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SCOTUS Approves Trump's Travel Ban, But Refugee Rights Fight Continues

SCOTUS Approves Trump's Travel Ban, But Refugee Rights Fight Continues
On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Sundrop Carter, executive director of the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition.

The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 today to let stand President Trump's travel ban on predominantly Muslim countries. The majority said that the ban fell within the scope of presidential authority. Meanwhile, the head of Customs and Border Protection said yesterday that the bureau has temporarily stopped referring for criminal prosecution adults who cross the border with children.

The Syrian government said today that Israel fired two missiles that struck targets near Damascus Airport this morning. Meanwhile, fighting in the south intensifies as the battle for control of one of the armed opposition's last strongholds gets underway. Rick Sterling, an investigative journalist and member of the Syria Solidarity Movement, joins the show.

We continue our weekly series False Profits — A Weekly Look at Wall Street and Corporate Capitalism with financial policy analyst Daniel Sankey.

Whistleblower Reality Winner agreed to a sentence today of 63 months in federal prison, on one felony count of espionage. In contrast, Jeffrey Sterling had 7 counts of espionage and received 42 months. Winner's sentence is especially harsh, but is a harbinger of things to come from the Trump Administration. Brian and John speak with Kevin Gosztola, the managing editor for and co-host of the podcast Unauthorized Disclosure.

The European Union Withdrawal Bill has formally become law in the UK, following a delicate compromise between the government of Theresa May and both houses of the British parliament. The legislation enables EU law to be transferred into UK law and it repeals all previous laws that allowed the UK to join the EU. It is one of the final pieces of legislation necessary to implement Brexit. Legendary anti-war activist and former British parliamentarian George Galloway joins the show.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani promised that the government would be able to handle the economic pressure of new US sanctions, a day after traders demonstrated outside parliament to protest a sharp fall in the value of the national currency. Those sanctions are due to take effect soon. Mohammad Marandi, an expert on American studies and postcolonial literature who teaches at the University of Tehran, joins the show.

Have you ever been to Brooklyn Heights in Brooklyn, NY? It has a fantastic view of lower Manhattan. One of the most imposing buildings you see is the AT&T Building. It's a skyscraper, but it has no windows. Why? According to The Intercept, it doubles as a secret facility for NSA. And apparently there are other such AT&T buildings in most major American cities, including Washington.

The Supreme Court yesterday ruled on two highly-anticipated gerrymandering cases in North Carolina and Texas, saying that most of the controversial maps in both states will be used in the upcoming election. The ruling allows three of the four Texas districts to stand, and all of the North Carolina districts. Brian and John speak with Chris Hughes, a staff attorney at FairVote who focuses on ranked choice voting, voting rights, and electoral reform.

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