445 episodes

David Axelrod, the founder and director of the University of Chicago Institute of Politics, and CNN bring you The Axe Files, a series of revealing interviews with key figures in the political world. Go beyond the soundbites and get to know some of the most interesting players in politics.

The Axe Files with David Axelro‪d‬ The Institute of Politics & CNN

    • News

David Axelrod, the founder and director of the University of Chicago Institute of Politics, and CNN bring you The Axe Files, a series of revealing interviews with key figures in the political world. Go beyond the soundbites and get to know some of the most interesting players in politics.

    Ep. 432 — Rep. Joe Neguse

    Ep. 432 — Rep. Joe Neguse

    Rep. Joe Neguse first became interested in politics at a young age, inspired by his immigrant parents’ lesson to give back to the country that had welcomed them from Eritrea. He joined student government and got elected to the University of Colorado Board of Regents while still in law school. But the second-term congressman reached national prominence as an impeachment manager in the second impeachment trial of former President Trump, delivering deft and emotional arguments on behalf of House Democrats. Rep. Neguse joined David to talk about his personal connection to immigration legislation, his experiences on January 6 and throughout the impeachment process, and why he believes voting rights might force filibuster reform.

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    • 58 min
    Ep. 431 — Fareed Zakaria

    Ep. 431 — Fareed Zakaria

    As the Covid-19 pandemic spread across the US and much of the country hunkered down under stay-at-home orders, journalist, author and CNN host Fareed Zakaria was already thinking about the future. He began considering the lessons the virus could teach us about our health, the economy and society moving forward. Fareed joined David to discuss what we’ve learned so far about combatting Covid-19, why today’s economy needs political intervention for a more equitable future, the faltering American Dream and his new book, “Ten Lessons for a Post-Pandemic World.”

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    • 1 hr 2 min
    Ep. 430 — Heidi Heitkamp

    Ep. 430 — Heidi Heitkamp

    While former US Senator Heidi Heitkamp was growing up in Mantador, North Dakota, her family made up one tenth of the town’s population. She took the lessons she learned from her small-town upbringing to the Senate, where she served as a rare Democrat from a deep-red state willing to work across the aisle with then-President Donald Trump. Former Sen. Heitkamp joined David to talk about rural America’s emotional attachment to Trump, the energy industry and climate change, why she couldn’t vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court and the passing of conservative radio star Rush Limbaugh.  

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    • 1 hr 8 min
    Ep. 429 — Daniel Goldman

    Ep. 429 — Daniel Goldman

    After more than a decade working as a federal prosecutor and legal analyst, Daniel Goldman became a household name in 2020 for his role as lead counsel for the House in the first impeachment trial of former President Trump. As Trump’s second impeachment trial continues, Daniel joined David to talk about the House managers’ opening arguments, the through line from Trump’s first impeachment to his second, growing up a descendent of Levi Strauss, and how losing his father as a child impacted the trajectory of his life. 

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    • 59 min
    Ep. 428 — Andrew McCabe

    Ep. 428 — Andrew McCabe

    Former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe didn’t always plan to become an agent, but while interning at the Department of Justice he found himself obsessed with intricate details in case records. The fascination led him to a 22-year career in the Bureau—one that would end with McCabe himself at the center of a DOJ investigation. He joined David to talk about the “slow burning rise” of domestic terrorism, the decision to open an investigation into Russian involvement in the 2016 election, and the damage he believes the Trump administration has done to the FBI.

    To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy

    • 59 min
    Ep. 427 — Rep. Adam Kinzinger

    Ep. 427 — Rep. Adam Kinzinger

    Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a sixth-term Congressman from Illinois, recently found himself in the spotlight after he called for former President Trump’s removal from office following the January 6 attack on the Capitol. He was also one of 10 Republican House members to vote in favor of impeaching Trump. While some are lauding him as a voice of reason within the Republican Party, others are deriding him for turning against Trump and being out of touch with the broader GOP. Rep. Kinzinger joined David to talk about what he sees as his battle to restore the Republican Party, what happens when leaders are more concerned with fame than policy, the evil he felt on Jan. 6 and whether he has future plans for statewide office.

    To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy

    • 56 min

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