Media

Breaking Points: 6/27/22 FULL UNCUT SHOW

Krystal and Saagar discuss Roe v Wade being overturned, political fallout of the decision, various responses from politicians, Ukraine war movement, Liz Cheney’s desperation, Barstool conservatism, Dem base, & airline dysfunction with Derek Thompson.

Timestamps: Roe: 0:0034:30 Trump: 34:3144:40 Ukraine: 44:411:04:47 Liz Cheney: 1:04:481:09:42 Pelosi: 1:09:431:15:15 Saagar: 1:15:161:27:08 Krystal: 1:27:091:38:21 Derek Thompson: 1:38:221:50:39

6/27 NEWSLETTER: Roe v Wade Overturned, Roe Fallout, Ukraine Developments, & More!
Welcome to the June 27th, 2022 edition of the Breaking Points with Krystal and Saagar newsletter. Remember to purchase your tickets to the Breaking Points live show in Atlanta here: https://www.ticketmaster.com/event/0E005CD6DBFF6D47 with password BreakingPoints. The exclusive premium ticket sale will end soon, so remember to get your tickets! Lifetime members, when you purchase tickets please email james@breakingpoints.com to get a refund because of your substantial contribution to this program. The high volume of ticket sales is something we are all very grateful for, so keep it coming!
Now to the 6/27 show which can be found here: https://youtu.be/xXGPo9bYMoI
ROE V WADE
The big news of Roe v Wade officially being overturned by the Supreme Court was announced on Friday. It came after a draft opinion was released in May detailing the SCOTUS majority opinion that Roe should be overturned as part of the Dobbs v. Jackson case contesting a 15 week abortion ban in Mississipi. The decision to overturn Roe means that abortion is no longer legalized on a federal level, and it marks the culmination of a generational battle for the pro-life right. On the other side, pro-choice liberals are devastated after a seismic defeat was handed to them by SCOTUS. The abortion issue has been at the heart of American culture wars for a generation, and the meaning of Roe being overturned cannot be overstated. In terms of polling, the American people believe Roe being overturned is a step backward for the country. For independents, 6/10 disapprove of the decision, with predictable 8/10 disapprove and approve numbers for Democrats and Republicans. The ruling has made 50% of Democrats more likely to vote in the 2022 midterm elections, indicating a more animated base of the party. Time will tell if the abortion issue will play a major role in the midterm elections, give the overwhelming belief in polling that inflation is the top issue for the country. Nonetheless, the initial results after Roe being overturned are encouraging for liberals.
Democratic leadership has said better midterm results would enable them to codify Roe v. Wade, and ruled out the possibility of getting rid of the Senate filibuster. The timid response from the party was disappointing to activists and progressives; reflected by a tweet thread from AOC about the situation. She called for dramatic action from the party, beyond fundraising off the decision or asking for votes. Her position as a progressive leader reflects not only that wing of the Democratic party, but the anger of regular liberals who normally stand with the party. More on this anger will be covered in Krystal’s monologue below.
Republicans responded to the overturning of Roe by celebrating the SCOTUS decision and then setting their sights toward the future. Former VP Pence called for a national abortion ban and Republican states’ ‘trigger laws’ became enacted overnight. Now the state playing field for abortion has been set with varying, uneven practices even among states bordering each other. As the sides harden and fallout continues, instability on a state level is likely to grow larger depending on which party is in control.
TRUMP
A Republican with a less enthusiastic but still supportive reaction to Roe being overturned was former President Trump. He is reportedly warning that the decision could hurt the GOP in November by angering suburban women, especially if more laws get passed resembling the six week ban in Texas. When asked by Fox News, Trump said in a statement “God made the decision” about Roe and in a previous interview claimed “I never like to take credit for anything.” A strange, uncharacteristic response considering Trump’s enthusiastic boasting about his success on twitter or in front of the cameras taking credit for anything he could. The question came after three of the judges who voted to overturn Roe were appointed to the Supreme Court by Trump with that goal in mind. On the campaign trail, Trump frequently boasted about being the most pro-life President in history when touting his record to Republican voters. A line picked up by his enthusiastic supporters who are giving Trump plenty of credit for the SCOTUS decision. Perhaps the reaction from Trump comes from his time before Republican politics as a wealthy, Manhattan liberal who supported abortion, or he believes it could weaken his 2024 prospects.
UKRAINE
With all the attention in America focused on abortion, important moves in the Ukraine war have been overshadowed. After a long battle, the Russians have taken control of the vital Ukrainian city Sievierodonetsk. The fighting had persisted for weeks with mass casualties and full scale destruction of the city by the Russian army. Ukrainian forces conducted a tactical withdrawal from the city to focus on defending Lysychansk, right across the Siverskyi Donets river. Victory in Sievierodonetsk points to the slow moving success of the Russian offensive in the Donbas region, with the city being a key battleground in the Luhansk section of the contested eastern region. Most analysts believe the conflict has become a war of attrition between the two sides, where each mile of ground will come with massive losses in personnel and materials. In the meantime, western intelligence is providing Ukraine with a crucial boost in its strategic decisions, to the point where CIA officials have been stationed in Kyiv. Ukraine is eagerly awaiting the western military and humanitarian aid it has continued to receive so it can bolster their forces in a crucial time. All of the important battle updates will continue to be a regular part of Breaking Points programming.
