Monday, March 25, 2019

Week in Review Discussion on The Critical Hour (3/22/2019)

The Mueller Report Finally Drops, Dems Prepare List Of Demands

On this episode of The Critical Hour, Dr. Wilmer Leon is joined by Jim Kavanagh, political analyst and commentator and editor of The Polemicist; and Michelle Hudgins, communications strategist, producer, media consultant and writer. 

It’s Friday, that means it is panel time! 

Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III has submitted a confidential report to US Attorney General William P. Barr, marking the end of his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible obstruction of justice by President Donald Trump, a Justice Department spokeswoman said. The Justice Department notified Congress late Friday that it had received Mueller’s report but did not describe its contents. Barr is expected to summarize the findings for lawmakers in the coming days.
[My related articles: Be Careful What You Ask For: Wasting Time with Manafort, Cohen, and RussiagateDonald The Destroyer: Assessing The Trump-EffectShip of Fools: What Trump Teaches]

UK Prime Minister Theresa May previously sought agreement by the EU’s 27 leaders on a “technical extension” of Article 50, pushing Brexit day back to June 30, in the event that the House of Commons ratifies the withdrawal agreement in its third vote on the deal. The extra time would be needed to pass the necessary legislation. May’s appeal to the heads of state and government was described by sources as “90 minutes of nothing.” She was unable to offer any answers as to how a no-deal Brexit would be avoided if the deal were rejected again. The leaders imposed a new Brexit timeline on the prime minister to avoid a possible accidental no-deal scenario next Friday, March 29. Under the new timeline, Britain will stay a member state until April 12 if the withdrawal agreement is rejected by MPs. If lawmakers accept the prime minister's Brexit deal, the UK will leave the EU by May 22. The government will be able to seek a longer extension if it can “indicate a way forward” and agrees to hold European elections.
[My related article: For What It’s Worth: The Yellow Vests and the Left]

The FBI has reportedly joined a criminal investigation of the certification process for Boeing's 737 Max 8 jets, two of which have crashed since October, killing 346 people. The Seattle Times first reported that the bureau is assisting federal aviation investigators in a federal grand jury probe based in Washington, DC, looking into the process. Indonesian airline Garuda said Friday that it's canceling a multi-billion-dollar order for 49 737 Max 8 jets in light of the deadly crashes. "Our passengers have lost confidence to fly with the Max 8," Garuda spokesperson Ikhsan Rosan told CNN. The Indonesian carrier ordered 50 of the planes in 2014 for $4.9 billion. It has taken delivery of one of them but has now sent a letter to Boeing saying it no longer wants to receive the remaining jets on order, Ikhsan said. Garuda is the first airline to say it's canceling a 737 Max 8 order.

US President Donald Trump on Thursday took more shots at the late Sen. John McCain, despite growing calls from Republicans and veterans groups to stop attacking the Arizona GOP lawmaker who died last year. In an interview with Fox Business Network, Trump called McCain “horrible” for his 2017 vote against a congressional Republican measure to repeal Obamacare and accused him of handing a dossier of explosive claims about Trump’s ties to Russia to the FBI for “very evil purposes.” When asked by anchor Maria Bartiromo why he continues to criticize McCain, who died seven months ago after battling brain cancer, Trump claimed he was prompted by the news media. “I don’t talk about it,” the president said. “People ask me the question. I didn’t bring this up. You just brought it up. You just asked the question.” Trump renewed his attacks on McCain last weekend in an apparent reaction to a news report about the controversial dossier authored by former British spy Christopher Steele, not after he was asked about his attitude toward the senator. He has continued to lash out at McCain over the past several days, telling reporters on Tuesday, “I was never a fan of John McCain, and I never will be,” and then on Wednesday grousing about not receiving a “thank you” for approving funeral arrangement plans for McCain, despite his dislike for the former senator. McCain was memorialized at Washington’s National Cathedral last fall, and Trump was not invited to attend. Trump authorized a government airplane to transport McCain’s remains from Arizona to the nation’s capital, but the cathedral said Trump’s approval was not needed to host the funeral.

It took New Zealand just six days to announce an immediate plan to change to the nation’s gun policy after a gunman killed 50 people at two mosques in Christchurch last week. On Thursday, a day after the first victims were laid to rest, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced a national ban on all military-style semiautomatic weapons, all high-capacity ammunition magazines and all parts that allow weapons to be modified into the kinds of guns used in last week’s attack. Ms. Ardern is expected to encounter little resistance in Parliament. The new law could be in place as soon as April 11.
[My related articles: The Rifle on the Wall: A Left Argument for Gun Rights
(Reprise)Lawyers, Guns, and Twitter: Gun Battles and Class Struggle after San Bernardino]

We've got all these stories and more!

Jim Kavanagh — Political analyst and commentator and editor of The Polemicist

Michelle Hudgins — Communications strategist, producer, media consultant and writer.

Listen to "The Mueller Report Finally Drops, Dems Prepare List Of Demands" on Spreaker.

The Critical Hour is a daily 60-minute news analysis and talk radio program on Radio Sputnik hosted by Dr. Wilmer Leon. Introduction above is theirs, with related articles of mine referenced in brackets.

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