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Townhall Review

Hugh Hewitt


Podcast Overview

Townhall Review is today’s top conservative weekend radio show.

Townhall Review brings together political commentary and analysis from leading conservative talk-radio hosts. You’ll enjoy the fast-paced recap of the week’s political events Townhall Review provides. You can rely on the show to provide the “who said what” in U.S. politics, global news and breaking news.

Townhall Review honors your conservative principles and enables you to participate in the conversation on issues shaping our nation.

Podcast Episodes

Michael Medved: Different Roles Divide the Party

As Republicans on Capitol Hill struggle to make progress on healthcare and tax reform, the loudest voices in conservative media rip the GOP’s Congressional leadership for their willingness to compromise on drafting legislation. Actually, Republicans in the House and Senate are doing what they need to do to succeed at their jobs, while conservative commentators in talk radio and syndicated columns do what brings success in their very different roles. Congressional conservatives can achieve nothing without support from moderate Republicans and, ideally, some Democrats, but conservative talkers can maintain ratings dominance by appealing solely to hard-core true believers who make up at most 10 percent of the available audience. The only way to repair the rift in Republican ranks is for conservative media to alter their strident approach and broaden their base. That process might bring even larger audiences, while helping Congressional colleagues to build the larger coalitions that Constitutional checks and balances require.

THR 7/15/17: A Prime Opportunity for the Ages: Trump's Promise to Repeal and Replace Obamacare

Hugh Hewitt interviews Politico’s Senior Washington Correspondent Anna Palmer about the Donald Trump Jr. email exchange with a Russian lawyer. Dennis Prager offers his insight into the Russian collusion controversy. Mike Gallagher invites Senator Ted Cruz to talk about the promise President Trump made to repeal and replace Obamacare and how this is a prime opportunity for the ages. Hugh Hewitt also asks Senator Tom Cotton about the likelihood of the Republican healthcare bill passing in the Senate. Michael Medved laments the Oregon push to legalize deadly drugs like heroin and ecstasy. Mike Gallagher interviews Heather MacDonald, author of The War on Cops, about how cop hatred led to the assassination of a forty-eight year old mother of three. In response to a Cornell University study, Larry Elder shares a story about his father working in the food industry and how certain demographics leave better tips than others.

David Davenport: Free Speech

This summer, Commentary magazine published a forum on the question: Is free speech under threat in the United States? Ironically, in a country where the Constitution and the courts carefully protect free speech, many people do not feel free to speak freely. Why? Because of a smothering blanket of political correctness that starts in our colleges and permeates our society. Speakers with points of view that differ from the liberal orthodoxy are not welcome on many campuses, and in some cases have been subject to threats and violence. Students are supposed to be protected from so-called trigger words and microaggressions in the classroom. So much for free speech and the open debate of competing ideas. The problem is that the First Amendment protects free speech from limitations by government, but the big challenges to free speech come from our culture and our campuses. It will take a strong fight to protect free speech, which is clearly under threat.

Michael Medved: Defying the "Success Sequence"

The New York Times recently acknowledged that some of the recent changes in marriage and childbearing have damaged our country. Noting that a big majority—55 percent—of first children born to millennial couples are now born outside of marriage, columnist David Leonhardt explained that this “new normal” violates the “success sequence” established long-ago by the Brookings Institution. That research proved that young people, whatever their background, could minimize any chance of long-term poverty by taking thee simple steps: graduating from high school, getting a job—any job—right after graduation from high school or college, and bearing children only after marriage, not before. The success sequence shows that good choices can help all people avoid bad outcomes, even if they’re disadvantaged, while bad choices are likely to produce bad outcomes, even for the more privileged. Welcoming children in their traditional context of marital commitment will benefit those children, their parents and society at large.

Jerry Bowyer: The Impeachment Crusade Is Costly

Over the past six weeks or so, there has been a steady drumbeat of impeachment talk from the elite press and the opposition party. As a result: • Google searches on “impeachment” have spiked by 1,200 percent per day. • London odds makers have raised the odds that Trump will not finish out his term by 21 percent. • And the stock market? The seven weeks after Trump was elected, markets exploded upward 8.3 percent. But in the same period of time after the impeachment push, it has gone up by only 1 ½ percent. There is little doubt that the effort to keep impeachment on the table is hurting markets, which means it’s hurting retirements, pensions and college savings programs. If there were proof of wrongdoing, then of course, justice counts more than money. But Americans should not be forced to endure even more economic stagnation for the sake of scoring higher ratings and political points by the Trump opposition. Simply put: The impeachment crusade is costing you money.

