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Stephen Richer and Will Saletan: Kari Lake Lied

April 2, 2024
Notes
Transcript
Kari Lake said she’d fight to the bitter end to prove the AZ governor’s race was stolen from her, but in court she essentially conceded that it was all a lie. Plus, the danger of the white grievance movement, the Florida abortion ruling, and a shout-out to Caitlin Clark. Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer and Will Saletan join Tim Miller.

show notes
https://stephenricher.com/
Vote for Will’s ‘Corruption of Lindsey Graham’ here
The ‘Corruption of Lindsey Graham’ limited series 

This transcript was generated automatically and may contain errors and omissions. Ironically, the transcription service has particular problems with the word “bulwark,” so you may see it mangled as “Bullard,” “Boulart,” or even “bull word.” Enjoy!
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:07

    Hello, and welcome to the Secret Podcast. I’m your host, Tim Miller. We’ve got a great double header for you today. First up Stephen Richard, my pal, the recorder. In Maricopa County, Arizona, overseas elections there, and has been in a long time fight with Carrie Lake.
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:22

    We’ve got some good news on that front. And then after that, we’ll get to Will Saletan. I do have to shout out the the great Caitlin Clark last night. It was unbelievable kudos to her. I tipped my LSU cap to her.
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:33

    Forty one points. Most three pointers ever tied for most in a March Madness game. She has this thing where she does a crossover and then moves left. And then there’s a left step back and then shoots across her body, from beyond the three point line. And she made, like, three of those.
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:51

    The shop making is just unbelievable. So she’s gonna have an interesting final four page Bukers, and yukon’s pretty good. But South Sarah Longwell GameCocks are pretty damn good, but, Kudos to Caitlyn Clark into my friend Andrew Edgar. He wins our private bat Steven. Thank you for joining us.
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:06

    How are you feeling?
  • Speaker 2
    0:01:07

    I’m a little surprised that you can give up forty one points in the elite a with a team as talented as l s u when you know that, like, make someone else beat you. Make Caitlin Clark give up the ball. I was I was to see that stat line. I was a little surprised.
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:20

    I was a little disappointed. I gotta say they could have put Flage Johnson who just bad ass, and she’s gonna be back at next year, fella. She they could’ve put her on Caitlin Clark, I think. I anyway, I could analyze the defense of choices of LSUU, tigers all all morning, but that’s not what people are here to talk about. So I’ll just give kudos to Caitlin Bulwark, but I agree with that Kim Mulke, maybe as tape to look at this morning.
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:42

    Steven, it seems like things are going better for you than for Kim Moki right now. Congratulations on your success for people who don’t know. You’re in the midst, I guess, ish, of a defamation suit that you filed against Carrie Lake. Why don’t you just tell people who aren’t familiar? The basics of the suit that we can get into
  • Speaker 3
    0:02:01

    Okay.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:02

    To your exciting victory.
  • Speaker 2
    0:02:03

    Twenty twenty two election happens, Carrie Lake, is the Republican nominee for governor in Arizona. She loses narrowly by about seventeen thousand votes. Then she starts making a bunch of wild allegations. She files what the appropriate mechanism is for addressing those election Ron DeSantis. But in those election contests, court.
  • Speaker 2
    0:02:24

    She alleges a whole bunch of crazy unlawful things that she purports that I did among other people including that I injected three hundred thousand fraudulent early ballots into the system and that I purposefully disrupted the printing of ballots. So to throw the election to now governor Katie Hobbs.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:43

    Now as the Maricopa County recorder, do you print ballots? Are you in charge
  • Speaker 2
    0:02:47

    of that part of the election. So I’m in charge of the the mailing out and the taking back in. And so then it goes over to the board of supervisors. So, yeah, setting that aside. So she didn’t even have her facts straight about the administration of elections in Arizona, which was a bit rich for somebody who claims she knows a lot about this process.
  • Speaker 2
    0:03:05

    But, she loses in all those court cases. She appeals. She loses again. But then after she loses and she loses on all of her appeals, she continues to say all these things. She goes to rally.
  • Speaker 2
    0:03:18

    She puts pictures up of me and says that this man stole the election from me. This man injected three hundred thousand fraudulent early ballots into the system. And, obviously, that has some downstream ramifications for me and my family. And I keep thinking that gosh, she’s gonna get over this, and she’s gonna come to terms with her loss, and she’s gonna move on to something else. She might even get a new job, and that would be nice.
  • Speaker 2
    0:03:41

    But eventually I realized that this is the job. This is the pathway to continued political relevance. This is the pathway to continue fundraising. And so then in about June of twenty twenty three, my legal team and I decided file a defamation lawsuit on two specific claims that she had continued to make that were very specific. Supposed violations of the law that she reports that I did.
  • Speaker 1
    0:04:12

    Now it’s pretty challenging to win a defamation suit against a public figure. Right? There’s a lot more leniency when discussing political figures. You know, have you been a private citizen, right, and, you know, had Charlie Sykes said you know, Steven, I saw you stealing ballots out of a mailbox or something, and you’re just kind of like a guy that was a dentist or whatever. Like, the the the bar to clear a defamation suit is much lower.
  • Speaker 1
    0:04:36

    For that, as public figure, it’s much higher. And so that’s, part of the reason why Carrie Lake was so confident that she was gonna win when you filed this defamation suit against her. And I wanna play, just a little audio from her just in January about how she was gonna fight till the end.
  • Speaker 4
    0:04:51

    And I am not going to go into this, without fighting.
  • Speaker 3
    0:04:55

    Because I have Yeah.
  • Speaker 5
    0:04:57

    But what
  • Speaker 3
    0:04:58

    When is when is that gonna take place? When does it start jury selection? Right now, on the path that they’re proposing and you’re fighting.
  • Speaker 4
    0:05:05

