Mornings on the Mall 07.19.19 / Newt Gingrich, NASA’s Jim Morhard, GWU’s John Logsdon, Weather Channel’s Geoff Maurer, Smithsonian’s Katie Moyer, Nick Partridge, Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer

Newt Gingrich, NASA’s Jim Morhard, GWU’s John Logsdon, Weather Channel’s Geoff Maurer, Smithsonian’s Katie Moyer and Nick Partridge, and guest host Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer join WMAL on Friday morning!

Mornings on the Mall

Friday, July 19, 2019

Hosts: Vince Coglianese and guest host LT. COL. TONY SHAFFER – a CIA trained former senior intelligence officer and president of the London Center for Policy Research
Executive Producer: Heather Hunter



  • Trump Disavows ‘Send Her Back’ Chant as G.O.P. Frets Over Ugly Phrase. (NY Times) — WASHINGTON — Nervous Republicans, from senior members of Congress to his own daughter Ivanka, urged President Trump on Thursday to repudiate the “send her back” chant directed at a Somali-born congresswoman during his speech the night before at a rally in North Carolina, amid widespread fears that the rally had veered into territory that could hurt their party in 2020. In response, Mr. Trump disavowed the behavior of his own supporters in comments to reporters at the White House and claimed that he had tried to contain it, an assertion clearly contradicted by video of the event. Mr. Trump said he was “not happy” with the chant directed at Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, a freshman Democrat who is Muslim. At the rally Wednesday evening, he had been in the middle of denouncing her as an anti-American leftist who has spoken in “vicious, anti-Semitic screeds” when the chant was taken up by the crowd. Pressed on why he did not stop it, Mr. Trump said, “I think I did — I started speaking very quickly.” In fact, as the crowd roared “send her back,” Mr. Trump paused and looked around silently for more than 10 seconds as the scene unfolded in front of him, doing nothing to halt the chorus. “I didn’t say that,” he added. “They did.”
  • “I was not happy with it. I disagree with it,” Pres. Trump says of “send her back” chant from crowd at his campaign rally last night. He asserts he tried to stop the chant by “very quickly” speaking again as the chant broke out, despite a long pause during the chant.
  • Sen. Cory Booker on “Send her back” chants: “I felt like I was watching what my parents watched in black and white. Literally the same language as Gov. Wallace.”
  • Joy Behar Suggests Trump Should Face Criminal Charges Over ‘Send Her Back’ Chants
  • Rep. Ilhan Omar responds to “send her back” chants at President Trump’s rally: “We have said this President is racist. We have condemned these racist remarks. I believe he is fascist”
  • House Minority Leader McCarthy on “send her back” chant: “The president moved on with his speech.”Reporter: Does he have a responsibility to cut this out? McCarthy: “[The president] did not join in … You want to try to hold him accountable for something in a big audience?”
  • Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: “His rhetoric is endangering lots of people, this is not just about threats to individual members of Congress, but it is about creating a volatile environment in this country through violent rhetoric that puts anyone like Ilhan … in danger”
  • Chuck Schumer: “The only way Pres. Trump will stop is when Republicans on the other side have the honor, the decency, the courage to tell him to stop, and all we hear is silence and diversions from Leader McConnell … This is a moment. There’s no John McCain anymore.”

5am – D         APOLLO 11 MOON LANDING ANNIVERSARY:  Fifty years ago, when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin took their first steps on the moon, the world was watching. Millions huddled in front of televisions at home and gathered in auditoriums and schoolrooms as the Apollo 11 astronauts ventured onto another world for the first time.

5am – E         INTERVIEW — GEOFF MAURER — Weather Channel Meteorologist — discuss the heat wave.

  • Excessive heat watch Friday through Sunday as D.C. faces 100-degree temperatures
  • Today|Sunny & hot. High 98F with a heat index near 106. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph.
  • Tonight|Generally clear skies. Warm and humid. Low 81F. Winds SW at 5 to 10 mph.
  • Tomorrow|Except for a few afternoon clouds, mainly sunny. Very hot. High near 100F. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph.
  • Tomorrow night|Partly cloudy. Low 82F. Winds WSW at 5 to 10 mph.
  • Sunday|Mostly sunny. Highs 98 to 102F and lows in the upper 70s.


6am – A         50th Anniversary: Memories of the Moon Landing

6am – B/C     UPCOMING DNC DEBATE LINEUP DECIDED: CNN had a live draw to determine the candidate lineup for each night of the 2020 Democratic debate in Detroit, Michigan, on July 30 and 31. The CNN debates: The Democratic debates will be held over two nights on July 30 and 31. The CNN debate brings the Democratic candidates to the battleground state of Michigan, which Trump won in 2016.