Hugh Hewitt: Winning In Washington

What does it mean to “win” in Washington? I’ve long described “progress” as the ongoing, incremental expansion of liberty and literacy in a growing number stable regimes in or aligned with the West. And by that definition, much of the agenda of President Trump’s administration could well be described as “winning.” Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt have become the domestic policy stars of the Trump administration, joining Defense Secretary Mattis, Homeland Security Secretary Kelly and CIA Director Pompeo as foreign policy counterparts off to successful starts. Each of the five brought to the task discipline and passion to lead their agencies. The key, however, is that all five have sought and received buy-ins from the president and Vice President Pence on their policy directions and priorities—and, even more, that they pursue and defend their missions with little or no reference to the raging battle between the West Wing and the media elites. Any assessment of the Trump administration ought to include a clear-eyed evaluation of where they are in fact wining.

Michael Medved: Double Standards In The War Between White House And Media

For all his vast power, the President of the United States is always at a structural disadvantage in a “war” with the media. The First Amendment protects press rights to criticize the government, and everyone expects such criticism. But if government—or the president, as head of government—strikes back by assailing media, there’s an uneasy hint of bullying or oppression. President Trump isn’t exceptional in generating media hostility, but Barack Obama was exceptional in avoiding such scrutiny for eight years. What’s more, there’s a double standard on defining victory in battles between the administration and the press. CNN would celebrate if it ever won 20 percent of the available viewing audience, but presidential approval ratings of just 20 percent would undermine chances for legislative and re-election success. A president can’t win by exclusively catering to his most enthusiastic base, but a cable news operation can’t lose if it solely rallies its hard-core fans.

THR 7/8/17: North Korea Goes Nuclear

Hugh Hewitt interviews Richard Grennell concerning proposed actions that the U.S should take against North Korea. Then, Charles Krauthammer offers his solution to the potential nuclear crisis. Hewitt interviews an optimistic Senator Pat Toomey on what the Senate needs to do to get to “yes” on the Senate healthcare bill. Michael Medved interviews influential black journalist, Jason Riley, on how Black Lives Matter can make a difference at the ground level. Dennis Prager discusses Douglas Murray’s book, Strange Death of Europe. Medved presents new alarming government data which reveals how couples being married before children is no longer the norm. Hewitt, in celebration of the Constitution and Declaration of Independence, invites Larry P. Arnn to fill in for the late Harry V. Jaffa, who had been a regular 4th of July guest on the show for 15 years. Prager brings to attention the far leanings of the Left and how destructive it can be on societies like Canada, whose government has now recognized the first non-gender child ID card.

Hugh Hewitt: Americans And Contact Sports

The United States of America isn’t defined by Beltway or Manhattan elites, nor by those in Los Angeles or Silicon Valley. The mainstream media gets its cues from the collective consciousness of these four isolated reserves of great power, wealth and fame. Donald Trump’s sparring with elites, though, is deeply satisfying to much of the rest of the country that doesn’t live in those four sectors… at least that sparring is satisfactory most of the time. There’s a limit, however, to how much good the president does by dominating media. The president met and exceeded that limit with the escalation of his war with Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski via tweets. These tweets were wrong because they were cruel. They don’t energize the base, except at its far fringes. They shrink it. Americans do love contact sports. We swoon for heated rhetoric. If Trump can resolve to stay combative but back off cruel, it won’t matter whether he tweets once or 100 times a day.

Michael Medved: Infatuation With Obama; Rage Against Trump

President Trump and his supporters are absolutely right that there’s a glaring contrast between the way media treat this president and way the press handled his predecessor, Barack Obama. With Obama, potentially devastating scandals—Benghazi, the IRS, Fast and Furious, the VA—never gained momentum; the press never blamed Obama personally when things went wrong in his administration. For Trump, he’s blamed personally for every embarrassment or disappointment under his watch. But conservatives are wrong to suggest that the treatment of Trump is exceptional. George W. Bush and Bill Clinton also got rough handling by the press; it was the always-forgiving, generally glowing treatment of Obama that was exceptional, extraordinary, in fact. Maybe it was his image as a “hip cool dude,” or his historical status as the first non-white president, but media infatuation with Obama set a dangerous precedent that distorts press-relations with the current administration.

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