    We’re right now trying to get the judge to throw this out. It’s a ridiculous case. It’s a frivolous case. It’s law fair. But if not, it’ll it’s gonna start immediately.
  • Speaker 4
    0:05:15

    It’s gonna start immediately with, discovery. And we’ll we’ll have subpoena power. We’ll be subpoenaing all kinds of records from Steven Richard pertaining to this rigged election that he, was part and parcel to.
  • Speaker 1
    0:05:29

    I don’t. She’s no longer, fighting. It turns out. What happened there late last week?
  • Speaker 2
    0:05:36

    She filed motion to dismiss in the fall and she lost on those. And what you said is absolutely right that it is hard for a public figure to bring a defamation action, but we thought we had a particularly strong case just because the very things that she was alleging had been determined by multiple previous courts to have been categorically false, and yet she kept saying them. And so if anyone should have known a false deed or have recklessly proceeded, it would have been cheap. So she loses on those motions to dismiss. And then finally, once she loses her last motion, then the court says, okay.
  • Speaker 2
    0:06:14

    It’s time to proceed with discovery. And so we say let’s get down to discovery. Meanwhile, her attorneys are giving us you know, the the the runaround, and we can’t pin her down on that. And so what happens is she eventually files a motion to default. Meaning that she’s not even going to contest that she defamed me.
  • Speaker 2
    0:06:36

    She’s just acknowledging that that’s going to be entered into a court of law. And I don’t understand the strategy behind that, but the rub is that now we don’t have to prove falsy. We don’t have to prove that she had malice All we have to do now is prove damages and that’s something that we’re gonna be very comfortable doing. And so for somebody who said she was gonna fight this to the bitter end, She lied. For somebody who said she could easily prove that I did these very heinous crimes, she lied.
  • Speaker 2
    0:07:07

    For somebody who said that she was looking forward to discovery cutting both ways, she lied. And so now we’re just in this situation in which she has completely waive the white flag and we’re ready to go to damages and we’re still gonna ask for discovery and damages. We’re still going to have extra witnesses and damages It’s just it’s gonna be very one-sided and so we feel to your original point, we feel better about our situation than the LC women’s basketball team who now feels about their
  • Speaker 1
    0:07:35

    And the damages, I wanna dunk on Kerry a little more, but to be serious for a second, I mean, the damage is related to, you know, threats, you’ve received and very real and they’re real ramifications. Like, this stuff is just in a game. Right? And there are a lot of Kooks out there that believe this kind of stuff when they’re being put forth.
  • Speaker 2
    0:07:53

    Yeah. And and she’ll go online and she continues to make fun of me, which an interesting legal strategy. And so, say, okay. Well, I’ll buy Stephen Richard, a therapy dog. Or, okay.
  • Speaker 2
    0:08:03

    Well, I’ll I’ll help him with his hair that I made fun of. And so, you know, that’s not the type of stuff we’re talking about. There are have been in the recent months to people arrested who will go to jail for more than two years who made threats and took steps towards acting on them in response to what Carrie said about me in the twenty twenty two election. My threats towards you. Yeah.
  • Speaker 2
    0:08:29

    And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There have been a lot of costs that we’ve had to incur in terms of security reputational damages. This is somebody who says she has millions of followers who hang on her every word, and she told those millions of followers, not want not twice, but, like, thirty plus times that I’m a criminal. So how do you unring that bell? She might have communicated to various Arizona that I’m not to be trusted and that I’m a criminal that obviously has damages as well.
  • Speaker 2
    0:08:59

    So so no, this is very frustrating. While I’m a politician and I accept some measure of that. This is based off a pernicious lie and it has had real effects on me and my family.
  • Speaker 1
    0:09:12

    Just on the family point. I mean, how how is your kind of family dealing with it? I and at some level, it has to be gratifying, right, to continue to be proven right. But another hand, like, you guys, you’re just a public servant. Like, your family’s just, you know, your wife, your family just trying to live their life.
  • Speaker 2
    0:09:27

    Yeah. They get frustrated enough when it’s talk about me, but I get especially frustrated when it interrupts their workday. So my wife had to get pulled out of a work situation because of a threat that one of these followers of election wise was making to both her and me. And so it, you know, pulled her out in the middle of the day. And something like that is jarring to say nothing of the disruption to your work.
  • Speaker 2
    0:09:56

    And quite frankly, while I signed up for a lot of this stuff, we didn’t imagine that she would sign up for such disruptions in her workplace.
  • Speaker 1
    0:10:04

    Yeah. That does suck. I’m sorry that she had to go through that. I mean, look at the Carrie situation now. She continues to push it, and she’s on Bannon’s podcast, talking about this stuff.
  • Speaker 1
    0:10:14

    Still last week, continue to put out meritless claims, but I I mean, I think the big takeaway here is in a way this defamation suit and the fact that she is What’s right? We’re defaulted on, you know, her defense puts a final stamp on something that we’ve all known. You know, those of us who live in reality have all known for a long time, but it’s a admission in court essentially that she lied and that her claims about the election are are false.
  • Speaker 2
    0:10:42

    That’s absolutely true. Now, she’s pretending it’s otherwise in some of her public appearances, but just like with the eugene Carol case. If she persists in saying that Steven injected three hundred thousand fraudulent ballots and stole the election from me, then we’ve already got a court judgment saying that these are defamatory remarks. And so that would make any future action pretty darn easy for us to to file suit.
  • Speaker 1
    0:11:11

    Now you’re still a Republican. Yeah. The Republican running as a Republican this time?
  • Speaker 2
    0:11:16

    I’m a I’m a Republican running in a primary and, you know, that has its own complexities, but we’re feeling pretty good about
  • Speaker 1
    0:11:22

    it. Okay. We’ll put your website there in the, show notes for folks that wanna support that campaign or post it, I guess. I don’t know if people wanna trash tuck you. I don’t know what what complaints they’d have against you, but I I don’t wanna put my finger on the scale.
  • Speaker 1
    0:11:34

