ala., occurred on Jan. 2 and was first reported by AL.com.

"I am devastated, just devastated. We have just the clothes on our backs," said Johnson on Friday morning as quoted by Al.com.

For at least the past decade, the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) has been the unrivaled voice of a vast industry, from neighborhood grocery stores to food manufacturing giants with supply chains that span the globe. Most recently, it's been a powerful force in fighting proposals to require information about added sugar or GMOs on food labels.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

We've heard a lot this week about the political fallout from the new Michael Wolff book about the Trump White House and the big break the book has caused between the president and his former political guru Steve Bannon.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Right now, joining me for our Friday politics talk are columnist E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and the Brookings Institution and David Brooks of The New York Times. Hi, both of you. Good to see you.

DAVID BROOKS, BYLINE: Hello.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Updated at 3:50 p.m. ET

The book that created a rift between President Trump and his former campaign chief executive and adviser Steve Bannon hit the shelves Friday morning, ahead of the original Tuesday release date, despite the president's threat to block its publication.

Michael Wolff, author of Fire and Fury: Inside The Trump White House, told NPR's Kelly McEvers that he "100 percent" stands behind his reporting, which the White House and some of the book's subjects have sharply criticized.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Former New Jersey Gov. Brendan Byrne, who presided over the legalization of casino gambling in Atlantic City and nearly lost re-election after establishing the state's first income tax, has died at age 93.

The Democrat held New Jersey's highest office from 1974 to 1982. His death was announced by Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican who nonetheless acknowledged Byrne as a role model.

"Governor Byrne had an extraordinary career of public service," Christie said in a statement.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The political strategist who once meant to do damage to the political establishment seems to have done damage to himself.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

The Dow Jones industrial average finished above 25,000 for the first time, as the long rally in stock prices showed no signs of letting up.

A strong report about hiring from payroll processor ADP helped push stocks higher. Financial stocks did especially well, and an increase in oil prices has benefited the energy sector.

The Dow finished the day at 25,075, a gain of 0.61 percent. Both the Nasdaq composite index and the Standard and Poor's 500 index also finished at record highs.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

The Justice Department is changing its approach to marijuana enforcement. To talk about how far the Trump DOJ might go to bring new federal marijuana cases, NPR justice correspondent Carrie Johnson is here with us in the studio again. Hi, Carrie.

After a harshly worded New Year's Day tweet by President Trump accusing Pakistan of "deceit" and of harboring terrorists, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert confirmed Thursday that the U.S. will suspend most security assistance to Islamabad.

The cutoff is not permanent, Nauert said, and only affects military assistance. Civilian assistance is not affected.

What Would A Deal On DACA Look Like?

Jan 4, 2018

With guest host John Donvan.

As lawmakers get back to work in Washington for 2018, one of the top items on their to-do list is to figure out a solution for recipients of the immigration policy called Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, which protects undocumented people who were brought to the U.S. illegally as minors from deportation.

Retiring Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., says a primary challenge in 2020 to President Trump isn't off the table.

"That's not in my plans, but I don't rule anything out," the frequent Trump critic told NPR's Robert Siegel in an interview airing Thursday on All Things Considered.

Copyright 2018 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Updated at 4:45 p.m. ET

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is scrapping Obama-era guidelines that essentially removed marijuana from the list of federal drug enforcement priorities as more states legalized it.

In guidance issued Thursday, Sessions rescinded those policies and instead will permit individual U.S. attorneys to decide how aggressively to go after marijuana in their jurisdictions.

Sessions, a former Alabama senator, has long viewed pot as a public menace and a source of street crime.

You can bet campaign managers for sitting Republican senators up for re-election this year are smiling.

Heck, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is. The official McConnell Senate Committee tweeted a GIF of the grinning majority leader.

In the power struggle among various power centers vying for President Trump's attention, the president was thrown into the arms of McConnell with Trump's evisceration of former chief strategist Steve Bannon.

Virginia Republican David Yancey is the winner of a tie-breaking drawing for a House of Delegates seat, a result that appears to allow Republicans to barely hang on to control of the chamber.

Each candidate's name was placed in a film canister; those were then placed into a bowl and one name was drawn.

Updated at 11:40 p.m. ET

Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon says that he still believes President Trump is "a great man" and that he supports Trump "day in and day out."

He made the comments despite the fact that Trump eviscerated Bannon on Wednesday in a cutting public statement.

"Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency," Trump said. "When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind."

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

One of the biggest stories in a year of big stories was the intersection of sports, race and politics, and it's looking like that story won't go away in 2018.

And at several key moments one of the people who seemed right in the middle of this story was ESPN's Jemele Hill.

Back in February, ESPN relaunched the evening edition of its flagship sports news show, SportsCenter, with Jemele Hill and Michael Smith as its new anchors.

Pages