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Politics is Everything Podcast

Ep. 26: Is Joe Biden’s approval too weak for him to win the 2024 Presidential Election? Ft. Kyle Kondik

Across more than 230 years of American history, 26 presidents have run for re-election after a full term and only 10 have lost. A mere four have lost in the past century – Herbert Hoover in 1932, Jimmy Carter in 1980, George Bush in 1992 and Donald J. Trump in 2020. Based on recent history, a key question for Biden is whether a president can win reelection with an approval rating in the low-to-mid 40s.

Links in this episode:

Is Biden’s Approval Rating Too Weak for Him to Win?

Ep. 25: Leaning Into State Trends Pt. 1 ft. J. Miles Coleman

How do state voting trends compare to the national popular vote in presidential elections since 2000? J. Miles Coleman shares his new analysis that contrasts two regions –  the North and South.

Links in this Episode:

Leaning Into State Trends: The Northeast and Greater South

Ep. 24: Can We Become Re-sensitized to Crazy? Ft. Tara Setmayer

This has not been a great week for Fox News or Ron DeSantis. Tara Setmayer joins us to discuss the fallout from the Dominion Voting Systems settlement with Fox News and weighs in on the 2024 presidential election. She expresses deep concern for the way in which the media is contributing to the “desensitization of crazy” and how some channels are already covering 2024 presidential election as if it were a regular election. “It feels like Groundhog Day,” says Setmayer, about the media making the same mistakes as they did in 2016. This is the time for journalists and media to seriously consider the way they approach coverage and content of politics generally and elections specifically. Tara also discusses what the Republican Party should do to rebuild. “People don’t change until they’ve paid enough of a price. Republicans need to get with it. They can’t continue to shrink their voting base.” 

Tara Setmayer is contributor to ABC News, MSNBC and former GOP Communications Director on Capitol Hill. She’s appeared on ABC‘s The View, ABC’s Good Morning America, and on HBO‘s Real Time with Bill Maher. In January 2020, she joined The Lincoln Project as a senior advisor and hosts the live show “The Breakdown” along side co-founder Rick Wilson, on the organization’s streaming channel, LPTV.

Ep. 23: How Can We Defend Against Cybersecurity Threats? ft. Chris Krebs

Chris Krebs, the first director of the federal Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), joins us to discuss a range of pressing national security and cybersecurity threats, AI, neural network models, machine learning, leaked classified information and more.

The way to overcome election denialism, says Krebs, “is to push good policy ideas and good policy outcomes. Grievance politics, negative politics, fear politics, has a shelf life. Keep focusing on the positive and people will be more attracted to that in the long term. Yes, it looks pretty dark now, but there are positive policy concepts we can focus on.” 

Mr. Krebs is a Scholar at the Center for Politics and a CBS political analyst. He and former Facebook Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos co-founded and head the Krebs Stamos Group, a cybersecurity consultancy.

Links in this episode:

CISA Security Advisors
Cybersecurity High-Risk Series:Challenges in Securing Federal Systems and Information, GAO 2023
Lawfare Podcast

Ep. 22: Deep In the Heart of Texas…There’s a Growing Democratic Trend?

What are the voting trends in the Southwest states of Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada? As recently as 2004, George W. Bush carried all 5 of these states, but there’s been a Democratic trend in the region more broadly in the years since. Kyle Kondik continues the deep dive of how voters in the most populous versus the least populous counties vote in presidential elections. We also discuss the Tennessee Republican supermajority’s expulsion of two Black Democratic state legislators – Justin Pearson and Justin Jones and Senator Tim Scott’s announcement that he’s forming a presidential exploratory committee.

Links in this episode:

How the Other Half Votes: The Southwest
Elected Officials Expelled from State Legislatures

Ep. 21: Flying Close to the Sun

In this episode, we discuss the indictment of Donald J. Trump, the Wisconsin State Supreme Court election, and the presidential election voting trajectories in the Eastern states of Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Links in this Episode:

With Protasiewicz win, Democrats flip the Wisconsin Supreme Court
How the Other Half Votes: The East
Night Train

Ep. 20: Doing Everyday Democracy ft. Jamelle Bouie

New York Times columnist Jamelle Bouie joins us to discuss a range of issues facing American politics, misinformation, the fantasies of political separation, and what he would do to strengthen democracy. “Politics is about collectively deciding how we’re going to solve problems and how we’re going to govern ourselves. As that gets divorced from how people experience politics, it can have the perverse effects we’re seeing now,” Bouie tell us. Political conflicts aren’t going away, but reforming party politics and the structures that incentivize party competition may lower the temperature, Bouie argues. 

Jamelle Bouie is also a political analyst for CBS News and a scholar at the UVA Center for Politics. 

Links in this Episode:

Jamelle Bouie’s website
Columns at New York Times 

Ep. 19: What Are the Driving Forces Behind Shifting Voting Patterns in the Midwest?

What are the factors driving shifts in presidential voting patterns in the Midwest states of Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa, Ohio, Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana? In this episode, Kyle Kondik provides an in-depth look at the partisan split and direction of counties in these states. Carah Ong Whaley and Kyle also discuss the high-stakes supreme court contest in Wisconsin.

Links in this Episode:

How the Other Half Votes
What to Watch for in the Wisconsin Supreme Court race
A First Look at 2024 State Supreme Court Contests

Ep. 18: What Is the Future of Republican Party? Ft. Barbara Comstock

In this episode, we talk with former Republican Representative Barbara Comstock about why a red wave didn’t materialize in the 2022 elections, the state and future of the Republican Party, and potential indictments of Donald Trump. 

Barbara was elected to Congress in 2014, and served two terms representing Virginia’s Tenth Congressional District, making her the first woman elected to that seat. She was named as one of the “Top Ten Most Effective Lawmakers” in the 115th Congress by the Center for Effective Lawmaking, a joint effort of the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University. Barbara also serves as an ABC News political contributor and appears regularly on CNN, PBS, and MSNBC.

Links in this Episode:

Barbara Comstock on Twitter
Baker Donelson
Issue One
Sarah Longwell, The Focus Group

Ep. 17: How Women Are Showing Up for Justice and Democracy

At a time when political rights are being contested, we talk with Dahlia Lithwick about the women who are working tirelessly through the law and legal system in pursuit of justice and a more democratic society.

Dahlia Lithwick is the senior legal correspondent at Slate and host of Amicus, Slate’s award-winning biweekly podcast about the law.  Her work has also appeared in The New York Times, Harper’s, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, The New Republic, and Commentary, among other places. Lithwick won a 2013 National Magazine Award for her columns on the Affordable Care Act. She was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in October, 2018.

Links in this Episode:

Lady Justice: Women, the Law and the Battle to Save America (Penguin 2002)