Rank #1: Will President Trump's immigration ban survive?
Feb 03 2017
Rank #2: Pelosi signals next step. Does anyone get what they wanted?
Jan 10 2020
Rank #3: Five things we know now that we didn’t know last week
Dec 06 2019
Rank #4: Republicans’ defense of Trump grows frantic. Will it work?
Oct 24 2019
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Rank #5: Should Trump be spending weekends at Mar-a-Lago?
Feb 10 2017
Rank #6: White House investigation reveals effort to justify Trump’s Ukraine aid decision
Nov 26 2019
Rank #7: How Trump is leveraging the presidency to campaign against Biden
Former vice president Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, has spent the past few months holding virtual events, largely from his basement. President Trump, meanwhile, has resumed some travel, though in an official capacity as president and not as part of the campaign.
That distinction though, has been muddled as Trump’s travel schedule shows trips to the battleground states that are crucial to his reelection chances. And what’s more, these events have taken on clear campaign overtones: Supporters have lined the streets to greet his motorcade, and Trump’s campaign soundtrack even played inside a facility while he toured.
Is Trump leveraging unfair advantages with an election just six months away? What powers does he have to ensure he can safely resume the kinds of large campaign events that are among his most powerful political tools?
On this episode of the“Can He Do That?” podcast, political reporters Sean Sullivan and Toluse Olorunnipa discuss how the two campaigns are handling these unprecedented circumstances, and how the president’s power in crisis can affect his ability to reach voters.
Related reading Trump uses official travel to gain campaign edge in swing states as he seeks to move past pandemicTrump blames Democrats for his grounded campaign, even as bipartisan restrictions ban his signature ralliesBiden defends his decision to campaign from home, calls Trump reckless
May 21 2020
Rank #8: Politics, pressure and pleas: The twisting case of Michael Flynn and the Justice Department
As a refresher, Flynn, back in 2017, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. The new documents show the FBI preparing for Flynn’s interview and debating whether their goal was to“get him to lie.” Flynn’s lawyers call these documents“stunning” new evidence, while other legal experts say these documents merely show standard procedure for law enforcement officials preparing for an interview.
Trump fired Flynn shortly after that FBI interview, for lying to Vice President Pence about Flynn’s conversations with Kislyak. Regardless, Trump has recently suggested he might pardon Flynn. A pardon that, of course, wouldn’t be necessary if the Justice Department is able to drop the case against Flynn altogether.
It turns out, as it often does in our complicated legal system, dropping the charges against Flynn might not be so easy. A U.S. district judge earlier this week put the move on hold, making room for independent groups and legal experts to come in and argue against exonerating Flynn. That judge even asked a retired judge to oppose the Justice Department in all of this.
These legal battles bring our Justice Department into uncharted territory, with boundaries between the department and the president repeatedly tested. And, as these matter tend to go, this isn’t the only news to emerge recently that shines a light on the relationship between federal law enforcement agencies and the president of the United States. This episode of the“Can He Do That?” podcast unpacks the latest news developments in this twisting and turning story, with the help of national security reporter Devlin Barrett.
Related reading/episodesInvestigating an investigation: Barr’s newfound power to declassify materialsHow does Attorney General Barr view presidential power?Understanding the twists and turns in the Michael Flynn case
May 14 2020
Rank #9: House Democrats unveil rules for impeachment process. What changes now?
Oct 30 2019
Rank #10: The inquiry moves to Judiciary. Can the president’s legal team sit this one out?
Dec 03 2019
Rank #11: What Trump's rhetoric at his rallies can tell us about his approach towards policy and diplomacy
Jul 13 2018
Rank #12: The problems with pardon power
We’ve seen President Trump exercise his pardon power at several moments during his tenure in office - sometimes to much controversy.
Tuesday, the president continued this trend. He pardoned or commuted the sentences of several convicted white-collar criminals at the center of federal anti-corruption and tax fraud cases.
Trump’s choice to grant clemency to this group, combined with a reported desire from the administration to issue more pardons in the coming months, raises questions about who else Trump might pardon. Among them is his longtime adviser and friend Roger Stone, who was sentenced Thursday to serve three years four months for impeding a congressional investigation of 2016 Russian election interference.
Trump left this door open when he said at an event in Las Vegas Thursday that while he wasn’t going to grant clemency to Stone right now, Stone “has a very good chance of exoneration.”
What do a president’s decisions about who to pardon say about his agenda? How unusual is it really for a president to pardon those close to him? And how much power does the Justice Department have to push back on a president who seeks to pardon for political gain?
On this episode, White House reporter Toluse Olorunnipa helps us boil our questions down to this: If a president has sweeping pardon powers — are there really consequences to using them? And … should there be?
Feb 20 2020
Rank #13: Special episode: Trump’s lawyer got raided by the FBI. Now what will Trump do?
Apr 12 2018
Rank #14: Articles of impeachment against Trump are unveiled
Dec 10 2019
Rank #15: How much power does a president have to affect an investigation?
May 12 2017
Rank #16: How to Flip the House: The takeaways for 2018
Jun 29 2018
Rank #17: A new inquiry phase and a new revelation: Your guide to the first public impeachment hearing
Nov 14 2019
Rank #18: What we learned from Michael Cohen's scathing testimony
Mar 01 2019
Rank #19: A harrowing book, an anonymous op-ed and a White House in chaos
Sep 07 2018
Rank #20: Do power struggles in the White House make Trump a more effective president?
Apr 21 2017