Episode 42

Coach’s Prayers, Trump Endorsements, Ukraine, CA Medical Board

Ravi, Cory, & Rikki start with a controversial new bill in California aimed at curbing COVID misinformation before turning to a potentially landmark religious freedom case before the Supreme Court. Then the hosts walk us through the latest developments in Ukraine and wrap things up with Trump’s endorsements in the GOP primaries. 


Rikki explains the parameters of California’s new COVID misinformation law and why defining misinformation has proven dangerous in the course of the pandemic. Ravi pushes back, arguing it’s not far from the existing purpose of a medical board. [01:21]

Ravi decodes some legal jargon and runs down the details of the religious freedom case before the Supreme Court involving a high school football coach in Washington. He argues the case is neither as clear-cut or impactful as some analysts are making it out to be. Rikki and Cory take different sides in terms of their sympathy for the coach. [11:11]

Cory gives an update on the state of the war in Ukraine. Rikki goes through the tragic violence over Orthodox Easter before delivering some statistics on displacement and casualties. Cory supplements that with evidence of more countries severing ties with Russia. Ravi comes in with the increasingly bold U.S. stance that Ukraine will win the war. [22:42]

Ravi sheds some light on an emerging pattern around Trump’s endorsements in the GOP primaries: both on the candidates he chooses and those he doesn’t. Cory and Rikki push back with counterexamples where Trump’s support hasn’t had much of an impact, with Rikki reminding us to consider the candidates and local influences too. [28:25]

California’s Medical ‘Misinformation’ Crusade Could Cost Lives (The Wall Street Journal, 04/20)
A Warning From Shanghai (Common Sense, 04/12)
Introduced by Assembly Member Low (California Legislature – 2021-2022 Regular Session, 02/15)
Kennedy v. Bremerton Sch. Dist. Oral Argument (Supreme Court of the United States, 04/25)
Kennedy v. Bremerton Sch. Dist. Transcript (Heritage Reporting Corporation, 04/25)
Washington high school coach placed on leave for praying on field (CNN, 10/30/2015)
High school football coach who prayed at midfield gets warm reception from some justices (SCOTUSblog, 04/25)
Supreme Court Leans Toward Coach in Case on School Prayer (The New York Times, 04/25)
The Supreme Court is leading a Christian conservative revolution (Vox, 01/30)
The Supreme Court’s “praying coach” case, explained (Vox, 04/12)
 ​Praying Bremerton Coach Asking Supreme Court For His Job Back (Patch, 04/24)
Endorsement Test (The First Amendment Encyclopedia)
Coercion Test (The First Amendment Encyclopedia)
Lynch v. Donnelly, 465 U.S. 668 (1984) (Justia)
Lee v. Weisman (90-1014), 505 U.S. 577 (1992) (Cornell Law School Legal Information Institute)
Convulsed by war, tearful Ukrainians mark Orthodox Easter (Reuters, 04/24)
Ukraine roundup: No let up in fighting as Orthodox Easter marked (BBC, 04/25)
Ukrainians celebrate Easter in the shadow of war (CNN, 04/24)
April 26, 2022 Russia-Ukraine news (CNN, 04/26)
Pentagon chief calls Russia nuclear rhetoric ‘dangerous’; U.S. to send diplomats back to Ukraine (CNBC, 04/27)
Ukraine: civilian casualty update 25 April 2022 (United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commission, 04/25)
Russia Warns of Nuclear War Risk as Ukraine Talks Go On (Bloomberg, 04/26)
Russia shuts off gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria (CNN, 04/27)
Lavrov accuses NATO of engaging in proxy war, warns of armed conflict spreading beyond Ukraine (CNN, 04/26)
How many Ukrainians have fled their homes and where have they gone? (BBC, 04/28)
Uniting for Ukraine program allowing 100,000 Ukrainian refugees into the U.S. (NBC News, 04/24)
Blinken says State Dept. budget will help spark ‘strategic failure’ for Russia (New York Post, 04/26)
Ukraine can win war with Russia, U.S. defense secretary says (Reuters, 04/26)
Austin: U.S. believes Ukraine ‘can win’ war against Russia (Politico, 04/26)
Russia cuts off gas to Poland, Bulgaria, stoking tensions with E.U. (The Washington Post, 04/26)
Russia raises nuclear tensions as Ukraine’s allies promise more arms (Los Angeles Times, 04/26)
Dmytro Kuleba Tweet (Twitter, 04/25)
The First Post-Trump Republican Race (The New Yorker, 04/16)
How much is Trump’s endorsement *actually* worth? (CNN, 02/17)
Ohio Senate Race Pits Trump and Son Against Big G.O.P. Group (The New York Times, 04/26)
Trump’s Georgia allies are running on 2020 grievance. It may not work. (The Washington Post, 04/27)
Trump has endorsed nearly 130 candidates for 2022, testing his influence in the Republican Party (CBS, 03/20)
Does a Trump endorsement make a difference? Yes, but not the way a candidate hopes it will (The Conversation, 08/03/21)
Endorsements by Donald Trump (Ballotpedia, 04/26)
Fox News Poll (Fox News, 04/20-24)
Trump’s Oz, Vance endorsements bring cash windfall, backlash (Associated Press, 04/23)
Vance parlays Trump endorsement into new Thiel money (Politico, 04/19)