In addition, larger geopolitical developments took place over the weekend in Lithuania after the country accused Russia of lying about the Kaliningrad situation. The small baltic nation’s Prime Minister denied the rail blockade of goods and passengers. They say enforcing the EU sanctions is only affecting about 1% of Russian freight due to Lithuania’s ban of steel and other metals from transporting through to Kaliningrad. Sanctions enforcement began recently after a three month transition period for existing contracts. During the G7 meeting between the US, Canada, Japan, UK, France, Germany, and Italy the countries pledged even more measures against Russian exports. They agreed to ban Russian gold imports in an effort to broaden the sanctions package despite growing blowback from domestic populations. When British PM Boris Johnson met with French President Macron at the summit, Johnson took issue with the push for diplomacy between Ukraine and Russia spearheaded by Macron. The UK disputes the reporting, but did say there is an opportunity to turn the tide in the war at a crucial time.
LIZ CHENEY
Returning to the domestic front, GOP Congresswoman Liz Cheney of Wyoming is now blatantly relying on Democrats to save her political career. Her GOP primary campaign sent a mailer to Wyoming Democrats with instructions on how to change parties to vote for Cheney. Back in February she denied her campaign was going to make an effort to reach out to Democrats to make up for large deficits in polls. The daughter of infamous George W. Bush Vice President Dick Cheney, she has become a hero in liberal media for opposition to Donald Trump. Ms. Cheney has previously come out in support of her father, who orchestrated the Iraq War, War on Terror, CIA torture programs behind the scenes during the Bush administration. Following Roe being overturned, Cheney’s old world and new reality collided when her support for the decision received strong backlash from her liberal supporters. While unlikely to change her standing with liberals, it was a telling moment that Democrats expected her to be on their side of the decision.
PELOSI
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been the recipient of strong backlash after the Roe ruling by SCOTUS for her leadership decisions. When the announcement was made, she held a press conference widely derided because she read a poem in an effort to console outraged Democrats. The perceived lack of action or emotion from her despite holding the third most powerful office in America drew ire from the party base hoping for more. Immediately after the announcement, her team sent out a fundraising email asking for midterm election donations so Democrats can codify legal abortion on a federal level. Critics pointed out the lack of action Democrats have taken right now with the Presidency, House, and Congress. They also noted the persistent methods used by Democrats to fundraise and gain support on issues they refuse to act on. Supporters of the Democratic party have called for Pelosi to take action instead of using abortion as a fundraising tool or a midterm wedge issue.
SAAGAR
In Saagar’s monologue, he breaks down the consequences of Roe being overturned for the Barstool Conservatism theory he has been advancing over the past few years. The theory is that the old culture wars of the 1990s have mostly passed and have been replaced by battles over political correctness, language manipulation, gender ideology, and other battles surrounding wokeness. Gay marriage, prayer in schools, and other religious fights have taken a back seat, leading to secular people to become part of the right wing coalition on culture. Dave Portnoy, Barstool founder, is pro-choice, pro-Trump, anti-lockdown, and voted Republican. He represents the non-woke bros who take a socially libertarian stance and want to be left alone. The same framework applies to Elon Musk, Joe Rogan, Bill Maher, and other pro-choice liberals of old who find themselves adrift from the current cultural left. It’s all predicated on the right actually moving forward from the 90s cultural fights, and the Roe repeal means it is not going to happen. Here’s what Portnoy had to say following the SCOTUS ruling in an emergency press conference and comments on Twitter. He kept going with his political analysis because he believes it could bail out Democrats. A midterm recovery is unlikely for Dems because of the economy and gas but there could be major ramifications in the long term, with Republicans on the wrong side of public opinion. America is becoming a more secular country and the status quo opposes abortion after the first trimester but they are alright with it. Majoritarian opinion was in line with the status quo, and now Republicans are in the opposition to two thirds of the country. Next for the religious right is a national abortion ban, a policy supported by only 13% of the country. The numbers on a national abortion ban are at defund the police levels, meaning everyone on the right will be affected by the fallout of this proposal and the plans to criminalize seeking abortions in other states. Given the power of the religious right in the conservative media and institutions, dissent will become difficult in similar ways it is on the left. Donald Trump is sounding the alarm on the political ramifications of overturning Roe and then pursuing national abortion bans. He refused to take credit for the SCOTUS decision, an uncharacteristic move for Trump. On both sides, the political effects will be dramatic and coalition shifts could be put to a test by the abortion issue.
