Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (2014–…): Season 7, Episode 24 - The Supreme Court - full transcript

USA is appointing a new supreme court judge in the wake of Ruth Bader Ginsberg's death. John Oliver discusses what it means for the future of the Supreme Court and the country. He describes...

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HI THERE.

WELCOME TO THE SHOW.

STILL TAKING PLACE IN THIS

BLANK VOID WHICH, FUN FACT, IS

ACTUALLY THE INTERIOR OF THE

STAY PUFT MARSHMALLOW MAN'S

BLEACHED ASSHOLE.

IT'S TRUE!

AND YOU KNOW WHAT?

IT'S ACTUALLY WARMER IN HERE

THAN YOU MIGHT THINK.



THIS IS OUR FIRST SHOW IN A

MONTH, AND THERE'S CLEARLY A LOT

TO CATCH UP ON, INCLUDING THE

FACT THAT VIN DIESEL CHOSE TO

PREMIERE HIS NEW SONG TO

KELLY CLARKSON'S VIRTUAL

AUDIENCE LIKE THIS:

YES.

I KNOW YOU MIGHT BE EXPECTING ME

TO SHIT ON PROFESSIONAL GRUNTER

VIN DIESEL RELEASING A POP SONG

TO WHAT LOOKS LIKE A DIGITAL PTA

MEETING, BUT YOU HAVE READ ME

WRONG ON THIS ONE.



BECAUSE THAT SONG IS PURE,

TENDER ART.

IT'S HONESTLY THE ONLY THING

THAT'S BROUGHT ME JOY IN THE

LAST SIX MONTHS, AND I HAD AN

EMMY EXPLOSIVELY PUNCHED AT ME

JUST LAST WEEKEND.

IS VIN DIESEL A

BRITISH SAUSAGE PRODUCER?

BECAUSE THE MAN MAKES

BANGERS.

BUT SADLY, IT HASN'T ALL BEEN

FUN SINCE WE'VE BEEN AWAY.

IN FACT, BASICALLY NOTHING'S

BEEN FUN.

U.S. COVID DEATHS HIT 200,000,

PARTS OF THE WEST COAST ARE

STILL ON FIRE.

AND IN LOUISVILLE, A GRAND JURY

DECLINED TO INDICT ANYONE OVER

THE DEATH OF BREONNA TAYLOR,

MERELY CHARGING ONE OFFICER WITH

WANTON ENDANGERMENT FOR SHOOTING

AT HER APARTMENT BUILDING.

IT WAS AN INFURIATINGLY

PREDICTABLE DECISION, LEADING TO

WIDESPREAD PROTESTS, WHICH

FOX NEWS SOUGHT TO DOWNPLAY WITH

THE HELP OF THIS FORMER COP.

YOU HAVE THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

FOR... DANIEL CAMERON FOR THE

STATE OF KENTUCKY WHO ANNOUNCED

THE CHARGE AND ALSO THE CITY

PAID $12 MILLION TO THE FAMILY,

AND YOU HAVE TO ASK, WHY ARE THE

DEMONSTRATIONS CONTINUING?

ARE... IT'S ONLY CONTINUING, IN

MY MIND, BECAUSE THERE ARE

PEOPLE WHO HAVE THEIR OWN

AGENDA.

NOW, I KNOW THAT SOUNDS

AWFUL, AND THAT'S BECAUSE IT IS.

BUT TRY AND LOOK AT IT FROM HIS

THE COPS IN

QUESTION WERE INVESTIGATED, LET

OFF, AND THE VICTIM'S FAMILY WAS

PAID OFF WITH TAXPAYER MONEY.

FROM A FORMER POLICE OFFICER'S

POINT OF VIEW, THAT'S THE SYSTEM

WORKING AS DESIGNED...

AND THAT IS KIND OF THE WHOLE

FUCKING PROBLEM HERE.

BUT OUR MAIN STORY TONIGHT

CONCERNS THE FACT THAT, LAST

WEEKEND, RUTH BADER GINSBURG

DIED, WHICH WAS DISTRESSING

ENOUGH.

BUT IT'S BEEN COMPOUNDED BY THE

FACT THAT JUST YESTERDAY, THIS

GOOD EVENING, WE BEGIN WITH

THE NUMERIC BREAKING NEWS.

THE PRESIDENT NOMINATING ANY CO.

BARRETT IS FAVORITE OF

RELIGIOUS CONSERVATIVES FOR HER

STRONG ANTI-ABORTION RIGHTS

VIEWS AND, IF CONFIRMED, WOULD

MOVE THE COURT TO THE RIGHT FOR

A GENERATION.

RIGHT, TRUMP IS ABOUT

TO REPLACE A LIBERAL ICON WITH

AN EXTREMELY CONSERVATIVE

JUSTICE WHO'S BEEN CALLED THE

FEMALE ANTONIN SCALIA, AND SHE

COULD SERVE FOR A LONG, LONG

TIME.

AMY CONEY BARRETT IS ONLY 48,

AND I KNOW THAT I MAKE 43 LOOK

LIKE 76, BUT TRUST ME, THAT'S

YOUNG FOR A SUPREME COURT

JUSTICE.

AND LOOK, IF... AND ALMOST

CERTAINLY WHEN... BARRETT IS

CONFIRMED TO THE SUPREME COURT,

THE IMPACT COULD BE DIRE.

IN RECENT YEARS, KEY CASES HAVE

BEEN DECIDED BY JUST ONE VOTE,

FROM UPHOLDING THE AFFORDABLE

CARE ACT TO PRESERVING DACA TO

STRIKING DOWN AN INCREDIBLY

RESTRICTIVE ABORTION LAW.

SHOULD THOSE ISSUES COME BEFORE

THE COURT AGAIN, THEY COULD NOW

EASILY GO THE OTHER WAY.

AND THERE IS CLEARLY NO POINT

HOLDING ONTO HOPE THAT

CONSERVATIVES MIGHT CHOOSE TO

RESPECT THE PRECEDENT THEY SET

BY REFUSING TO EVEN CONSIDER

MERRICK GARLAND IN AN ELECTION

YEAR, BECAUSE THAT WAS ALWAYS IN

BAD FAITH, AS WAS OBVIOUS AT THE

TIME.

IN FACT, AHEAD OF THE 2016

ELECTION, SENATOR RICHARD BURR

EVEN PRIVATELY SAID THIS TO A

GROUP OF CAMPAIGN VOLUNTEERS:

IF HILLARY CLINTON BECOMES

PRESIDENT, I AM GOING TO DO

EVERYTHING I CAN DO TO MAKE

SURE THAT, FOUR YEARS FROM NOW,

WE STILL GOT AN OPENING ON THE

SUPREME COURT.

