Democracy Now!

2016 Election

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  • Three weeks after the election of Donald Trump, Sen. Bernie Sanders spoke at the Free Library of Philadelphia as part of his "Our Revolution" book tour. He spoke harshly about the corporate media. "What media does and what media loves is conflict and political gossip and polls and fundraising and all that stuff," Sanders said. "What media loves is to focus on the candidates. What the American people, I believe, want is for us to focus on them, not the candidates, not anymore."

  • In a Democracy Now! special, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders sat down with Amy Goodman at the Free Library of Philadelphia in late November in his most extensive broadcast interview since Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton just weeks earlier.

  • The 538 electors of the Electoral College are set to meet today to officially choose the next president of the United States. Members of the Electoral College are meeting in their respective state capitals to cast ballots to determine who will be the next president. In past elections, the meetings have generally been considered a formality. But this year, an increasing number of people have called on the electors to refuse to vote for President-elect Donald Trump. One Republican elector has come out saying he will not vote for Trump, and there are reports of other so-called Republican faithless electors. Michael Moore has offered to pay the fines of any electors who break ranks and vote against Donald Trump. Donald Trump needs to secure 270 elector votes to take office. He lost the popular vote by 2.9 million. We speak to Polly Baca, Democratic elector from Colorado.

  • We turn now to take a broader look at U.S.-Russian relations in the wake of Donald Trump’s election. On Tuesday, Trump officially nominated Rex Tillerson, chair and CEO of ExxonMobil, to be secretary of state. Tillerson is known to have close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who awarded Tillerson the country’s Order of Friendship decoration in 2013. One of the focuses of the Senate confirmation hearings will be Exxon’s $500 billion oil exploration partnership with the Russian government’s oil company, Rosneft. Considered the largest oil deal in history, the partnership can only go through if the U.S. lifts sanctions against Russia, which the Obama administration imposed over Russia’s intervention in Ukraine. The news of Rex Tillerson’s nomination came just days after the CIA accused Russia of meddling in the U.S. election to help Donald Trump win. Trump has rejected the CIA’s conclusion, decrying it as "ridiculous." But President Obama ordered a review of Russia’s role in influencing the presidential election. With us are Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch, and Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at New York University and Princeton University.

  • In less than one week, on December 19, members of the Electoral College will meet in their respective state capitals to cast ballots to determine who will be the next president. In recent history, the vote of the Electoral College has largely been a formality. But this year electors in states won by Donald Trump are facing mounting pressure to reject his presidency. On Monday, nine Democratic and one Republican member of the Electoral College asked Director of National Intelligence James Clapper for a briefing before next week on whether Russia interfered with the election to help Trump win. The CIA has concluded Russia intervened to help Trump win, but the agency has not released its findings. Meanwhile, Reuters is reporting the Office of the Director of National Intelligence has yet to endorse the CIA’s assessment because of a lack of conclusive evidence that Moscow intended to boost Trump over Hillary Clinton. We speak to Christine Pelosi, a Democratic California elector. She’s the lead author of the letter to Clapper.

  • Investigative reporter Greg Palast has just returned from Michigan, where he went to probe the state’s closely contested election. Trump won Michigan by fewer than 11,000 votes out of nearly 4.8 million votes cast. Green Party presidential contender Dr. Jill Stein attempted to force Michigan to hold a recount, but a federal judge ordered Michigan’s Board of Elections to stop the state’s electoral recount. One big question remains: Why did 75,335 ballots go uncounted?

  • The Service Employees International Union faced criticism for endorsing Hillary Clinton in November 2015 even though many labor activists saw Senator Bernie Sanders as the candidate with a stronger record on labor issues. Sanders was an early backer of the Fight for $15 movement, while Clinton faced criticism for her time serving on the board of Wal-Mart. SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry says she did not make a mistake in endorsing Clinton so early in the campaign.

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