4 The Record

Koch brothers donation pressures could divide Republicans from President Trump

Big oil campaign contributors oppose president's trade policies

Here are some of the topics covered by our 4 The Record panel this week.

+ President Trump applies some pressure on the attorney general to silence Robert Mueller.

+ There's agreement and inaction when it comes to what's now being called Russian information warfare.

+ Using computers to make guns becomes the latest political hot potato.

All of these issues came up for discussion with Illinois Democratic County Chairs President Doug House and former Rock Island County Republican Party Chair Bill Bloom on 4 The Record.

Guns and technology

A federal judge intervened this week to block a Texas company from publishing how to make guns with a 3D printer.

Gun aficionados say the technology is probably not adequate to make a durable weapon, and supporters of tighter gun laws say it would be a way to circumvent any regulations.

There's now a push in the United States Senate to prevent these blueprints from being published.

House and Bloom addressed how should the government handle this, assuming that the technology only will improve over time.

'Information warfare'

A Senate intelligence committee hearing this week brought testimony from cybersecurity authorities.

They labeled the interference by Russians and other enemies into the U.S. election system as information warfare.
I have raised the question about whether this is a form of warfare in the past on 4 The Record.

The director of national intelligence confirmed this week the threat hasn't diminished.

Yet, there's no noticeable activity on Capitol Hill or from the White House other than talk.

Bloom and House talked about why there isn't a commitment from the leadership in Congress to do something about this

Trump's tweets

A couple of posts on Twitter from President Trump this week are under more scrutiny than usual this week. And they already get a lot of scrutiny.

One called for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to end Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation.
The other called the prosecution of his former campaign chair Paul Manafort a hoax.

Manafort's trial started this week.

The New York Times reported the president crossed a line he never crossed until now. His critics call these actions examples of obstruction of justice.

House and Bloom discussed whether we have reached the point where this activity from the president has to be reined in and if so, how that happens.

Trade policies

There are some powerful Republicans trying to rein in the president or at least the trade policies they don't like.
They are the billionaire Koch brothers, well-known Republican campaign contributors.

They oppose the trade tariffs being imposed by the president and threaten to stop financing Republicans who don't stand up to the president on trade.

In fact, they said they would even contribute to Democrats. This is a shot across the bow in Republican politics.

Bloom and House talked about what impact they think this will have on the midterm election.

View the full discussion in the video above.

Local 4 News, your local election headquarters, is proud to present 4 The Record, a weekly news and public affairs program focused on the issues important to you. It's a program unlike any other here in the Quad Cities. Tune in each Sunday at 10:30 a.m. as Jim Niedelman brings you up to speed on what's happening in the political arena, from Springfield, Des Moines, Washington, D.C. and right here at home.

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