YEAH, THAT'S A

REPUBLICAN SENATOR COMMITTING TO

BLOCKING A JUSTICE CONFIRMATION,

NOT JUST IN AN ELECTION YEAR,

BUT FOR AN ENTIRE PRESIDENTIAL

TERM.

AND JUST THINK ABOUT HOW LONG

FOUR YEARS IS.

FOUR YEARS AGO, HARVEY WEINSTEIN

WAS STILL PRODUCING MOVIES.

IN THE PAST FOUR YEARS,

HARRY AND MEGHAN BEGAN DATING,

GOT ENGAGED, GOT MARRIED, LEFT

THE ROYAL FAMILY, AND I THINK

OWN NETFLIX NOW?

AND IN THE PAST FOUR YEARS,

LEONARDO DiCAPRIO'S GIRLFRIEND

GAINED THE RIGHT TO LEGALLY

DRINK ALCOHOL.

TWO MORE YEARS, AND SHE'LL

HAVE NO PROBLEM GETTING

A RENTAL CAR...

TO MOVE HER BELONGINGS OUT OF

HIS HOUSE.

TIME IS AMAZING.

AND SOME REPUBLICANS SEEM TO

RATIONALIZE THEIR PARTY'S

BLATANT HYPOCRISY BY SAYING

THAT, SHOULD THEY CONFIRM

TRUMP'S NOMINEE, THEY'LL SIMPLY

BE BRINGING THE COURT CLOSER TO

THE WILL OF THE COUNTRY.

I RECOGNIZE THAT WE MAY HAVE

A COURT WHICH HAS MORE OF A

CONSERVATIVE BENT THAN IT'S HAD

OVER THE LAST FEW DECADES, BUT

MY LIBERAL FRIENDS HAVE, OVER

MANY DECADES, GOTTEN VERY USED

TO THE IDEA OF HAVING A LIBERAL

COURT, AND THAT'S NOT WRITTEN IN

THE STARS.

IT'S ALSO APPROPRIATE FOR A

NATION WHICH IS, IF YOU WILL,

CENTER RIGHT, TO HAVE A COURT

WHICH REFLECTS CENTER RIGHT

POINTS OF VIEW.

WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU

TALKING ABOUT, MITT?

SET ASIDE THE NOTION THAT A

COURT THAT GUTTED THE VOTING

RIGHTS ACT IS A "LIBERAL COURT,"

SINCE WHEN IS THIS NATION

NATURALLY CENTER RIGHT?

DID WE ALL TAKE A BUZZFEED QUIZ

THAT I'M NOT REMEMBERING, LIKE

"CHOOSE YOUR FAVORITE

FALL LASAGNA INGREDIENTS AND

WE'LL TELL YOU WHICH DIRECTION

THE NATION'S ELECTORATE LEANS?"

BECAUSE, FOR THE RECORD, MORE

AMERICANS SAY THEY ALIGN WITH

THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY THAN THE

REPUBLICANS.

PLUS, POLL AFTER POLL HAS SHOWN

AMERICANS FAVOR ABORTION RIGHTS,

WITH SUPPORT OF ROE V. WADE

REACHING RECORD HIGHS, WHILE A

STRONG MAJORITY OF THE PUBLIC

ALSO SUPPORTS MEDICARE FOR ALL.

OH, AND INCIDENTALLY, A SOLID

MAJORITY SAY THE WINNER OF THIS

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION SHOULD BE

THE ONE TO CHOOSE GINSBURG'S

SUCCESSOR.

SO OUR COUNTRY ISN'T SO MUCH

CENTER RIGHT AS MITT ROMNEY IS

CENTER WRONG.

LOOK, THIS HAS BEEN A VERY DARK

WEEK FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE.

THE SUPREME COURT IS ABOUT TO

LURCH TO THE RIGHT FOR THE

FORESEEABLE FUTURE.

AND IF THINGS SEEM HOPELESS

RIGHT NOW, IT'S BECAUSE, TO BE

COMPLETELY HONEST, THEY

BASICALLY ARE.

THIS IS A PIVOTAL MOMENT, AND

WHILE WE GOT HERE A LITTLE BIT

BY BAD LUCK AND BAD TIMING, WE

ALSO GOT HERE THROUGH DILIGENT

EFFORT BY REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP

AND, CRUCIALLY, SOME VERY BIG

SYSTEMIC PROBLEMS WHICH JUST

HAVE TO BE ADDRESSED.

SO TONIGHT, LET'S TALK ABOUT

SPECIFICALLY, HOW THE FUCK

WE GOT HERE AND WHAT THE FUCK WE

CAN POSSIBLY DO NEXT.

AND THERE ARE BASICALLY TWO

MAJOR FACTORS THAT BROUGHT US TO

THIS POINT.

THE FIRST IS THIS MAN,

MITCH McCONNELL, THE ONLY THING

TO COME OUT OF KENTUCKY MORE

SHAMELESS THAN THE KFC MENU.

HOW DO YOU WANT YOUR CHICKEN?

REGULAR?

CRISPY?

CHEETO-FLAVORED?

IN A WARM SLURRY?

AS BREAD?

'CAUSE IT'S ALL ON THE TABLE.

AT KFC, WE PROMISE:

MAXIMUM FLAVOR FOR YOU,

MAXIMUM DISRESPECT FOR A

CHICKEN'S MEMORY.

RECONFIGURING AMERICA'S COURTS

HAS BEEN A SINGLE-MINDED FOCUS

FOR McCONNELL.

TRUMP ONCE MARVELED TO

BOB WOODWARD THAT "YOU KNOW WHAT

MITCH'S BIGGEST THING IS IN THE

WHOLE WORLD?

HIS JUDGES."

AND HIS OBSESSION ISN'T JUST

WITH THE SUPREME COURT.

McCONNELL'S BLOCKADE OF

MERRICK GARLAND JUSTIFIABLY GOT

A LOT OF ATTENTION, BUT HE ALSO

MADE SURE TRUMP COULD STACK THE

LOWER COURTS WITH CONSERVATIVE

JUDGES, SOMETHING TRUMP ALSO

EXPLAINED TO WOODWARD.

I'M GOING TO BE UP TO

280 JUDGES VERY SOON.

NOBODY'S EVER HAD THAT.

280.

OBAMA GAVE US 142 JUDGES WHEN I

CAME HERE.

THIS NEVER HAPPENED.

YOU NEVER HAD ONE.

IF YOU WERE A PRESIDENT, YOU

WOULD NEVER HAVE ANY FEDERAL...

THEY WERE LIKE GOLDEN NUGGETS,

RIGHT?

