Oct 22, 2022 • 1HR 1M

How the Right Wing Captured the Supreme Court

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Appears in this episode

Ralph Nader
Ralph Nader talks about what’s happening in America, what’s happening around the world, and most importantly what’s happening underneath it all.
Episode details

Ralph and Rhode Island Senator, Sheldon Whitehouse, dive into his new book “The Scheme: How the Right Wing Used Dark Money to Capture the Supreme Court.” And Ralph takes the opportunity with the Senator to pitch his "Winning America" strategy for the Democrats to use in the midterms.  In addition, our resident constitutional expert, Bruce Fein, stops by to argue that so many of the books about Trump and other American presidents emphasize personality and ignore the constitutional implications of their decisions. Plus, Ralph urges listeners to sign up for Tort Law Day, Saturday October 29th to celebrate our constitutional right to have our day in court.

Sheldon Whitehouse - IMDb

Sheldon Whitehouse represents Rhode Island in the U.S. Senate. He has served as his state’s United States Attorney and as the state Attorney General, as well as its top business regulator. He is the author of Captured: The Corporate Infiltration of American Democracy, and the new book The Scheme: How the Right Wing Used Dark Money to Capture the Supreme Court.

We just had a vote on [the DISCLOSE Act] in the Senate, and every single Republican voted against it. They voted— to a person—to protect dark money. Despite not only 80% of Republican voters feeling opposed and hostile to dark money and all this corporate influence, but really angrily opposed to it. These are people that come in with a very high sense of frustration and fury. It's a very salient and even emotional issue, and yet they all voted— to a person— against it.  Because, in my view, they've become as dependent on dark money as a deep-sea diver is on an air hose.

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, author of The Scheme: How the Right Wing Used Dark Money to Capture the Supreme Court

Imagine blaming Joe Biden for high gas prices when the fossil fuel industry actually sets the gas prices. If they actually let Joe Biden set gas prices when they were high, he could have knocked a dollar per gallon off like that. But of course, you can’t. We’ve got a market economy. But they blame him for it.

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, author of The Scheme: How the Right Wing Used Dark Money to Capture the Supreme Court

Bruce Fein is a Constitutional scholar and an expert on international law.  Mr. Fein was Associate Deputy Attorney General under Ronald Reagan and he is the author of Constitutional Peril: The Life and Death Struggle for Our Constitution and Democracy, and American Empire: Before the Fall.

There's only one oath that all of our members of Congress and the President and the judiciary take— the one oath to hold and support the Constitution of the United States. They don't take an oath to support their political party. They don’t take an oath to get re-elected. They don't take an oath for any other purpose other than to uphold and defend the Constitution.

Bruce Fein

The crux of our Republic is process— following process as prescribed in the Constitution, and if you lose, you go back and you make a better argument, or if you think the Constitution is defective, you propose an amendment…that is what makes us different from other countries. And this preoccupation with personalities is leading us off of a cliff very fast.

Bruce Fein

Your broader point, Bruce, is truly being occluded by people who engage in the public press and Congressional activities. Your broadest point is that we are living in an age of massive serial violations of our Constitution by our elected representatives, and of course, by implication, government officials who are working under these elected representatives in the branches of government. And this breeds a culture of lawlessness all the way down to the corporate crime wave to violations of consumers’ rights, workers’ rights, civil rights, civil liberties.

Ralph Nader

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