The New Yorker: Politics and More

The New Yorker: Politics and More

A weekly discussion about politics, hosted by The New Yorker's executive editor, Dorothy Wickenden.

WNYC Studios and The New Yorker News 150 rész A weekly discussion about politics, hosted by The New Yorker's executive editor, Dorothy Wickenden.
What the Atlanta Shootings Reveal About Racism and Misogyny in the U.S.
19 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On March 16th, a gunman killed eight people—six of them women of Asian descent—in a series of shootings in Atlanta-area spas and massage parlors. Although the shooter has not been charged with committing a hate crime, he told the police that the women were “temptations” that he needed to “eliminate.” Jiayang Fan, a New Yorker staff writer, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the surge in anti-Asian violence over the past year, and what many of these hate crimes reveal about the commonality between racism and misogyny.

“2034,” a Cautionary Tale of Conflict with China
14 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

American naval vessels routinely patrol the South China Sea. It is a shared maritime space, but China claims much of the area as its own. That much is true. What if one of the ships was torpedoed? The retired admiral James Stavridis teamed up with Elliot Ackerman, a journalist and former Marine, to write about how, in the shadow of an increasingly tense relationship between the U.S. and China, such an incident could spiral into catastrophe. The result is “2034: A Novel of the Next World War.” The book is a thriller, and also a cautionary tale; Stavridis cites Nevil Shute’s post-apocalyptic novel “On the Beach” as an inspiration. The writers tell Evan Osnos that they intend to deliver in fiction an ingredient that’s missing in military planning: “We have plenty of intelligence, we have plenty of hardware,” Ackerman notes, but “what we often lack is imagination.”

Joe Biden's Crisis at the Border
23 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Donald Trump’s controversial “zero tolerance” policy, and the resulting images of migrant children being wrenched from their parents arms, were defining moments of his administration. On Biden’s first day in office, he proposed a raft of changes to America’s immigration policy, including an eight-year path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants and a plan for an orderly resettlement of refugees. But over 4,200 migrant children are currently being held in custody, and the process to deal with them has fallen into chaos.Jonathan Blitzer joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the surge in border crossings, and Biden’s options for addressing the migrants’ plight.

Can the Royal Family Withstand Oprah’s Scrutiny?
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Oprah Winfrey’s interview with Meghan and Harry, the Duchess and Duke of Sussex, was riveting celebrity television, but it may also be a significant turning point in the history of the British royal family. Revelations about racism and about Meghan’s struggles with mental health are already reshaping public perception of the powerful institution. The interview also touched on racism and mental health, issues that are familiar to many families. “In the future, we will look to this interview as a real touchstone marking the change of who it is we see as authorities of their own experience,” says Doreen St. Félix. In conversation with St. Félix and the eminent historian Simon Schama, the author of a three-volume history of Britain, David Remnick discusses how the interview plays into culture wars in the U.K. and in American.

Andrew Cuomo, from Pandemic Hero to Political Pariah
22 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Last spring, as the federal government seemed unable or unwilling to concoct a national plan to confront the pandemic, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo became something of a hero to people looking for stable leadership. But, recently, Cuomo’s profile has changed. Accusations that his administration misreported the number of COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes were followed by accusations that Cuomo had personally threatened elected officials to cover up those discrepancies in the data. And, in the past four months, six women have accused Cuomo of sexual harassmentNick Paumgarten, who wrote a profile of Cuomo for The New Yorker, joins guest host Eric Lach to discuss the failures and successes of Cuomo’s administration, and whether he can hold on to power in New York.

Daniel Kaluuya Plays “the Black Messiah”
15 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In 1969, Fred Hampton, a young leader in the Black Panther Party, was shot in his bed by Chicago police in a predawn raid. The raid was facilitated by an informant, a teen-ager by the name of William O’Neal. The half-century quest for justice by activists, lawyers, and Hampton’s family has revealed the extent of the F.B.I.’s role in what happened—all the way up to J. Edgar Hoover, who wanted to prevent the rise of what he called a “messiah” who could unify the Black community. Daniel Kaluuya, the British actor known for “Get Out” and “Black Panther,” plays Hampton in the new film “Judas and the Black Messiah.” The film follows Hampton in the last year of his life as he works to found the Rainbow Coalition, a movement that would bring together Black, Latinos, and working-class whites. Kaluuya talked with Kai Wright, the host of WNYC’s “The United States of Anxiety,” about how the F.B.I. and many whites saw Hampton’s affirmation of Black people as tantamount to terrorism.

Is the Forever War in Afghanistan Coming to an End?
20 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

American troops have been in Afghanistan for nearly twenty years. Every President since George W. Bush has promised an imminent end to the fighting and a U.S. withdrawal, but none has succeeded. The Trump Administration brokered a deal with the Taliban which planned to end the American military presence in the country this May, and peace talks are under way in Doha, Qatar. But, in recent months, hundreds of Afghans have been killed in a series of assassinations apparently orchestrated by the Taliban—and some, perhaps, by the government in Kabul. Dexter Filkins joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the difficulties faced by the Biden Administration.

Clubhouse Opens a Window for Free Expression in China
14 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Clubhouse is an audio-only social-media platform offering chat rooms on any subject, allowing thousands of people to gather and listen to each other. Jiayang Fan, who often reports on China, tells David Remnick that the chance to talk in private and without a text trail has opened a window of free expression for Chinese users. (Recently, some questions have been raised about whether the app is as secure as its makers claim.) Suddenly, in chat rooms with names like “There is a concentration camp in Xinjiang?,” Chinese users are able to address politically taboo subjects out loud in large groups. A Clubhouse chat-room moderator explains to Fan that for Han Chinese, who are the beneficiaries of the government’s persecution of Uighurs and other ethnic minorities, the app offers a space for reckoning and protest comparable to America’s Black Lives Matter movement. The government has clamped down on Clubhouse, but tech-savvy young people are used to finding workarounds.

Are There Politics on Mars?
20 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, after a six-month, 292.5-million-mile journey, NASA{:.small}’s Perseverance rover touched down on the surface of Mars. The United States is the only country to have successfully landed on the Red Planet, but spacecraft from China and the United Arab Emirates recently arrived in Mars’s orbit. In the fifty years since the Cold War space race was at its peak, other governments and private businesses have launched ambitious space programs. How long can the United States remain the leader in space exploration? Adam Mann joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the Perseverance mission and the past and future of America’s space program.

Congressman Jamie Raskin on Impeaching Donald Trump—Again
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Tommy Raskin, a twenty-five-year-old law student, took his own life on New Year’s Eve, after a long battle against depression. His family laid him to rest on January 5th, and, the next day, his father went to the United States Capitol, where he serves in Congress. Representative Jamie Raskin, who represents Maryland’s Eighth District, had an enormous task ahead of him: he was mounting the defense of the Electoral College vote. When a violent mob incited by Donald Trump breached the building, Raskin’s life was in danger, along with the lives of his daughter and son-in-law, who had joined him that day for support. Just weeks later, when the House impeached Donald Trump for his role in inciting that insurrection, Raskin was the lead manager prosecuting the case. Raskin told David Remnick about the devastation of a suicide in the family, his condolence calls from President Biden and Vice-President Harris, and how he believed the entire Senate would unite to convict Donald Trump.

How Did a Mob’s Attack on the Capitol Become Part of the Free-Speech Debate?
22 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

After the January 6th insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, several social-media companies banned a host of far-right figures, as well as President Trump. The move provoked an outcry among conservatives, many of whom accused those companies of violating users’ First Amendment rights. The country’s ever-present disagreements over what, exactly, constitutes free speech have taken on new urgency in this era of little-regulated social media, disinformation, exhortations to violence, and so-called cancel culture. Andrew Marantz joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the future of free speech in our splintered nation.

The Supreme Court of Facebook
37 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Facebook is at the center of the hottest controversies over freedom of speech, and its opaque, unaccountable decisions have angered people across the political spectrum. Mark Zuckerberg’s answer to this mess is to outsource: Facebook recently created and endowed a permanent body it calls the Oversight Board—like a Supreme Court whose decisions will be binding for the company. And Facebook immediately referred to the board a crucial question: whether to reinstate Donald Trump on the platform, after he was banned for inciting the January 6th riot at the Capitol. In this collaboration between the New Yorker Radio Hour and Radiolab, the producer Simon Adler explores the creation of the Oversight Board with Kate Klonick, whose reporting appears in The New Yorker. What they learn calls into question whether Zuckerberg’s fundamentally American-style view of free speech can be exported around the world without resulting in sometimes dire consequences. 

Joe Biden’s Plan to Save the American Economy
22 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Throughout his general-election campaign, Joe Biden promised that his first order of business as President would be to deliver COVID{:.small}-19 relief for Americans. This week, as Donald Trump faces his second impeachment in the Senate, Biden is negotiating the American Relief Plan, a $1.9 billion bill designed to stimulate the economy and organize the federal government’s response to the pandemic. Although Biden has long preached the importance of working across party lines, he intends to pass the bill despite opposition from Republicans. John Cassidy joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss Biden’s relief plan and his determination to prove that faith in American democracy can be restored.

Trump Closed the U.S. to Asylum Seekers. Will Biden Reopen It?
22 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Immediately after Inauguration, the Biden Administration began trying to unwind some of Donald Trump’s most notorious policies on immigration. But, over four years, Trump’s advisers made more than a thousand seemingly bureaucratic, technical rule changes that have had profound consequences. Sarah Stillman reports on the case of a mother and daughter who arrived at the southern border from Honduras. After the family ran afoul of local politicians and crime figures, the father was assassinated and an older daughter was raped in the presence of a police officer. Yet their appeal for asylum was rejected by a Trump-appointed judge, who went to unusual lengths to explain her reasoning. Replaying a recording of the hearing, Stillman walks through the series of legal barriers designed to send the women back into severe danger. “In order to qualify for asylum,” Stillman remarks, you almost have to have been murdered to show that you could be murdered.”  

(Many of the Trump Administration policies were driven by Stephen Miller, the ultra-hard-line immigration adviser; The New Yorker Radio Hour reported in 2020 on Miller’s influence.)

Will the Pandemic Be the End of Office Life as We Know It?
23 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

For most of the twentieth century, the office was one of the centers of American life, and the joys and annoyances of life there have inspired works of art, from Melville’s “Bartleby, the Scrivener” to NBC’s “The Office.” But, last spring, in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus, several businesses closed their offices and asked employees to work from home. Nearly a year later, many companies’ spaces remain closed to their staffs; it is unclear when they’ll be able to reopen, and how many workers can expect to return when they do. John Seabrook joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the past and future of office life—and the personal, economic, and demographic ramifications of remote work.

Joe Biden, the Second Catholic President
11 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Joe Biden is only the second Catholic out of forty-six Presidents. Paul Elie, a senior fellow at Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs, considers whether that faith may shape Biden’s policies or his leadership. Elie points out that, though prominent Catholics in government, such as William Barr or Amy Coney Barrett, are associated with groups that oppose modern reforms in the Church, Biden aligns with Pope Francis’s “openness, his informality, his flexibility, his confidence that Catholicism is relevant and lack of anxiety about its place in any culture war.” After decades of sex-abuse scandals in the Church, Elie believes that many Catholic voters “are yearning for some good news,” and that Biden, though not in the Church hierarchy, “suggest[s] that there is some moral authority left in this tradition.”  

How Alexey Navalny Survived an Assassination Attempt and Reignited Protests in Russia
23 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Over the past decade, the anti-corruption activist Alexey Navalny has become one of the most influential opponents to President Vladimir Putin. Last August, he was poisoned by Putin’s secret police, and he spent five months recovering in Berlin. Last week, on his return to Moscow, he was detained by Russian authorities. Since then, tens of thousands have taken to the streets to protest his arrest. Masha Gessen joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how Navalny repeatedly outwits the Kremlin, and what these protests could mean for him, and for Putin’s regime.

Jane Mayer and Evan Osnos on the Balance of Power at the Start of the Biden Administration
28 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

With Donald Trump rated the least popular President in the span of modern polling, President Biden might feel confident in claiming a mandate to advance his progressive agenda. Yet Democratic majorities in Congress are slim in the House of Representatives, and razor-thin in the Senate. That gives a small number of Democratic conservatives and moderate Republicans outsized influence over what legislation can pass. Senator Mitch McConnell, in a power-sharing arrangement with the Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, remains a force to be reckoned with. What will this balance of power mean for the new Administration? David Remnick poses this question to Jane Mayer, who has reported on McConnell’s tenure as a political operator, and to Evan Osnos, who covered Biden’s campaign and wrote a biography of the new President.