    I think it’s pretty clear what what my views are. As a Republican in Arizona, I mean, It’s pretty insane, like, that the party has circled the wagons around her in this senate race. Essentially. I mean, like, I guess, the Mark Lam situation is still out there, but the National Republican Senate Committee and do any of these people call you. I’ve I’ve been using this.
  • Speaker 1
    0:11:56

    I just called you and said, like, what do you think about this? Like, should we have concerns about this? I mean, it’s pretty wild. To think that somebody that just has been proven to be a consistent liar. And now proven in court to be a consistent liar is somebody that
  • Speaker 2
    0:12:10

    the entire party is putting their stamp of approval. One, they might feel like it is a foregone conclusion, and they’re already chip committed at this point. But it will be interesting to see if some of the national groups play as much as they otherwise would have. I think a few concerns at one, this is just more damage, two, that this is just really going to the Kerry Lake Solvency Fund. And then three, when you’re looking at Montana, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and you’re saying, how many of these seats do we need to have Republican control of the Senate.
  • Speaker 2
    0:12:45

    And then you look at Arizona and you have look at all this. You know, it’ll be interesting to see if they think that’s still a good investment opportunity. But, no, none of those US senators have, reached out and said, what’s going on here? A lot of local Republicans who have been elected prior to twenty sixteen have called and said, keep up the good fight. We’re so happy.
  • Speaker 2
    0:13:08

    In fact, just yesterday, somebody in elected office in a Republican said, you’ve got a quiet cheering section who’s just really hoping for discovery still.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:18

    Well, Carrie, you might wanna stamp that out. Carrie, you might wanna put your research team on that. There’s some Republicans quietly whispering about rooting for your demise. It’s not surprising considering that Charlie Sykes and Donald Trump have hollowed out the party at Arizona. I mean, it is crazy.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:31

    Like, for people that come from the perspective of we want to have conservative governance, Arizona was a just Model. Across the board had Republican victors, governor, senators, and Carrie Lake and Donald Trump have hollowed out party in the state. All they do is lose.
  • Speaker 2
    0:13:48

    John Kyle, John McCain, Jeff Lake, Doug Ducy. In many ways, we were the most sort of the like hollow grounds. The some of the most reputable names within the Republican party. I I mean, yeah, it’s pretty amazing where we’ve gone from in just six eight years, twenty sixteen to twenty twenty four.
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:08

    Can you punned it hat for me? Are you allowed to punted hat as a recorder? You not allowed to fund it? Let’s fund it really quick. Look, you know, there’s some concerns about Arizona.
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:15

    We talked yesterday with Bill Crystal. Trump is up by four and the polling average, whereas Carrie Lake is down. How do you assess the state of the presidential race in Arizona right now?
  • Speaker 2
    0:14:25

    I think Trump is running ahead of Carrie in in US Senate races that shown in most polls where Carrie’s like three or four down, but who are those people? I think those are people who are frustrated with the current situation, but don’t really like the noise of Carrie maybe. The border’s a big stinking deal here. I know you know that, but being here, it’s hard to impress upon people just how much people talk about that here in Arizona. And you had our governor, who’s a Democrat, US Senator, Mark Kelly, who’s a Democrat, US Senator Kirsten Cinema, who’s an independent, all saying something needs to be done about the border and and And I know that, you know, with the border bill and Trump killing that, but even so there is a perception that the Biden administration has not given it it’s due attention.
  • Speaker 2
    0:15:14

    Inflation has had a disproportionate impact on the Phoenix metro area, and so especially with respect to home prices, And so I think that’s weighing heavily. And then I, you know, I don’t have to tell you, but there’s a a sentiment that that unemployment isn’t at four percent or below. As to that, I would leave it to you guys and the team as to why that is.
  • Speaker 1
    0:15:34

    What was it in my team? I don’t I’m an independent media, media podcast now, Steven. Okay. Two more things. If you if Joe Biden called you tomorrow, said Steven Richard.
  • Speaker 1
    0:15:43

    Besides, I would hope that he would say thank you for your service star democracy and defending it from the threat Donald Trump and Carrie like a post. But after that, if he was like, hey man, what do you think I should do?
  • Speaker 2
    0:15:51

    Yeah. I do get a lot of former presidents who ask this and and regular presidents So,
  • Speaker 1
    0:15:56

    yeah, current presence. Yeah, I would say Would you tell Joe Biden if he goes?
  • Speaker 2
    0:16:00

    This is the border commit resources to the board. Go down there. Show you care. Be with the men and women who are working there every single day and say to the greatest extent possible that I’m allowed to do awfully unilaterally I’m going to commit resources to the border. I’m gonna work with Arizona elected officials to make sure that that is being given attention.
  • Speaker 1
    0:16:22

    Finally, there’s been some craziness in Maricopa County. There’s a supervisor’s meeting with some of these Lake supporters, Washington Post report a swarm of people rushed towards the days shouting that the members were illegitimate. Another, like you, one of the Zoo down the right thing. Clint Hickman was at a board meeting. So the people were making a death threat against him.
  • Speaker 1
    0:16:42

    They started a prison sentence. Crowd started jeering and laughing and yelling at him when he talked about his death sentence. So I have a two part question. How concerned are we about the radicalization of kind of the mega voters in Arizona, and and what percentage of those people do you think are Phoenix Suns fans?
  • Speaker 2
    0:17:03

    I, you know, I I I to to the latter question, I actually think that this is the reflection of a deficit of healthy outlets for social engagement. I think for a lot of these people, it has become their religion. It has become their hobby and, you know, they spend all their time online going down rabbit holes, and that’s why they so fervently believe this. So I would say you’d be better off, you know, following all eighty two games and painting your your face orange every single game. And, that that would just be a better, healthier outlet.
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:36

