When It Arraigns, It Pours | Crooked Media
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June 12, 2023
What A Day
When It Arraigns, It Pours

In This Episode

  • Former President Donald Trump will appear in federal court in Miami today to be arraigned on 37 federal counts over his alleged mishandling of classified documents. It’s his second court appearance as a criminal defendant this year – and he is expected to plead not guilty.
  • SB 1718, a sweeping anti-immigration law signed by Florida Governor Ron DeSanits, takes effect next month. It bears striking similarities to a ballot measure passed by California voters almost 30 years ago called Proposition 187, which galvanized the state’s Latino communities. L.A. Times columnist Gustavo Arellano joins us to discuss whether SB 1718 will have the same effect in the Sunshine State.
  • And in headlines: youth activists sued Montana in a first-of-its kind case over climate change, New York City has become the first city to mandate a minimum wage for app-based food delivery workers, and two non binary actors made history at this year’s Tony Awards.

 

Show Notes:

 

 

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TRANSCRIPT

 

Josie Duffy Rice: It’s Tuesday, June 13th. I’m Josie Duffy Rice. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: And I’m Priyanka Aribindi. And this is What A Day, welcoming all of the Reddit users with nothing to do during the blackout. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: You can just talk to us instead. You know, we’re not going to talk back because– 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: –Yeah. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: –we can’t hear you. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: We might not answer, but you can pretend like you’re a part of the conversation. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Well, we can leave a pause like right now. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah we’ll leave a pause, right now. [music break] [laughing] 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Ha ha ha ha. You did great. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: You’re so funny. That was a great joke. [music break] On today’s show, youth activists are taking the state of Montana to court over climate change. Plus, two non-binary actors made history at this year’s Tony Awards. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: But first, it is arraignment day in America, round two. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Oh Lord. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Former President Donald Trump will appear today in federal court in Miami, Florida, for the first time since being indicted on 37 felony counts related to his mishandling of classified documents. He is scheduled to arrive at the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida at 3 p.m. Eastern and is expected to plead not guilty. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Priyanka, as you know, it’s very, very difficult for me [laughter] to root for any prosecutors, federal prosecutors in particular. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Sure, I know it. But–

 

Josie Duffy Rice: –Donald Trump has really tested me. He’s really tested me this man. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah, that is one of the worst parts about this man. He really just is like makes you question where your allegiances [laughter] really lie, making you side with people you thought you hated. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Anyways, this is not Donald Trump’s first rodeo. This is the second time he will appear as a criminal defendant in court. Earlier this year, he was indicted in New York on state charges that he falsified business records in connection with hush money payments to Stormy Daniels. Who could forget? He also pleaded not guilty in that one, too. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah, I haven’t forgotten. [laughter] I have not forgotten any of that. Okay. So– 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Nope. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: What else do we know about today’s appearance? Like what’s happening?  

 

