The New Yorker: Politics And More


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


  • How Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Death Is Changing the 2020 Election

    How Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Death Is Changing the 2020 Election

    25/09/2020 Duração: 22min

    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 Can Joe Biden win the Presidency based on a promise of generational change? The fall and rise of Kamala Harris. When a sitting President threatens to delay a sacrosanct American ritual like an election, you should listen. To understand the path Donald Trump has taken to the 2020 election, look at what he has provided the executive class. What happens if Trump fights the election results? The refusal by Mitch McConnell to rein in Trump is looking riskier than ever. Sign up for our election newsletter fo

  • An Election in Peril

    An Election in Peril

    21/09/2020 Duração: 18min

    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?

    Are Voters Asking the Wrong Questions About the 2020 Elections?

    17/09/2020 Duração: 20min

    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?

    What to Do with a Confederate Monument?

    14/09/2020 Duração: 33min

    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

    Jiayang Fan on Navigating Her Mother’s Illness While Becoming a Target for Chinese Nationalists Online

    10/09/2020 Duração: 25min

    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”

    Bette Midler and the Screenwriter Paul Rudnick on “Coastal Elites”

    07/09/2020 Duração: 21min

    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 a

  • Can Ron DeSantis Deliver a Victory in Florida to Donald Trump?

    Can Ron DeSantis Deliver a Victory in Florida to Donald Trump?

    03/09/2020 Duração: 21min

    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?

    Would an Election Victory Be Joe Biden’s F.D.R. Moment?

    31/08/2020 Duração: 27min

    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,

  • Trump’s Convention and the Allure of the Politics of Fear

    Trump’s Convention and the Allure of the Politics of Fear

    27/08/2020 Duração: 19min

    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?

    Everyone Knew Who Shot Ahmaud Arbery. Why Did the Killers Walk Free?

    24/08/2020 Duração: 27min

    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 inc

  • The Democratic Convention, Online and United

    The Democratic Convention, Online and United

    21/08/2020 Duração: 21min

    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

    Isabel Wilkerson on America’s Caste System

    17/08/2020 Duração: 14min

    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

    Kamala Harris and the Future of the Democratic Party

    13/08/2020 Duração: 17min

    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

    The Documentary ICE Doesn’t Want You to See

    10/08/2020 Duração: 15min

    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

    Donald Trump Declares War on TikTok

    06/08/2020 Duração: 17min

    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

    Mayor Lori Lightfoot and the Federal Forces in Chicago

    03/08/2020 Duração: 13min

    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

    Why Trump and the Public Love the Army Corps of Engineers

    30/07/2020 Duração: 18min

    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

    Emily Oster on Whether and How to Reopen Schools

    27/07/2020 Duração: 16min

    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

    In Portland, Oregon, Trump Cracks Down on Protests

    24/07/2020 Duração: 16min

    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

    Chance the Rapper’s Art and Activism

    20/07/2020 Duração: 21min

    “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.”

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