After the monologue, Krystal and Saagar mention the barstool conservative idea as an observation and not an ideology. It was predicated on moving on from 1990s issues that had been fortified in the battle over public opinion. In the long run there will be consequences when stories come out and the elite media hammers home the point on abortion. The right could become the annoying scolds again like the liberals have been over the past few years. Language policing and regulating behavior typically provokes a reaction from the American people whether it is being conducted by the right and left. After Obergefell, the GOP was let off the hook on gay marriage and now there is an emboldened religious right that could target it again. Nothing is off the table for the right and it could put them strongly against public opinion on debates of the 1990s the Republicans have lost.
KRYSTAL
In her monologue, Krystal analyzes the discontent from Democrats on the party’s lukewarm response to abortion. The generational defeat for Democrats is a failure so blatant and undeniable that even partisan liberals who cheerlead for the party are showing frustration. On the GOP side, they have made their next step of a national abortion ban clear. Legislation with significant support has been introduced in the House and Senate, despite only 13% public support. On the state level, Republicans are leaping into action in Florida to pressure DeSantis to go further. Interstate travel and abortion pills by mail are becoming contentious state issues too. The response from Democrats has been much more timid in the wake of defeat; sending out fundraising emails and reading poems and singing songs outside the Supreme Court. Biden sent out weak tweets from someone without interest in using the power he holds. Vice President Kamala Harris’ tweet of her watching cable news on an airplane encapsulated Democrats’ helplessness. Party leadership is pearl clutching and begging for money despite having a trifecta in government they could use right now. Even if they maintain power, nothing will change if they do nothing against the right whose goals have been made clear. At abortion protests, angry protestors have called the party’s bluff on their lack of fight for abortion. The base took the promise to support Biden as a bulwark against Trump. Now the right is stronger than ever clamoring to get back into power off the fecklessness of Biden. Polls demonstrate Trump’s 2024 chances over Biden and Kamala being fairly strong. Biden promised nothing would fundamentally change in a time of major upheavals guaranteeing fundamental change in some form.
The abortion fight is at the heart of Democratic party politics and the liberal base cannot deny the failure of their beloved leadership. Progressives are being hailed as truth tellers for criticizing the hypocrisy of leadership and demanding more urgency. The disaffection of the college educated liberal is only beginning to come to fruition. College degrees provide less and less guarantees with growing student debt. Another recession will be destructive to livelihoods for people already living in precarious circumstances. Anger towards Democrats over Roe could be a radicalizing force for the base typically supportive of the party line. The rage could be channeled towards anger donations, cable news watching, and bickering online. It could be channeled to not voting at all out of a sense of hopelessness. A string of street protests the government will not respond to. Or it could be used to channel a real challenge to the power of the Democratic establishment and its donors. The failure on abortion for liberals is impossible to deny, and reality is coming to people hard.
After the monologue, Krystal and Saagar ponder the loyal liberals realizing for the first time that Democratic leadership is full of it. The retort of pointing to Trump will be effective in combating the dissent, but the base is realizing they have been hoodwinked by the feckless Democratic elites. Promises about Trump and Russia or Trump and prosecutions have fallen apart even though all the cable news coverage had liberals believing the walls were closing in. This time Biden is not the opposition to Trump, and the electability voter might not be persuaded about Biden with his tanking poll numbers. A challenge could happen if someone runs on policy preferences combined with electability in a Democratic primary.
DEREK THOMPSON
Krystal and Saagar are joined by The Atlantic writer Derek Thompson about the dysfunctional airline industry as part of a larger issue in American life. Thompson goes through the problems facing airlines and then connects them to the problem America is having where nothing is working in the way it should. The demand crash in 2020 led to the industry pulling back supply, and all the sudden demand surged much faster than expected leaving airlines unprepared to meet capacity. Reserve pilots, crews, and planes are unavailable leading to cancellations and overscheduling by airlines. Complication is multifaceted because the schedules are set months ahead of time, and airlines did not cut back their summer schedules ahead of time hoping they could meet demand. Another issue is the tens of billions of dollars in bailout money sent to airlines with the intent of preventing this crisis, but the airlines pocketed the cash and laid off its workforce anyways. Problems have mounted with supply chains, infrastructure, gas prices, inflation, and other vital facets of American life reflecting a deep dysfunction in the country. Government and the private sector are not living up to their promises as to how they are supposed to work and it’s exacerbating a deeply divided nation. It is important to diagnose the problems accurately to get to fixing fundamental issues with demand and supply breaking the American economy.

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