Can the Biden Administration Lead a Revolution to Avert Catastrophic Climate Change?
19 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker
On his first day in office, President Biden signed seventeen executive orders, including orders for the United States to rejoin the Paris climate agreement; to cancel the building of the Keystone XL oil pipeline; and to impose new restrictions on emissions, drilling, and many other threats to the environment. During Biden’s campaign, he promised a climate-change revolution. Two-thirds of the American public expresses support for government action on global warming, Democrats now control both houses of Congress, and activists are making significant headway in the fossil-fuel-divestment movement and other actions. Bill McKibben joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how to shift the Zeitgeist and save the planet.
President Trump’s Last Stand
21 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

After the President incited a shocking attack against the Capitol, members of Congress made the unprecedented decision to impeach him a second time—during his last week in office. But as President-elect Joe Biden prepares to assume office, the threat of violence hovers over the Inauguration, and Washington seems girded for warfare. David Remnick talks with The New Yorker’s Washington correspondent Susan B. Glasser about the response from Congress, and with Luke Mogelson, who reported from inside the Capitol as it was stormed by the violent mob.

Big Tech Turns on Trump
18 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In late 2019, the House of Representatives voted to impeach Donald Trump for abuse of power and obstruction of justice. This week, the President was impeached a second time, for inciting the January 6th insurrection against the government. Perhaps as significantly, several tech companies, including the biggest social-media platforms, have severed ties with the President, suspending or eliminating his accounts, and many of the country’s largest corporations have halted donations to the Republican members of Congress who objected to certifying the election of Joe Biden. Sheelah Kolhatkar joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss Big Tech’s new opposition to Trump’s rhetoric and the role that social-media platforms play in government.

Lawrence Wright on How the Pandemic Response Went So Wrong
33 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine mark what we hope will be the beginning of the end of the global pandemic. The speed of vaccine development has been truly unprecedented, but this breakthrough is taking place at a moment when the U.S. death toll has also reached a new peak—over three thousand per day. How was the response to such a clear danger mismanaged so tragically? The New Yorker staff writer Lawrence Wright—who has reported on Al Qaeda and the Church of Scientology—has followed the story of the pandemic unfolding in the United States since the first lockdowns in March. Wright walks David Remnick through key moments of decision-making in the Trump White House: from the response to the first reports of a virus to botched mask mandates and testing rollouts, up through the emergency-use authorization of the vaccine. The Trump Administration bears much responsibility for the bungled response to the coronavirus pandemic, but Wright also finds ample evidence of larger, systemic breakdown. “The magnitude of our failure,” he tells David Remnick, “is unparalleled.”

Democrats Take the Senate, and a Mob Storms the Capitol
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On January 6th, pro-Trump fanatics stormed the Capitolgalvanized by the President’s claims that the 2020 election had been stolen. That day, Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff were declared the victors of their respective Senate run-off races against Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, two champions of Trump’s incendiary theoriesCharles Bethea, a New Yorker staff writer based in Atlanta, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss whether this is the end of an era or just the beginning.

The Republican Rift in Georgia
15 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In the past month, a fracture has opened up in the G.O.P. between those who grudgingly accept Joe Biden’s win and those who falsely claim that the election was rigged. In Georgia, supporters of Donald Trump have turned on Republican election officials—in some cases, with threats of violence. The Atlanta-based staff writer Charles Bethea explains why this rift is dangerous for Republicans. Georgia’s two incumbent Senate seats are up for grabs in a runoff election in January; the G.O.P. needs to retain at least one to maintain its majority and to give Mitch McConnell near-veto power over the Biden agenda. But the more that the President and his followers attack the election, the less likely Republican voters are to turn out to vote—which would create an advantage for the Democratic Senate hopefuls. Bethea spoke with Gabe Sterling, an election official in Georgia; Lin Wood, an attorney who is fuelling conspiracy theories; and voters at a Trump rally in Valdosta.

The Rise and Collapse of the Grand Old Party
25 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The Republican and Democratic Parties can seem like permanent institutions, but their agendas today bear little resemblance to what they once stood for. Political parties have repeatedly died out in American politics, often after periods of instability and infighting. [Jelani Cobb]( joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how drastically the two major parties have changed over time, and whether Trumpism has wrecked the G.O.P.

Abigail Spanberger and Ayanna Pressley on the Democratic Rift
19 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In November, when the Democratic Party lost seats in the House and a hoped-for victory in the Senate fizzled, centrist Democrats were quick to blame left-leaning progressives. Rhetoric about democratic socialism and defunding the police, they said, had scared away moderate voters, who rejected Donald Trump but voted for Republicans down ballot. Abigail Spanberger, who represents the conservative Seventh Congressional District of Virginia, made that argument on a post-election call with fellow House members which was then leaked to the press. She tells David Remnick that the Party cannot achieve anything without bipartisan dealmaking—however unwelcome it may be to progressives. But Ayanna Pressley, who represents the liberal Seventh Congressional District of Massachusetts, doesn’t buy it. In order to prove Democrats’ value to voters, she says, the Party must stand up for ideals and not seek compromise. Pressley feels that a sufficiently populist approach to pandemic relief, for example, can sway Republican voters. “We know, before the pandemic, [many] families didn’t have four hundred dollars saved to weather a disruptive life event,” she points out. “And I’m sure many of those families were Republicans. So the ultimate persuasion tool is impact.”

Dianne Feinstein and the Perils of an Aging Leadership
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In January, Joe Biden will become the oldest President in U.S. history. Of the leaders in the other branches, the youngest is Chief Justice John Roberts, who is sixty-five. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is seventy-eight, and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is eighty. The unsteady handling of the confirmation hearings for Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett by the eighty-seven-year-old Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, has raised alarm among some Party members and progressive advocacy groups, who say it is time for her to retire. Jane Mayer joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the generational divide in American politics and what can be done about it.

Atul Gawande on Taming the Coronavirus
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Can a vaccine be distributed fairly? What will be the impact of a large number of people not taking it—as they say they won’t? Atul Gawande, a New Yorker staff writer who was recently appointed to President-elect Joe Biden’s COVID-19 task force, walks David Remnick through some of the challenges of this pivotal moment. F.D.A. approval of at least one vaccine is expected imminently, but hospitalizations are still rising rapidly around the country, and Gawande is concerned that news of an approval could lead to more irresponsible behavior. “If, once people start getting vaccinated, they start throwing the masks away and you can’t get them to do social distancing,” he said, “then you’re really relying on vaccination as the sole prong of the strategy.” More than forty per cent of people polled say they are reluctant to take the new vaccines, but Gawande suspects that the real number of resisters may be much smaller. “Part of the reason it’s good that health-care workers would go first is [that] . . . health-care workers are everywhere. Which means we’re all going to know people who got vaccinated, and we’re going to see that they did all right.”

Can Joe Biden Repair America’s Reputation Abroad?
24 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Over the past four years, the Trump Administration has gutted the State Department, antagonized America’s foreign allies, expressed admiration for authoritarians, broken key treaties and accords, and stoked conflicts all over the world. It now falls to Joe Biden’s foreign-policy team to rebuild diplomatic relationships and reassert American leadership abroad. Susan B. Glasser joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the legacy of Donald Trump’s foreign policy, and what Biden can do to counteract it.

The Fight to Turn Georgia Blue
15 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This month, Georgia flipped: its voters picked a Democrat for President for the first time since Bill Clinton’s first-term election. To a significant degree, Charles Bethea says, this was owing to political organizing among Black voters; after all, Donald Trump still received approximately seventy per cent of the white vote. Bethea tells David Remnick about the political evolution of the state, and he speaks with two Democratic organizers: Nsé Ufot, the C.E.O. of the New Georgia Project, and Royce Reeves, Sr., a city commissioner in Cordele, Georgia.

How You Can Help Restore American Democracy
22 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In the weeks since Election Day, Trump has refused to concede defeat, fired his Secretary of Defense, ordered his Attorney General to investigate specious claims of voter fraud, and stoked conspiracy theories that the election was somehow fraudulent. Are his actions the flailing response of a sore loser, or an attempt at an authoritarian power grab? Academics and activists believe that in either case, ordinary citizens have more power than they think they do. Andrew Marantz joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what has been learned in recent years about successful nonviolent resistance movements, and how to take action to perpetuate a stable democracy.

Jane Mayer on the G.O.P.’s Post-Trump Game
8 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The President’s fantastical allegations about “illegal ballots” are being indulged by quite a number of prominent Republicans in Washington, who have declined to acknowledge Joe Biden as President-elect. If Republicans in some key state legislatures go further and appoint electors who disregard their states’ popular votes, the electoral chaos would be disastrous. To understand how the politicians may proceed, David Remnick spoke with Jane Mayer, who has written extensively about today’s GO.P. and the forces that drive it.

A Nobel Laureate on the Politics of Fighting the Coronavirus
20 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, the United States set new records for COVID-19 cases. Despite the rising numbers, the Trump Administration continues to downplay the severity of the pandemic. While Donald Trump refuses to concede the 2020 election, President-elect Joe Biden has assembled a task force to help his Administration take immediate action to combat the coronavirus. Meanwhile, Pfizer has announced that it has developed a vaccine that may be more than ninety-per-cent effective against the coronavirus. Harold E. Varmus, a Nobel laureate and former director of the National Institutes of Health, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss recent developments in the fight against the coronavirus, and what to expect from the year ahead.

The Trump Administration’s Chaotic Attack on the Undocumented
11 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Donald Trump launched his Presidential campaign on the issue of immigration, and after his Inauguration, arrests by Immigration and Customs Enforcement increased sharply. David Remnick talks with the staff writer Jonathan Blitzer, who has been covering Trump’s immigration policy all along. “The Trump Administration got smarter over the last four years,” he tells David Remnick. Rather than the “high drama” of executive orders, they began implementing rules and regulation changes across multiple departments that are much harder to undo. Blitzer explains that the cumulative impact fundamentally alters how the government thinks about immigration.

The Agonizing Election of 2020
28 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In the weeks before Election Day, Joe Biden was polling strongly in Florida and Texas, and Donald Trump’s approval rating was foundering as the pandemic grew steadily worse. But the President did well in traditionally red states, and, as the votes were counted, excited talk of a “Blue Wave” was replaced by speculation about whether a “Blue Wall” in the Midwestern battleground states could enable Biden to eke out a victory. Jelani CobbJane Mayer, and Evan Osnos join Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what to expect as the two parties confront the difficulties of governing an ever more deeply divided country.

Remaking the Federal Courts
12 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Donald Trump has changed the ideological cast of our entire federal court system, appointing the most appellate-court judges in a single term since Jimmie Carter, as well as three conservative Justices to the Supreme Court. Jeannie Suk Gersen, a contributing writer and a professor at Harvard Law School, unpacks the complicated question of court-packing. Joe Biden’s cautious engagement with the strategy, she thinks, is smart politics. The Supreme Court’s members “do not want to see Congress mess with the number of Justices on the Court or the terms,” she tells David Remnick. “So they now also understand . . . that they’re being watched with an idea that the institution can change without their being able to control it.”

A Voters’ Guide to Three Key Swing States
31 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Despite the coronavirus pandemic and numerous voter-suppression efforts, some seventy million ballots have already been cast this fall. As Election Day nears, Dorothy Wickenden is joined by New Yorker writers to talk about three states where the vote is particularly contentious. Peter Slevin discusses Wisconsin, where the Democrats have learned from Hillary Clinton’s mistakesE. Tammy Kim calls in from Montana, where a very close Senate race is in play; and Charles Bethea, in Atlanta, describes the Democratic revolt against Republican efforts to disenfranchise voters of color.

The Future of Trumpism
15 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Nicholas Lemann’s “The Republican Identity Crisis After Trump” explores what will happen to the movement Donald Trump created among Republicans. In his 2016 campaign, he ran as a populist insurgent against Wall Street, “élites,” and the Republican Party itself—mobilizing voters against their traditional leadership. But, in office, he has governed largely according to the Party’s priorities. If Trump loses next month’s election, what will become of the movement he created? Lemann spoke with David Remnick about three possible scenarios for Republicans.

Ilana Glazer’s “Cheat Sheet for the Voting Booth”
18 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson created “Broad City” in the early days of the Obama Administration, and their portrait of young, progressive slackers in New York City struck a nerve with millennial and Gen Z viewers. With the election of Donald Trump, Glazer turned her focus to politics. In her Web series “Cheat Sheet for the Voting Booth,” she interviews celebrities who have personal connections to swing states. Her goal is to make young people feel the urgency of voting, and to introduce them to down-ballot races where they live. Ilana Glazer joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss her current projects, and how to persuade the country’s biggest voting bloc that they can effect sweeping change.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Elizabeth Warren
13 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

At the 2020 New Yorker Festival, this month, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Elizabeth Warren joined Andrew Marantz to talk about the Presidential race and how Joe Biden should lead if he wins the election. Biden often speaks about bipartisanship as a cherished value that he would restore to Washington, but Ocasio-Cortez is dubious. “Bipartisanship to young people seems like this kind of vintage fantasy, like it seems like people are yearning for this time that I’ve never lived through,” she remarks. Bipartisanship got us the Iraq war . . . [and] bank bailouts. And we very rarely see the results of bipartisanship yielding in racial justice, yielding in economic justice for working families, yielding in improvements to health care. . . . Just because something is bipartisan doesn’t mean it’s good or good for you.”