Priyanka Aribindi: There is a lot going on. A few different things that we know, first thing, presiding over his appearance today is Judge Aileen Cannon. She was actually appointed by Trump to her position as a district judge back in 2020, and she was criticized for ruling in Trump’s favor last year to appoint a special master to review the materials that were seized from Mar-a-Lago. So, you know, she’s been here for a minute. That is an interesting element at play here. There also will be the scene outside the courtroom. Security, of course, will be tight. This is a former president. It’s unclear how many supporters or protesters against Trump will show up to the court. It was heavy on the latter when he appeared for his arraignment in Manhattan. But Florida, very different place, very different vibe. So who knows what will happen? Trump has called for any demonstrations to be peaceful, which is just like pretty much a joke coming from him. So very much TBD on what happens out there. But as for inside the courtroom, federal court proceedings aren’t streamed or recorded. So sadly, we will not be able to watch this go down in real time, though unfortunately for us, I’m sure Trump will have plenty to say afterwards. He’ll be heading back to his golf club at Bedminster, New Jersey tonight. And according to his campaign, because despite all of this, he is still running for president. He will be delivering remarks at 8:15 p.m. Eastern. So in case you want to ruin your night, you can tune in to whatever he has to say. But, you know, just in case you want to salvage whatever is left of your of your evening, we will be recapping everything that happens in the courtroom. Anything worthwhile that he has to say on tomorrow’s show. So come back here tomorrow morning for the rundown. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Why isn’t he just going back to Mar-a-Lago? 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Who knows? He just saw Taylor Swift was at the top of the list for the jets and he was like, No, fuck that. I could do one better. I don’t know why. That’s pretty wild. But– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: It just feels weird. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: You got to give a speech from somewhere. Like, why not Mar-A-Lago? But maybe just because– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Right. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: –it’s the scene of the crime. Is it a little, like, too fresh? 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: [laugh] I guess that’s true. It’s bringing back a lot of rough memories of bathrooms. [laughter] And speaking of Florida, a sweeping anti-immigration law signed by Governor Ron DeSantis is going into effect next month. The law, called SB 1718, allocates millions of dollars for DeSantis’s controversial migrant, quote unquote, “relocation program.” And starting July 1st, Florida will become an even more hostile place for undocumented residents. Among other things, hospitals that accept Medicaid must ask patients about their citizenship status. Undocumented immigrants who were previously admitted to the Florida State bar will no longer be allowed to practice law in the state, and the law even invalidates out of state driver’s license for undocumented folks. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Okay. Didn’t know it could uh get worse, but apparently– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: –it can. And it has. And it’s much, much worse. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: The hospital thing is particularly cruel. It just means people won’t seek medical care when they need it, which– 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: –Right. Like they know what they’re doing with this and– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: –Right. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah. It is beyond cruel. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: That includes people who have children who need medical assistance. It’s just really bad. And it’s also not a totally new strategy. Almost 30 years ago, California voters passed a similar anti-immigrant initiative called Proposition 187. That ballot measure banned undocumented immigrants in the Golden State from accessing major public services, including public education and non-emergency health care. It even directed state and local agencies to report folks that they suspected of being undocumented. That sounds like a recipe for racism. Then Governor Pete Wilson, a Republican who was running for reelection, had already been targeting immigrants in his campaign ads and officially endorsed Prop 187. Take a listen to one of his political ads. 

 

[clip of Pete Wilson campaign ad] They keep coming. 2 million illegal immigrants in California. The federal government won’t stop them at the border yet requires us to pay billions to take care of them. Governor Pete Wilson sent the National Guard to help the Border Patrol. But that’s not all. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Jesus. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Truly. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Come on. But it sounds familiar, does it not? 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: I mean, beyond like that could have been a Trump ad. I feel like. That– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Truly. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: –does not sound too far off from what we are fed. Down to– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: –Yeah. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: –like the menacing voice and the little soundtrack. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yep. Could have been Trump. Could have been DeSantis. Could have been Brian Kemp. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Any of them. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. So although the ballot measure passed by a vote of 59% in November of 1994, legal challenges stopped the measure from ever becoming law, and it was eventually declared unconstitutional. Still, the proposition mobilized immigrant communities across the state and became a major turning point for California, arguably setting the stage to make the state the Democratic stronghold it is today. So joining me to talk about this and more is Gustavo Arellano, columnist for the L.A. Times. Thank you so much for coming on the pod. 

 

Gustavo Arellano: Gracias for having me. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: So I want to start by discussing something that you recently wrote about, which is the striking similarities between Florida’s anti-immigration law and Proposition 187. So for folks who aren’t familiar with that proposition, can you start by walking us through the measure and tell us a little bit about what it was trying to do? 

