Politics with Amy Walter Every Friday, Amy Walter brings you the trends in politics long before the national media picks up on them. Known as one of the smartest and most trusted journalists in Washington, D.C., Amy Walter is respected by politicians and pundits on all sides of the aisle. You may know Amy her from her work with Cook Political Report and the PBS NewsHour where she looks beyond the breaking news headlines for a deeper understanding of how Washington works, who's pulling the levers of power, and how it all impacts you.Politics with Amy Walter is a co-production of PRI and WNYC Radio in collaboration WGBH.
Politics with Amy Walter

Politics with Amy Walter

From WNJP Radio - FM

Every Friday, Amy Walter brings you the trends in politics long before the national media picks up on them. Known as one of the smartest and most trusted journalists in Washington, D.C., Amy Walter is respected by politicians and pundits on all sides of the aisle. You may know Amy her from her work with Cook Political Report and the PBS NewsHour where she looks beyond the breaking news headlines for a deeper understanding of how Washington works, who's pulling the levers of power, and how it all impacts you.Politics with Amy Walter is a co-production of PRI and WNYC Radio in collaboration WGBH.

Most Recent Episodes

Democratic Candidates Battle It Out in Houston

The third Democratic primary debate is behind us now--all three hours of it. On Thursday night, the top ten polling Democratic candidates met in Houston, Texas. And for the first time, frontrunners Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders shared a single stage. So, did anything from the latest debate reshape the battle for the nomination? That's the question at the center of today's show. We also look at how the caucus process works in Nevada and what we might expect in the first primary state, New Hampshire. Finally, a conversation about the Democrats and impeachment, in light of the House Judiciary Committee vote this week to move forward with an impeachment inquiry. Guests: Claire Malone, senior politics writer for FiveThirtyEight Joel Payne, former aide to the Hillary Clinton Campaign Issac Dovere, staff writer at The Atlantic Shelby Wiltz, caucus director for the Nevada State Democratic Party Rebecca Katz, founding partner of New Deal Strategies Karen Hicks, founder and CEO of Civix Strategy Group Kyle Cheney, Congress reporter for Politico

What Have We Learned on the Campaign Trail?

Amy Walter's take: There's something of a consensus-building within the so-called mainstream political media that it's only a matter of time before Biden's Teflon shield is deflated. His debate performances have been shaky. He is not as quick on his feet as the other candidates. And, he's spent most of the campaign on defense - either explaining past votes, or changing long-held positions on policy. But, it also seems to me that many in the political class may be underestimating the staying power of a flawed - but popular and well-known - candidate. In 2016, for example, the assumption among the political elites - me included - was that once the summer ended, so would Trump's hold on the lead in the GOP race. Voters would start to get serious about electability and stability and would reject this unorthodox candidate. Obviously, we know that didn't happen. This isn't to say that Biden's destined to win the nomination. But, just that his staying power may be more durable than we think. He's built up a lot of goodwill over his many years in office that no one else can claim. Guests: Annie Linskey, National politics reporter for The Washington Post Josh Jamerson, National politics reporter for The Wall Street Journal Elaina Plott, White House correspondent for The Atlantic Matt Paul, Democratic Strategist based in Des Moines

Will Unions Deliver 2020 to the Democrats?

In the episode before Labor Day, we look at the rise and fall of the labor movement, particularly unions. By collectively bargaining for better work conditions, unions elevated the middle class. Over the years, we've watched their membership numbers decline. As a result of a few Supreme Court decisions, a loss in manufacturing jobs, and a lack of increased federal protections, unions saw their influence reduced. As we edge closer to 2020, candidates hoping to win the Democratic nomination have made rebuilding the middle class the central tenant of their candidacies. What role will unions and organized labor play in 2020? Plus, we look at domestic workers and caregivers and how they've been left out of the conversation when it comes to labor protections. Guests:Randi Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers Lee Saunders, President of AFSCME, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Mary Kay Henry, President of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Stephanie Bloomingdale, President of the Wisconsin AFL-CIO Rusty McAllister, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Nevada ALF-CIO Rick Bloomingdale, President of the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO Dave Jamieson, Labor Reporter at the Huffington Post Ai-jen Poo, Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance

Should We Be Worried About a recession?