Amy Coney Barrett and the Future of Abortion Rights
18 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, the Senate held confirmation hearings for Amy Coney Barrett, a conservative judge who clerked for Justice Antonin Scalia. If she is appointed, the Supreme Court will include six justices selected by Republicans, which could determine the fate of Roe V. Wade. Margaret Talbot, a New Yorker staff writer, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss Barrett's record on abortion and birth control, the future of women's reproductive rights in the United States, and what strategy pro-choice Democrats should pursue in the coming years. 

Anthony Fauci, Then and Now
10 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

At the moment that Donald Trump was leaving Walter Reed Hospital, not yet recovered from a case of COVID-19, Dr. Anthony Fauci sat down with Michael Specter to discuss the coronavirus and its impact on America. For the President—and those of us counting on a vaccine to miraculously deliver us back to normalcy—Fauci offers a reality check. “Let’s say we have a vaccine and it’s seventy per cent effective. But only sixty per cent of the people [are likely to] get vaccinated. The vaccine will greatly help us, but it’s not going to eliminate mask-wearing, avoiding crowds, and things like that.” Specter, who covered Fauci’s work in public health during the AIDS crisis, asks him about his relationship with activists in the nineteen-eighties and today. “The [AIDS] activists never threatened us in a serious way, they wanted to gain our attention,” he says. “Their motivations were all pure.” Opponents of masks and lockdown, he believes, intend to do harm. “The threats that we get now are real. Threats on life, harassment of family. . . . That requires our needing security.”  


Michael Specter’s audio biography “Fauci” is available from Pushkin.

Can the Economy Be Saved?
19 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

After the coronavirus lockdown, unemployment soared and the stock market crashed. Congress quickly passed the CARES{:.small} Act, and the Federal Reserve took action to shore up the economy, averting a collapse of the financial system. But millions of Americans are still unemployed, and another wave of business closures looms. John Cassidy joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the economic and political response to the coronavirus pandemic thus far, and what can be done to restore stability to the economy and to Americans’ lives.

##More on the Coronavirus

The Election, as Seen from Swing States
18 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Joe Biden leads the Presidential race in Pennsylvania by around ten per cent, according to most polls, but Eliza Griswold says you wouldn’t know it on the ground. Republicans in the state have organized a huge registration drive in recent years, and, while Griswold was driving to Biden’s working-class birthplace of Scranton, she saw Trump signs blanketing the lawns and roads. Peter Slevin, reporting from Wisconsin, tells David Remnick that Democrats there organized early, to avoid the mistake that Hillary Clinton made in 2016 of taking the state for granted. Even so, Biden’s campaign has declined to do risky in-person events, but the Trump campaign, until recently, has proceeded as if coronavirus had never happened.

The Election Wars of 2020
26 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On Tuesday, Donald Trump and Joe Biden met for their first Presidential debate. For ninety minutes, Trump repeatedly shouted over and attacked both his opponent and the debate moderator, Chris Wallace. He also challenged the legitimacy of the election, and warned, “this is not going to end well.” Evan Osnos joins Dorothy Wickenden to talk about how political discourse has changed in recent decades, and whether Joe Biden's vision of a return to “normalcy” is possible.

Can a Newcomer Unseat Lindsey Graham?
14 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Jaime Harrison may seem like a long shot to become a South Carolina senator: he is a Black Democrat who grew up on food stamps in public housing, and he has never held elected public office. But a Quinnipiac poll ties him with Lindsay Graham—each has the support of forty-eight per cent of likely voters. Harrison is not exactly a progressive upstart candidate: he’s spent much of his career as a lobbyist, and has worked in the office of House Majority Whip James Clyburn. “I’ve seen the power of how good public servants can really address the issues of what people deal with,” Harrison tells David Remnick. “The worst thing you can do as a public servant is to betray the trust of the people that you represent.” For Harrison, Graham’s decision to support a fast-track nomination to the Supreme Court proves that “his word is worthless.”

How Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Death Is Changing the 2020 Election
22 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Last week, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died, at the age of eighty-seven. Although early voting has already begun in several states, President Donald Trump and his Republican colleagues immediately announced their intention to fill Ginsburg’s seat. Jane Mayer and Jeffrey Toobin join Dorothy Wickenden to discuss Ginsburg’s legacy, how the fight for her seat will affect the 2020 election, and the key cases that the Court is likely to hear in the coming term.

##Read More About the 2020 Election

An Election in Peril
18 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This Presidential race is a battle for the soul and the future of the country—on this much, both parties agree—and yet the pitfalls in the election process itself are vast. David Remnick runs through some of the risks to your vote with a group of staff writers: Sue Halpern on the possibility of hacking by malign actors; Steve Coll on the contention around mail-in voting and the false suspicions being raised by the President; Jeffrey Toobin on the prospect of an avalanche of legal challenges that could delay the outcome and create a cascade of uncertainty; and Jelani Cobb on the danger of violence in the election’s aftermath. 

Are Voters Asking the Wrong Questions About the 2020 Elections?
20 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In an election year, media coverage focusses overwhelmingly on federal elections—races for the Senate, House, and, above all, the Presidency. But, in November, voters across the country will also cast their votes for governors and state legislators, officials who exercise enormous power over the lives of their constituents. Daniel Squadron, a former state senator and the co-founder of Future Now, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what to expect from key state races in 2020 and their power to transform the country.

What to Do with a Confederate Monument?
33 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Across the South and well beyond, cities and states have been removing their Confederate monuments, recognizing their power as symbols of America’s foundational racism. In the town of Easton, Maryland, in front of the picturesque courthouse, there’s a statue known as the Talbot Boys. It depicts a young soldier holding a Confederate battle flag, and it honors the men who crossed over to fight for secession. It’s the last such monument in Maryland, outside of a battlefield or a graveyard. Casey Cep grew up nearby, and she’s watched as the town has awakened to the significance of the statue. Five years ago, when a resolution to remove it came before the county council, the vote was 5–0 opposing removal. But, during a summer of reckoning with police violence and structural racism, the statue came up for a vote again. Is time finally catching up with the Talbot Boys?

Jiayang Fan on Navigating Her Mother’s Illness While Becoming a Target for Chinese Nationalists Online
25 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Jiayang Fan immigrated to the United States from China at age seven. Her mother, who had been a doctor, cleaned houses in Greenwich, Connecticut, so that Jiayang could attend good schools. In 2011, Jiayang’s mother was diagnosed with A.L.S., and Jiayang oversaw her care as her condition worsened. This year, when the COVID{:.small}-19 lockdown threatened to separate her mother from the health aides who kept her alive, Jiayang spoke out on social media. In response, she received a torrent of threats against her life and that of her mother. Jiayang Fan joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how she and her mother struggled to adjust to American culture, and how she became a target for anti-American sentiments in China.

Bette Midler and the Screenwriter Paul Rudnick on “Coastal Elites”
21 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In the new film “Coastal Elites,” Bette Midler plays a New Yorker of a certain type: a retired teacher who lives on the Upper West Side, reads the New York Times with Talmudic attention, and is driven more than half mad by Donald Trump. So much so that one day she picks a fight in a coffee shop with a guy wearing a red MAGA hat, and her monologue takes place when she’s in police custody. The role isn’t too much of a stretch: she tells David Remnick about a long-ago dinner at the Trumps’ apartment that she recalls as a nightmare, and, just days after this interview, Midler tweeted some ill-advised comments about Melania Trump’s accent that she had to apologize for. Paul Rudnick wrote “Coastal Elites” as a series of monologues to be performed at the Public Theatre, but seeing no avenue to perform it during the pandemic, he reconceived of it as a film for HBO, starring big names like Kaitlyn Dever, Dan Levy, Sarah Paulson, and Issa Rae. And while he’s sad about the state of live theatre, Rudnick has no regrets about taking the show to television: “You actually got closer than you would if it had been staged live in the theatre,” he says. “You have the best possible seat in the house for a Bette Midler performance.”

Can Ron DeSantis Deliver a Victory in Florida to Donald Trump?
21 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Florida, with twenty-nine electoral votes, is one of the most sought-after states in any election. It went for Bush in 2000 and 2004, Obama in 2008 and 2012, and Trump in 2016. Dexter Filkins joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss continuing efforts by the G.O.P. to suppress the Democratic vote, the pivotal role the state will play in the election this fall, and how the aftermath of 2020 could be more chaotic than the contested election of 2000.

Would an Election Victory Be Joe Biden’s F.D.R. Moment?
27 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Joe Biden has been playing it safe during the coronavirus pandemic, but Evan Osnos got the chance to sit down with the nominee in person. It was too hot to sit outside, but the campaign staff didn’t want an outsider in Biden’s home, so the interview took place in a small house on the property that Biden’s late mother stayed in. In a wide-ranging conversation, Biden compares his position—should he win—to that of Franklin Roosevelt: taking office during a disaster, he argues, he would have an opportunity to effect a hugely ambitious agenda, but driven by pragmatism rather than ideology. (He was not comparing himself to Roosevelt, he hastened to add.) While the country is ever more partisan, Biden describes his centrism and his propensity for off-the-cuff remarks as an advantage. “The good news is the bad news,” he told Osnos. “Everybody knows me, and you guys know me, the good and bad. . . . It’s kind of hard to pin a label on someone that’s inconsistent with who they are. To make me out to be a revolutionary, it’s awful hard to do. Conversely, it’s awful hard to make me out to be a right-wing, very conservative Democrat.”

Trump’s Convention and the Allure of the Politics of Fear
19 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Despite the historic chaos of recent months, Donald Trump’s message in the 2020 campaign remains largely unchanged. He continues to focus on “law and order” in the streets, the dangerous agenda of the “radical left,” and protecting the country from nefarious outsiders. That message has proved remarkably effective at securing the allegiance of his party. Can Joe Biden convince enough voters that “hope is more powerful than fear”? Peter Slevin joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the Republican National Convention and Trump’s strategy for winning a second term.

Everyone Knew Who Shot Ahmaud Arbery. Why Did the Killers Walk Free?
27 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

It has been six months since Ahmaud Arbery, a young Black man, was shot by three white men while he was out for a Sunday jog near his childhood home. The video of the killing, taken by one of the men who participated in it, could be said to have kindled the blaze that ignited after the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd. 

There was no mystery to be solved in Arbery’s killing. It happened in broad daylight, and the men who did it were on the scene when police arrived. But the killers walked free, and no one was arrested for seventy-four days—until after the video was made public and caused a scandal. What, exactly, were prosecutors thinking? Caroline Lester spoke with Arbery’s mother, a local reporter, lawyers, and a district attorney to understand what happened in those seventy-four days. His case, she finds, highlights a fundamental problem for criminal-justice reform: we may change the laws that govern policing, but those laws have to be vigorously enforced. And district attorneys may have little incentive to do so.

The Democratic Convention, Online and United
21 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, the Democratic Party presented its first-ever virtual nominating Convention. Over three nights, a host of speakers—from establishment Democrats like Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama, to progressive figures like Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, to moderate Republicans like John Kasich and Colin Powell—promoted a big-tent movement to defeat Donald Trump in November. John Cassidy joins Eric Lach to discuss what the Democratic Convention tells us about the general election, and what to look forward to from the Republican Convention next week.

Isabel Wilkerson on America’s Caste System
14 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In this moment of historical reckoning, many Americans are being introduced to concepts like intersectionality, white fragility, and anti-racism. Isabel Wilkerson, the author of the best-selling book “The Warmth of Other Suns,” is introducing a little-discussed concept into our national conversation: caste. As she researched the Jim Crow system in the South, she realized that “every aspect of life was so tightly controlled and scripted and restricted that race was an insufficient term to capture the depth and organized repression that people were living under.” She explains to David Remnick that “the only word that was sufficient was ‘caste.’ ” The United States, Wilkerson argues, is a rigid social hierarchy that depends on a psychological as well as a legal system of enforcement. Her new book is “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents,” which has already been hailed as a modern classic. She says that “we need a new framework for understanding the divisions and how we got to where we are.”

Kamala Harris and the Future of the Democratic Party
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On Tuesday, Joe Biden announced his running mate: California Senator and former presidential candidate Kamala Harris. There had been talk of a potential Biden-Harris ticket going back to last spring. But the choice cemented Harris’ place as an architect of the future of the Democratic Party. Dana Goodyear joins Eric Lach to discuss Kamala Harris’s political past, and what she’ll bring to the presidential ticket.