    And maybe going to church, sons in church would be a lot better than Steve Bannon’s podcast and, you know, becoming a backlight of Carrie Lakes’s allies. Just a couple of guys giving some free advice.
  • Speaker 2
    0:17:46

    Yeah. Yeah. And now, admittedly, we might be reaching the sun’s off season a little sooner than we thought, but hold hope springs eternal. Yeah, it’s serious. There is a a radicalization among some segments And, there was a CNN segment recently on an elections director in Pinal County, which is to the southeast of Maricopa County, smaller county.
  • Speaker 2
    0:18:12

    And the lady who was running elections there, who had been a former prosecutor, criminal prosecutor. She said, I’ve been treated better by rapists and murders than I have been by some of the people I’m interacting with regarding elections. I was just thinking to myself, like, that’s one, undoubtedly true, and two, pretty similar to my experience. Just all the normal constraints, all the normal social niceties have seemingly been abandoned in the context of this election conversation. And I guess just because if you tell people, like, this is the republic being stolen from you, then you’re you’re allowed a decent amount of free rein because the republic being stolen from you is pretty darn serious.
  • Speaker 1
    0:18:56

    Yeah. Carrie tried to tell me when we last spoke that that she feels like she’s a patriot and that she cares about her country, but I I think that somebody that actually cares about her country wouldn’t be doing this, wouldn’t be sparing people to make these kind of threats against public servants.
  • Speaker 2
    0:19:10

    So I I’m inclined to agree. Was this when she was trying to touch your hands?
  • Speaker 1
    0:19:14

    It was when she was trying to touch me. So I’d love to have Carrie back on the podcast. We could talk about it a little bit more, but in summation, What I’m hearing from you and what is happening, the defamation case is similar to maybe what Megan McCain might have said to carry, like, no peace bitch. The damages will continue. The defamation suit will press on.
  • Speaker 2
    0:19:34

    The takeaway is that this is somebody who said if given the opportunity, she could prove that the twenty twenty two election was stolen from her. Here she had an opportunity teed up for her with as much discovery as she possibly want, and she put her tail between her legs and walked out. And now she avoided that and, but she’s going to have to pay for it. And so when presented with this opportunity, she said, I got nothing. And that is just such a a forfeit and is so telling of everything that she has said over the past two years and the falsity of those statements.
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:13

    Hey, man, brother. Thank you for us standing up for truth and for continuing to stay in the arena. It would have been easy for you to step out. And, we’ll be talking to you soon.
  • Speaker 2
    0:20:22

    Thanks very much. Up next
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:23

    on the other side Will Saletan. Thanks to Steven Richard. Alright. We are back with my colleague, Will Saletan. But, boy, Steven Richard.
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:34

    What a great guy. I mean, if we only had more Republicans like Steven Richard, if you’re a Democrat, you’ve never supported anybody, he’s got a real campaign. If you’ve never supported a Republican before, what better time? What better time to make your first one ever Stephen Richard? You can just give him one dollar just to say you did.
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:48

    He’s running for reelect as Maricopa County recorder. We need people like him in public service, Will. What’d you think about our buddy, Steven?
  • Speaker 6
    0:20:55

    I love Steven. I love him for standing up, One of the things that I think is really important in our country is it’s important that the people who stand up against the Kerry Lakes and the Donald Trump’s the liars, all the corrupt Republicans are not all lids. Okay? It’s important that people see the difference between being an honest conservative because part of the Trump Carrie Lake agenda is to convince normal Republicans that they have to choose between liberals and election liars, elections and hires. So Steven Mitchell stands up and people like him, Brad Raffensberger, Rusty Bowers, and they say, nope.
  • Speaker 6
    0:21:27

    I’m conservative, and I don’t believe in these lies.
  • Speaker 1
    0:21:30

    He also speaks clearly and plainly, which I like. You know, you see him plainly about Carrie, like, being a liar. You know, there you could do legal talk A lot of times you have politicians. A lot of times, I think, particularly Democratic pot, there’s a lot of times talking a lot of frou frou talk, and there’s no bullshit from that guy. Okay.
  • Speaker 1
    0:21:46

    For those that are just listening on audio, Will has changed into a Houston Rockets hat, so we can just kind of have a little NDA chat here. Houston Rockets are they’re I don’t think they’re gonna miss the playoffs. They’re playing pretty well, though. I wanna play a little audio, for you, of Mike Johnson, the op the anti Steven Richard, if you will. Our speaker of the house, Mike Johnson, recently talking about January sixth.
  • Speaker 5
    0:22:08

    Originally, we were trying to blur some of the faces to protect the innocent you know, people who were just there and just have to be walking to the building.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:16

    Yeah. So that was his priority. Mike Johnson’s own an apology tour. I wanna hear you’ve been even monitoring his apology tour, but, before we get to kind of the substance what’s happening in Congress, this was part of it. He’s on with Eric Bowling on NewsMax there.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:28

    And, talking about releasing the tapes. All this bullshit about January six are secret tapes. Who knows? But before they released them, he wanted to make sure that their priority was blurring the faces of the insurrectionists that nobody else got into trouble.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:41

    Right.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:42

    Law and order. Well, what do you think about that?
  • Speaker 6
    0:22:44

    So okay. I understand the distinction between people who have committed violence on January sixth and
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:49

    those who were in the capital, not necessarily
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:49

    committing violence.
  • Speaker 6
    0:22:52

    Here’s what I don’t understand, Tim. I don’t understand the innocence part, like, you’re outside the capitol on January sixth. Now we all saw what happened, like, massive attack on the capitol. Officers’s getting beaten up. Windows broken.
  • Speaker 6
    0:23:05

    People break it outdoors.
  • Speaker 1
    0:23:06

    Going up in the air. People are climbing up the capitol waving Trump flags.
  • Speaker 6
    0:23:11

