By TINA RYNBERG and JEFF BENESCH
What better time to welcome popular and longtime political pundit and scholar professor Ric Epps to the November general meeting of the La Mesa Foothills Democratic Club?
Epps is particularly knowledgeable about Middle East and Russian politics, and given the start of the impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump’s latest instigation of foreign interference in our electoral process, it should be a fascinating talk indeed!
Trump has not only upset political norms time and again, this time he readily admits asking foreign leaders for dirt on his political opponents. If not treasonous, it certainly rises to high crimes and misdemeanors, and abuse of power, not to mention his self-serving and repeated violations of the emoluments act. These activities are happening at such a pace as to make them all hard to track.
Professor Epps will not address impeachment, but endeavor to enrich us with an understanding of the unprecedented power grab by the executive branch. As a former Air Force officer, it will be particularly salient for Epps to comment on the president’s disdain for our service members by siphoning allocated defense funds for his ill-fated border wall; the FBI and the entire intelligence community; the corruption of our departments of Justice and State; and the certainty that these actions threaten our national security and our standing in the world.
In addition to Dr. Epp’s presentation, club president Tina Rynberg will give an update on GO-team efforts and recruitment in the coming election year. If you are not yet part of the solution, you can join the GO-team and make a difference in 2020.
And to round out a great evening of teaching and discussion, we’ll have a presentation by San Diegans for Justice, a committee established to support a ballot measure proposed to the San Diego City Council by Women Occupy San Diego. Its focus is increased accountability and transparency in policing by creating an independent Commission on Police Practices that will investigate cases of police misconduct.
Ric Epps is a professor of political science and public administration at San Diego State University and Imperial Valley College. He is also a political commentator and consultant for multiple news and radio sources. He earned his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where he also played football.
In addition to his general background in political science, Epps is an authority in American government, international relations, U.S. foreign policy, Middle East politics, and international security, with specializations in intelligence, nuclear proliferation, and terrorism. During his more than 25 years of teaching and research, Professor Epps has garnered numerous honors including the California State Assembly Award, Who’s Who Among American Teachers, Outstanding Professor of the Year and numerous other professional awards.
The Wednesday, Nov. 6 meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. at the La Mesa Community Center, 4975 Memorial Drive.
— Tina Rynberg is president and Jeff Benesch is vice president of programming for the La Mesa Foothills Democratic Club.