The Documentary ICE Doesn’t Want You to See
15 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Immigrations and Customs Enforcement has been given a broad mandate to round up undocumented immigrants. The agency is infamously unwelcoming to journalists, but two filmmakers managed to get unprecedented access to its employees and detention facilities. Christina Clusiau and Shaul Schwarz discuss how they got this closeup look at the agency as it developed ever-harsher policies designed to deter immigrants. Schwarz tells Jonathan Blitzer, who covers immigration for the magazine, that “if [ICE] can make life difficult enough, if [it] can send these messages . . . that this is the hell you’re going to get, then [they’ll] make these people leave.”  


The documentary, “Immigration Nation,” is available on Netflix.

Donald Trump Declares War on TikTok
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Last week, President Trump declared his intention to “ban” TikTok, a social-media platform with eighty million daily users in the United States. TikTok is a product of the Chinese tech company ByteDance, and some privacy activists have raised concerns that the company may share user data with the Chinese government. Sheelah Kolhatkar joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what the controversy reveals about U.S.-Chinese relations and the changing politics around Big Tech.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and the Federal Forces in Chicago
13 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Before she became the mayor of Chicago, last year, Lori Lightfoot spent nearly a decade working on police reform. Now Lightfoot is facing civil unrest over police brutality and criticism by the President for the homicide and shooting rates in her city. Between the violence and the pandemic, it seems to be one of the toughest climates any Chicago politician has seen. David Remnick spoke with Mayor Lightfoot about the state of the city, policing, and President Trump’s recent decision to send two hundred federal agents to help “drive down violent crime.” 

Why Trump and the Public Love the Army Corps of Engineers
18 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In 1802, President Thomas Jefferson created a regiment of military engineers within the U.S. Army. Over the next two hundred years, the Army Corps of Engineers, as it came to be known, has been involved in construction projects including the Washington Monument and the Panama Canal. When Governor Andrew Cuomo asked the Corps to help New York City cope with the coronavirus pandemic, it transformed a convention center into a twenty-five-hundred-bed medical facility in four days. The Corps has also been tasked with building President Trump’s wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. The Trump Administration has gutted many government agencies, but the Army Corps of Engineers remains well resourced and popular, with the public and the President. Paige Williams joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the history of the Army Corps of Engineers, and its role in the politics of 2020.

Emily Oster on Whether and How to Reopen Schools
16 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The decision about whether to reopen schools may determine children’s futures, the survival of teachers, and the economy’s ability to rebound. Emily Oster, an economist at Brown University, reviews what we do and don’t know about the dangers of in-person classes. How likely are children to transmit the coronavirus? Will teachers spread it to one another? Oster talks about the data with Joshua Rothman and opens up a knottier question about this upcoming school year: How do we measure the trade-off between the lives that will inevitably be lost if schools open against the long-term negative effects of learning loss if schools stay closed? What will a school do when, inevitably, somebody dies? “We’re going to have to accept that there isn’t actually a right choice,” she says.

In Portland, Oregon, Trump Cracks Down on Protests
16 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker
Since the police killing of George Floyd, in May, protests have continued around the country. The demonstrations have been largely peaceful, but the Trump Administration and its allies have seized on isolated incidents of violence and looting to describe protesters as “anarchists” who “hate our country.” Trump sent federal law-enforcement officers to the city of Portland, where the agents have been accused of inflaming the violence and illegally detaining demonstrators. James Ross Gardner, who has covered the Portland protests for The New Yorker, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what the public might misunderstand about the protests, and what the demonstrations illustrate about Trump’s “law and order” reëlection campaign.
Chance the Rapper’s Art and Activism
21 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

“My generation was taught that the civil-rights movement ended in the sixties, and that the Civil Rights Act put things as they should be,” Chance the Rapper tells David Remnick. “That belief was reinforced with the election of Barack Obama”—who loomed especially large to a boy from the South Side of Chicago. One of the biggest stars in hip-hop, Chance is also one of the most politically committed, and his art has always been closely tied to his commitment to lift up his community. Quite early in his career, he founded a nonprofit, SocialWorks, that invests in education in Chicago, and he has advocated for progressive candidates in city politics. But as politically aware as he is, Chance says that the protests following the death of George Floyd have given him a new consciousness of the struggle for racial justice. “This movement has shown us that we are very far from an equitable or an equal society. And that we will be the generation that fixes it.”

How a Poultry Mogul Is Profiting from the Pandemic
21 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Meat-packing and poultry-processing jobs have always been dangerous, and COVID-19 has exacerbated the risks. This spring, infection rates climbed so high at Mountaire, one of the largest poultry producers, that it stopped disclosing the numbers. Mountaire’s owner, Ronald Cameron, is one of Trump’s biggest donors. Jane Mayer, a New Yorker staff writer, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss conditions at the company's plants, and how Cameron is leveraging the coronavirus crisis to strip workers of their protections. 

A Good Week for the Climate Movement
18 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, the Supreme Court rejected the Trump Administration’s request to expand construction on the Keystone XL oil pipeline, and the climate change task force formed by Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders urged politicians to "treat climate change like the emergency that it is." Bill McKibben, an activist in the environmental movement for three decades, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss whether the United States has hit a turning point in the battle against global warming.

Hasan Minhaj on Being His Ancestors’ Wildest Dreams
17 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Hasan Minhaj, a comedian and political commentator, is the host of Nexflix’s “Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj.” His show—which has won both an Emmy and a Peabody—has frequently gone viral. Last year, Minhaj became a household name when he testified before Congress on the weight of student loan debt. He spoke with Carrie Battan at the 2019 New Yorker Festival about how he got invited to Washington, developing his specific brand of writing while working as a correspondent on “The Daily Show,” and how his family has helped to shape his voice as a comedian. “You don't know how long you have these shows for,” he tells Battan. “To me, if you do have that privilege, just be surgical in the way you use it.”

Keeping Released Prisoners Safe and Sane
29 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Starting this spring, many states began releasing some inmates from prisons and jails to try to reduce the spread of COVID-19. But a huge number of incarcerated people are mentally ill or addicted to drugs, or sometimes both. When those people are released, they may lose their only consistent access to treatment. Marianne McCune, a reporter for WNYC, spent weeks following a psychiatrist and a social worker as they tried to locate and then help some recently released patients at a time of uncertainty and chaos. 

This is a collaboration between The New Yorker Radio Hour and WNYC’s “The United States of Anxiety.”

At the Supreme Court: A Big Day for DACA, and a Bad Day for Trump
22 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, in a 5–4 decision, the Supreme Court ruled unlawful the Trump Administration’s decision to cancel the DACA program. DACA protects from deportation some seven hundred thousand undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children. Though DACA and the “Dreamers” that it protects have widespread public support, the Trump Administration remains hostile to the program. Jonathan Blitzer joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss DACA’s big day in court, and the Trump Administration’s next moves on immigration policy.

Masha Gessen on Recognizing an Autocrat
15 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In the past month, President Trump has cleared peaceful demonstrations with tear gas, told governors to “dominate” protesters, and threatened to invoke the Insurrection Act. The staff writer Masha Gessen argues that transgressions like these are signs that the President’s mind-set is fundamentally not democratic but autocratic. “Polarization and violence and high anxiety are all things that benefit an autocrat,” they warn David Remnick. Gessen’s new book, “Surviving Autocracy,” draws on their experience as a targeted journalist in Russia, and Gessen sees troubling similarities between Trump and Vladimir Putin.

Arkansas Prisoners Organize Against Unchecked Racism and the Coronavirus
19 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The Cummins Unit, a penitentiary in southeastern Arkansas, opened in 1902. Designed as a prison for black men, its rigid hierarchy and system of unpaid labor have been likened to slavery. The population at Cummins, still overwhelmingly black, has been devastated by the coronavirus—the prison has the tenth-largest outbreak of COVID-19 in the country.Rachel Aviv joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what incarcerated men in Cummins told her about their study group, called the Think Tank; about black identity in America; how they have organized to demand adequate measures against the pandemic; and what they think about the protests following the killing of George Floyd.

Running for Office During a Pandemic
14 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The need for social distancing has upended most of the ways that candidates have traditionally put themselves before voters: gathering crowds, shaking hands, kissing babies. Eric Lach has been following the race in New York’s Seventeenth Congressional District to learn how Facebook Live, e-mail newsletters, and Zoombombs are shaping the race. “There’s no question that people are in pain, and they’re worried and they’re distracted,” Allison Fine, a candidate with a background in digital organizing, said. “So we’re not going to be able to break through all that noise . . . . But all the metrics of engagement are going up.”

Protests Against Police Brutality and Systemic Racism Push Trump and the G.O.P. to a Breaking Point
18 perc 149. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

During Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, mainstream Republicans expressed disgust with his divisive rhetoric, but once he became President, they fell in line behind him. The protests in the wake of the murder of George Floyd have created a moment of reckoning for the Republican Party. In recent weeks, several senators and former members of the Trump Administration have spoken out against the President, including his onetime Defense Secretary, James Mattis, who accused him  of making “a mockery of our Constitution.” Susan B. Glasser, a New Yorker staff writer, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how Trump’s response to the demonstrations is changing the dynamics of the 2020 campaign.

A Former D.O.J. Official on How to Fix Policing
11 perc 148. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Ron Davis was a cop for almost thirty years, first as an officer with the Oakland P.D., then as the chief of police of East Palo Alto, California. In 2013, he joined President Barack Obama's Department of Justice to direct initiatives on policing reform. He investigated the police response to the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, after the killing of Michael Brown. Davis tells Jelani Cobb that police violence in black communities is built into the structure of policing. “I think the system is working perfectly. It is working as it was intended to work,” Davis says. “We’re still using the same systems that were designed on purpose to oppress communities of color.”

The Killing of George Floyd and the Origins of American Racism
23 perc 147. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The killing of George Floyd has inspired a renewed public reckoning with America’s legacy of racism. Racial prejudice is so ingrained in the origins of the country, and so pervasive in all of our institutions, that its insidious effects on all of us can be hard to grasp. The anti-racism trainer Suzanne Plihcik joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how the concept of white racial superiority was constructed in America, and what people can do to oppose structural racism.

A Rise in Anti-Chinese Rhetoric Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic
20 perc 146. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Peter Hessler has been in one of the strictest COVID-19 lockdowns in the world: starting in January, he was quarantined with his family in Chengdu, China, presaging what life would soon look like in America. Now, as restrictions lift in China, Hessler says that the experiences of the two countries have diverged. China’s government spent the lockdown setting up systems to check people’s temperatures on a wide scale and do contact tracing when someone becomes ill. But, although China’s response has been effective in containing the virus so far, one scientist told Hessler, “There is no long-term plan. There’s no country that has a long-term plan.”

Meanwhile, in the United States, perhaps the only common ground in the Presidential campaign is to attack China’s handling of the outbreak, which, candidates claim, cost lives around the world. The Trump Administration has implicated China in spreading the virus; Joe Biden’s campaign positions him as the tougher leader to take on China. Evan Osnos, who previously reported from Beijing and is now based in Washington, tells David Remnick that both sides count on the fact that China’s government ignores whatever American politicians say about it during campaign season.

A Guide to the Economics and Politics of the Coronavirus Recovery
16 perc 150. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Just a month ago, experts were predicting that the American economy would be slow to recover from the pandemicUnemployment remains at record highs, but, as the country begins to reopen, federal policies that have bolstered small businesses and bailed out big ones seem to have helped avoid another Great Depression. John Cassidy joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how good news about the economy complicates Joe Biden’s campaign against Donald Trump.

To Test a Vaccine for COVID-19, Should Volunteers Risk Their Lives?
17 perc 149. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

When he was eighteen, Abie Rohrig decided that he wanted to donate a kidney to save the life of a stranger who needed it. At twenty, he put his name on a list of volunteers for a human-challenge trial that would test the efficacy of a COVID-19 vaccine. A human-challenge trial for a vaccine would be nearly unprecedented: it would entail giving subjects a candidate vaccine against the virus, and then infecting them deliberately to test its efficacy. The side effects would be largely unknown, and the viral infection could be deadly. But, if successful, this experiment could shave months off of the process of vaccine development and save countless lives. In a conversation with his mother, Elaine Perlman, Rohrig points out that many occupations involve taking on risks to help others. But how much risk is too much? Larissa MacFarquhar, who has written extensively about altruism, talks with Marc Lipsitch, an epidemiologist who co-authored a journal article calling for human-challenge trials, and Angela Rasmussen, a virologist who feels that SARS{: .small}-CoV2 is too unknown for any volunteer to meaningfully give informed consent about its risks.