  • The candidates who qualified: Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, former Vice President Joe Biden, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, former Maryland Rep. John Delaney, Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, California Sen. Kamala Harris, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, author Marianne Williamson and businessman Andrew Yang.
  • The lineup: Williamson, Delaney, Hickenlooper, Ryan, Bullock, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Buttigieg, Warren and Sanders are taking the stage on the first night.
  • Inslee, Gillibrand, Gabbard, Bennet, de Blasio, Booker, Yang, Castro, Harris and Biden will face off on the second night.


  • ‘Come on man, what’s that about?’: Cummings assails DHS chief over border facility conditions. (Politico) – House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings ripped into the acting head of Homeland Security Thursday, upbraiding Kevin McAleenan over the conditions of detention facilities for migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border. The Maryland Democrat got emotional while discussing the crowded centers migrants are being held in. Reading from a court document in which a federal judge found that Homeland Security “did a better job of tracking immigrants’ personal property than their children,” Cummings repeatedly shut down McAleenan’s attempts to speak up. “I’m talking about human beings,” Cummings said. “I’m not talking about people that come from, as the president said, sh–holes. These are human beings. Human beings. Just trying to live a better life.” Cummings asked whether there was an “empathy deficit” at DHS, though he later clarified that he meant the Trump administration’s implementation of its so-called zero tolerance policy toward people crossing the border without permission. The 2018 policy, which was intended to deter migrants from coming to the U.S. and led to families being detained and split up, lasted little more than a month before President Donald Trump ended family separations amid public outcry. Two government watchdogs have since found that the administration was unprepared to carry out the policy or to mitigate its effects.
  • House Democrats confront Acting Homeland Security secretary on treatment of migrants. (Fox News) – Progressive lawmakers on Thursday grilled the acting Homeland Security secretary about family separations at the U.S-Mexico border, with one member of the “Squad” alleging that Trump administration officials want to prolong the detention of children. Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., at a House Oversight Committee hearing, accused Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan and fellow administration officials of trying to change the long-standing agreement known as the Flores settlement that governs how immigrant children can be detained, “to keep kids longer” in custody. McAleenan denied the accusation, explaining that he wanted to keep families together for the time necessary it takes for immigration proceedings to go through, and for the justice system to make a ruling on the case. Democrats have slammed the detentions as “inhumane,” while many Republicans have accused the Democrats of hypocrisy, saying they were silent about similar detentions under the Obama administration.


  • Trump: US warship destroyed Iranian drone in Strait of Hormuz. (Fox News) – Tensions between the U.S. and Iran have been gradually rising for weeks, and President Trump’s announcement Thursday that a U.S. Navy ship downed an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz only further strained relations between the two countries. Trump said the USS Boxer took defensive action after the drone closed to within 1,000 yards of the warship and ignored multiple calls to stand down — an act the president called “provocative and hostile.”
  • Iran denies US shot down Iranian drone; Ilhan Omar’s anti-Israel resolution sparks outrage. Iran on Friday denied Trump’s statement. “We have not lost any drone in the Strait of Hormuz nor anywhere else,” tweeted Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi. According to Jim Hanson, president of Security Studies Group, who served in the U.S. Army Special Forces, the U.S. sent an important message to Iran: Aggression has consequences and America will strike back when provoked. And President Trump is not former President Obama and will not be compromised by a flawed nuclear deal.

7am – A         INTERVIEW – Dr. John Logsdon, Professor at George Washington University’s  and author of “John F. Kennedy and the Race to the Moon” (2010) and “After Apollo? Richard Nixon and the American Space Program” (2015). Dr. Logsdon is a member of the Board of Directors of the Planetary Society.

