Daily Video

November 10, 2019

Impeachment update: Why public hearings?


Directions: Read the summary, watch the video above and answer the discussion questions. You can turn on the “CC” (closed-captions) function and read along with the transcript here.


Summary: The impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump continues to ramp up ahead of next week’s public testimonies. Almost 2,700 pages of transcripts pertaining to the inquiry were also released this week. The inquiry began after a whistleblower alleged that Trump and other top government officials pressured the leader of Ukraine to investigate political opponent and former U.S. vice president Joe Biden.

New York Times columnist David Brooks and syndicated columnist Mark Shields talk with the NewsHour about the inquiry; the possible entry of former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg into the 2020 presidential race; and results from state elections in Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

Discussion questions:

1) Essential question: What are the allegations against President Trump?

2) Do you think the witness testimony in support of the whistleblower’s allegations will make a difference to Trump supporters? Why or why not? 

3) Do you agree with David Brooks’ analysis that public hearings are meant to educate the voters? Explain.

4) Will Michael Bloomberg’s potential entry into the 2020 presidential election sway voters to support his candidacy? Do you think he brings something different to the race? Explain.

5) What might the recent election results in Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Virginia tell you about public opinion ahead of the presidential election?

6) Media literacy: How is the Shields and Brooks conversation different from other news reports? What questions would you have asked both commentators?


Extension activity:

Pick a story from the NewsHour’s impeachment coverage and summarize. What questions does the story address? What questions do you have after watching or reading the story? How can you find answers to those questions?

For monthly updates containing teacher resources on Election 2020, click here.

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