The ongoing trade war with China, a weakened global economy, and a lack of investment by companies indicates that a recession might be looming. President Trump has spent his first term saying that the economy is in better shape than ever before, but is that really the case? Who stands to suffer most during another recession? Has the trade war with China fulfilled President Trump's objective for the economy? Also, when it comes to understanding economic opportunity in Africa, the continent is still largely overlooked by the West. We look at the African Continental Free Trade Area and the opportunities it could unlock. Finally, a conversation with the political heavy-hitter from New Hampshire that Democratic hopefuls are trying to woo. This episode was guest hosted by Duarte Geraldino. Guests: Nancy Cook, White House Reporter, POLITICO Andria Smythe, Assistant Professor of Economics at Howard University David Luke, Coordinator of the African Trade Policy Centre at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa Howard French, Journalism Professor at Columbia University and former New York Times foreign bureau chief in Africa and China Carlos Cardona, Laconia Democratic Party Chair

Texodus: Can Democrats Turn the Lone Star State Blue?

A number of Republicans in the House have announced their retirements... and turns out many are in suburban districts, where the GOP's support has been dwindling. In June, we saw one of the more high-profile Republican retirements when Congresswoman Susan Brooks, who represents Indiana's 5th congressional district, announced that she would not seek reelection. In fact, 4 of the 11 retirements are Congressman in Texas. This on top of 5 Texas Republican retirements in 2018 and two districts where Democrats flipped the seat. Could this turn Texas — a historically red state — blue, or at least purple? This week, we break down these Republican retirements. Guests: Brendan Buck is a partner at Seven Letter Communications and the former chief communications advisor and counselor to Speaker Paul Ryan. Susan Brooks (R), represents Indiana's 5th congressional district. Pete Sessions (R), former Congressman from Texas. Cal Jillson, professor of political science at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Manny Garcia, executive director of the Texas Democratic Party.

The Past and Present of Gun Control

Last weekend, there were two mass shootings in the span of 13 hours. In El Paso, 22 were killed in what federal authorities are considering a domestic terrorist attack. And in Dayton, nine people were killed when a gunman opened fire in the city's Oregon district. After horrific events like these, there's always questions like "Will lawmakers take action?" and "Will this time be different?" While there has been some small movement in the wake of the Parkland and Las Vegas mass shootings, the issue of gun control is largely at a standstill. This week, we're revisiting the last time major gun control legislation was signed into law. Twenty-five years ago, Congress passed two major gun control bills, but the votes didn't line up exactly as you'd expect. The Brady Bill, which was signed in 1993, didn't go into effect until February 1994, and that was followed by the Assault Weapons Ban later that year. Plus, we take a look at the complex world of absentee ballots. Last week, a new round of charges were filed against a political operative in North Carolina. He's being investigated for alleged voter fraud related to his handling of absentee ballots during the 2016 and 2018 elections. We also break down another voter fraud scandal in Brooks County, Georgia, from 2010. Guests: Hank Brown (R), former Senator from Colorado Glen Browder (D), former Congressman from Alabama German Lopez, senior correspondent at Vox Professor Barry Burden, director of the Elections Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Steve Harrison, political reporter for WFAE Jon Ward, national political correspondent with Yahoo News Andra Gillespie, associate professor of political science at Emory University

Michigan, Michigan, Michigan: the Upcoming 2020 Elections in the Battleground State

This week, Politics with Amy Walter is coming to you from Detroit. The city has gotten a lot of attention over the course of the week as it hosted the latest round of democratic debates. But why Detroit? Because — Michigan. President Donald Trump won Michigan by just over 10,000 votes in 2016. But Democrats are hoping to put the state firmly back in their column. After a strong showing in the 2018 midterms, Democrats are feeling hopeful. Republicans say there's still a lot of support for President Trump — even in the counties, the Democrats were able to flip. Guests: Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D), representing Michigan's 12th District Lavora Barnes, Chair of the Michigan Democratic Party Congresswoman Haley Stevens (D), representing Michigan's 11th District Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D) Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, a progressive activist who ran against Whitmer in the primary Congressman Paul Mitchell (R), representing Michigan's 10th District Jamie Roe, a Michigan-based Republican strategist

