political-theater-podcast

Why a crowded 2020 ‘knife fight’ is good for Democrats
Political Theater, Episode 67

Former Vice President Joe Biden, right, and Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., left, (seen here at a swearing-in ceremony in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, January 03, 2017, with Harris' husband Douglas Emhoff) are vying for the Democratic presidential nomination. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democrats continue to throw their hats into the 2020 presidential race, and veteran strategist Rodell Mollineau thinks that’s a healthy way to work out the party’s message during a “once in a generation time” for them. “I’m all for this,” he says. Mollineau, a founder of American Bridge and Rokk Solutions, and previously a staffer for Senate majority leaders Tom Daschle and Harry Reid, discusses with Jason Dick and Nathan Gonzales the burgeoning field, what an ideal ticket would look like and learning from 2016’s mistakes.

When Fritz Hollings ‘made the turn’ as a Southern politician
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 66

Ernest "Fritz" Hollings, then-governor of South Carolina, campaigns with John Kennedy during the 1960 presidential campaign and helped JFK win South Carolina and six other southern states. Before he left office, Hollings would reverse himself on segregation and call for integration. He went on to serve in the Senate from 1966 until 2005. (CQ Roll Call file photo).

Before the late Sen. Ernest “Fritz” Hollings was elected to what would become a distinguished congressional career, the South Carolina Democrat reversed himself on the defining issue in Southern politics: segregation. 

Running for governor in 1958, Hollings opposed integration, a keystone battle in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision desegregating public schools. But by the end of his term, he said it was time for the South to change, taking a step out of line with many of his Democratic colleagues in the region. 

Why ‘Queer Eye’ stormed Capitol Hill
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 65

Jonathan Van Ness from the Netflix series ‘Queer Eye,’ takes a selfie with a fan in the Capitol after meeting with Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., on Thursday, April 4, 2019. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Washington might be Hollywood for ugly people, but every once in a while Hollywood pretties the place up. That was certainly the case when the cast of “Queer Eye” came to the Capitol to advocate for the Equality Act, to the delight of many staffers, members and tourists. Jennifer Shutt discusses how the celebrity advocates used their powers for policy purposes. 

Dear senators: More conflict please

Maybe a little MORE conflict is what the Senate needs to get out of its funk. (Laura Patterson/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Senate pushed the nuclear option, again, to change its rules so judicial and executive nominees are subject to less debate. With a debate that featured Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell delivering such eloquent bon mots as “He started it!” at Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, it’s fair to ask what it will take to restore the chamber to a place that looks like it’s populated with adults. 

“Ironically, I think it’s going to take more conflict,” says James Wallner, a senior fellow at the R Street Institute, former Senate aide and all-around procedural badass.

Why we should care that the Senate will debate less
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 64

The Senate changed its rules, again, and the result will be less debate on judicial and executive nominees. The result could have ramifications for civil discourse. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Will Mueller matter in 2020?
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 63

President Donald Trump alongside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., left, and Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., has been trumpeting the Mueller report. But will it matter to voters in 2020. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

‘The River and the Wall,’ a journey down the wall’s path
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 62

Ben Masters, director of "The River and the Wall," right, discusses his movie about the Rio Grande and the immigration and border issues around it with Political Theater Podcast host Jason Dick. (Nathan Ouellette/CQ Roll Call)

Not green with envy: People who missed Friends of Ireland lunch

From left, Massachusetts Rep. Richard E. Neal, President Donald Trump, Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Speaker Nancy Pelosi follow Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Michael Stenger and House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving down the House steps after the annual Friends of Ireland luncheon on Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Regardless of how you spend your St. Patrick’s Day, it’s not likely to be as awkward as the Friends of Ireland luncheon at the Capitol this year.

Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar found himself Thursday in close quarters with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and President Donald Trump, one day before the president vetoed a resolution Congress passed to terminate his national emergency declaration on the southern border. Amid all that, Trump found time to discuss Brexit, which the Irish are concerned will erect a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland. 

Why Trump, in the era of fake news, is fueling journalism majors
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 61

Christina Bellantoni, professor of journalism at the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, says it is more important than ever for the media to earn back the trust the public used to have in the press. (James R. Brantley/CQ Roll Call file photo)

When you want to HR 1 but have to anti-hate first
Podcasts for all the news, plus marijuana and daylight saving too!

Bipartisan Buds? Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, and Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, hold a news conference Thursday outside the Capitol to discuss the introduction of two bipartisan marijuana bills. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Not disrespect intended to the Senate, but the action was in the House this past week, dominated by debate about a resolution condemning anti-Semitism and bigotry and passage of a sweeping overhaul of campaign finance, election and ethics laws. And we have a podcast for each topic! We also have a cool story and video about pot and more. 

HR 1. Democrats love it. Republicans hate it. K Street really hates it. The White House wants to veto it.