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The sun sets at the U.S. Supreme Court building the week that the court is expected to hear arguments in a Mississippi case that challenges Roe v. Wade in Washington, U.S., November 29, 2021.

REUTERS/Leah Millis

Get ready for the SCOTUS deluge

This is the Supreme Court’s last scheduled week for issuing opinions this term — and they have some big questions to decide. At least 14 cases are still outstanding, with big consequences for the election and the US government.

Here are three to watch:

Trump and Jan. 6: Trump claims he is immune from prosecution for virtually any action he took as president, following the argument that Congressional impeachment is the check on his power, not the courts. It’s a very bold claim, one that lower court judges pointed out could mean a president who orders assassinations of his rivals might face no consequences. The court is expected to split a fine hair here, perhaps protecting some forms of conduct but not others.

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Francis Fukuyama: Americans should be very worried about failing democracy
Francis Fukuyama: Americans should be very worried about failing democracy | GZERO World

Francis Fukuyama: Americans should be very worried about failing democracy

The prospect of another Trump presidency can be hard to imagine. Still, before we even get there, we must confront the possibility of political violence in the months leading up to November 5.

With the US presidential election on November 5, many Americans are pondering what another four years of a Trump presidency could mean for the country and the world. But let's not get ahead of ourselves. The months leading up to November 5 (and the period after the election but before the January 20 inauguration) could be the most consequential in modern history. That's according to Stanford political scientist Francis Fukuyama, who warns that the capacity for violence amongst Trump supporters is unprecedented.

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U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks on what he calls the "continued battle for the Soul of the Nation" in front of Independence Hall in Philadelphia, U.S.

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Biden’s primetime warning kicks off the midterms

President Joe Biden delivered Thursday night a primetime address in Philadelphia — the birthplace of the US republic — with a clear message to the American people: Democracy is under threat.

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Former US President Donald Trump

REUTERS/Brian Snyder

What We’re Watching: Mar-a-Lago  "under siege," US pitches Africa, Italy’s left falters, Greek spy scandal

Trump claims FBI raid at Mar-a-Lago

Former US President Donald Trump said Monday that the Feds were searching his sprawling residence in Palm Beach, Florida. In a statement, Trump complained that his swanky Mar-a-Lago estate is "currently under siege, raided, and occupied by a large group of FBI agents." If his claim is true, the raid would be a big escalation in efforts by the Department of Justice to investigate the former president for trying to overturn the 2020 election result and inciting the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection at the US Capitol building in Washington, DC that resulted in several deaths. It could also be related to a separate DOJ probe into 15 boxes of classified documents that Trump took with him to Mar-a-Lago after leaving office. Although federal law prohibits moving classified material to unauthorized locations, Trump might argue that, in his final days as president, he got to make the final call on declassifying the files. Either way, the raid — which has not yet been confirmed by the DOJ — will surely cause political ripples in the coming days: the former president and his fans will cite the search as proof that the so-called "deep state" is trying to stop him from running again in 2024, while Democrats and never-Trump Republicans likely hope that the FBI was indeed looking for evidence linked to the Jan. 6 committee hearings that could help indict Trump.

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Opinion: Has the Jan. 6 committee killed Trump’s 2024 chances?

Opinion: Has the Jan. 6 committee killed Trump’s 2024 chances?

Donald Trump remains the most popular and strongest figure in the Republican Party. The former president is almost certainly going to announce his 2024 candidacy in relatively short order, and if you made me bet right now, I’d say he is more likely than not to clinch the GOP nomination.

But it's a close call.

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Opinion: January 6 failed but the threat to U.S. democracy is far from over

Opinion: January 6 failed but the threat to U.S. democracy is far from over

The select congressional committee investigating the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol kicked off a series of public hearings last Thursday to make the case to the American people that former President Donald Trump was directly involved in a violent and coordinated attempt to overturn the 2020 election.

Already the initial proceedings have made two things clear, a stark reminder of just how divided and dysfunctional our political system is.

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US political violence increases; Democrats seek Jan 6 accountability
Jan. 6th Hearing: Much of the Facts Revealed Were Already Known | US Politics In :60 | GZERO Media

US political violence increases; Democrats seek Jan 6 accountability

Jon Lieber, head of Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington, shares his perspective on US politics:

What was the biggest takeaway from the first January 6th hearing?

The House Committee investigating the January 6th riot at the Capitol hosted its first hearing last night. And while a major focus of the committee is making the case for the criminal culpability of former President, Donald Trump, for his role in instigating the riots, much of the facts revealed last night were already well known through leaks from the committee and are unlikely to change any minds for either supporters or detractors of the former president.

The committee also spent significant resources uncovering a connection between two nationalist groups, the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers, in their role in deliberately stoking violence that day. The committee showed video evidence that group members coordinated in advance to attack the Capitol and disrupt the certification of a completely valid election. And they were egged on by Donald Trump's appearance at the White House that morning. The existence of these nationalist groups and their ability to organize online is going to be an ongoing challenge in the United States, which is starting to see elevated levels of political division and outright political violence.

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A year after Jan. 6, U.S. democracy is in more trouble than ever

A year after Jan. 6, U.S. democracy is in more trouble than ever

Today marks the one-year anniversary of the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol.

This unprecedented act of sedition was the worst attack on US democracy since the Civil War. It was the first disruption of the peaceful democratic transition of power since 1876, and the only one to be instigated by a sitting president. I’d argue Trump’s role in it constitutes the gravest violation of the oath of office by any president in the history of the nation.

Thankfully, the insurrection failed to stop the certification of the vote and subvert the democratic order. It was destined to fail—and was not, indeed, an attempted coup—because the military, the courts, then-VP Mike Pence, former Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, key state and local officials, and a majority of GOP senators ultimately sided with rule of law and the Constitution. Most of our key institutions held firm. We should be grateful for that.

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