Jun 30, 2017

06/30/2017: Halfway there

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The Senate's last push of the first half of 2017 is toward passing the new health care bill. Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expects a tight margin in the upcoming vote, so he's trying to appeal to both sides — adding funding for opioid addiction treatment and low-income Americans, as well as higher tax deductions for health savings accounts. We discuss a newly released study that calculates the financial impact of unchecked climate change and talk to one of the study's authors, who says that climate change's impact will be much bigger in hotter regions. These areas tend to be poorer, meaning climate change has the potential to aggravate America's inequality. And speaking of inequality, we play some of your responses to last week's story on America's divide between people who leave their hometowns and those who stay.

Segments From this episode

The media blitz on health care bill begins as lawmakers head home for holiday

Jun 30, 2017
Advocacy groups prepare to petition Senators undecided on the health care bill.

Are we worrying too much about the "skills gap?"

Jun 30, 2017
Some economists say businesses would find the workers they need if they simply raised wages.

Study suggests climate change will hit poorer parts of U.S. hardest

Jun 30, 2017
Hotter regions in the U.S. tend to be poorer, meaning the worst effects could spur increased economic inequality.
Swamp grass and standing water take over the front yard of a home in Tangier, Virginia, May 15, 2017, where climate change and rising sea levels threaten the inhabitants of the slowly sinking island.
Jim Watson / Getty Images

06/30/17: Europe and Japan's blooming trade partnership

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Jun 30, 2017
Japan and the European Union are close to signing a trade agreement that would offset the dearth created by the U.S. pulling out of the Trans Pacific Partnership. Health care stocks are slightly up as the Senate reworks the health care bill ahead of next week's vote. Because the bill is not expected to pass, health care companies can likely write off a radical overhaul of the system. And finally, today kicks off the U.S. conference of mayors, where city leaders from all over the country will look for answers on the Trump administration's infrastructure improvement plans and how they'll be paid for.

The Senate’s last push of the first half of 2017 is toward passing the new health care bill. Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expects a tight margin in the upcoming vote, so he’s trying to appeal to both sides — adding funding for opioid addiction treatment and low-income Americans, as well as higher tax deductions for health savings accounts. We discuss a newly released study that calculates the financial impact of unchecked climate change and talk to one of the study’s authors, who says that climate change’s impact will be much bigger in hotter regions. These areas tend to be poorer, meaning climate change has the potential to aggravate America’s inequality. And speaking of inequality, we play some of your responses to last week’s story on America’s divide between people who leave their hometowns and those who stay.

The team

Stephen Ryan Producer, BBC