Could the Coronavirus Pandemic Change Iran’s Political Future?
18 perc 148. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker
Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamanei, has failed to cover up the extent of damage posed to the country by the coronavirus crisis. Dexter Filkins travelled to Iran in February, just as the outbreak was metastasizing. He joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what Iranian doctors and young dissidents told him, and why people think this could be a breaking point for the generation of aging revolutionaries.
Mayors Describe the Challenge of Safely Ending Lockdown
16 perc 147. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

With non-essential business starting to reopen in many states, elected officials have to make a call on a series of impossible questions: How soon is too soon? How safe is safe enough? What will the cost be, in new cases of the disease and in deaths? 


To get a sense of how mayors are handling the reopening of America’s cities, David Remnick spoke with Quinton Lucas, the mayor of Kansas City, Missouri; Andy Berke, of Chattanooga; and Marian Orr, of Cheyenne. They expressed frustration with the guidance or lack of it from the state and federal levels. But Mayor Orr said that some of the changes of the lockdown could point the way to the future—including a reassessment of how her own City Hall operates. “We don’t need this massive building, with HVAC issues and electrical costs. We need technology,” she told Remnick. “Perhaps the way we do business and deliver government services shall be changed forever.”   

Trump’s Day at the Supreme Court, Remote and Live-Streamed
19 perc 146. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This term, for the third time in recent U.S. history, the Court is considering just how far executive privilege extends. On Tuesday, the court heard two cases relating to President Trump’s financial records—one brought by the House of Representatives and another by the New York District Attorney Cyrus Vance. During the coronavirus pandemic, for the first time, the court is hearing oral arguments remotely, and the arguments are being live-streamed to the public. Jeffrey Toobin joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the cases against the President and what they could mean for Trump and for the country.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer on COVID-19, Trump, and the Accusations Against Joe Biden
23 perc 145. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Michigan is the tenth-largest state by population, but it has the third-largest number of COVID-19 deaths. Governor Gretchen Whitmer enacted some of the country’s most stringent stay-at-home orders, even forbidding landscaping and fishing. Furious and sometimes armed protesters became national news. Meanwhile, Whitmer’s outspoken criticism of the Trump Administration’s efforts on behalf of the states made her a frequent target of the President. “I didn’t ask to be thrown into the national spotlight,” Whitmer tells Susan B. Glasser. “I’m just trying to do my job, and I’m never going to apologize for that. Because lives are at stake here.” Whitmer’s national visibility has brought rumors that she is on the short list for Joe Biden’s Vice-Presidential pick. Whitmer is a sexual-assault survivor herself, and she explains why she stands by Biden despite the accusation made by his former aide Tara Reade.   

Susan B. Glasser also speaks with David Remnick about the tensions that have emerged between the federal government and the states. While mostly targeting Democratic governors, Trump has also criticized some in his own party.  

Loneliness, Tyranny, and the Coronavirus
18 perc 144. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Though some economies have begun reopening, many people around the world are battening down for an indefinite period of extreme social distancing. Loneliness can be a destructive force. The toll of isolation on people’s health has been well documented, but isolation can also be a potent political tool, one often wielded by autocrats and despots. Masha Gessen joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how the pandemic is reshaping politics, for better and for worse.

The Pandemic Is Wreaking Havoc in America’s Prisons and Jails
21 perc 143. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Three months ago, Kai Wright, the host of WNYC’s the United States of Anxiety, joined David Remnick for a special episode about the effects of mass incarceration and the movement to end it. Now, as the coronavirus pandemic puts inmates in acute and disproportionate danger, that effort may be gaining new traction. Wright and Remnick reconvene to examine the COVID-19 crisis in prison and its political effects. David Remnick also speaks with Phil Murphy, the governor of New Jersey, who has signed an executive order to release certain at-risk inmates from states prisons—the sort of measure that would once have been deeply unpopular and risky. “I haven’t really spent any time on the politics,” Governor Murphy says. “In all the steps we’ve taken, we’re trying to make the call as best we can, based on the facts, based on the data, based on the science.” And Kai Wright interviews Udi Ofer, the head of the A.C.L.U.’s Justice Division, who notes that “the communities that the C.D.C. has told us are most vulnerable to COVID-19 are exactly the communities that are housed in our nation’s jails and prisons,” including a disproportionately older population among inmates. Given the lack of social distancing and, in many cases, substandard hygienic conditions, Ofer says that reducing the inmate population “literally is a life-and-death situation.”

Trump vs. the United States Postal Service
20 perc 142. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The U.S. Postal Service is a rare thing: a beloved federal agency. Mail carriers visit every household in the country, and they are the only federal employees most of us see on a regular basis. But the service has been in serious financial trouble for years, a problem exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis. The survival of the system depends on intervention from Congress, but President Trump has called the postal service “a joke,” and without congressional intervention it could be forced to cease operating by the end of the year. Casey Cep, a New Yorker staff writer and the daughter of a postal worker, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the past and future of the U.S.P.S.

A City at the Peak of Crisis
47 perc 141. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Experts predicted that Wednesday, April 15th would be a peak of the COVID-19 pandemic in New York City, its epicenter. On that day, a crew of New Yorker writers talked with people all over the city, in every circumstance and walk of life, to form a portrait of a city in crisis. A group-station manager for the subway talks about keeping the transit system running for those who can’t live without it; a respiratory therapist copes with break-time conversations about death and dying; a graduating class of medical students get up the courage to confront the worst crisis in generations; and a new mother talks about giving birth on a day marked by tragedy for so many families. The hour includes contributions from writers including William Finnegan, Helen Rosner, Jia Tolentino, Kelefa Sanneh, and Adam Gopnik, who says, “One never knows whether to applaud the human insistence on continuing with some form of normal life, or look aghast at the human insistence on continuing with some form of normal life. That's the mystery of the pandemic.”

Trump and Biden Face Off Over China and the Coronavirus
21 perc 140. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Around the world, COVID-19 is fundamentally altering politics. In China, the Communist Party is lauding its handling of the crisis and spreading disinformation about the virus in the U.S. And, as attacks on Chinese-Americans increase, the Biden and Trump campaigns accuse each other of being overly cozy with Beijing. Evan Osnos joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how the coronavirus is affecting the course of the 2020 Presidential election.

Bill McKibben and Elizabeth Kolbert on the Pandemic and the Environment
16 perc 139. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Bill McKibben and Elizabeth Kolbert join David Remnick to talk about the twin crises of our time: the coronavirus pandemic and the climate emergency. What can one teach us about the other? During the COVID-19 national emergency, the Trump Administration has loosened auto-emissions standards, and has proposed easing the controls on mercury released by power plants, among other actions. With protesters no longer able to gather, construction on the controversial Keystone Pipeline has resumed. Still, McKibben and Kolbert believe that the pandemic could remind the public to take scientific fact more seriously, and possibly might change our values for the better. “When we get out of detention,” McKibben says, “I hope that it will be a reminder to us of how much social distancing we’ve been doing already these last few decades,” by focussing on technology and the virtual world. In the pleasure of human contact, he hopes, “we might begin to replace some of the consumption that drives every environmental challenge we face."

Mitch McConnell, the Most Dangerous Politician in America
19 perc 138. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Mitch McConnell was first elected to the Senate in 1984, but he didn’t come to national prominence until the Obama Presidency, when, as the Senate Majority Leader, he emerged as one of the Administration’s most unyielding and effective legislative opponents. In the past three years, McConnell has put his political skills to work in support of Donald Trump’s agenda, despite the lasting damage that his maneuvering is doing to the Senate and to American democracy. Jane Mayer joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how and why McConnell, who faces reëlection this year, became one of Trump’s staunchest allies.

The Injustice of COVID-19
10 perc 137. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On the surface, COVID-19 may seem to be a great leveller. Princes and Prime Ministers, musicians and Hollywood A-listers, N.B.A. players, and other prominent people have made headlines for contracting the virus. But looking more closely at the numbers of illnesses and fatalities, we see that the virus—far from an equalizer—exacerbates the inequality of the American health-care system. Minorities, and particularly African-Americans, account for a greatly disproportionate number of deaths in places around the country. Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, a contributor to The New Yorker and an assistant professor of African-American studies at Princeton University, describes to  David Remnick the circumstances that give rise to this stratification. Even the basic preventative measures urged on Americans by the C.D.C. are less accessible in black communities. To shelter in place, she points out, “you need to have safe, sound, and comfortable housing . . . [and] only nineteen per cent of black people have the ability to work at home, because of the types of jobs that they are employed in. . . . African-Americans in New York city still must get on the subway to get to work.” Even access to clean water, she points out—essential to frequent hand washing—is not universally available.

Can Trump Avoid a Post-Coronavirus Great Depression?
21 perc 136. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Two weeks ago, Congress passed a two-trillion-dollar stimulus bill aimed at mitigating the damage the coronavirus is doing to the American economy. With the stock market flagging and unemployment reaching historic highs, further government intervention will almost certainly be needed to stave off financial devastation. But even as COVID-19 cases quickly rise around the country, President Trump says that business should return to normal this spring. John Cassidy joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the dangers of Trumponomics, lessons from other nations about how to respond to pandemics, and how to put American back to work without precipitating a rebound of the virus.

Why We Underestimated COVID-19
11 perc 135. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Even as the scale of the coronavirus outbreak was becoming apparent, spring breakers flooded the beaches of Florida and New Yorkers continued to congregate in parks. Despite the warnings of politicians and health-care professionals, many people failed to treat the coronavirus pandemic as a serious threat. Daniel Kahneman, a Nobel Prize-winning expert on human behavior, told Maria Konnikova that the problem isn’t just that the threat posed by COVID-19 is hard to grasp, it’s that public officials haven’t done enough to explain the threat. “There should be clear guidelines and clear instructions. We all ought to know whether we should open our Amazon packages outside the door or bring them in,” Kahneman said. “It’s not a decision individuals should consider making on the basis of what they know, because they don’t know enough to make it.”

Can Democrats Take the Offensive in the Pandemic Elections of 2020?
19 perc 134. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Since the coronavirus became a public-health emergency in the United States, coverage of the 2020 Presidential election has been scarce. With little media attention and public events an impossibility, Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders have taken their campaigns online. Meanwhile, state election officials across the country are struggling to find the best time and means to hold their primaries. Eric Lach joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss electoral reforms, such as voting by mail, and how the Democratic Party is trying to exploit President Trump’s bungling response to the pandemic.

The Coronavirus Election
17 perc 133. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

It’s been just over a month since Donald Trump tweeted for the first time about the coronavirus—saying, in essence, that the virus did not pose a substantial threat to the United States. Why did he so dramatically underplay the risks of COVID-19? “With Trump, sometimes the answer is pretty transparent,” The New Yorker’s Washington correspondent, Susan B. Glasser, told David Remnick, “and, in this case, I think the answer is pretty transparent. He didn’t want anything to interrupt his reëlection campaign plan, which entirely hinged on the strength of the U.S. economy.” Even as the virus spreads, Trump has criticized widespread self-isolation orders and made overtures toward reopening businesses to revitalize the economy. Meanwhile, Joe Biden, Trump’s likely Democratic Presidential opponent, has refrained from openly antagoniz ing the President. Glasser weighs this tactic: “Do you attack Trump right now, or do you just sort of stand out of the way and let him shoot himself in the foot?”

Arts and Entertainment in the Era of Coronavirus
21 perc 132. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This month, in an effort to combat the coronavirus pandemic, arts organizations around the country shut their doors. Theatre productions were cancelled, film premières postponed, gallery openings scuttled. Artists and other creative professionals, many of whom are freelance workers with no health benefits and little access to unemployment insurance, suddenly found themselves with no income. The dire economic circumstances have caused some to search for new creative outlets online, but others face an uncertain future. Emily Witt and Alexandra Schwartz join Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the effect of the coronavirus on arts and artists—and their audiences.

In a Nightmare Scenario, How Should We Decide Who Gets Care?
16 perc 131. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In northern Italy, doctors were forced to begin rationing ventilators and other equipment—a nightmare scenario that could become a reality for medical staff in the United States soon; New York has projected ventilator shortages in the thousands per week. David Remnick talks with Philip Rosoff, a professor of Medicine at Duke University and a scholar of bioethics who has studied rationing. Rosoff believes medical institutions must also consider the needs of those who can’t be saved, and suggests that hospitals should stock up on drugs to ease suffering at the end of life. Rosoff notes that the U.S. medical system puts an emphasis on “go for broke” care at all costs, and is poorly prepared for those kinds of decisions, which leave hospital workers with an acute sense of “moral distress.” “If we’re smart, we would have institutional guidelines and plans in place ahead of time,” Rosoff says. “The way not to make [a rationing decision] is to make it arbitrarily, capriciously, unilaterally, and at the bedside in the moment.”

How Humanity Survives Pandemics
20 perc 130. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The earliest epidemics date back to Neolithic times, and, in the millennia since, viral outbreaks have repeatedly shaped the course of human history, influencing behavior and creating and destroying cultural norms. In the weeks since COVID-19 became a worldwide emergency, people are showing resilience, humor, and creative ways of communicating as governments and businesses struggle to respond. Robin Wright joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss differing responses to infectious diseases across time and cultures, and the global political ramifications of COVID-19.