    So unless you are legally blind and legally deaf, how is it that you went into the capitol after that? Innocently. I don’t understand this. I can understand the idea that you weren’t protesting for Bulwark Lives Matter. You were protesting for Donald Trump and trying to overthrow democracy.
  • Speaker 6
    0:23:27

    But I don’t see how that’s defense. So that doesn’t make you innocent. So I I don’t get where Mike Johnson’s coming from.
  • Speaker 1
    0:23:32

    I do. I get where he’s coming from. This is a religious thing now. Like, they are the martyr Like, they need to protect and defend the martyrs, and that is the anti now to enter the church of trumpism. But, yeah, I don’t I would be sympathetic to this view.
  • Speaker 1
    0:23:45

    If it was, like, there was closed footage from, like, around the Washington Monument, you know, and they and somebody wanted to release video, people, like, leaving after the rally, like, going away from the capital. We wouldn’t wanna show their faces. That’s fine. But inside the capital? Okay.
  • Speaker 1
    0:23:59

    No. Nope. Sorry, Mike Johnson. Alright. This tour though, what do you call an apology tour?
  • Speaker 1
    0:24:04

    We’re at Messching earlier, which I liked. A lot of media. Obviously, he’s very concerned about being able to manage his conference right now. He’s trying to quell the uprising from NTG. We have one more little bit from Mike Johnson.
  • Speaker 1
    0:24:17

    Let’s listen to that, and then I’m I’m interested in you to kinda give us a a view of what you’ve seen from him in these interviews over the last few days.
  • Speaker 5
    0:24:23

    So here’s what happened. So because the shutdown would be so terrible, We fought fought fought fought fought on the appropriation bills. We we, I was I was hemmed in by the top line spending numbers that my predecessor negotiated. Okay. I inherited all this because I remember I was after the end of the fiscal year, they handed me the reins of the state coach going off the cliff.
  • Speaker 1
    0:24:45

    Yeah. Okay. So he’s on the tour. He’s fighting. He’s fighting buddy fights Will Saletan is not like that blow dry kevin McCarthy.
  • Speaker 1
    0:24:51

    That’s predecessor, him to men. He’s been fighting. What so what have you seen from Mike?
  • Speaker 6
    0:24:55

    So first of all, you remember when when in the state of the union, Biden kept saying my predecessor and Republicans went. Abe over this, they went completely nuts. Like, you don’t do that. You don’t blame your predecessor. And then what happens, the guy who who literally sat behind Joe Biden during the state of the union and complained about him blaming his predecessor is blaming his predecessor.
  • Speaker 6
    0:25:16

    So What Johnson’s saying is, he’s going out there to right wing talk radio and right wing TV. And he’s got a lot of buddies. He’s got a lot of friends. Sean Hannity, Eric Bowling, all these guys are Charlie Kirk. They’re all trying to help Mike out.
  • Speaker 6
    0:25:29

    They want hardball interviews? Yeah. They’re trying to assure their listeners who think that Mike Johnson, with his one vote majority or whatever it is, three, can sort of ram the conservative agenda through America. They’re trying to, like, reconcile. So Mike, tell our listeners why you can’t do this.
  • Speaker 6
    0:25:46

    So he’s out on the tour saying, hey, Kevin McCarthy hamstrung me. Right? I I had to cut this deal for the CR for it to extend funding for all this stuff. I’m operating with a really small margin. He says, he’s a football metaphor.
  • Speaker 6
    0:25:58

    He’s like, I can’t throw a hail Mary on every play. We need, you know, three yards and a cloud of dust, get the first downs, move the ball. He used the word incremental.
  • Speaker 1
    0:26:06

    He doesn’t look like a big football fan to me. I’m just people can read water boy, the lines on that. I think
  • Speaker 6
    0:26:12

    he’d be a good water boy, don’t you think? I
  • Speaker 1
    0:26:13

    don’t know. I think that he was probably in the drama club, but that’s only for another another day.
  • Speaker 6
    0:26:19

    One of my favorite, little sticks he’s got is, he’s a southern Baptist. Right? He’s promising the Republican base, a kind of heaven. The idea of heaven is, you know, things are really bad in this world, but just be patient. Don’t ask for too much because in the next world, everything’s gonna be cool.
  • Speaker 6
    0:26:35

    So Mike Johnson’s version of heaven is he’s telling all these guys. Right now, just bear with me while we don’t get much of what we want because we don’t have enough majority. And after the election, everything’s gonna be wonderful. He says, you know, Donald Trump’s gonna be president. We’re gonna have a much bigger majority.
  • Speaker 6
    0:26:51

    We’re gonna have the Senate. And all good things will come to you right wing Republican base after the election. If you just be patient with me and Please, you know, withdraw your your motion to vacate. So that’s his that’s his spiel.
  • Speaker 1
    0:27:05

    Did Ukraine come up much in these interviews? Like, what’s your sense out? We were talking to Bill Crystal yesterday. He’s a little bit more bullish. Joe Perdek owner man in the hills, been very bearish on anything getting done.
  • Speaker 1
    0:27:14

    What when he Any sense of that or what were these softball interviews kind of avoiding that, the touchier topic?
  • Speaker 6
    0:27:21

    So Eric Bowling did bring up, a News Max interview, did bring up Ukraine. Because this is like an independent thing. It’s, set aside all the spending stuff. We don’t have money going to Ukraine before the border. And, of course, remember Republicans had the deal on the table, and they say, we don’t want this border agreement that negotiated in the Senate.
  • Speaker 6
    0:27:36

    And so there has been no movement on Ukraine. So Bowling asks Johnson, have you been actually negotiating with the Democrats to pass money for Ukraine? And Johnson sort of dances around it, which we can probably agree means he is gonna do it. And so Johnson’s sales pitch to Bowling and his audience about Ukraine is we’re doing this differently from what the way the Democrats did. We’re gonna do it in loans rather than a grant rather than just given them the money.
  • Speaker 6
    0:28:03

