tv Washington Journal Greg Sargent CSPAN November 13, 2018 2:20pm-2:37pm EST
career, helping children and families and voting rights issues and criminal justice issues. a lot of human rights and going to affect foths that don't have a seat on the table. that has been my career focus nd i continue to go there. [inaudible] >> i think that's going to be something that is likely to happen. i don't think it should be the priority. the proirt has to be serving our constituents. > thank you so much. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018] captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org >> live coverage expecting senate minority leader chuck schumer and senator nelson to hold a news conference on the recount that is going on in the florida senate race. senator nelson is oice is the
incumbent and take you live to the democrats' briefing as soon as it begins. we'll look at today's "jarks journal." sargent : takingook, n uncivil war back our democracy in the age of trump he and disinformation and thunder dome politics." what are thunder dome politics? two things, first the zero sum death struggle that results in politics when all rules and norms and standards of fair play go out the window. you and your viewers have probably seen the movie in the thunder dome. two men enter and one leaves. it is a reference to that aspect of our politics in an euro of norm shredding and so forth.
crudecond is the tenor, bloodsport entertainment tone that trump has dragged us all down to her thunder dome politics puts those two things together in an effort to encapsulate pre-much how everything feels now. host: how much is donald trump to blame for thunder dome pommel -- politics? guest: i think it is pretty clear that he is a major culprit. in many ways, he is -- he has taken a definite approach to political warfare that i think a lot of people on both sides of the aisle have decided is pretty distasteful. on the norm shredding, when i argue in the book is in many ways, there is a fundamental disconnect at the core of everything right now. and that is, it took a figure , so menacingrump and openly hostile to democratic values, to focus everyone on the health of our planet system.
but a lot of our problems, especially from the perspective of norms, predate trump and will outlast him. back biggera step picture look at some larger deterioration's that were underway before trump came along. host: one line from your book in the opening chapter, the current -- occupant of the oval office deepresult of serious structural factors and problems that go well beyond trump and long predate him. those problems both helped produce trump's rise and are an essential reason this trump moment is so perlis. take us back to the beginning them. when did it start? not easy to put an exact date on it. for the narrative of the book, i start during newt gingrich as speaker. it a lot of people, represented a new sort of politics, a nationalization and
a level of scorched earth warfare that at least two people at the moment, seemed like something new. there had been previous times in american history where we had seen that in various forms, but i tell the story of deterioration from newt gingrich to the president. greg sargent is the author with us. if you want to join the conversation -- define the term democratic backsliding? it can mean different things for political scientists. there are overt and dramatic versions of it like coups and military takeovers. the type i'm referring to is more incremental and subtle. for political scientists, when there iscurs
a level of partisan capture of the rules of political alarmingon that seem and undemocratic. these are subtle things and they are hard to measure. for instance, the advent of partisan gerrymandering during the last decade, where voter suppression. those represent democratic backsliding because the rules were captured for the purposes -- they were manipulated for the purpose of entrenching the power of politicians. how about the backsliding since president trump took office? guest: a lot of what you see with his attacks on our institutions come one could argue it is a slightly more overt version of democratic backsliding than the stuff we were saying before hand. the constant undermining of the news media's's institutional role in our democracy, endless
attacks on law enforcement and constant attention of law enforcement as corrupt and because they are carrying out a legitimate investigation into russian interference into our elections. while we don't know what the long-term impact of those things will be, i think we can be they --and worried that those types of attacks could really have a dealer tereus and undemocratic effect going forward. americans60 million voted in the midterm elections, a turnout rate of 49.2%, the highest since 1914's 15 points -- 50.4%. the you take from that? we have to posit that this was a big reaction to trump. in some states like the red states where republicans majority, ie senate
think you saw a positive reaction to trump. he polarized the electorate and could portend a new realignment. he is essentially german the republican party into a position where it is more reliant on noncollege whites, which is why they were able to boost of their majority in red states. at the same time, he has alienated college educated and suburban affluent whites, particularly women who delivered the house to democrats. it is worth pointing out that the one national election we had was for the house. won by ap forces sizable popular majority. host: you talk about your concern about declining state in free and fair elections. there are 116 million people voting, does that represent a declining faith in the electoral process? guest: i think it was a reaction to efforts to erode faith in our elections.