  • Dr. Logsdon reflected on the Apollo 11 anniversary.
  • HISTORY: On July 20, Armstrong and Aldrin became the first humans to land on the moon. Armstrong was then the first person to walk on the space rock, famously saying, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Aldrin eventually joined Armstrong on the moon’s surface, where photos were taken and the men spoke with then-President Richard Nixon through central command in Houston.  The Apollo 11 was also the fifth manned flight of the command and service modules in the series and the third flight of a lunar module, which Armstrong and Aldrin used to get to the moon’s surface.
  • BIO: John Logsdon is Professor Emeritus of Political Science and International Affairs at George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs. Prior to his leaving active faculty status in June 2008, he was on the faculty of the George Washington University for 38 years; before that he taught at the Catholic University of America for four years. He founded the Elliott School’s Space Policy Institute in 1987. Dr. Logsdon’s research interests focus on the policy and historical aspects of U.S. and international space activities. He is author of the award-winning John F. Kennedy and the Race to the Moon (2010) and After Apollo? Richard Nixon and the American Space Program (2015). Dr. Logsdon is a member of the Board of Directors of the Planetary Society. From September 2008-August 2009, he held the Charles A. Lindbergh Chair in Aerospace History at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum. In 2003, he served as a member of the Columbia Accident Investigation Board. He is a former member of the NASA Advisory Council and its Exploration Committee.

7am – B/C     “Send Her Back” Hysteria

7am – D         INTERVIEW – NASA Deputy Administrator Jim Morhard on the Moon Landing and the future of the space program – shared the importance of the moon landing to the space program, humankind and discussed NASA’s future efforts in space including Mars and a lunar outpost orbiting the Moon.

  • BIO: Deputy Administrator James W. Morhard: James Morhard was nominated by President Trump and confirmed to be NASA’s 14th Deputy Administrator. He was sworn in on October 17th, 2018. Jim helps provide overall leadership, planning, and policy direction. He performs duties and exercises powers delegated by the Administrator, assists him in making final agency decisions, and acts in his absence to govern NASA operations. Jim also is responsible for articulating and representing the agency’s vision.
    NASA and ESA Reach Critical Decision on How the First Lunar Outpost Will Orbit the Moon.  (Gizmodo) –
    Mission planners for the lunar Gateway project have decided how the lunar outpost should orbit the Moon—and it’s actually quite brilliant. They’ve chosen a near-rectilinear halo orbit. This highly elliptical orbit should solve a bunch of problems, making it easy for astronauts to embark on missions to the lunar surface and for the outpost to receive supplies from Earth, among other things, according to mission planners from NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA), which announced the decision in a press release today. The team “spent months debating the pros and cons of different orbits,” noted ESA, with the near-rectilinear halo orbit, or NRHA, getting the final and definitive thumbs up. Indeed, it was a critically important decision given the requirements of the Gateway project and the demands that will be placed on the lunar outpost, a collaborative project involving NASA, ESA, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), Roscosmos, the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA), and other international partners. Slated for completion by the mid 2020s, the lunar Gateway will serve as a staging post for crewed missions to the Moon, namely NASA’s upcoming Artemis program, which aims to place a man and woman on the lunar surface by 2024.  The orbital station will provide a short-term place for astronauts to stay, a laboratory to conduct scientific research, a depot to stock up on supplies and fuel, a hub for relaying communications, and a base to dispatch astronauts, robots, and other supplies to the lunar surface. Eventually, the base could be used as a staging post for a crewed mission to Mars.

7am – E         Tom Cruise returns in action-packed ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ trailer. (Fox News) — Tom Cruise will be flying high on the big screen once again. The veteran actor surprised fans at San Diego Comic-Con on Thursday to promote the upcoming sequel, “Top Gun: Maverick.” “I felt it was my responsibility to deliver for you,” Cruise told a packed convention hall before premiering the new trailer. In the new trailer, it’s revealed that Cruise’s iconic character, Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, will serve as the new flight instructor of the Top Gun school, and is seen wearing his infamous Ray-Ban sunglasses, as he faces off against a new enemy — drones. The movie will also feature original star Val Kilmer, who will reprise his role of Tom “Iceman” Kazansky, now a commander at the school. Aside from Cruise and Kilmer, newcomers include Miles Teller, who is set to play the now-grown son of “Goose” in the original film, played by Anthony Edwards. Other co-stars include Jon Hamm, Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly and Manny Jacinto. The movie will be a reunion for Cruise and director Joseph Kosinski, who originally worked together on the 2013 science fiction movie “Oblivion.” “Top Gun: Maverick” is expected to soar into theaters in 2020.


8am – A         INTERVIEW – NEWT GINGRICH – former Speaker of the House and creator of the Newt’s World podcast – discussed the Apollo 11 moon landing anniversary and shared his thoughts on Speaker Pelosi’s feud with The Squad.


  • Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Jamie Raskin hosted a rally to benefit the Democracy Summer Maryland 2019 youth training program in Silver Spring, Maryland.
  • AOC: We are picking up where the Civil Rights movement left off
  • AOC talks about Martin Luther King and how she’s picking up from his work…
  • AOC: It took us 240 years to get THE Squad in Congress!