OKAY, FIRST, IT'S WEIRD

TO REFER TO ANYTHING AS

"GOLDEN NUGGETS" UNLESS

YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT ACTUAL

GOLDEN NUGGETS OR YOU'RE

DESCRIBING YOUR HUSBAND'S BALLS

IN THE MIDDLE OF HIS

TIGER-THEMED FUNERAL WHILE

IMPERSONATING A PRIEST.

THOSE ARE THE ONLY TWO PERFECTLY

APPROPRIATE TIMES.

BUT NEEDLESS TO SAY, OBAMA VERY

MUCH DIDN'T DELIBERATELY LEAVE

THOSE VACANCIES OPEN FOR TRUMP.

WHEN REPUBLICANS TOOK THE SENATE

IN 2014, MITCH McCONNELL BEGAN

SYSTEMATICALLY BLOCKING

LOWER COURT APPOINTEES SO A

FUTURE REPUBLICAN PRESIDENT

COULD FILL THE SEATS LATER.

SO OBAMA DIDN'T GIVE TRUMP THOSE

JUDGES ANY MORE THAN THE

NATIONAL ARCHIVES GAVE

NICOLAS CAGE THE DECLARATION OF

INDEPENDENCE.

IN FACT, OBAMA'S ONLY EVER GIVEN

A BRIEF TOUR

OF THE WHITE HOUSE AND A

COLOSSAL INFERIORITY COMPLEX

THAT FUELED TRUMP'S RISE TO

POWER AND MADE HIM SO FURIOUS HE

DECIDED TO TURN AMERICA INTO AN

APOCALYPTIC HELLSCAPE AND

DESTROY DEMOCRACY AS WE KNOW IT.

REALLY JUST THOSE TWO THINGS.

AND McCONNELL'S WILLINGNESS TO

GO TO THE MAT FOR JUDICIAL

APPOINTMENTS WAS PERHAPS NEVER

MORE OBVIOUS THAN DURING THE

KAVANAUGH HEARINGS, BECAUSE

IMMEDIATELY AFTER

CHRISTINE BLASEY FORD'S

GUT-WRENCHING TESTIMONY,

McCONNELL APPARENTLY HAD THIS

CONVERSATION WITH THE PRESIDENT.

BOTH OF THEM ARE KIND OF

TESTING EACH OTHER A BIT.

"WHERE ARE YOU AT ON THIS?"

YOU KNOW, "HOW STRONG ARE YOU?"

AND McCONNELL BASICALLY SAYS TO

THE PRESIDENT, "YOU DON'T WORRY

ABOUT ME.

I'M STRONG AS MULE PISS."

THAT'S HIS QUOTE.

"I'M STRONG AS MULE PISS."

IN OTHER WORDS, HE'S NOT GOING

TO LET UP, HE'S NOT GOING TO

GIVE UP, HE'S NOT GOING TO

SURRENDER.

WOW.

THAT IS EXTRAORDINARY.

BECAUSE IT'S EASY TO FORGET THAT

AFTER BLASEY FORD'S TESTIMONY,

KAVANAUGH'S CONFIRMATION FELT A

LOT LESS CERTAIN.

AND TO REACT TO WHAT SHE SAID

WITH, "DON'T WORRY, I'M STRONG

AS MULE PISS" IS BOTH HORRENDOUS

AND DEEPLY WEIRD.

I WASN'T SURE

HOW STRONG MULE PISS ACTUALLY

IS, AND THE INTERNET IS

SURPRISINGLY SHORT OF VIDEOS OF

MULES URINATING.

ALTHOUGH WE DID FIND MANAGE TO

FIND THIS STOCK FOOTAGE TITLED

"DONKEY WHO URINE AT SUNSET,"

AND I HAVE TO SAY, THAT IS AN

IMPRESSIVELY STRONG STREAM.

SO I DO TOTALLY GET IT NOW.

AND GOING FORWARD, EVERY TIME I

THINK OF MITCH McCONNELL, I WILL

THINK OF THAT DONKEY

WHO URINE AT SUNSET.

BUT AS EASY AND FUN AS IT IS TO

BLAME MITCH McCONNELL AND HIS

MULE PISS FOR EVERYTHING, IT'S A

MISTAKE TO FOCUS JUST ON THE

PEOPLE INVOLVED HERE, BECAUSE

THERE IS A WHOLE SYSTEM

UNDERNEATH THEM THAT HAS ENABLED

WHAT THEY HAVE DONE.

AND THAT BRINGS US TO THE SECOND

MAJOR FACTOR THAT GOT US TO

THE DEEPLY

UNDEMOCRATIC NATURE OF

AMERICA'S INSTITUTIONS.

BECAUSE THERE IS NO DOUBT, THE

REPUBLICAN PARTY CURRENTLY

CONTROLS BOTH THE SENATE AND THE

WHITE HOUSE.

IT'S TRUE.

AND THEY WILL ARGUE

THIS GIVES THEM A MANDATE TO DO

EXACTLY WHAT THEY'RE DOING.

CHRIS, THE SENATE MAJORITY IS

PERFORMING OUR CONSTITUTIONAL

DUTY AND FULFILLING THE MANDATE

THAT THE VOTERS GAVE US.

VOTERS HAVE ELECTED A

REPUBLICAN PRESIDENT.

THEY ELECTED A REPUBLICAN

SENATE.

AND I THINK REPUBLICANS NEED TO

KEEP THEIR PROMISES HERE, AND

THAT'S WHAT I INTEND TO DO.

THE AMERICAN PEOPLE ELECTED

PRESIDENT TRUMP AND A REPUBLICAN

MAJORITY BECAUSE WE WANT THE

CONSTITUTION AND BILL OF RIGHTS

PROTECTED, AND THAT IS OUR JOB.

IT'S WHAT WE NEED TO DO.

I DO NOT LIKE THAT MAN

TED CRUZ.

I DO NOT LIKE

HIS BACKWARD VIEWS.

I DO NOT LIKE HIS STUPID SUITS.

I DO NOT LIKE HIS COWBOY BOOTS.

I DO NOT LIKE HIM WHEN

HE SNEEZES.

I DO NOT LIKE HIM

EATING CHEESES.

I HATE TO SEE

HIS DUMB FACE SMIRKIN',

BECAUSE HIS BEARD LOOKS LIKE

A MERKIN.

BUT, LOOK, LET'S TALK ABOUT THAT

MANDATE, BECAUSE NEITHER THE

PRESIDENCY NOR THE SENATE ARE AS

REFLECTIVE OF THE WILL OF THE

AMERICAN PEOPLE AS THEY'RE

SUGGESTING THERE.

