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Primary Concerns Episode 17: Two Houses Divided

David McNew/Getty Images

The horrific mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando this weekend left the nation grieving and in shock. Yet Donald Trump, in typical fashion, made it into an opportunity to take a victory lap. He accused President Obama of being an ISIS sympathist, and claimed Hillary Clinton wasn’t an LGBT ally because of her foreign policy ties in the Middle East. Establishment Republicans, even ones who endorsed him, are recoiling in horror.

MSNBC’s Benjy Sarlin has spent monthly closely studying Trump supporters. He joins the show to talk about what makes Trump fans tick, and how they explain his appalling response to domestic terrorism.

Then, we take a look at the unexpectedly ideological rift that is running through the Democratic party primary, and its implications for the future. Harvard political scientist Theda Skocpol, a contributor to our cover project The Split, and Boston College political scientist Dave Hopkins debate how and when the Democratic Party will reunify.

Further reading:

  • How Donald Trump took a turn towards conspiracy post-Orlando, by Benjy Sarlin for MSNBC
  • The Split: The New Republic investigates the Democratic Party’s deep divide
  • Dave Hopkins in Vox on why the future of the Democratic Party lies in President Obama, not Bernie Sanders
  • How GOP leaders are reckoning with Trump’s Orlando speech, by Brian Beutler for the New Republic