Michigan, Michigan, Michigan: the Upcoming 2020 Elections in the Battleground State

Mueller's Testimony Underscores a Crisis of Faith in Democracy

Much of the coverage of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's congressional testimony this week focused on optics, with pundits on both sides framing the hearings as either beneficial or damaging to a particular political narrative. But where the hearings may have lacked in made-for-TV soundbites, Mueller's comments reiterated the fact that the United States remains under attack from a foreign adversary, one that seeks to undermine our faith in the foundational principles of democracy. We hear from cybersecurity experts about how this problem goes far deeper than just election meddling, and what needs to be done to address the continuing threat. Plus, we take a look at the growing amount of student debt owed in the US, which passed a staggering $1.5 trillion in 2018. With more and more students struggling to pay for a college education, what are political leaders, and 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, doing to address this crisis? Guests: Suzanne Spaulding, former Under Secretary for cyber and infrastructure protection at the US Department of Homeland Security. Lisa Kaplan, founder of the Alethea Group. M.H. Miller, editor at The New York Times, and author of a forthcoming book about his experience with student debt. Danielle Douglas-Gabriel, a reporter covering the economics of education for The Washington Post.

There's a Generational Divide Upending U.S. Politics

After a bruising political week in which President Trump's feud with "The Squad" reached a fever pitch, Amy Walter reflects on how both Republicans and Democrats could be alienating crucial voters ahead of the 2020 elections. Plus, we look at the yawning generation gap, as voters from different eras compete for political relevance. With the U.S. electorate divided along generational lines, there are transformational demographic trends already having clear impacts on the way 2020 presidential candidates are trying to appeal to voters. But while the Baby Boomer bloc is increasingly eclipsed by the combined numbers of Generation X, Millennials, and Generation Z, so far it's an open question whether or not the influence of younger voters will have the final say in determining the results of the Democratic primary, or the general election. This week, we look at the different generations active in U.S. politics, and try to figure out the forces at play in deciding the country's future. Guests: Dave Weigel, national political reporter for The Washington Post Paul Taylor, author of The Next America: Boomers, Millennials, and the Looming Generational Showdown Clare Malone, senior political writer at FiveThirtyEight Manuel Pastor, professor of sociology and American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California

Democrats Divided

The ongoing migrant crisis is getting worse, as the Department of Homeland Security is running out of room to house the increasing number of migrants detained at the border. And when evidence of the conditions dominated the news cycle earlier this month, the outrage prompted lawmakers to get involved. But how that involvement played out became the latest point of contention between factions within the Democratic Party. The Senate passed a spending bill aimed at alleviating what the Trump administration said was a lack of funding to properly house detained migrants. But the Democratic-controlled House, wary of writing a blank check without strict limits on how that money would be spent, sent a revised bill back to the Senate. But when that bill died with Mitch McConnell, the conservative-leaning "Problem Solvers" caucus of the House Democrats signaled that they were willing to pass the Senate's no-strings-attached bill, with or without the support of Speaker Pelosi. When Pelosi ultimately sided with the Problem Solvers, it set off a backlash among the party's progressive wing, most notably Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib, and Ilhan Omar, known collectively as "The Squad." And the outrage breathed new life into a long-simmering division between The Squad and Party leadership. This week, Amy examines how deep these divisions go, and whether or not party unity is possible heading into 2020. Also, Representative Seth Moulton from Massachusetts, who's running for the Democratic presidential nomination, joins Amy for her Candidate Talk series. And Eric Liu discusses his new book, Become America: Civic Sermons on Love, Responsibility, and Democracy. Guests: Ryan Grim, the DC bureau chief at The Intercept, and the author of We've Got People: From Jesse Jackson to AOC, the End of Big Money and the Rise of a Movement Seth Moulton, Represents Massachusetts's Sixth District in the House of Representatives, Democratic presidential candidate Heidi Heitkamp, former Senator from North Dakota Steve Kornacki, National Political Correspondent for NBC News and MSNBC, author of the book The Red and the Blue Eric Liu, CEO of Citizen University and executive director of the Aspen Institute's Citizenship and American Identity Program, author of Become America: Civic Sermons on Love, Responsibility, and Democracy

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