FIRST, TAKE THE WHITE HOUSE.

A DEMOCRAT HAS WON THE NATIONAL

POPULAR VOTE IN FOUR OUT OF THE

LAST FIVE ELECTIONS, BUT WE HAVE

SPENT 12 OF THE LAST 20 YEARS

WITH A REPUBLICAN IN OFFICE, AND

THAT IS BECAUSE THE ELECTORAL

COLLEGE, WITH ITS

WINNER-TAKE-ALL APPROACH IN MOST

STATES, CAN DISTORT THE WILL OF

THE MAJORITY, ON TOP OF WHICH IT

GRANTS DISPROPORTIONATE POWER TO

LESS POPULOUS STATES, WHICH TEND

TO BE RURAL AND MORE

CONSERVATIVE, SOMETHING WHICH IS

EVEN MORE PRONOUNCED IN THE

SENATE, WHERE THERE ARE

15 STATES REPRESENTING

38 MILLION PEOPLE THAT HAVE

30 REPUBLICAN SENATORS, EVEN

THOUGH THAT IS LESS THAN THE

TOTAL POPULATION OF CALIFORNIA,

WHICH HAS JUST TWO DEMOCRATIC

ONES.

AND THAT'S BEFORE YOU EVEN

GET INTO THE FACT THAT

PLACES LIKE PUERTO RICO AND

WASHINGTON D.C.... WHERE THE

POPULATIONS ARE LARGELY BLACK

OR HISPANIC... DON'T HAVE

REPRESENTATION IN THE SENATE AT

ALL.

IN FACT, IF YOU TAKE ALL THIS

TOGETHER, THE SENATE GIVES THE

AVERAGE BLACK AMERICAN ONLY 75%

AS MUCH REPRESENTATION AS THE

AVERAGE WHITE AMERICAN AND THE

AVERAGE HISPANIC AMERICAN ONLY

55% AS MUCH.

AND IT'S CLEARLY NOT GREAT WHEN

THE BEST THING YOU CAN SAY ABOUT

YOUR REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY

IS, "HEY, AT LEAST BLACK PEOPLE

GOT ABOVE THREE FIFTHS THIS

TIME.

AT THIS RATE, THEY COULD COUNT

AS 100% OF A WHITE PERSON AS

EARLY AS 2408.

ONWARDS AND UPWARDS,

BLACK PEOPLE!

YOU TRULY ARE AN INSPIRATION TO

HISPANIC HALF-PEOPLE

EVERYWHERE."

SO THE FACT IS, WHEN BARRETT IS

CONFIRMED, A PRESIDENT WHO LOST

THE POPULAR VOTE WILL HAVE

PICKED A QUARTER OF THE FEDERAL

JUDICIARY AND A THIRD OF THE

SUPREME COURT, AND HIS CHOICES

WILL HAVE BEEN RUBBER-STAMPED BY

A SENATE REPUBLICAN MAJORITY

REPRESENTING 15 MILLION FEWER

PEOPLE THAN THE DEMOCRATIC

"MINORITY," AND THOSE COURTS

HAVE ALLOWED REPUBLICANS TO SET

WILDLY UNPOPULAR POLICY THAT

WOULDN'T ACTUALLY PASS MUSTER

WITH VOTERS.

AND THAT BRINGS US TO OUR FINAL

QUESTION OF, WHAT CAN NOW BE

DONE?

WELL, FOR DEMOCRATS, THE FIRST

PRIORITY IS TO TRY AND TAKE

CONTROL OF THE WHITE HOUSE AND

BOTH CHAMBERS OF CONGRESS THIS

NOVEMBER, WHICH, GIVEN

EVERYTHING WE'VE JUST DISCUSSED,

IS BY NO MEANS A CERTAINTY.

NOT ONLY COULD TRUMP WIN THE

ELECTION OUTRIGHT, EVEN IF HE

DOESN'T, HE COULD, AS HE'S

REPEATEDLY INDICATED, REFUSE TO

CONCEDE AND FORCE THE RESULT

INTO THE COURTS.

AND THAT POSSIBILITY IS CLEARLY

PART OF HIS HASTE TO GET A

JUSTICE CONFIRMED BEFORE THE

ELECTION.

BECAUSE HE'S NOT EVEN TRYING TO

HIDE IT NOW.

WE NEED NINE JUSTICES.

YOU NEED THAT.

WITH THE UNSOLICITED MILLIONS OF

BALLOTS THAT THEY'RE SENDING,

IT'S A SCAM, IT'S A HOAX,

EVERYBODY KNOWS THAT.

AND THE DEMOCRATS KNOW IT BETTER

THAN ANYBODY ELSE.

SO YOU'RE GONNA NEED NINE

JUSTICES UP THERE.

I THINK IT'S GOING TO BE VERY

IMPORTANT.

OKAY.

THERE IS A NUMBER OF

DARK INSINUATIONS THERE,

INCLUDING, "IT'S IMPORTANT FOR

US TO CHOOSE THE NEXT JUSTICE SO

THEY CAN DECIDE WHAT THE

AMERICAN PEOPLE CHOSE."

AND THAT MAKES IT PRETTY CLEAR

THAT, FOR TRUMP, HAVING AN

ADDITIONAL SUPREME COURT

APPOINTMENT IS ABSOLUTELY

CRUCIAL TO HIS RE-ELECTION...

AS CRUCIAL, SAY, AS ANGRY WHITE

PEOPLE WEARING RED HATS,

FACEBOOK POSTS FROM UNDERCOVER

RUSSIAN OPERATIVES, AND, BASED

ON HIS CAMPAIGN'S ONLINE STORE,

SELLING TRUMP COLORING BOOKS

THAT EVEN THE KIDS IN THE AD

LOOK BORED BY.

WHAT IS GOING ON THERE?

THE YOUNGER KID ISN'T EVEN

PAYING ATTENTION, AND THE OLDER

ONE LOOKS LIKE HE'S TRYING TO

WILL THE COLORING BOOK INTO

BECOMING A NINTENDO SWITCH WITH

HIS EYES.

ALSO, WHY AREN'T THEY

COLORING IN THE COLORING BOOK?

THE FATHER SEEMS TO BE READING

IT TO HIS CHILDREN, WHICH IS

OBJECTIVELY THE ONE WRONG WAY TO

ENJOY A COLORING BOOK.

BUT LOO, LET'S SAY, FOR THE SAKE

OF ARGUMENT, DEMOCRATS DO MANAGE

TO SWEEP THE UPCOMING ELECTION.