8am – D         INTERVIEW – Katie Moyer and Nick Partridge – Apollo 50th Anniversary program directors at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum – discussed how D.C. area residents can celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing this weekend.

  • DCist: Here in D.C., there are plenty of ways to commemorate Apollo 11’s mission, from being blown away by a 363-foot Saturn V rocket being projected on the Washington Monument to seeing a 3.5 billion-year-old moon rock at the National Cathedral.
  • Go to the Apollo 50 Festival: For three days, the National Air and Space Museum will host an outdoor festival on the National Mall. From July 18-20, moon-minded folks will be able to visit Apollo Mission Control, meet a Mars Rover, take a “tour” of the moon, and marvel at mini-Lego models of Apollo 11. There will also be costumed characters from PBS’s Ready Jet Go for the little astronauts in your life. The festival is free and will take place between 4th and 7th Streets SW. It will run from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on July 18-19, and from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. on July 20.
  • See Armstrong’s Spacesuit: For the first time in 13 years, Neil Armstrong’s lunar-dust-covered spacesuit will go back on display to the public at the National Air and Space Museum. In 2015, a crowd-funded Kickstarter campaign funded the $700,000 conservation of the suit. The artifact will go in a temporary display starting July 16 (near the 1903 Wright Flyer) until it moves in 2022 to the new exhibit “Destination Moon.”
  • Relive the Apollo 11 launch … on the Washington Monument. Join us for a once-in-a-lifetime celebration of the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, featuring a 363-foot Saturn V rocket projected on the east face of the Washington Monument and a special “Apollo 50: Go for the Moon” show. This presentation was conceived and commissioned by the National Air and Space Museum, and is made possible through a partnership with the U.S. Department of the Interior and 59 Productions. On July 16 through 20, the projection will be live from 9:30 pm to 11:30 pm. It all builds up to July 19 and 20, when we will also present “Apollo 50: Go for the Moon,” a 17-minute show that will combine full-motion projection mapping artwork and archival footage to recreate the launch of Apollo 11 and tell the story of the first Moon landing. The show will unfold on the face of the Washington Monument and supporting screens, including a 40-foot-wide recreation of the famous Kennedy Space Center countdown clock.  The free show will run at 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm, and 11:30 pm on Friday, July 19, and Saturday, July 20. Experience “Apollo 50: Go for the Moon” from viewing areas on the National Mall in front of the Smithsonian Castle between 9th and 12th Streets.
  • Late-night at The Museum… The Eagle Has Landed” Late-Night Celebration: July 20, 2019 | 8:00pm – 2:00am / On July 20, 1969, humans walked on another world for the first time. 50 years later, join us for a late-night celebration of the first Moon landing.  Timed Programming:
    • Trivia at 8:30 pm, 10:00 pm, and 12:15 am
    • “Eyewitness to Space: Art and the Apollo Program” at 9:00 pm
    • Rebroadcast of Moon landing and first steps at 10:30 pm
    • A special countdown at 10:56 pm ET to celebrate the exact time Neil Armstrong first set foot on the Moon
    • Apollo 11-themed musical performance by electronic-duo Quindar from midnight to close
    • Spacesuit Fashion Show at 1 am

8am – E         “The Kennedy Machine Buried What Really Happened”: Revisiting Chappaquiddick, 50 Years Later. There aren’t many people alive who witnessed Chappaquiddick firsthand. Those who did recall how Ted Kennedy escaped punishment—and how Mary Jo Kopechne’s story was overshadowed. (Vanity Fair) — Fifty years ago, as men prepared to land on the moon and millions of those stuck on earth followed each staticky dispatch from space, Senator Ted Kennedy drove his car into a pond. The weekend of the Apollo 11 moon landing should have cemented the Kennedy family’s legacy of public service. Seven years earlier, Teddy’s brother President John F. Kennedy proposed putting an American on the lunar surface before the decade was out. And on the evening of July 18, 1969, Neil Armstrong was hours away from doing just that. But for the new patriarch of Camelot, the weekend instead was marked by a tragic accident at best, an unconscionable act at worst—one that ultimately killed a young woman, 28-year-old Mary Jo Kopechne. Looking back 50 years on, Chappaquiddick says much about its era, a time when a privileged, powerful man could manipulate a system to avoid prosecution while a young woman who had ascended in male-dominated Washington—when only 11 women were in Congress—had both her life and death engulfed by the senator’s political ambitions and America’s fascination with the Kennedys.



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