    We’re gonna use this repo act to seize assets from Russian oligarchs to pay for it. We’re gonna unleash American energy to hurt, you know, the Russian gas industry and hurt the war effort. So he’s trying to prepare them for, we are gonna send some money to Ukraine but we’re gonna do it in a Republican macho conservative way. I hope so.
  • Speaker 1
    0:28:23

    I hope so. Bill and I talked about this yesterday, I’m wondering your take on it. I just must feel like a hack when I have to bring this stuff up. But I it’s just reality. Like, the Democrats don’t get any credit for this.
  • Speaker 1
    0:28:33

    It gives me a pretty crazy that, like, we live in this world where the Republicans can make these random demands about funding and equipping our allies in Ukraine And there’s not even any worry that the Democrats are gonna push back on it. Like, that the Democrats are just being responsible, you know, not everybody’s Jake Okin class over there, not everybody’s excited about the military industrial complex. Right? There’s some Democrats that have legitimate concerns about the way that our defense budget is spent. And yet, no peeps.
  • Speaker 1
    0:29:00

    Like, they’re all just like, alright. Whatever, you know, bullshit you assholes need to come up with to provide cover on this. We’ll go along with and Joe Biden will sign it.
  • Speaker 2
    0:29:08

    Right.
  • Speaker 1
    0:29:08

    I do just wish that they would get some credit for that. You know, with anybody. I don’t it’s not like I don’t know what I’m hoping for. The Brett Bear is gonna say, good on, Joe Biden, standing up to A lot of me are Putin and and doing horse trading, but it is true. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:29:22

    Am I am I wrong?
  • Speaker 6
    0:29:23

    I should ask you about this because, like, that’s the way I look at it, and I wonder how it works in politics. Because it seems to me, Tim, that priors are so built in that people just refuse to see that what used to be the conservative party isn’t anymore and vice versa. Right? I mean, Mike Johnson goes around on this apology tour, and he tells people, okay, I don’t have a lot to show you, conservative based, but we’re standing for all the values believe. And then he rattles it off, like limited government, strong foreign policy, you know, border security.
  • Speaker 6
    0:29:51

    Meanwhile, what’s happening in reality? Like, they reject the border security let’s leave the border open for another year until Trump gets in. Right? And, you know, family values as a joke, limited government, they spend as much as the Democrats do. That was Nikki Haley’s point.
  • Speaker 6
    0:30:05

    And on foreign policy, exactly what you said, the Republicans are now the isolationist party. And they’re the ones who don’t wanna support our allies. And yet they somehow claim credit for it, and it’s not clear that voters in the middle are gonna punish them for that.
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:19

    No. Or even aware. You know, it’s not clear that they’re even aware. Anyway, I don’t know how to message this. You know, it’s is something for for my conversation with Sarah.
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:27

    Me and Sarah doing the secret pod this week on Friday for people who aren’t bullet plus members and me and Sarah Longwell this all out. Like, how do you message us that the Democrats can get some credit in the big middle for being willing to give up. Like, they still have this reputation for going so far to the left and and giving in to the left. And they do they have in various times, we’ve discussed that. But, like, on a couple major issues this year, immigration, which we just talked about with Steven and Ukraine, I like, they’re willing to sacrifice order to make a deal, and it’s the Republicans that won’t.
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:56

    Okay. A couple other topics here. We gotta get through. I just I’m so excited about all these. I don’t know which one to start with.
  • Speaker 1
    0:31:03

    Let’s start with anti white discrimination. How about that? The Trump administration Project twenty twenty five. They’re starting to put a little meat on the bone about what their plans are, if they get in. And one of the big efforts is going to provide protections for victims of racism.
  • Speaker 1
    0:31:20

    It’s interesting. White people though. One white people are victims of racism. They’re going after the rooney rule. We’ve been talking about the NBA.
  • Speaker 1
    0:31:27

    Here’s some NFL chat. The rooney rule is how how NFL teams The league requires them to interview a black coaching candidate. Was trying to deal with the fact that, like, in a league that’s mostly black players, all the coaches were white. So it’s, like, kind of a reasonable rule. They wanna look at, you know, instances where the government is giving money to black farmers, for example, kind of that, you know, it should be, you know, the money should go to farmers equally no matter what their race is, etcetera.
  • Speaker 1
    0:31:56

    I’m interested in your thoughts on both the substance and the politics of this. I’m concerned about this. I think that we’re going down a very bad road here. And I think that a lot of the motivation of the right right now is concerns about reverse racism. I think a lot of times the left plays into that.
  • Speaker 1
    0:32:13

    And so I think this is gonna be a very potent political thing, even though I find it obviously ridiculous as a policy matter. Where do you stand on that?
  • Speaker 6
    0:32:21

    So unlike a lot of folks with the Bulwark, I’m born a Democrat and grew up in the Democratic Party. This is before Donald Trump.
  • Speaker 1
    0:32:28

    Yes, sir.
  • Speaker 6
    0:32:28

    I feel like Republicans have always had a white grievance angle. Whatever it is, it’s Jesse Helms, and, you know, you needed that job or whatever. I mean, this has been going on my whole life. And So I I feel like the Republican Party has a lot to answer for here. On this particular thing, though, going after the rooney rule, Think about this for a minute, Tim.
  • Speaker 6
    0:32:48

    The okay. This is not even we gave the job to a non white person instead of a
  • Speaker 5
    0:32:52

    white, like,
  • Speaker 1
    0:32:53

    you know, It’s a site. I just get I just get an interview. The only thing is they get an interview. Finders full of black coaches is all they’re doing.
  • Speaker 6
    0:33:01

