Week In The News: Latest On Kavanaugh, Trump's Taxes, New Trade DealPlay
With David Folkenflik
The FBI’s Kavanaugh file. Trump’s taxes. A new trade deal. And an Amazon wage hike. The roundtable digs in.
Catherine Rampell, Washington Post opinion columnist who covers economics, public policy, politics and culture. (@crampell)
Jackie Kucinich, Washington bureau chief for The Daily Beast. (@JFKucinich)
Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst. (@JackBeattyNPR)
From The Reading List
NPR: "Key GOP Senators Say FBI Inquiry Of Kavanaugh Was 'Thorough'" — "Key Republican senators who have been withholding judgment on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court amid allegations of sexual assault said the supplemental inquiry by the FBI into those allegations was "thorough." While not announcing how they would vote, they did not signal further reservations about Kavanaugh.
"Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, told reporters after reviewing the report, 'It appears to be a very thorough investigation, but I am going back later today to personally read the interviews.'
"Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., who insisted on the further investigation before allowing Kavanaugh's nomination to advance out of the Senate Judiciary Committee, also said the report was thorough and indicated that no new evidence had emerged to corroborate the claims against Kavanaugh.
"Their votes are seen as decisive, along with that of GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska. When the agreement to have the FBI do an additional background check on the Supreme Court nominee was reached last week, Flake indicated that he would vote in support of Kavanaugh absent new information."
The Daily Beast: "GOP Senators Tell Trump to Stop Mocking Christine Blasey Ford. But Trumpworld Loves It." — "President Donald Trump’s unscripted mockery of Christine Blasey Ford at a rally Tuesday night may have pleased the crowd. But back on Capitol Hill, the senators whose support he needs the most in the coming days to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court were stone-faced and unamused.
"Some suggested it could impact their vote."
Washington Post: "Duh, we need to see Trump's tax returns. But that's just the first step."
"Everyone is shocked, shocked to learn that President Trump amassed his fortune not by the sweat of his brow, but rather the old-fashioned way: choosing the right parents and dodging the Internal Revenue Service.
"That’s certainly the lesson of the New York Times exposé this week reporting that Trump received more than $400 million in today’s dollars from his father’s business empire, some of it through what the Times characterized as criminal tax fraud.
"What to do with this information? Beyond all the Trump-specific takeaways — such as, duh, we need to see his tax returns — two much broader policy conclusions shouldn’t get lost here:
"1. We need to adequately fund the IRS.
"2. What’s scandalous here isn’t just what’s illegal. It’s also what is legal."
Washington Post: "Trump’s ‘historic’ trade deal doesn’t look so historic after all"
"Well, that was unnecessarily painful.
"After spending a year and a half alienating our friends, punishing our farmers and manufacturers with devastating tariffs and counter-tariffs, and fracturing the hard-won alliance we had built to isolate and pressure China, we finally got a new trade deal — and a “new” trade strategy.
"Yet somehow, they look an awful lot like the old ones.
"On Sunday evening, news broke that Canada agreed to the terms of a renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement. Not merely renegotiated: rebranded! What was once the easily pronounceable 'NAFTA' will hereafter be the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or 'USMCA.' "
This program aired on October 5, 2018.