The Ripple Effects of a Pandemic
13 perc 129. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

For most of us, the speed and intensity of the coronavirus pandemic has come as a shock. But not for Lawrence Wright. A staff writer and the author of nonfiction books about Scientology and Al Qaeda, Wright recently wrote a novel—yet to be published—called “The End of October,” about the spread of a novel virus that eerily resembles the outbreak of COVID-19. Wright looked to illnesses of the past to try to understand their enduring consequences, and he mapped those ripple effects onto our contemporary circumstances. “The End of October” is a work of fiction and firmly in the thriller genre, but what he imagined in it turns out to be eerily close to what we are experiencing now. “I read the paper and I feel like I’m reading another chapter of my own book,” he tells David Remnick.  


Lawrence Wright’s “The End of October” is due out in April. 

How Donald Trump Will Wage His Reëlection Campaign
18 perc 128. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Donald Trump never really stopped running for President. On the day of his inauguration, in 2017, he filed the paperwork to run for reëlection in 2020. As the Democrats have fought a historically long primary battle, Trump has been gearing up for the general election. In particular, his campaign will take place online—he has tapped his 2016 digital-media director, Brad Parscale, to run his 2020 campaign. Andrew Marantz, who profiled Parscale for The New Yorker, joins Eric Lach to discuss Parscale’s role in the Trump phenomenon and what to expect from an increasingly online reëlection campaign.

And Then There Were Two: Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden
21 perc 127. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Just over a week ago, Bernie Sanders seemed to be the front-runner for the Democratic nomination. Then came some prominent withdrawals from the race, and, on Super Tuesday, the resurgence of Joe Biden’s campaign. (Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii remains in the race, but has no chance of winning the nomination.) But the narrowing of the field only highlights the gulf between the Party’s moderate center and its energized Left.  David Remnick talks with Amy Davidson Sorkin, a political columnist for The New Yorker, about the possibility of a contested Convention. Then Remnick interviews Michael Kazin, an historian and the co-editor of Dissent magazine. Kazin points out that Sanders is struggling against a headwind: even voters sympathetic to democratic socialism may vote for a pragmatist if they think Biden is more likely to beat the incumbent President in November. But Sanders seems unlikely to moderate his message. “There is a problem,” Kazin tells David Remnick. “A divided party—a party that’s divided at the Convention—never has won in American politics.” 

Is Joe Biden the Future of the Democratic Party?
16 perc 126. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Joe Biden’s pitch to voters has been remarkably consistent: he says he can unite older voters, people of color, and moderates into a coalition that can defeat Donald Trump. A series of gaffes, concerns about his voting record, and disappointing results in the early primaries seemed to doom Biden’s candidacy. But big victories in South Carolina and on Super Tuesday have given new credence to his claim that he’s the best person to take on Trump in November. Evan Osnos joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how Biden became the Democratic front-runner and how he’ll go about winning over skeptical young, progressive voters.

The Many Iterations of Michael Bloomberg, C.E.O., Mayor, and Presidential Hopeful
20 perc 125. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Eleanor Randolph finished her biography of Michael Bloomberg in June, 2019, just as the former mayor decided not to run for President. “He didn’t want to go on an apology tour,” Randolph tells David Remnick. Bloomberg knew that he would be called to answer for his vigorous pursuit of unconstitutional stop-and-frisk policing, accusations against him of sexual misconduct, and his history as a Republican. Ultimately, Bloomberg did enter the race, and he has spent more than four hundred million dollars on political ads to defeat another New York billionaire, the incumbent, Donald Trump. Randolph and Andrea Bernstein, a reporter for WNYC who covered Bloomberg’s three terms as mayor, join Remnick to discuss the candidate’s time in Gracie Mansion, his philosophy of governing, and his philanthropy. Trump’s political contributions have been unabashedly transactional, but Bloomberg’s generous philanthropy also has an expected return. “All the money that he gave to philanthropies and charities were a way of doing good in the world, sure, but they were also a way of making him more powerful as mayor,” Bernstein says. “Everything with Bloomberg, there’s a countervailing thing. Something benefits somebody: it also might benefit him, it also might benefit billionaires from Russia.”

Eleanor Randolph is the author of “The Many Lives of Michael Bloomberg.” Andrea Bernstein’s book is “American Oligarchs: The Kushners, the Trumps, and the Marriage of Money and Power.”

Rebecca Solnit on Harvey Weinstein and the Lies that Powerful Men Tell
18 perc 124. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, the former film producer Harvey Weinstein was convicted on two counts of sexual assault in a New York court. Weinstein, who has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than ninety women, has become an emblem of misogyny in Hollywood, and of the systems that protect wealthy and powerful men from the consequences of criminal misconduct. Rebecca Solnit joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss whether the Weinstein verdict is a turning point in the #MeToo movement, and what it takes to expose the lies of those in power in business and politics.

Stephen Miller, the Architect of Trump’s Immigration Plan
23 perc 123. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Donald Trump began his Presidential bid, in 2015, with an infamous speech, at Trump Tower, in which he said of Mexican immigrants, “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” But it was not until a former aide to Jeff Sessions joined Trump’s campaign that the nativist rhetoric coalesced into a policy platform—including the separation of children from their families at the border. Jonathan Blitzer, who writes about immigration for The New Yorker, has been reporting on Stephen Miller’s sway in the Trump Administration and his remarkable success in advancing an extremist agenda. “There has never been an American President who built his campaign around the issue of immigration and later won on that campaign on immigration. Trump was the first and only President really ever to do it,” Blitzer tells David Remnick. Despite this influence, Miller remains largely behind the scenes. Blitzer explains why: “He knows that the kiss of death in this Administration is to be identified as the brains behind the man. He can’t let on that he’s the one who effectively is manipulating Trump on these issues.” 

Does It Really Matter Who the Democratic Nominee Is?
20 perc 122. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Rachel Bitecofer, a political scientist at the Niskanen Center, in Washington, D.C., thinks that most pollsters and forecasters rely on outdated ideas about how candidates succeed. She argues that the outcome has far less to do with the candidates’ ideology than we think it does. Her perspective has been controversial, but in July, 2018, months before the midterm elections, her model predicted the Democratic victory in the House with an accuracy unmatched by conventional forecasters. And it suggests that Democrats should stop worrying about losing, and focus on firing up their voters.

A Teen-age Trump Tries to Win His High School’s Election
17 perc 121. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Every year, Townsend Harris High School, in Queens, New York, holds a schoolwide election simulation. Students are assigned roles and begin campaigning in September. Every candidate has a staff, raises money, and makes ads for the school’s radio and television network. This fall, the school simulated the Democratic and Republican primaries. Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Joe Biden got into a rap battle. The American Family Association joined the fray and released a rap of its own. 


The New Yorker’s Joshua Rothman first observed the simulation during the primaries of the 2016 Presidential election. At the time, he saw that Trump’s political arrival was greeted with distaste at a school where many students come from immigrant families. “There was some stuff Donald Trump was saying that, if you heard from any other candidate, it would frankly be disgusting,” Justin, who played Pete Buttigieg this cycle, said. But Togay, who was assigned the role of Trump—he’s a Democrat in real life—was determined to make the President more appealing to his classmates. “In preparation, I watched Alec Baldwin for a couple weeks,” he tells Rothman. For Togay and the Townsend Harris student body, Donald Trump’s unprecedented Presidency is normal. “We’ve seen what’s actually going on in Washington, because it’s been like a reality show to us,” Justin said. “This isn’t really surprising. This isn’t new.”

After Two Primary Contests, What’s Ahead for the Democratic Race?
19 perc 120. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On Tuesday, voters in New Hampshire cast their ballots in the Democratic Presidential primary. Following the debacle surrounding the Iowa caucuses, many Democrats hoped that the results from New Hampshire would bring clarity to the race. Bernie Sanders won, arguably making him the front-runner. But close behind him was Pete Buttigieg, who also narrowly won the Iowa caucuses, and Amy Klobuchar, whose third-place finish gave her campaign renewed energy. Benjamin Wallace-Wells joins Eric Lach to discuss the New Hampshire primaries and how a clear picture of the future of the Democratic contest remains elusive.

The Black Vote in 2020
17 perc 119. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The last time a Democrat won the White House, he had enormous support from black voters; lower support from black voters was one of many reasons Hillary Clinton lost in 2016. Marcus Ferrell, a political organizer from Atlanta, tells Radio Hour about the importance of turning out “unlikely voters” in order to win an election, which, for him, means black men. Jelani Cobb, a New Yorker staff writer and historian, points out that the four Democratic front-runners, all of whom are white, may struggle to get the turnout they need. Cobb tells David Remnick that Joe Biden’s strong lead may begin to fall after his weak showing among largely white voters in Iowa; Pete Buttigieg has very low support among South Carolina voters, and even faces opposition from black constituents in his home town, South Bend. But Bernie Sanders, Cobb says, seems to have made inroads with at least younger black voters since 2016.

Disasters at America’s Polling Places
17 perc 118. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On Monday, at the Iowa caucuses, a new smartphone app was used to report the results from each precinct. The app proved faulty, leading to a catastrophic failure to collect and report vote totals. In theory, advances in voting technology make voting easier and more accessible. In practice, they have introduced new vulnerabilities that can be exploited to suppress or undermine the will of the voters. Sue Halpern joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the recent history of voter suppression and malfunctions at polling places and whether the 2020 election can be saved.

Jill Lepore on Democracy in Peril, Then and Now
16 perc 117. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In the nineteen-thirties, authoritarian regimes were on the rise around the world—as they are again today—and democratic governments that came into existence after the First World War were toppling. “American democracy, too, staggered,” Jill Lepore wrote in The New Yorker, “weakened by corruption, monopoly, apathy, inequality, political violence, hucksterism, racial injustice, unemployment, even starvation.” Lepore talks with David Remnick about how Americans rallied to save democracy, and how we might apply those lessons in a new era with similar problems. 

The Trump-Netanyahu “Deal of the Century”
13 perc 116. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump announced his Administration’s Middle East peace plan. The unveiling occurred in the midst of the Senate impeachment trial of Trump, for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, and on the day that the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, was indicted on charges of bribery, fraud, and breach of trust, in three cases. While nominally presenting a two-state solution, the plan heavily favors Israeli interests. Robin Wright joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the Trump Administration’s plan in the Middle East and the dangers that Trump and Netanyahu pose to the future of democracy in their countries.

What Would a World Without Prisons Be Like?
21 perc 115. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Mass incarceration is now widely regarded as a prejudiced and deeply harmful set of policies. Bipartisan support exists for some degree of criminal-justice reform, and, in some circles, the idea of prison abolition is also gaining traction. Kai Wright, the host of the WNYC podcast “The United States of Anxiety,” spoke about the movement with Paul Butler, a law professor and former federal prosecutor who saw firsthand the damage that prosecution causes; and sujatha baliga, a MacArthur Foundation fellow who leads the Restorative Justice Project at the nonprofit Impact Justice and a survivor of sexual violence. “Prison abolition doesn’t mean that everybody who’s locked up gets to come home tomorrow,” Butler explains. Instead, activists envision a gradual process of “decarceration,” and the creation of alternative forms of justice and harm reduction. “Abolition, to my mind, isn’t just about ending the prisons,” baliga adds. “It’s about ending binary processes which pit us as ‘us, them,’ ‘right, wrong’; somebody has to be lying, somebody’s telling the truth. That is not the way that we get to healing.”

Adam Schiff, Hakeem Jeffries, and the Framers Weigh In on Impeachment
20 perc 114. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Last week, the Senate opened the impeachment trial of Donald Trump. With Republicans standing immovably by the President, the trial is expected to result in Trump’s acquittal. The Framers of the Constitution issued dire warnings about the spectre of “factionalism” and how it could endanger American democracy. Jelani Cobb joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the origins of partisanship in American politics and how it’s playing out in arguments about whether the President should be removed from office.

Ten Years After “The New Jim Crow”
13 perc 113. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The United States has the largest prison population in the world. But, until the publication of Michelle Alexander’s book “The New Jim Crow,” in 2010, most people didn’t use the term mass incarceration, or consider the practice a social-justice issue. Alexander argued that the increasing imprisonment of black and brown men—through rising arrest rates and longer sentences—was not merely a response to crime but a system of racial control. “The drug war was in part a politically motivated strategy, a backlash to the civil-rights movement, but it was also a reflection of conscious and unconscious biases fuelled by media portrayals of drug users,” Alexander tells David Remnick. “Those racial stereotypes were resonant of the same stereotypes of slaves and folks during the Jim Crow era.”