THE BIGGEST MISTAKE WOULD BE TO

THINK THAT THAT HAS, IN ITSELF,

FIXED EVERYTHING... OR, INDEED,

ANYTHING... BECAUSE THERE'S NO

POINT GETTING POWER UNLESS YOU

ARE THEN WILLING TO BE BOLD

ENOUGH TO USE IT TO MAKE

SIGNIFICANT STRUCTURAL CHANGE.

WE'VE ARGUED BEFORE THAT THE

FILIBUSTER SHOULD BE ABOLISHED.

THAT WOULD ALLOW LEGISLATION TO

GET PASSED WITH A SIMPLE

MAJORITY.

IT IS ADMITTEDLY RISKY,

ESPECIALLY FOR A PARTY THAT,

AGAIN, FOR STRUCTURAL REASONS,

CAN EXPECT TO BE IN THE MINORITY

MORE OFTEN THAN IT SHOULD.

BUT THOSE VERY FACTORS MAKE IT

EXTREMELY HARD FOR DEMOCRATS TO

WIN A FILIBUSTER-PROOF

SUPERMAJORITY AND DO ANYTHING

MEANINGFUL.

WHAT IS FRUSTRATING IS THAT SOME

CENTRIST DEMOCRATS, LIKE

JOE MANCHIN, HONESTLY SEEM TO

THINK THAT, EVEN IF THEY GET

SIGNIFICANTLY MORE POWER, THE

BEST WAY FORWARD IS TO TRY AND

RETURN TO A MORE CIVILIZED,

MODERATE ERA IN AMERICAN

POLITICS.

I WILL MAKE EVERY DECISION

I CAN THAT KEEPS THE SENATE

BIPARTISAN.

SIMPLE AS THAT.

WE HAVE GOT TO FIGHT FOR

BASICALLY WHO WE ARE AS A

SENATE.

CAN WE REPRESENT THE PEOPLE IN A

BIPARTISAN WAY?

DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS.

OH, I'VE GOT AN ANSWER

TO THAT QUESTION FOR YOU, JOE:

NO.

YOU CAN'T.

IT SEEMS THE MESSAGE MANCHIN

WOULD TAKE FROM AMERICA SURGING

TO THE LEFT, AGAINST THE ODDS,

WOULD BE "I THINK THEY WANT US

TO WORK WITH REPUBLICANS."

AND THAT IS NOT JUST DUMB,

THAT'S DUMB ON THE LEVEL OF

JAMES CAMERON GOING, "YOU KNOW

WHAT PEOPLE WANT?

FOUR MORE 'AVATAR' MOVIES."

AND TO BOTH OF THOSE MEN, I SAY

NO ONE WANTS THAT, STOP

TALKING ABOUT IT, AND JUST GIVE

US WHAT WE WANT:

ONE MORE GOOD "TERMINATOR" MOVIE

AND A GREEN NEW DEAL.

I DON'T CARE WHICH OF YOU DOES

WHICH, JUST GET IT THE FUCK

DONE.

ALTHOUGH I WILL SAY, EVEN IF THE

DEMOCRATS SWEEP THE ELECTION,

AND EVEN IF THEY THEN GET RID OF

THE FILIBUSTER AND THEN HAVE THE

COURAGE TO PASS MAJOR

LEGISLATION, THOSE LAWS ARE NOW

INCREASINGLY VULNERABLE TO A

MORE CONSERVATIVE SUPREME COURT

STRIKING THEM DOWN.

AND THAT HAS LED SOME TO SUGGEST

TAKING THE MORE DRAMATIC STEP OF

EXPANDING THE SUPREME COURT BY

ADDING JUSTICES.

IT'S POSSIBLE.

THE CONSTITUTION DOESN'T SPECIFY

HOW MANY SEATS THERE SHOULD BE,

AND IT CAN AND HAS BEEN DONE IN

THE PAST THROUGH A SIMPLE ACT OF

CONGRESS, ALTHOUGH THERE ARE

REAL CONCERNS ABOUT WHAT THE

EVENTUAL BLOWBACK TO THAT WOULD

BE.

BECAUES IT DOESN'T TAKE A GENIUS

TO IMAGINE WHAT REPUBLICANS

WOULD DO NEXT TIME THEY TOOK

CONTROL OF THE GOVERNMENT.

SERIOUSLY, IT DOESN'T TAKE A

GENIUS.

THEY WANNA PACK THE COURT...

YOU KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS?

THEY WANNA PUT ON A LOT OF

JUSTICES.

THESE ARE THINGS THAT ARE JUST

HORRIBLE.

I GUESS WE COULD DO THAT TOO,

RIGHT?

WE COULD DO THAT TOO.

YEAH.

HE'S RIGHT.

HE COULD ABSOLUTELY DO THAT,

WHICH IS UNDENIABLY CHILLING.

EXPANDING THE COURT IS A BIT

LIKE DOING YOGA NAKED...

ONE WAY TO DAMPEN YOUR

ENTHUSIASM FOR THE IDEA IS TO

PICTURE DONALD TRUMP DOING IT

TOO.

COURT EXPANSION COULD OPEN THE

DOOR TO A NEVER-ENDING CYCLE OF

BOTH PARTIES DOING IT, WHICH

COULD PERMANENTLY DESTABILIZE

ONE OF THE BEDROCK INSTITUTIONS

OF AMERICAN GOVERNMENT.

NOW, DOES THAT OUTWEIGH THE

POTENTIAL FOR A COURT WITH

BARRETT ON IT UNDOING OR

BLOCKING YEARS OF PROTECTIONS

FOR OUR CLIMATE, HEALTH CARE,

AND CIVIL AND WOMEN'S RIGHTS?

THAT IS DEFINITELY WORTH

CONSIDERING.

NOTHING SHOULD BE TAKEN LIGHTLY

HERE... THOUGH I WILL SAY, THERE

ARE SOME OTHER STEPS WE COULD

TAKE THAT SHOULD BE IMPOSSIBLE

TO ARGUE WITH AT THIS POINT,

STEPS THAT WOULD MAKE BOTH THE

SENATE AND WHITE HOUSE MORE

REPRESENTATIVE OF THE

ELECTORATE.

ON THE SENATE SIDE, YOU

COULD GRANT STATEHOOD TO

WASHINGTON D.C. AND, IF VOTERS

THERE WANT IT, PUERTO RICO.

THAT WOULD NOT ONLY HELP BALANCE

OUT THE SENATE'S PRO-WHITE,

...BIAS TOWARD WHITE, RURAL

VOTERS,

IT'S ALSO THE

RIGHT FUCKING THING TO DO FOR

THE ALMOST 4 MILLION AMERICANS

WHO CURRENTLY HAVE NO SENATORIAL

REPRESENTATION WHATSOEVER, WHICH

IS JUST ASTONISHING.