i think it is fair to understand a lot of from to tax on the legitimacy of our put a consistent such as the ones we are seeing in florida and georgia, where he is out there essentially saying if we count all the votes, the outcome will be illegitimate. call it for republicans already. a lot of social edge of the ground has shown that a lot of energy among the anti-trump a reactionriven by to trump's his attacks on democracy. a lot of people consciously see their suspicion right now as a reaction to that, a reaffirming of our democratic values. tweeting president that large numbers of new ballots showed up out of nowhere and many are missing or forged. an honest vote count is no longer possible. dallas massively affected, must go with election night.
that was the president yesterday morning. guest: it is an extraordinary thing for the president of united states to be doing. he is telling the country from the bullet pulled of the presidency that if we allow our processes to unfold the way they are supposed to, if we count our votes, the outcome must be illegitimate. message to send to the country about our democracy to her we should be clear on just how undemocratic a sentiment that is. host: call is at first, kentucky, independent. good morning. caller: i want to comment on how this guy is two-faced p or he is talking about president trump and others don't respect democracy. the democrats had their out.shirts at -- they have never accepted the selection. call every name against him in the book. then he defends himself and he's the one causing the trouble. who will notocrats
listen if they lose. there is certainly a problem of mob action on both sides. we have seen the activity on the right and the left and i will concede that. at the center of the conversation must be the fact that the president spent the last 18 months in a concerted and deliberate effort to stoke conflict on as many friends as possible. it is mystifying to me that people would be able to deny that when it is right in front of their faces. host: david, athletic city, democrat, good morning. caller: i have just one comment.
unpopular he is. i sympathize with that caller to the degree that sometimes -- i'm going to generalize, but sometimes it feels as if the coverage overall is a little reluctant to acknowledge how deeply unpopular he is. host: what are some examples you have seen in the past week? guest: last month there was a slight uptim and the republicans spun very hard that the cavanaugh justice hearing were a mistake. now that whole thing turned out to be completely false. and the press coverage admitted the tone of it was the press was coming back. the polling was clear. it was a slight uptick. host: what were the impact of the hearings?
guest: one could surmise it could have helped him in the red states. at what cost? we saw the backlash intensifying in these educated suburban districts where white women were driving it. host: what should they think sinema? guest: arizona was ground zero. in 2018 when he made his big statement, the big speech before election day was about imgation. who is aned joe arpaio local hero tosome.
and flake was hounded out of the senate for being too anti-trump. that seat was vacated and along a democrat who picks it up. it shows you in the state where trump tried to stoke conflict around his signature issue. aller: i'm a disabled veteran. d i watched the 707 take his last appointment. so i could do the six-month
cruise and everyone said why did you go to shore duty for two ?ears and then go to a shipyard nobody is democrat and nobody's republican. we are just human beings and stop labeling ourselves as red or plus. what if i'm happy and you are sad. and we have a president that, you know what? he might be up there in age, but he speaks his mouth. and when he came into this -- they got body rocks and can't wait to throw them at this poor man. guest: i understand the argument you are making.
my argument is the best approach would be to pursue comprehensive immigration reform which would deal with the millions of undocumented immigrants by providing them a path to legalization. we all know they aren't going to get deported and the choice is clear, legalize them. and comprehensive immigration reform can be structured in a way that addresses concerns by this caller. the border -- a lot has been invested and by the way in terms of there being an immigration crisis, in historical terms, the flow is somewhat down. i do think trump is ex ager rating -- [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018] captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org >> senator nelson: can afternoon, senator