 

Gustavo Arellano: Yeah. So Proposition 187 is one of the most influential ballot initiatives ever passed in the United States and its influence. We’re still feeling it. I mean, by the very virtue of DeSantis basically trying to one up what 187 did. And so the context of 187, you have to go back to 1986, actually, when President Reagan signed an amnesty with the idea that, oh, you know, there’s not going to be any more undocumented migration into the United States anymore. Problem solved. But no migrants still came to this country for a better life. And in California, especially as demographics were changing, the white population said enough. We are, you know their words, not mine. We’re losing our country. No one speaks English any more, blah, blah, blah. So out of this frustration, frankly, xenophobia came Proposition 187. And in California, just in case uh listeners don’t know what a ballot initiative is, because I always thought all states had ballot initiatives. It turns out only a couple of them do. No other state is as crazy with its ballot initiatives as California. Basically, if you want to pass something into law, you can get the voters to vote on it. If you get enough people to sign a initiative to put it on the ballot. So in California, they got enough voters to sign petitions to put 187 on the ballot. No one thought it was going to pass and then it totally did. Californians, almost 60% of Californians voted yes on Proposition 187. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Hmm. Wow. Wow. Can you tell us a little bit more about what happened after it passed? Like, what lasting impact did that have in California? How did it change the politics in California? You know, what was the impact of Prop 187? 

 

Gustavo Arellano: Oh, it was a double edged sword that cut both the left and the right. On the left, it woke up an entire generation of Latinos like myself, who either were undocumented, had undocumented relatives like my dad. He was undocumented and uncles of mine and said, no, we are not going to take this, you know, state voters telling us that we’re the reason why California is supposedly going down the drain. So a lot of my generation that got into politics, the reason the California legislature is so I mean, it’s a super majority Democrat, so the Democrats could pass whatever they want is because a lot of these Latinos ended up running for office, like U.S. Senator Alex Padilla. He was down in California at the time. He was back east going to school, but he protested against that, so it inspired and basically made a generation of Latinos go Democrat. But at the same time, it inspired other xenophobes across the country to think, hey, if 187 could pass in California, it could pass in our states as well. So you’ve had xenophobic legislation and ballot initiatives all across the United States ever since 187. And 187, by the way, was eventually declared unconstitutional. But those same people who created 187 and created all these other either state initiatives, legislative initiatives, they were also the people who got into the ear of Donald Trump and actually Donald Trump during his campaign rallies he would surround himself with veterans of the Pro 187 uh movement, and we all know how much he rode that xenophobia into the White House and how much now you’re seeing Ron DeSantis and other candidates doing it today. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah, I mean, that was going to be my next question for you. Like what parallels exist between that ballot measure and SB 1718? And, you know, where are we seeing kind of history repeat itself right now, especially in Florida? 

 

Gustavo Arellano: In everything. I mean, DeSantis knows this history. That’s why he’s doubling down on it and making it even nastier. What’s so disgusting about 1718 is that he is overturning things that Florida has done just within the past decade. So basically you know undocumented folks could go to college and pay in-state tuition. Not any more. Undocumented folks could apply to become uh lawyers. Not anymore. And one of the nastiest things of 187, and one of the reasons why it was declared unconstitutional, by the way, was because it basically mandated any government worker to if they suspected someone of being undocumented, they had to rat them out to the IN– Well, back then, it was I.N.S.. Now it’s ICE. Desantis’s bill wants to do that the same. but now the big question then becomes will Florida, which was Democrat not too long ago and now is increasingly turning more and more Republican. Will the 187 effect that happened in California that also happened in Arizona after SB 1070 a decade ago, will it happen in the Sunshine State? And that’s something that in my column I argued that it’s probably not going to happen because Florida’s politics, especially when it comes to Latinos, are completely different from what’s going on in California. But one never knows. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: So we’re getting closer to July 1st when this law will go into effect. There is some pushback, right? There have been reports of migrant truck drivers starting to boycott Florida. A strike dubbed A Day Without Immigrants took place in Florida as workers refused to show up to work in protest of this new law. And, you know, it’s worth noting, like many of these populations are at much more risk of things like striking and things like not showing up to work. You know, they don’t always have the same sort of protections that other people may. But what do you think about this? What are you seeing and what is your message to organizers and Floridians who oppose this bill, who might be scared of what’s to come, who don’t agree with it, and who might be hoping for a Proposition 187 effect? 