IT'S ROUGHLY THE POPULATION OF

RHODE ISLAND, MAINE, MONTANA,

AND WYOMING COMBINED.

NOW, AS FOR THE PRESIDENCY, WE

HAVE TO GET RID OF THE ELECTORAL

COLLEGE, WHICH MIGHT SOUND

RADICAL, BUT IT REALLY ISN'T.

IT'S NOT EVEN A NEW IDEA.

IN FACT, IN THE LATE '60s, IT

VERY NEARLY HAPPENED.

HERE'S BIRCH BAYH, THE SENATOR

WHO SPEARHEADED THOSE EFFORTS,

MAKING WHAT IS, IN RETROSPECT, A

PRETTY CONVINCING CASE:

THERE IS A GREAT DANGER WITH

THE PRESENT ELECTORAL COLLEGE

SYSTEM OF ELECTING A MINORITY,

OR A NON-PLURALITY, PRESIDENT,

OF ELECTING A PRESIDENT WHO HAS

FEWER VOTES THAN THE FELLA HE'S

RUNNING AGAINST.

WHEN WE HAVE AN ELECTORAL

COLLEGE SYSTEM WHICH THREATENS

TO ELECT A MAN WHO HAS FEWER

VOTES THAN HIS OPPONENT, WE TEND

TO ERODE THE CONFIDENCE IN THE

PEOPLE OF THIS COUNTRY IN THEIR

PRESIDENT AND IN THEIR FORM OF

GOVERNMENT.

RIGHT.

AND AS SOMEONE WHO'S LIVED

THROUGH THE EXACT HYPOTHETICAL

HE JUST DESCRIBED, AND TWICE, I

CAN REPORT THAT OUR CONFIDENCE

IN GOVERNMENT HASN'T SO MUCH

BEEN ERODED... EROSION IS A

SLOW, DIGNIFIED PROCESS... AS

MUCH AS IT'S BEEN HIT BY AN

ASTEROID FULL OF SENTIENT

NUCLEAR JACKHAMMERS UNTIL IT

COLLAPSED IN ON ITSELF LIKE A

STAR INSIDE A BLACK HOLE.

BACK THEN, THE IDEA OF

ABOLISHING THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE

HAD BIPARTISAN SUPPORT.

THEN-PRESIDENT NIXON EVEN URGED

CONGRESS TO GO THROUGH WITH IT,

WRITING "EVERY FOUR YEARS, THE

AMERICAN DEMOCRACY PLACES A

LARGE, UNACCEPTABLE, AND

UNNECESSARY WAGER THAT THE

ELECTORAL COLLEGE WILL WORK ONE

MORE TIME."

WHICH DOES MAKE SENSE, BECAUSE

IF THERE'S ONE THING WE KNOW

NIXON WAS NOT A FAN OF, IT'S

LEAVING ELECTIONS UP TO CHANCE.

AND IF THERE ARE SIX THINGS WE

KNOW HE WASN'T A FAN OF, IT'S

JEWS, BLACKS, HIPPIES, SNITCHES,

LIVING VIETNAMESE PEOPLE, AND

THEN LEAVING ELECTIONS UP TO

CHANCE.

MISS YOU, DICK.

BUT OBVIOUSLY, WE DIDN'T END UP

DOING AWAY WITH THE ELECTORAL

COLLEGE IN 1970, BECAUSE THE

LEGISLATION WAS ULTIMATELY

BLOCKED BY, YOU GUESSED IT, A

FUCKING FILIBUSTER.

AND EVEN TODAY, THE IDEA HAS

WIDESPREAD SUPPORT, WITH 61% OF

AMERICANS SAYING WE SHOULD

ABOLISH THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE.

BUT REPUBLICANS WILL FIERCELY

DEFEND IT.

IN FACT, WHEN A MOVEMENT TO

SWITCH TO A NATIONAL POPULAR

VOTE BEGAN PICKING UP STEAM A

DECADE AGO, MITCH McCONNELL SAID

REPUBLICANS NEED TO "KILL IT IN

THE CRADLE BEFORE IT GROWS UP."

BUT THE BEAUTY IS, THE MOVEMENT

McCONNELL WAS TALKING ABOUT

THERE DOESN'T NECESSARILY

REQUIRE HIS COOPERATION...

OR, INDEED, AN ACT OF CONGRESS

AT ALL... BECAUSE A GROUP OF

STATES HAVE QUIETLY SIGNED ONTO

AN INTERESTING WORKAROUND.

RECENTLY, 15 STATES AND THE

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA JOINED THE

NATIONAL POPULAR VOTE INTERSTATE

COMPACT.

THEY'RE PLEDGING TO GIVE THEIR

ELECTORAL VOTES TO THE CANDIDATE

WHO WINS THE NATIONAL POPULAR

VOTE RATHER THAN THE PERSON WHO

WINS THE POPULAR VOTE IN THEIR

STATE.

BUT THIS WON'T TAKE EFFECT UNTIL

ENOUGH STATES ADOPT IT WHICH, SO

FAR, HASN'T HAPPENED.

YEAH, IT'S KIND OF

AMAZING.

VERY BASICALLY, IF ENOUGH STATES

JUST PRETEND THE ELECTORAL

COLLEGE DOESN'T EXIST, IT COULD

FUNCTIONALLY DISAPPEAR.

IT'S THE SAME APPROACH EVERY

"HARRY POTTER" FAN IS CURRENTLY

TRYING TO TAKE TOWARD

J.K. ROWLING.

OBLIVIATE.

YOU GO, THE BOOKS STAY.

NOW, FOR THIS IDEA TO TAKE

EFFECT... SETTING ASIDE THE

LEGAL HURDLES IT WOULD ALMOST

CERTAINLY FACE... IT WOULD

NEED STATES REPRESENTING

270 ELECTORAL VOTES TO SIGN ON.

IT CURRENTLY HAS 196, WHICH IS A

LOT, BUT NEEDS 74 MORE, WHICH

WOULD BE INCREASINGLY HARD TO

GET.

AND OBVIOUSLY, THE BETTER WAY TO

ABOLISH THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE

WOULD BE TO DO IT THROUGH A

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT, BUT

THAT IS EVEN HARDER.

AND I WILL SAY,

THERE ARE OTHER IDEAS FOR

SIGNIFICANT REFORM, SUCH AS

SETTING TERM LIMITS FOR

SUPREME COURT JUSTICES, WHICH

WE'VE ARGUED BEFORE WE SHOULD

ABSOLUTELY DO.

THE POINT HERE IS, IT'S PAST

TIME FOR BIG CHANGE.

