Episode #182: Hearing Problems

Whoever scheduled former FBI Director James Comey to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on a Thursday clearly had one goal: to mess up the Political Junkie’s recording schedule. Don’t they know we record the show on Wednesday?

So instead, we chose to take a look back at three other famous congressional hearings that changed the course of history. Norm Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute recalls the Army vs. McCarthy, Watergate, and Iran-Contra hearings, and considers how they compare to the circumstances surrounding the Trump-Russia investigation.

On Tuesday, Virginians vote in the primary election for the nominees to succeed Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who is term-limited. Bob Holsworth, a longtime expert on Virginia politics, describes why the election will become the closest-watched race in the country this year.

Speaking of closely-watched races, Greg Bluestein of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution is back to give us an update on the June 20 special election in Georgia’s 6th congressional district between Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel, which has become the most expensive House race in history.

And we go back to 2006, when President George W. Bush, hoping to use gay marriage as a wedge issue, called for a constitutional “Marriage Protection Amendment.” Little did anyone at the time expect that less than a decade later, the U.S. Supreme Court would declare same-sex marriage the law of the land. Harvard Law School Professor Michael Klarman reflects on how quickly and dramatically public and political opinions shifted on this issue. He is also the author of “From the Closet to the Altar: Courts, Backlash and the Struggle for Same-Sex Marriage.”

Oliver North photo via AP /J. Scott Applewhite

Music used in this podcast:

The Air That I Breathe by The Hollies

Testify by Rage Against The Machine 

Illegal Alien by Genesis

That’s All by Genesis

Mirage by Tommy James & the Shondells 

Girls and Boys by Blur

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