 

Gustavo Arellano: You’re not going to get victory immediately. Like there’s lawsuits already, of course, to try to stop this from happening. That’s going to take years. So my message to the people protesting it can’t just be one day, it has to be sustained. In Arizona, there was boycotts of Arizona that arguably had an effect. At the very least, it rallied good people against xenophobia. So you have to take your argument wherever it can happen. There’s going to be different people arguing in different ways. There’s going to be strikes. There is going to be sit down protests. There’s going to be arrests. There also has to be people, you know, going out into the media and having these debates with these xenophobes. That’s what you have to do. Any which way you have to do it. Because what’s at stake here, really, I think, is the future of American democracy. And in California, it worked out beautifully because look at us now. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: That was my conversation with L.A. Times columnist Gustavo Arellano. We’ll have more to say on what Florida’s new law will mean for immigrant families in the coming days. But that is the latest for now. We’ll be back after ads. [music break]. 

 

[AD BREAK] 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Let’s get to some headlines. 

 

[sung] Headlines. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Banking giant JPMorgan Chase has reached a $290 million dollar settlement in a class action lawsuit brought by Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual abuse victims. This comes after months of public exposure and many receipts showing that JPMorgan overlooked warnings about the deceased sex traffickers operations because he was a loyal, wealthy client for years. He not only kept hundreds of millions of dollars in more than 50 accounts, he also introduced a stream of wealthy clients to the bank. And the bank continued to do business with Epstein even after he pleaded guilty to soliciting a minor for prostitution in 2008. More than 100 women are expected to receive compensation from the settlement. And while JPMorgan did not admit any liability in the case the bank told CBS News in a statement, quote, “Any association with him was a mistake and we regret it.” 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: 16 youth activists are suing the state of Montana in a first of its kind case over climate change. They claim that Montana, which is a major coal exporter, is violating their constitutional rights by supporting the fossil fuel industry and not setting limits on carbon emissions. And the group cites this line in Montana’s state constitution to back them up, which reads, quote, “The state and each person shall maintain and improve a clean and healthful environment in Montana for present and future generations,” which, like it feels like the one time like the old timey people– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: –might have been looking out and– 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Um. That it might not be working in favor of um Republicans, I guess like. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Well, you know, they spent more time outside. They could really appreciate [?]–

 

Priyanka Aribindi: They touched grass, they touched grass. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: They touched grass. They touched grass.

 

Priyanka Aribindi: For all of their faults–

 

Josie Duffy Rice: They were not on reddit in fact.

 

Priyanka Aribindi: No, no, they were not. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: No. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: And it shows. This is the first climate change suit to actually make it to trial in the U.S. And it’s definitely one to watch. That is because depending on how it plays out, it could set a precedent for similar lawsuits across the country. It’s no surprise that the youths are the ones taking the wheel on this fight. But the state of Montana is expected to come in swinging, especially since fossil fuel loving Republicans hold a supermajority in the state legislature. Coal industry jobs are very lucrative in Montana, and entire communities there rely on coal as their livelihood. The trial started yesterday in Helena and is set to continue over the next two weeks. We’ll be watching very closely. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: New York City has become the first city to mandate a minimum wage for app based food delivery workers. Starting next month, companies like Uber Eats, DoorDash and GrubHub must pay their delivery workers in the city a minimum of $18 an hour, plus whatever tips they make. And by 2025, that rate must increase to nearly $20 an hour to keep up with inflation. According to city officials, an estimated 60,000 people work for app based food delivery services in New York City. The wage increase is a huge bump from their current pay of about $12 an hour, which accounts for the fact that these delivery workers are classified as independent contractors and have to pay higher taxes while different apps still have room to decide how they calculate payments under the new rule, they must meet the $18 an hour minimum to continue doing business in New York City. As you might expect, they’re not pleased with the new law. For its part, DoorDash even said it was considering taking legal action against the city over the rule, calling it, quote unquote, “extreme.” 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Oh, you’re going to say that out loud? 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: I don’t know if extreme is the word I would use.