AND PERHAPS THAT'S WHY

REPUBLICANS LIKE KEVIN McCARTHY

ALREADY SEEM TO BE FREAKING OUT.

THE DEMOCRATS BELIEVE IT HAS

TO BE THEIR WAY OR NO WAY, BUT

NOW IT'S A NEW EXTREME.

THEY WANT TO EXPAND THE

COURT.

THEY WANT TO BRING NEW STATES

INTO THE UNION.

ANYTHING THAT RIGS THE SYSTEM ON

THEIR BEHALF INSTEAD OF

BELIEVING IN THE RULE OF LAW.

OKAY, FIRST OF ALL,

FUCK YOU, KEVIN.

IF THERE IS ONE GROUP OF PEOPLE

WHO DON'T GET TO COMPLAIN ABOUT

THEIR OPPONENTS GOING TO

EXTREMES TO GET WHAT THEY WANT,

ITS CONGRESSIONAL FUCKING

REPUBLICANS, AND SECONDLY, WE'VE

EXPANDED THE COURT BEFORE AND

WE'VE ADDED STATES BEFORE.

WE ADDED TWO STATES IN 1959.

WE DIDN'T FIGHT WORLD WAR II

WITH 50 STARS ON THE FLAG.

AMERICA IS CONSTANTLY SHIFTING,

AND GRANTING D.C. AND

PUERTO RICO STATEHOOD OR ENDING

THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE WOULD

ACTUALLY MAKE OUR SYSTEM MORE

DEMOCRATIC RATHER THAN LESS,

BECAUSE THE UNAVOIDABLE TRUTH

HERE IS THAT THE SYSTEM IS

ALREADY RIGGED.

AND IT'S RIGGED IN A WAY THAT

HAS ALLOWED A PARTY WITHOUT

POPULAR SUPPORT TO DRASTICALLY

RESHAPE AN ENTIRE BRANCH OF

GOVERNMENT FOR THE FORESEEABLE

FUTURE BY APPEALING ALMOST

EXCLUSIVELY TO WHITE VOTERS IN

SOME OF THE LEAST POPULOUS

REGIONS OF THE COUNTRY.

THAT'S NOT A MANDATE, AND IT'S

NOT DEMOCRACY.

IT'S A FUCKING TRAVESTY.

WE ARE AT END OF A GENERATIONAL

BATTLE, AND THE HEARTBREAKING

THING IS, WE LOST.

AND THAT HURTS.

IT'S GOING TO HURT FOR A LONG

TIME FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE IN WAYS

THAT COULD TAKE A WHILE TO FULLY

COMPREHEND.

BUT THE NEXT BATTLE HAS TO START

RIGHT NOW.

AND IT WILL BE LONG.

WE DIDN'T GET HERE OVERNIGHT,

AND WE WON'T GET OUT OF HERE

OVERNIGHT, BUT WE MUST BE

WILLING TO FIGHT TIRELESSLY AND

WITH EVERY TOOL AND TACTIC AT

OUR DISPOSAL, BECAUSE SOMETIMES,

FIGHTING FIRE WITH FIRE ISN'T

ENOUGH.

YOU HAVE TO FIGHT MULE PISS WITH

MULE PISS.

AND NOW THIS.

AND NOW, AN

UNEXPECTED UPDATE REGARDING

PEEPS.

A MAJOR CHANGE FOR ONE CANDY

COMPANY, JUST BONE QUALITY

CONFECTIONS HAS ANNOUNCED IT

WON'T BE PRODUCING ITS POPULAR

PEEPS FOR HALLOWEEN, CHRISTMAS,

OR VALENTINE'S DAY.

VALENTINE'S DAY.

VICTORY!

THE PEEPS HAS BEEN PURGED FROM A

HOLIDAY-THEMED GIFT BASKETS.

I DIDN'T KNOW THEY MADE THEM

FOR HALLOWEEN OR CHRISTMAS.

I DIDN'T KNOW THEY WERE

HALLOWEEN PEEPS EITHER, BUT YOU

NEVER STOP LEARNING.

PEEPS WILL NOT BE IN

HALLOWEEN CANDY BASKETS THIS

YEAR, THE COMPANY THAT PRODUCES

THEM SAID THEY WILL BE IN STARS

FOR CHRISTMAS EITHER.

DARN.

NO, NOT DON, WHATEVER THE

OPPOSITE OF "DARN" IS.

EVERY FOUR OR FIVE YEARS I

CONVINCE MYSELF TO TRY TO PEEP

BECAUSE I LOVE MARSHMALLOWS, AND

EVERY TIME I'M MAD.

I DON'T EVEN TRY THEM

ANYMORE.

DON'T EVEN TRY THEM!

THE END OF PEEPS SHALL BE THE

ONE TO DEVOUR YOU.

PRODUCTION STOPPED IN SPRING

WITH LIMITED PRODUCTION RESUMING

IN MID-MAY, HOWEVER, THE CANDY

IS SET TO RESUME NEXT YEAR JUST

IN TIME FOR EASTER.

NO!

NO, NO, NO, FUCK, NO!

NO!

MOVING ON.

FINALLY TONIGHT, A QUICK WORD ON

THE CENSUS.

YOU MAY REMEMBER WE COVERED IT

LAST YEAR WHEN WE LEARNED

DONALD TRUMP THOUGHT IT WAS WHEN

YOU COUNT HOW MANY TOILETS ARE

IN PEOPLE'S HOUSES.

WHICH, Y'KNOW...

IT ISN'T.

THE CENSUS IS HOW THE GOVERNMENT

DETERMINES THINGS LIKE THE

NUMBER OF SEATS EACH STATE HAS

IN THE HOUSE AND THE

DISTRIBUTION OF FEDERAL FUNDS,

AND GIVEN EVERYTHING THAT WE

JUST TALKED ABOUT EARLIER IN THE

SHOW ABOUT UNDERREPRESENTATION,

IT COULDN'T BE MORE IMPORTANT

FOR PEOPLE TO FILL IT IN.

UNFORTUNATELY, WITH THE

PANDEMIC, IT'S BECOME A BIT OF A

CLUSTERFUCK, WITH THE LATEST

NEWS COMING JUST THIS WEEK:

ALL RIGHT, BREAKING

A FEDERAL COURT

ORDERING THE TRUMP

ADMINISTRATION TO DROP PLANS TO

RUSH THE CENSUS TO A CONCLUSION

AND EXTENDING COUNTING IN THE

CENSUS FOR AN ADDITIONAL MONTH.

NOW, THE CENSUS RESULTS

DETERMINE FUTURE CONGRESSIONAL

DISTRICTING AND HOW FEDERAL

FUNDING IS DIVVIED UP ACROSS THE

COUNTRY.