    So piece in axios that went into this was really good, and it talks about this group, America First Legal, which is Steven Miller, you know, the Trump outfit, and they literally sued They filed a civil rights complaint against the NFL over the winning rule. Again, the winning rule just says you’ve gotta interview, not even give the job to interview what two minority candidates The complaint was, oh, but that takes time. It takes time. And anytime you spend interviewing a non white person comes away from a white person, That is a level of extremism in defense of I don’t wanna say white supremacy because that’s an incendiary turn, but, like, you’re not even allowed to make an effort to try to diversify your staff, your coaching staff. And how far does this extend?
  • Speaker 6
    0:33:43

    Cause there’s these interviewing rules They’re used in corporations, they’re used in other political offices. And, like and it’s just like the mildest form of let’s try to get outside our white bubble. And for them to be sued over that, just to me, testifies to the extremism of this white grievance movement and certainly under the trump era. Know, the other one, can I just say one other one about Trump?
  • Speaker 1
    0:34:04

    Please.
  • Speaker 6
    0:34:05

    Donald Trump, they mentioned this in the Axios piece. Donald Trump has been out there claiming that Latitia James and Fony Willis are racists for prosecuting him. And there’s no evidence other than that they’re black and he’s white. And if that’s, you know, his standard of what counts as racism, then that means, like, no white person, even one as patently guilty as Donald Trump. Can never be prosecuted.
  • Speaker 6
    0:34:29

    So I just think that’s gross.
  • Speaker 1
    0:34:31

    I did too. I find it gross and I find it extreme. I will also say I think this is something that we’re gonna be spending a lot of time talking about on this podcast something that I’m very concerned about is how this is perpetuating the sense of grievance outside of environments where like, outside of the Jesse Helms type world, right, and into kind of mainstream white America. One thing that that really stuck with me, I was watching, did you watch your white lotus
  • Speaker 6
    0:34:54

    Oh, yeah. Yeah.
  • Speaker 1
    0:34:55

    Okay. Yes. In the first season of White Lotus, I guess, it’s a rich family. They’re at a Hawaiian Resorts, and the whole thing is kind of a common area on on white privilege, etcetera. But there’s a scene.
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:05

    They’re sitting at breakfast at this resort in Hawaii. And the mom, the rich mom, is talking about how she has a daughter and a son. The daughter’s doing great. The son isn’t. I forget if he’s testing for colleges or for internships.
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:17

    I forget the exact context, but her complaint is you know, oh, he’s not gonna get the same fair shake. You know? Like, he’s getting discriminated against. Right? They’re gonna be black people or women or whatever are gonna be ahead of him in line now.
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:30

    And, obviously, they’re they’re making fun of the character in the show in this, but I’m telling you Like, how much this is starting to perpetuate among people? Like, this mom character was not like a Maga character. Right? It was if you’re guessing who the character voted for, probably Hillary and Biden. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:45

    And yet she has that thought. And I’m concerned about this, and I’m concerned that the Magga crowd is going to really use this wedge and that it’s something that’s gonna persist after Trump.
  • Speaker 6
    0:35:58

    So one little piece of I have a couple of ponies over my shoulder. I’m not even gonna grab one here because this is not a real pony. This is like a it’s a Trojan pony because inside the pony isn’t us some more bad news. It’s I don’t think that’s gonna happen yet. And the reason is that the Trump people, they need a scapegoat.
  • Speaker 6
    0:36:18

    They wanna tell American white people they need to scapegoat for what’s wrong with you. It can’t be, you know, some corporation or whatever. Right now it’s immigrants. As long as they got immigrants, they’re not gonna go to domestic non white people. What holds them to that is that Trump is doing better with Hispanic and black voters than he has been.
  • Speaker 6
    0:36:36

    I think then then certainly then, like, Mitt Romney. Right? So as long as those people, enough of them inside the Trump coalition, then he has something to lose by hyping this too much, But that’s only true as long as he’s got the immigrants to blame. If at any point, the immigrants are not a sufficient scapegoat, he’ll go after domestic non white Americans. Boy, that was the pony.
  • Speaker 6
    0:36:56

    We’re in trouble. Like I said, a Trojan pony.
  • Speaker 1
    0:36:58

    I kept waiting. I kept waiting for the real pony. I was, like, kept waiting for pegasy. To fly over. I’m gonna give a more positive view.
  • Speaker 1
    0:37:05

    Okay. I agree with that. I don’t know if that’s much of a pony. Definitely a treasure pony. Alright.
  • Speaker 1
    0:37:08

    I want you to be the house of Lib. And we’re running out of time. So to be the house level, would you like to talk about abortion? We have a great Mark Caputo article. Everybody should read this morning.
  • Speaker 1
    0:37:17

    There’s a six week abortion ban in Florida. Supreme Court is now ruled. There’ll be a ballot initiative to essentially repeal that six week ban that has been upheld. And then, you also are are working on a longer, you know, kind of looking into the the Republican position about the US having a blank check on Israel. So I wanna give one of these two topics the time they deserve rather than being rapid fire.
  • Speaker 1
    0:37:39

    So do you wanna be the house live on Israel or let’s
  • Speaker 6
    0:37:42

    go let’s go to abortion
  • Speaker 1
    0:37:43

    go to work because I could. Alright. Next week. We’ll do we’ll do Israel next week.
  • Speaker 6
    0:37:46

    Caputo’s got a great piece about what’s going on in Florida. And this is really significant. It’s certainly significant in Florida, but I think gonna be significant larger. The Supreme Court of Florida has set things up in the fall for maximum pro choice backlash. Maximum pro choice turnout, which is the Supreme Court of Florida said the fifteen week ban can go into effect.
  • Speaker 6
    0:38:07

    The six week ban that DeSantis signed is then gonna go into effect. And third, the supreme court said you can have this ballot initiative. It’s gonna be on that ballot in the fall to reinstate, basically, row. Allow abortion up until viability, essentially. And there’s gonna be a massive turnout because if you’re in Florida and you’re pro choice, the Supreme Court of Florida isn’t gonna defend you anymore as it used to.
  • Speaker 6
    0:38:29