 

Priyanka Aribindi: No like I’m sorry, paying people a livable wage in New York City I don’t even know if $18 an hour. I do know actually, that’s not a livable wage. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah. DoorDash. I don’t know if I’d feel comfortable doing that. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yeah. Extreme as New York City rent. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Yeah. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Is what extreme is.

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Got some questions for DoorDash coms on that one. But anyways. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Yup. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: And finally, a little recap of some razzle dazzle from the best of Broadway. J. Harrison Ghee and Alex Newell made history on Sunday night, becoming the first nonbinary performers to win acting awards at the Tony Awards. Ghee took home the best actor in a lead role award for their performance in Some Like It Hot, a musical adaptation of the Marilyn Monroe movie of the same name. In it, Ghee plays a character that comes to realize their nonbinary identity through drag, and the story mirrors Ghee’s own journey with gender. Here is what they had to say during their acceptance speech. 

 

[clip of J. Harrison Ghee] For every trans, nonbinary, gender non-conforming human, whoever was told you couldn’t be, you couldn’t be seen. [tapping sound] This is for you. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Meanwhile, Newell took home the trophy for best actor in a featured role in a musical for their performance in Shucked, a musical comedy about a midwestern community’s mission to save their local corn crop. Take a listen to their speech. 

 

[clip of Alex Newell] Thank you for seeing me Broadway. I should not be up here as a queer, nonbinary, fat, Black little baby from Massachusetts. [cheers and applause] And to anyone that thinks that they can’t do it, I’m going to look you dead in your face, that you can do anything you put your mind to. [cheers and applause]

 

Josie Duffy Rice: I love the Tonys. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Me too. What an inspiring, lovely award show. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Truly. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: The only good one, I feel. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: I agree. Just gives you hope. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Really does. Gives you hope and gives me so many things where I’m like I actually want to see these. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Mm hmm. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Like, whereas I don’t know if I feel that way [laughing] about any other–

 

Josie Duffy Rice: –I know. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: The other award shows. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: It’s true. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Sorry to say it. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: It’s true. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Anyways, sorry to trash the other arts. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: We love all the arts. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: We love all of them. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: But we love the Tonys most. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Yes. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: Those are the headlines. 

 

[AD BREAK]

 

Josie Duffy Rice: That is all for today. If you like the show, make sure you subscribe, leave a review. Tip your food delivery guy to support workers rights and tell your friends to listen. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: And if you’re into reading and not just websites that aren’t Reddit or Twitter like me, What A Day is also a nightly newsletter. Check it out and subscribe at Crooked.com/subscribe. I’m Priyanka Aribindi. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: I’m Josie Duffy Rice.

 

[spoken together] And log off already. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: I mean, it’s advice I need to take, but do it. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: I was about to say, [laugh] hilarious for me to be giving this advice honestly.

 

Priyanka Aribindi: You do it first and then tell me how it is [laughter] and then maybe I’ll do it, too. 

 

Josie Duffy Rice: [laughing] I’m sure it’s great. 

 

Priyanka Aribindi: Mm hmm. [music break] What A Day is a production of Crooked Media. It’s recorded and mixed by Bill Lancz. Our show’s producer is Itxy Quintanilla. Raven Yamamoto and Natalie Bettendorf are our associate producers and our senior producer is Lita Martinez. Our theme music is by Colin Gilliard and Kashaka. 

 

[AD BREAK]