Podcasts

Here’s what House Democrats are saying about impeaching Trump
CQ on Congress podcast, Episode 154

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., says that President Trump “is engaged in a coverup” and House committee investigations “may take us to place that is unavoidable in terms of impeachment or not but we're not at that place.” (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Democrat Jamie Raskin of Maryland, who sits on the House Judiciary Committee that would lead an impeachment inquiry, says he believes President Donald Trump has committed high crimes, both in obstructing Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller’s investigation and in refusing to cooperate with congressional investigators. CQ Roll Call senior politics reporter Simone Pathé talks about her interviews this week with Democrats from competitive House districts. They told her they are more open to beginning impeachment proceedings because of Trump’s refusal to cooperate with congressional investigators.

Show Notes:

Get used to talking about Pennsylvania
Political Theater, Episode 74

Hello, Pennsylvania! Air Force One arrives with President Donald Trump for a rally at the Williamsport Regional Airport in Montoursville, Pa., on Monday, May 20, 2019. The perennial battleground state will go a long way to determining the next president. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

For pure Political Theater, it will be hard to beat Pennsylvania during the 2020 campaign. The Keystone State will be, well, key to an Electoral College victory. President Donald Trump knows it. That may be why he has visited it six times since taking office, including to Montoursville in the north central part of the state on May 20.

He won’t be alone, though, because the current Democratic frontrunner, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., was born in Scranton, represented neighboring Delaware in the Senate for decades and opened his official campaign headquarters in Philadelphia on May 18. Pennsylvania has long been a swing state in presidential politics, and Democrats’ ability to flip several Republican seats in 2018 paved the way for them retaking the majority in the House.

Taliban money and fighter jets at issue in Pentagon's $690 billion bill
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 110

U.S. Marine Corps F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters from Naval Air Station Pensacola, Fla. fly off the coast of Northwest Fla. May 15, 2013, off the coast of Northwest Florida. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Donald R. Allen/Released)

House appropriators this week will take up the biggest of the 12 annual spending bills, the $690 billion Pentagon measure that includes some prickly issues such as funding for Taliban expenses for peace talks with the U.S. and money to give the Pentagon more F-35 fighter jets than it requested, says CQ Roll Call's senior defense reporter John M. Donnelly. He lays out what is likely to happen to the measure that assumes higher spending levels for fiscal 2020.

Lawmakers seek solutions in Venezuela, Iran
CQ on Congress podcast, Episode 153

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence (L) shakes hands with Carlos Vecchio (3rd L), a representative of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido, outside the West Wing of the White House after a meeting January 29, 2019, in Washington, DC. The Trump Administration has imposed sanctions on Venezuelan state-owned oil company in order to put pressure on President Nicolas Maduro to give up his power and step down. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

These Democratic women don’t want to be ‘show ponies’
Political Theater: Episode 73

Democratic House freshmen banding together to help each other raise money to keep their seats in 2020 are, from left, Reps. Mikie Sherrill, Abigail Spanberger, Elissa Slotkin, and Chrissy Houlahan, along with Rep. Elaine Luria. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Five Democratic freshmen, all women with military or intelligence backgrounds, are banding together to help each other fundraise for their 2020 races. They all flipped Republican districts in 2018, and they know winning districts like theirs is the key to holding and expanding the House majority in 2020. 

After a few months in Congress, they’ve figured out who are the “workhorses” and who are the “show ponies,” in the words of Michigan Rep. Elissa Slotkin, and they’re tired of the latter getting all the attention. Along with Slotkin, Reps. Elaine Luria and Abigail Spanberger of Virginia, Mikie Sherrill of New Jersey and Chrissy Houlahan of Pennsylvania are fighting to hold the majority.

Movie night: The Catholic priest who shepherded civil rights
Political Theater bonus: Episode 72

The Rev. Theodore Hesburgh, center left, with Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil-rights protesters in the 1960s.(Courtesy O’Malley Creadon Productions)

A documentary about the late Notre Dame president Fr. Theodore Hesburgh, a real life “Forrest Gump” who challenged presidents and popes in the last half-century, resonates in today’s turbulent times, the director of the film tells CQ Magazine managing editor Mike Magner, who grew up hearing about Father Ted’s work and causes. The film, directed by Patrick Creadon, explores the challenges Father Ted faced with Republican and Democratic administrations in advancing civil rights. 