COMMERCE SECRETARY WILBUR ROSS

HAD ORDERED THE CENSUS BUREAU TO

FINISH COUNTING BY SEPTEMBER

30TH, ONE MONTH EARLIER THAN

ORIGINALLY PLANNED.

THE RULING IS EXPECTED TO BE

APPEALED.

YEAH.

THE DEADLINE FOR THE CENSUS WAS

INITIALLY JULY 31, THEN IT WAS

PUSHED BACK TO OCTOBER 31, THEN

POINTLESSLY MOVED FORWARD TO

SEPTEMBER 30, WHICH IS IN JUST

THREE DAYS, AND NOW THE COURTS

WILL DECIDE WHETHER THAT'S

ACTUALLY THE DEADLINE OR NOT.

BUT REGARDLESS OF WHEN THE

DEADLINE IS, IT'S SOON.

AND CURRENTLY, ESTIMATES ARE

THAT AROUND 14 MILLION

HOUSEHOLDS HAVEN'T PARTICIPATED.

BASICALLY, THE CENSUS IS

SOMETHING EVERYONE SHOULD DO,

BUT SOME OF US AREN'T, PUTTING

IT IN THE SAME CATEGORY AS

FLOSSING, EXCEPT INSTEAD OF

GETTING GINGIVITIS, YOU'RE

GETTING UNDERREPRESENTED IN

CONGRESS.

AND IF YOU ARE ONE OF THOSE

PEOPLE WHO HASN'T FILLED IT OUT

YET, I CANNOT OVERSTATE HOW

IMPORTANT IT IS THAT YOU DO SO.

AND IT'S SO EASY.

JUST GO TO THIS WEBSITE, OR IF

YOU LOVE PHONE CALLS FOR SOME

REASON, DIAL THIS NUMBER.

THE CENSUS BUREAU SAYS YOU'LL BE

DONE IN LESS THAN 10 MINUTES,

BUT HONESTLY, AND NOT TO BRAG, I

FOUND IT TOOK ME LESS THAN TWO.

SO WHY NOT DO IT RIGHT NOW?

BECAUSE YOU DEFINITELY HAVE TWO

MINUTES.

AND THE REASON I KNOW THAT IS,

WE'RE CURRENTLY 28 MINUTES INTO

A 30-MINUTE SHOW, AND I'M ABOUT

TO DRIVE YOU AWAY TO GO FILL IT

IN.

AND IF YOU'RE THINKING, "I DON'T

KNOW ABOUT THAT, I'M PRETTY

COMFORTABLE RIGHT NOW"...

NOT FOR LONG, YOU'RE NOT.

BECAUSE FOR THE REST OF THIS

SHOW, I'M GOING TO LEAVE YOU

WATCHING THIS SCREENSAVER OF A

DVD LOGO BOUNCING AROUND, LIKE A

SUBSTITUTE TEACHER WHO FELL

ASLEEP AFTER "GLORY" ENDED.

AND NOT ONLY THAT, UNDERNEATH

IT, WE'RE GOING TO BE PLAYING

THE AUDIOBOOK VERSION OF

SEAN PENN'S "BOB HONEY WHO JUST

DO STUFF," READ BY ITS AUTHOR, A

MAN WITH A FACE THAT'S SEEN

BETTER DAYS AND A VOICE THAT'S

SEEN BETTER CENTURIES.

THE BOOK HAS NO FORMAL PLOT, A

PRESIDENT CHARACTER REFERRED TO

ONLY AS "MR. LANDLORD," AND IT

CONTAINS LINES LIKE

"EFFERVESCENCE LIVED IN HER

EVERY CELLULAR EXPRESSION, AND

SHE HAD SPIZZERINCTUM TO SPARE."

IT IS DREADFUL.

SO PLEASE SAVE YOURSELF AND GO

TO My2020Census. gov RIGHT NOW.

AND IF YOU'VE ALREADY FILLED OUT

YOUR CENSUS, WHY NOT USE THE

TIME TO REGISTER TO VOTE?

YOU CAN FIND INFORMATION ON HOW

TO DO THAT RIGHT HERE.

AND IF YOU'VE ALREADY DONE BOTH

OF THOSE THINGS, RUN FROM THIS

SCREEN.

LIKE THE WIND.

THAT'S OUR SHOW, THANKS SO MUCH

FOR WATCHING, SEE YOU NEXT WEEK.

TAKE IT AWAY, BOB.

THE AMERICA BOB DROVE FROM

WOOD BUTTE TO NEW ORLEANS WAS

NOT THAT ONE OF THE WAR, NOT THE

ONE HE HAD KNOWN IN HIS EARLIEST

CROSS CONTINENTAL AUTOMOTIVE

EXCURSIONS, NOT THE ONE OF PAY

LATER GAS STATIONS, VINTAGE

DINERS, AND 2-LANE ROADS.

ONLY THE TRAINS REMAINED IN

TRIBUTE TO THAT SPIRIT REFUGE IN

A VANQUISHED BY MODERNITY'S

GRAVE AND THERE WERE A FEW...

EXPENSE IN SOLITUDE.

THE RATHER INTERSTATE

STRIP MALLS, RETAIL EMPORIUMS,

TRAFFIC, ROADWORK, AND

BOTTLENECKS.

AMERICA, IT SEEMED TO BOB, WAS

NO LONGER THAT BEAUTIFUL GIRL

WHO'D BIRTHED HIM.

BUT INSTEAD, THE GHOST OF A GIRL

HE'D NEVER KNOWN.

DRIVING AT NIGHT THROUGH THE

INTERMITTENT EXPENSES CAN BOB

SOMETIMES SEE THE DISTANT AMBER

LIGHTS OF ISOLATED COMPOUNDS.

PERHAPS PRISONS.

PERHAPS CASINOS.

IN EITHER CASE, SOMEBODY WAS IN

THERE LOSING.

IT SEEMED MANY OF THE TOWNS WERE

BUILT EITHER ON THE BACK OF

VO-TECHS OR ON THE JOB SECURITY

OFFERED BY VARIOUS STATES'

CORRECTIONS DEPARTMENTS.

AT ONE DINERS STOP IN

SAN ANTONIO, BOB SAT AT A

COUNTER WHERE HE WAS DRAWN INTO

CONVERSATION BY A GRIM

SEPTUAGENARIAN TRAVELER.

BOB IMPULSIVELY ASKED.

"WHAT'S WITH ALL THE INCEST IN

YOUR AREA."

HE STEPPED UP AND ANSWERED BOB'S

QUESTION QUIETLY.

"JUST FOLKS GETTING BY."