Oil and Venezuela’s Crisis

In Venezuela, opposition groups are forming a parallel government and calling a national strike. Those moves come in response to the socialist government of Nicolas Maduro calling for a constituent assembly to re-write the constitution. And it’s all happening against the backdrop of what looks like economic chaos: widespread shortages of basic goods, lines that last for hours, booming black markets with skyrocketing prices, and a government starved of the oil income it once used to fund its social agenda. We do a deep dive on the origins of Venezuela’s crisis with Miguel Tinker-Salas.

Plus: The politics of minority rule. A highly-influential group that writes model laws for state-level Republicans now has its eye on a constitutional amendment that would end the direct election of US Senators. We’ll talk to John Nichols about what that would mean, whether it could happen, and what it signals about the political direction of the Republican Party.


  • 7:08 Miguel Tinker-Salas, professor of Latin American studies, History, and Chicano/a Studies at Pomona College. His most recent book is Venezuela: What everyone needs to know. Co-facilitator of https://venezueladialogue.com/
  • 7:33 John Nichols, Washington correspondent for The Nation. Author of a new article about the push to abolish the 17th Amendment (which requires direct election of Senators).
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