As the Impeachment Trial Begins, the Democratic Candidates Struggle to Forcefully Take on President Trump
20 perc 112. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, Democratic Presidential candidates met for their final debate before the Iowa caucuses, a few weeks after Trump ordered the targeted killing of the Iranian military commander Qassam Suleimani. They talked about how America’s role in the world is threatened by the President’s erratic—and, in the case of Ukraine, likely criminal—approach to foreign policy. But many voters remain skeptical that Trump can be beaten. Susan B. Glasser joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the radical uncertainties of the 2020 race.

In Iowa, the Democratic Candidates Respond to the Conflict with Iran
13 perc 111. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The New Yorker’s Eric Lach is in Iowa for the month leading up to the Democratic caucuses. Next week’s debate, in Des Moines, was likely going to focus on health care and other domestic issues core to the Democratic platform, but the agenda may instead be dominated by a discussion of the Trump Administration’s killing of the Iranian general Qassem Suleimani and the United States’ fraught history of war in the Middle East. Polls show that Joe Biden is trusted on foreign-policy issues, but Lach suggests that Bernie Sanders’s history of opposing wars—and his quick and confident articulation of his position on Iran—may sway voters seeking a clear message. Nearly a year into the campaign, votes will finally be cast, and in Iowa the deciding factor may involve personal contact more than ideological positions. Iowa voters tend to say, “ ‘I’ve shaken this person’s hand, and I’ve shaken this person’s hand, and I’m going to make my decision after I’ve shaken this other person’s hand.’ That counts for a lot, I think,” Lach says.

Mad Men: Trump’s Perilous Approach to Dictators
19 perc 110. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker
Since taking office, President Trump has repeatedly praised Russian President Vladimir Putin, held two summits with Kim Jong Un, of North Korea, and hosted Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mar-a-Lago. Trump relies on his instincts when it comes to the conduct of foreign policy, and his sycophancy toward dictators has been a defining feature of his Presidency. He has had a somewhat different approach to the Iranian leadership. Last week, Trump ordered an air strike that killed Qassem Suleimani, a high-ranking Iranian official, escalating tensions between the United States and Iran. Evan Osnos joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what Donald Trump may not understand about the minds of authoritarian leaders.
Terry Gross Talks with David Remnick
24 perc 109. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

David Remnick has appeared as the guest of Terry Gross on “Fresh Air” a number of times over the years, talking about Russia, Muhammad Ali, and other subjects. Hosting “Fresh Air” for nearly forty-five years, Gross is a defining voice of NPR, and is perhaps the most celebrated interviewer of our time. In October, 2019, the tables turned, and Gross joined Remnick as his guest for a live interview at The New Yorker Festival. They spoke about how she first found her way to the microphone, the role of feminism in establishing NPR, the limits of her expertise, and what she has had to give up to prepare for serious conversations day after day.

The Hyperpartisan State
25 perc 108. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

North Carolina is a relatively purple state, where voting between the two major parties tends to be close. That might suggest a place of common ground and compromise, but it’s quite the opposite. “A couple of years before the rest of the country got nasty, we started to get nasty,” a North Carolina political scientist tells Charles Bethea. Not long ago, a veto-override vote devolved into a screaming match on the floor, to which the police were called. Bethea, a longtime political reporter based in Atlanta, went to Raleigh to examine how hyper-partisanship plays out on a state capitol, where everyone knows each other, and the political calculations seem to revolve more on who did what to whom, and when, than on who wants to do what now.

Peter Schjeldahl on Good Cheer During Bad Times
16 perc 107. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Four months ago, Peter SchjeldahlThe New Yorker’s longtime art critic, was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. In this week’s issue of the magazine, Schjeldahl writes a personal history about New York’s downtown art scene in the sixties, how he overcame years of abusing drugs and alcohol, what led him to art criticism, and the trick of finding beauty in cracks in the sidewalk. For the final Political Scene podcast of 2019, Schjeldahl joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss life beyond politics.

A Worldwide #MeToo Protest that Began in Chile
7 perc 106. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Three weeks ago, members of a Chilean feminist collective called Las Tesis put on blindfolds and party dresses and took to the streets. The festive atmosphere put their purpose in stark relief: the song they sang was “Un Violador En Tu Camino” (“A Rapist in Your Path”). It’s a sharp indictment of the Chilean police, against whom a hundred charges of sexual violence have been lodged since the beginning of the anti-government protests in October. The lyrics also target the patriarchy in general. The song might have remained a local phenomenon, but someone put it on Twitter, and, in the span of a few days, it became the anthem of women protesting sexism and violence throughout Latin America. A few days later, the protest was replicated in Paris and Berlin, and, shortly thereafter, in Istanbul, where it was shut down by police. The New Yorker’s Camila Osorio was recently in Chile and recounts the exciting story of the creation of a global movement.

Revelations About the Forever War in Afghanistan
18 perc 105. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker
On Monday, the Washington Post published “The Afghanistan Papers,” a trove of more than two thousand pages of interviews with U.S. and foreign officials about the war in Afghanistan. The document reveals the extent to which politicians and military leaders lied to the public about the conflict. Dexter Filkins, who has covered the war since its inception, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the report, his experiences as a reporter in Afghanistan, and the current status of America’s longest war.
This Is William Cohen’s Third Impeachment
18 perc 104. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The current impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump are only the fourth in American history, and William Cohen has been near the center of power for three of them. First, he was a Republican member of the House Judiciary Committee in 1974, when his vote in favor of articles of impeachment helped end the Presidency of Richard Nixon. Twenty years later, as Bill Clinton’s Secretary of Defense, he had to navigate American military policy around the Lewinsky scandal. Cohen is now a Washington power-broker, and he tells The New Yorker’s Michael Luo the story of both sagas and their relation to today’s news. During Watergate, Cohen received death threats for what was perceived as his betrayal of Nixon, and he says that his chances for a Republican leadership position were “finished.” But Cohen implores his G.O.P. successors in Congress to put Constitution above party; otherwise, “this is not going to be a democracy that will be recognizable a few years from now.”

Facts vs. Fiction in the Impeachment Proceedings Against Donald Trump
17 perc 103. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, after two months of questioning seventeen former and current State Department and White House officials, the House Intelligence Committee released its report on the impeachment inquiry into President Trump. What has the country learned with certainty about how the Administration tried to strong-arm the new President of Ukraine, and about the fictional counter-narrative being spun by the Republican Party? Susan B. Glasser joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the strengths and weaknesses in the Democrats’ case for the impeachment of the President.

Rana Ayyub on India’s Crackdown on Muslims
24 perc 102. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

In August, India suspended the autonomy of the state of Kashmir, putting soldiers in its streets and banning foreign journalists from entering. Dexter Filkins, who was working on a story about Narendra Modi, would not be deterred from going. To evade the ban, he sought the help of an Indian journalist, Rana Ayyub. Ayyub had once gone undercover to reveal the ruling party’s ties to sectarian and extrajudicial violence against the Muslim minority. In a conversation recorded last week, Filkins and Ayyub tell the story of how they got into Kashmir and describe the repression and signs of torture that they observed there. Ayyub’s book “Gujarat Files,” about a massacre of Muslims in Gujarat, has made her a target of Hindu nationalists; one of the book’s translators was killed not long ago. She spoke frankly with Filkins about the emotional toll of living in fear of assassination.

What Can Progressive Voters Do to Help Fix Our Broken Political System?
20 perc 101. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

For decades, conservative organizations have poured time, attention, and money into state politics, and today, Republicans control the governorships and state legislatures of twenty-one states. But in recent years, grassroots progressive movements have begun to close the gap. Democrats have seen victories in formerly Republican districts in Mississippi, Virginia, North Carolina, and Maine. In two election cycles, Future Now, an organization that supports progressive candidates in state-level races, has helped flip three legislatures. Its co-founder and executive director, Daniel Squadron, joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how progressive voters can make their voices heard on the issues they care most about.

Samantha’s Journey into the Alt-Right, and Back
38 perc 100. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Since 2016, Andrew Marantz has been reporting on how the extremist right has harnessed the Internet and social media to gain a startling prominence in American politics. One day, he was contacted by a woman named Samantha, who was in the leadership of the white-nationalist group Identity Evropa. (She asked to be identified only by her first name.) “When I joined, I really thought that it was just going to be a pro-white community, where we could talk to each other about being who we are, and gain confidence, and build a community,” Samantha told him. “I went in because I was insecure and it made me feel good about myself.” Samantha says she wasn’t a racist, but soon after joining the group she found herself rubbing shoulders with the neo-Nazi organizer Richard Spencer, at a party that culminated in a furious chant of “seig heil.” Marantz and the Radio Hour producer Rhiannon Corby dove into Samantha’s story to understand how and why a “normal” person abandoned her values, her friends, and her family for an ideology of racial segregation and eugenics—and then came out again. They found her to be a cautionary tale for a time when facts and truth are under daily attack. “I thought I knew it all,” she told them. “I think it's extremely naive and foolish to think that you are impervious to it. No one is impervious to this.”


Samantha appears in Andrew Marantz’s new book, “Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation.” 

On and Off the Debate Stage, Democrats Contend with Race
18 perc 99. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, ten of the seventeen candidates still running for the Democratic nomination met on a debate stage in Atlanta. The setting was significant: for decades, Georgia has been seen as a Republican stronghold, but last year the Democrat Stacey Abrams very nearly won the election for governor. Democrats hope that the state will go blue in 2020. Key to any Democratic strategy in Georgia, and in other states, will be mobilizing black voters, ninety-three per cent of whom went for Abrams in 2018. Jelani Cobb joins Eric Lach to discuss the candidates’ messages on race, and how voter suppression efforts may play a role in the 2020 election.

Lena Waithe on Police Violence and “Queen & Slim”
20 perc 98. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Lena Waithe is the screenwriter and creator of the Showtime series “The Chi,” about the South Side of Chicago, but she tells Jelani Cobb, “Getting your own TV show is like getting beaten to death by your own dream.” Her first script for a feature film is “Queen & Slim,” directed by Melina Matsoukas. It’s about a man and woman who are on a not-great first date, during which they unintentionally kill a police officer at a traffic stop that escalates. “I just wanted to write something about us. But unfortunately, if I’m writing about us, how can I ignore the fact that we’re being hunted?” The film arrives in the aftermath two notorious police killings of black people—Botham Jean in Dallas and Atatiana Jefferson in Fort Worth—only the latest in a long line of similar tragedies. “I do not want that kind of publicity for my film,” Waithe says. “I am like every other black person. . . . Every time these stories hit our phones, a piece of us dies, because we know that we could be next.”

Tricky Dick and Dirty Don: How a Compelling Narrative Can Change the Fate of a Presidency
25 perc 97. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker
In 1972, Richard Nixon’s political future seemed assured. He was reëlected by one of the highest popular-vote margins in American history, his approval rating was near seventy per cent, and the public wasn’t interested in what newspapers were calling the “Watergate Caper.” But the President’s fortunes began to change when new revelations suggested that he knew about the Watergate break-in and that he had participated in a coverup. In May of 1973, the Senate Watergate Committee hearings were broadcast on television, and millions of Americans tuned in to watch compelling testimony about Nixon’s illegal activities. A narrative emerged, of Nixon as a scheming crook who put his own interests before those of the country. His poll numbers plummeted, his party turned on him, and, in August of 1974, Nixon resigned from the Presidency in disgrace. Thomas Mallon dramatized Nixon’s downfall in his 2012 novel “Watergate.” As Congress again debates the impeachment of a President, Mallon joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the power of a good story to affect the course of political history.
The Supreme Court Weighs the End of DACA
16 perc 96. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Jeff Sessions, then the Attorney General, announced in 2017 the cancellation of the Obama-era policy known as DACA—Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. A number of plaintiffs sued, and their case goes to the Supreme Court next week. The New Yorker’s Jonathan Blitzer spoke with two of the attorneys who will argue for it. The noted litigator Ted Olson is generally a champion of conservative issues, but he is fighting the Trump Administration on this case. He told Blitzer, “It’s a rule-of-law case—not a liberal or conversative case—involving hundreds of thousands of individuals who will be hurt by an abrupt and unexplained and unjustified change in policy.” And Blitzer also spoke with Luis Cortez, a thirty-one-year-old from Seattle who is arguing his first Supreme Court case. Cortez is an immigration lawyer who is himself an undocumented immigrant protected by DACA status; if he loses his case, he will be at risk of deportation. 

How Facebook Continues to Spread Fake News
20 perc 95. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

One of the big stories of the 2016 Presidential campaign was the role Facebook played in spreading false and misleading information, from Russia and from inside the United States, about candidates. The company has made some changes, but it is still under attack from the press, activists, users, and Congress for its failure to curb the proliferation of “fake news” on its platform. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s co-founder and chief executive, announced this fall that Facebook will not fact-check political advertisements or other statements made by politicians on the platform. Evan Osnos joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss social media’s power to shape politics and the likely effects on the 2020 Presidential campaign.