    The Supreme Court of the United States isn’t gonna defend you. You’ve gotta get out and turn out for it. And I think the marks cited polls that it’s, like, seventy percent for this ballot initiative, which is not surprising. And, Tim, I don’t even have to be the house live on this because this is gonna get the libertarians turning out. And voting for this ballot initiative.
  • Speaker 6
    0:38:49

    Okay? A little background. Ron DeSantis has been bragging for years that he changed voter registration in Florida, and Mark Caputo has in the Bulwark piece, some data on this. Florida used to be a plus seven hundred thousand Democratic registration, and it’s moved completely the opposite. It’s now, like, plus eight hundred thousand Republican.
  • Speaker 6
    0:39:09

    Right? But who are those people? Right? Those people are the ones who came to Florida because they wanted freedom. Remember, COVID and, like, come here.
  • Speaker 6
    0:39:17

    You don’t have lockdowns. Your kids go to school, nobody’s gonna make you get facts, nobody’s gonna make you wear a mask. Those are libertarian Republicans. You’re gonna tell those people that the government which can’t tell them to get boxed, can’t tell them to wear masks, can tell them whether they can get an abortion. So there’s gonna be a big turnout of people who are in the middle, who are a libertarian, for this ballot initiative.
  • Speaker 6
    0:39:36

    Don’t know if it’s gonna help Democrats, but it’s gonna be a big win for abortion rights.
  • Speaker 1
    0:39:40

    This is the big challenge the Democrats have. And is it worth fighting over Florida about this I’m gonna rein on the pony here. Because I agree with that assessment. I think that a valid initiative such as this almost certainly passes because the coalitions are such that you know, there’s a big percentage of Trump voters that approach voice. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:39:58

    Like, it’s something people don’t understand. Right? Like, there’s a lot of Trump voters that were not in it for the Supreme Court deal. Like, he managed to create a fusionism by accident, I think, like, bringing in these kind of secular working class folks and doing the deal with the evangelicals on the Supreme Court. So the question is, do the folks go and vote that are coming out?
  • Speaker 1
    0:40:19

    And do they vote for Joe Biden? Do they vote for, you know, whatever Democrat ends up winning the nomination against Rick Scott in the center race? And I just don’t know. I don’t think so. And I think that the way to do it conceivably is to try the message to those people that your vote today on abortion could be voided.
  • Speaker 1
    0:40:39

    By the Federal Congress. Right? Like, by Congress and the Supreme Court. Right? Like, you could vote today to reinstitute Roe in Florida, and then you could put in place Donald Trump, Mike John and, you know, whoever takes over Mitch McConnell, and they could pass a national abortion ban.
  • Speaker 1
    0:40:53

    That’s not insane. Like, it’s kind of hard to imagine sixty cent of votes for it. But it’s not totally implausible if Republicans had a big landslide year, for example. And so can that message sync in with some of these voters I just don’t know. We’ve seen this in Florida before.
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:09

    Florida had a minimum wage ballot initiative on the same ballot that Ron DeSantis won in a record landslide and the minimum wage increase past. Right? So how do you get the policy and the partisan preference to match up It’s tough because the culture stuff a lot of times overtakes it. I don’t know. What do you think?
  • Speaker 6
    0:41:27

    Yeah. Part of what Caputo captures in this piece is that Trump is getting out of the way of this
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:33

    thing. Right.
  • Speaker 6
    0:41:33

    Remember there’s a fifteen week ban that was passed earlier in Florida, then the six week ban.
  • Speaker 5
    0:41:37

    Right.
  • Speaker 6
    0:41:37

    World of difference between these two things. Sure. Like, just numerically, less than ten percent of abortions are
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:43

    after. Even a pro even some of the, like, videos pro life sympathies. Like, it’s six weeks is absurd. Right? Like, a lot of people don’t even know their
  • Speaker 6
    0:41:48

    private sixty percent of abortions, sixty to sixty five percent are after six weeks. So you’re cutting them off. You’re making abortion illegal in Florida. And what the Puto does he tries to find out what’s Trump’s position and trump is not saying anything. He’s sticking to that fifteen, sixteen weeks, which is politically safer.
  • Speaker 6
    0:42:04

    I don’t know if it’s saved him. But it’s certainly safer, but it goes to your point that by doing that, Trump is going to minimize and possibly save himself and John Bell Republicans, from the pro choice backlash.
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:16

    We will see if that will be successful. Will Saletan. Thank you so much. Thanks to Steven Richard. Will, we’re gonna put this in the show notes here.
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:24

    Will’s up for an award, the twenty eighth annual Webb Awards, or the corruption of Lindsey Graham. It’s in the category of limited series, Deepgram was awesome. If you guys did never listen to that, if anybody didn’t listen to it, go back. It’s on YouTube. It’s in the archives here.
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:37

    I will put that in the show notes as well. Go on there. Webby Awards dot com, vote for Will Saletan. He deserves a pony and a I don’t know. What do you get when you win a webby?
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:47

    I don’t know. Is there a little trophy? You can put it next to the pony. I don’t know.
  • Speaker 6
    0:42:50

    You might get some oddly shaped piece of plastic. I don’t know. You know, the problem is, like, you
  • Speaker 1
    0:42:54

    need ugly pieces of plastic. You deserve an oddly shaped piece of plastic. Stick. Will Saletan. Thank you so much.
  • Speaker 1
    0:43:00

    We’ll be talking to you again soon. We’ll see y’all back here tomorrow. I’ve got a fun guest for you. So make sure to tune in. Peace.
  • Speaker 2
    0:43:15

    The board podcast
  • Speaker 1
    0:43:24

    produced by Katie Cooper with audio engineering and editing by Jason Brett.
  • Speaker 3
    0:43:35

    I’m riding my
  • Speaker 6
    0:43:36

    wheel. I wanna
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