Show Notes:

Stalemate over disaster aid frustrates states
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 109

Relief for Puerto Rico after deadly hurricanes is among the issues hanging up a broader disaster aid package in Congress. (Angel Valentin/Getty Images)

Higher tariffs on Chinese goods spark call for Congress to intervene
CQ on Congress podcast, Episode 152

The U.S. hiked tariffs on Chinese imports and Beijing threatened to impose countermeasures. The two countries continue negotiations. (U.S. Army Photo by Sgt. Mikki L. Sprenkle/Released)

The continuing damage to businesses and farmers from the trade stand off between China and the U.S. is a sign that Congress needs to reinsert itself into the trade policy-making process again, argues Clark Packard, a trade policy counsel at the R Street Institute, a center-right think tank. He warns that boosting tariffs on Chinese imports "has the potential to spiral out of control.'' And CQ Roll Call's Ellyn Ferguson explains where legislation currently pending in Congress stands.

Who’s afraid of political gerrymandering?
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 71

Anti-gerrymandering activists gather on the steps of the Supreme Court as justices prepare to hear the Benisek v. Lamone case on Wednesday, March 28, 2018. The case challenged Maryland's 2012 Congressional redistricting. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Political gerrymandering is losing friends fast, at least in the courts. Ohio and Michigan recently got smacked by federal judges for rigging the maps in favor of Republicans. At the same time, the Supreme Court could decide next month whether Maryland and North Carolina drew unconstitutional gerrymandered maps to favor Democrats and Republicans, respectively.  Why all the interest all of a sudden in such an esoteric part of politics? CQ Roll Call campaign reporters Simone Pathé and Stephanie Akin are our guides through the maze of maps on the latest Political Theater podcast. 

Why Trump, Chuck and Nancy face huge hurdles in infrastructure spending plan
CQ Budget Podcast, Episode 109

The Washington Monument can be seen as traffic travels over the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge April 13, 2015. The bridge is one of 61,000 bridges across America that the Department of Transportation said were structurally deficient and in need of repair. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Movie Night: “Hail Satan?”
Political Theater Bonus, Episode 70

Penny Lane, director of the documentary film "Hail Satan?" is interviewed for an episode of the Political Theater podcast in the CQ Roll Call podcast studio in Washington, D.C., on April 17, 2019 (Thomas McKinless/CQ Roll Call).

Why Democrats haven't passed a minimum wage bill
CQ on Congress podcast, Episode 151

Former Vice President Joe Biden is one of several Democratic presidential candidates that support increasing the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democratic presidential candidates and most House Democrats want to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 an hour by 2024, a proposal David Cooper of the Economic Policy Institute says makes sense. But CQ Roll Call’s Lindsey McPherson explains why some Democrats representing rural areas are holding up the bill.

In crowded field, 2020 Democratic presidential hopefuls turn to podcasts
Medium growing in popularity puts candidates ‘between your ears’

South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, a candidate for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, records an episode of the “Cape Up” podcast with host Jonathan Capehart. (Courtesy Pete for America)

As he strove to boost recognition of his hard-to-pronounce name in the crowded field of 2020 Democratic presidential hopefuls, Pete Buttigieg appeared on at least 30 different podcasts.

And more are planned for the future.

No holds Barr as Democrats grill attorney general
Political Theater, Episode 69

Sens. Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Kamala Harris, D-Calif., both candidates for the 2020 presidential race, got their chance to question Attorney General William Barr about the Mueller report. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Movie Night: “Knock Down the House”
Political Theater Bonus: Episode 68

Political Theater host Jason Dick discusses the documentary "Knock Down the House" with director Rachel Lears, middle, and Amy Vilela. (Nathan Ouellette/CQ Roll Call)