How the Irish Border Keeps Derailing Brexit
19 perc 94. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

One of the almost unsolvable problems with the U.K.’s exit from the E.U. is that it would necessitate a “hard border” between Northern Ireland, which is part of the U.K., and the Republic of Ireland, which would remain a member nation in Europe. The border was the epicenter of bloody conflict during the decades-long Troubles, and was essentially dismantled during the peace established by the Good Friday Agreement, in 1998. The prospect of fortifying it, with customs-and-immigration checks, has already brought threats of violence from paramilitaries such as the New I.R.A. At the same time, moving the customs border to ports along the coast of Northern Ireland—as the U.K.’s Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has proposed—strikes Northern Irish loyalists as a step toward unification with the Republic, which they would view as an abandonment by Britain. Patrick Radden Keefe, who wrote about the Troubles in his book “Say Nothing,” discusses the intensely fraught issues of the border with Simon Carswell, the public-affairs editor of the Irish Times.

Impeachment Proceedings Go Public, and Republicans Go On the Attack
20 perc 93. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, the House of Representatives voted to move forward with public hearings into whether President Trump abused his office for political gain. House Republicans unanimously voted against the proceedings, and describe the impeachment process as a conspiracy to unlawfully unseat the President. Trump has called the process an attempted coup. Susan B. Glasser joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what to expect from the Intelligence Committee’s televised hearings.

Sophia Takal’s “Black Christmas,” and the Producer Jason Blum on Horror with a Message
21 perc 92. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On a sound stage in Brooklyn, Sophia Takal is racing to finish her first feature film, in time for a December release. The film is a remake of “Black Christmas,” an early slasher flick from Canada, in which sorority girls are picked off by a gruesome killer. Horror “takes our everyday anxieties and dread and externalizes them for us,” Takal told WNYC’s Rhiannon Corby, “and allows us to witness a character going through it and usually surviving.” Takal brought a very 2019 sensibility to the remake, reflecting the ongoing struggle of the #MeToo movement. “You can never feel like you’ve beaten misogyny,” she said. “In this movie, the women are never given a rest. They always have to keep fighting.”

“Black Christmas” is produced by Jason Blum. Blum found his way to horror films almost by accident: his company, Blumhouse Productions, produced “Paranormal Activity,” which was made for a few thousand dollars and then earned hundreds of millions at the box office. He went on to make high-prestige projects, such as Jordan Peele’s “Get Out,” which became one of the very few horror films to receive an Oscar nomination for Best Picture. Blum understands that a truly frightening movie needs more than good “scares.” “What makes horror movies scary,” he told David Remnick, “is what’s in between the scares,” meaning how it taps into the audience’s anxieties about issues in the real world. Having a message sells, Blum thinks.

Elizabeth Warren and the Revolution in Economics
19 perc 91. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Senator Elizabeth Warren has made a "wealth tax" one of the centerpieces of her presidential campaign. The plan was developed with the help of the economists Emmanuael Saez and Gabriel Zucman, part of a new generation of economists whose work focuses on the failures of free markets and advocate what many see as radical social change. John Cassidy joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how this cohort is affecting policy among the Democratic candidates, and whether the economy might help Donald Trump's 2020 re-election bid.

Ronan Farrow on a Campaign of Silence
22 perc 90. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Farrow’s reporting on Harvey Weinstein and other accused perpetrators of sexual assault helped opened the floodgates of the #MeToo movement. In his new book, “Catch and Kill,” and in “The Black Cube Chronicles” published on, Farrow details the measures that were taken against him and against some of the accusers who went on the record. These included hiring a private spy firm staffed by ex-Mossad officers. Speaking with David Remnick, Farrow lays out a connection between accusations against Harvey Weinstein and NBC’s Matt Lauer. And he interviewed a private investigator named Igor Ostrovskiy who was assigned to spy on him—until he had a crisis of conscience.

Representative Abigail Spanberger and the “National-Security Democrats” Turn the Tide on Impeachment
19 perc 89. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On September 23rd, Representative Abigail Spanberger joined six other House Democrats—all from swing districts and all veterans of the military, defense, and intelligence communities—in drafting an op-ed in the Washington Post declaring President Trump a threat to the nation. The op-ed signalled a shift in the position of the moderate members of the House Democratic caucus. The day after the Post op-ed ran, the House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, announced a formal impeachment inquiry into Trump. Spanberger joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss divisions within the Party, how Democratic candidates can win in 2020, and the Trump debacles in Ukraine and northern Syria.

Evan Osnos and Jiayang Fan on the Hong Kong Protests
18 perc 88. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

The months of protests in Hong Kong may be the biggest political crisis facing Chinese leadership since the Tiananmen Square massacre a generation ago. What began as objections to a proposed extradition law has morphed into a broad-based protest movement. “There was just this rising panic that Hong Kong was becoming just like another mainland city, utterly under the thumb of the Party,” says Jiayang Fan, who recently returned from Hong Kong. In Beijing, Evan Osnos spoke to officials during their celebration of the Chinese Communist Party’s seventieth year in power. He found that the leadership is feeling more secure than it did in 1989, when tanks mowed down student protesters. “I think the more likely scenario,” Osnos tells David Remnick, “is that China will keep up the pressure and gradually use its sheer weight and persistence to try to grind down the resistance of protestors.” 

Trump’s Abandonment of the Kurds Appeases Erdoğan and Infuriates Republicans
19 perc 87. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Last Sunday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan informed President Trump of his intention to launch a military offensive in northeastern Syria, in an effort to eradicate the Kurdish militias there. Trump agreed to draw down American troops to clear the way for the Turkish army. Though Erdoğan regards those militias as terrorist groups, the Kurds have been close American allies in the battle against ISIS. Trump’s decision was met with harsh criticism by high-ranking Republicans, U.S. military officials, and others. Dexter Filkins joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how the incursion into Syria is affecting one of the most volatile regions in the world, and what it could mean for Trump’s Presidency.

The New Yorker on Impeachment
21 perc 86. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

David Remnick asks five New Yorker contributors about the nascent impeachment proceedings against the President. Susan Glasser, the magazine’s Washington correspondent, notes that Republicans have attacked the inquiry but have not exactly defended the substance of Trump’s phone call to Zelensky. Joshua Yaffa, who has been reporting from Kiev, notes Ukraine’s disappointment in the conduct of the American President; Jane Mayer describes how an impeachment scenario in the era of Fox News could play out very differently than it did in the age of Richard Nixon; Jelani Cobb reflects on the likelihood of violence; and Jill Lepore argues that, regardless of the outcome, impeachment is the only constitutional response to Donald Trump’s actions. “This is the Presidential equivalent of shooting someone on Fifth Avenue,” she tells Remnick. 

Trump’s Enablers, Part 2: How Mike Pompeo’s Loyalty to the President Has Affected Diplomacy in Ukraine
20 perc 85. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

On Monday, the Wall Street Journal reported that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was on the line for President Trump’s July 25th phone call with the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, during which Trump urged Zelensky to assist in an investigation into Trump’s political rival, Joe Biden. Pompeo, a fierce Trump loyalist and the last surviving member of his original national-security team, is now implicated in a scandal that threatens Trump’s PresidencySusan B. Glasser joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the rapidly unfolding Ukraine story and Pompeo’s place within it.


Cory Booker on How to Defeat Donald Trump
43 perc 84. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

Senator Cory Booker burst onto the national scene about a decade ago, after serving as the mayor of the notoriously impoverished and dangerous city of Newark, New Jersey. To get that job, Booker challenged an entrenched establishment. “My political training comes from the roughest of rough campaigns,” he tells David Remnick. “You just won’t think it’s America, the kind of stuff we had to go up against. And it [was] such a great way to learn [that campaigning] has to be retail—grassroots. And so much of this, in those early primary states, is about that.”  

Booker spoke with Remnick about growing up black in a largely white area of New Jersey, where his parents had to fight to be able to buy a home; about his long relationship with the Kushner family, which started back when Jared Kushner’s father, Charles, was a leading Democratic donor; and why he’s proud to collaborate with even his direst political opponents on issues such as criminal-justice reform. “Donald Trump signed my bill,” Booker states. “I worked with him and his White House to pass a bill that liberated thousands of black people from prison” by retroactively reducing unjustly high sentences related to crack cocaine. “Tell that liberated person that Cory Booker should not deal with somebody that he fundamentally disagrees with.” 

Note: In this interview, Senator Booker asserts, “We now have more African-Americans in this country under criminal supervision than all the slaves in 1850.” The historical accuracy of this comparison has been challenged. More accurately, the number of African-American men under criminal supervision today has been compared to the number of African-American men enslaved in 1850. 

Trump’s Enablers: How Giuliani, Pence, and Barr Figure Into the Ukraine Scandal
34 perc 83. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This week, evidence emerged that Trump tried to enlist the help of a foreign power to discredit his political opponents—in this case, Democratic Presidential hopeful Joe Biden. Further disclosures revealed that the President may have been aided in his efforts by his personal lawyer, Rudy GiulianiVice-President Mike Pence, and Attorney General William Barr. On Tuesday, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced the start of a formal impeachment inquiry against President Trump, saying that he had betrayed his oath of office, the nation’s security, and the integrity of U.S. elections. Jeffrey ToobinJane Mayer, and David Rohde—three New Yorker writers who have reported extensively about the Administration—join Dorothy Wickenden to discuss the case against Trump, and how his inner circle may have helped jeopardize his Presidency.

In Communities of Color, Fighting for a Stake in the Legal Cannabis Market
14 perc 82. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

People of color have suffered disproportionately under cannabis criminalization, and social-justice advocates have played a major role in the push for legalization; Michelle Alexander’s book “The New Jim Crow” changed many people’s minds on this issue. But, as the legal cannabis market takes off into a multibillion-dollar economy, this “green rush” is likely to leave behind those who suffered. An entrepreneur in New York tells the staff writer Jelani Cobb that “while we’re waiting [for legalization], huge corporations are . . . working on their packaging, how they’re going to come to the market. If we don’t have that same freedom, how is it fair?” Cobb reports on how legalization bills are seeking to address that historical inequity. In Oakland, California, a bill stipulates that half of dispensary permits must be awarded to people who have been harmed by criminalization in the past. But one businessman tells Cobb that, without access to capital, would-be dispensary owners will be shut out, and will likely end up selling those permits for cheap.

How Will the Brinkmanship Between the U.S. and Iran Be Resolved?
18 perc 81. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

This past Saturday, a series of air strikes in Saudi Arabia damaged more than a dozen oil installations, including one of the most critical oil-production facilities in the world. The attack threw global fuel markets into disarray. Houthi rebels in Yemen claimed that they launched the strikes, but they have long been armed by Iran, fuelling conjecture that the attacks were carried out by Tehran. Robin Wright joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss how Iran views U.S. policies in the Gulf and how the Trump Administration has unwittingly strengthened the regime’s hard-liners.

A Texas Republican Exits the House
13 perc 80. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

An exodus is under way in the House of Representatives: not even halfway into the congressional term, fifteen Republicans have announced that they will not run in 2020. One of the exiting members is Will Hurd, a former C.I.A. officer who was elected in 2014. His district in Texas includes nearly a third of the state’s border with Mexico. Although he is reluctant to criticize the G.O.P. directly, Hurd tells the Washington correspondent Susan B. Glasser that he thinks the President’s border policy is ineffective: a wall isn’t the answer, Border Patrol is underfunded relative to the area it covers, and the technology in use for border security is both out of date and overly complicated, “requiring a Ph.D. in computer science to operate,” he says. “I wish I could pass a piece of legislation,” Hurd tells Glasser, “that says you can’t talk about the border unless you’ve been down to the border a few times.” Hurd’s departure is particularly significant because he is—for the sixteen months he has left to serve—the only African-American in the House Republican caucus, and he worries that the President’s negative rhetoric toward people of color is contributing to a demographic shift that’s turning Texas from deep red to purple. “When you have statements the equivalent of, ‘go back to Africa,’ ” Hurd notes, “that is not helpful.” 

Trumpism and Conservatives' Identity Crisis
18 perc 79. rész WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

One of the big stories of the 2016 presidential election was the rupture within the Republican Party. "Never Trump" traditionalists lost their fight to prevent the nomination of Donald Trump, but a small faction still strenuously objects to his scorched-earth style and many of his policies. Earlier this month, Catholic University hosted a debate between two prominent conservatives representing two distinct visions. On one side, the constitutional lawyer and National Review staff writer David French, a voice for traditional Republicanism who sees Trump as a threat to democracy. On the other side, Sohrab Ahmari, the op-ed editor of the New York Post and who fervently supports the president and describes politics as "war and enmity." Benjamin Wallace-Wells joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what their opposing positions mean for the future of the Republican Party.

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