113 episodes

Independent Americans is a weekly news show hosted by Paul Rieckhoff. He’s a fighter, a patriot, and an independent political and media force to be reckoned with. After serving as a soldier in Iraq in 2004, Rieckhoff emerged as one of the most dynamic political and social leaders in America. In every episode, he breaks down the most important issues facing our country. And he interviews the most influential and compelling people. He’s taking on Republicans, Democrats—and everyone in between. If you’re in the angry middle, Independent Americans reminds you that you’re not alone. We’re all in this together. Join the Independent Americans movement and subscribe now. Produced by Righteous Media.

Independent Americans with Paul Rieckhoff Righteous Media

    • Politics
    • 5.0 • 7 Ratings

Independent Americans is a weekly news show hosted by Paul Rieckhoff. He’s a fighter, a patriot, and an independent political and media force to be reckoned with. After serving as a soldier in Iraq in 2004, Rieckhoff emerged as one of the most dynamic political and social leaders in America. In every episode, he breaks down the most important issues facing our country. And he interviews the most influential and compelling people. He’s taking on Republicans, Democrats—and everyone in between. If you’re in the angry middle, Independent Americans reminds you that you’re not alone. We’re all in this together. Join the Independent Americans movement and subscribe now. Produced by Righteous Media.

    Jon Bernthal. The Iconic Actor Gets Real About America at a Crossroads. Defining Toughness, and Insurrectionist Using The Punisher Skull. George Floyd, Fatherhood, Sativa, DMX, Pitbulls. Biden's Afghanistan Drawdown.

    Jon Bernthal. The Iconic Actor Gets Real About America at a Crossroads. Defining Toughness, and Insurrectionist Using The Punisher Skull. George Floyd, Fatherhood, Sativa, DMX, Pitbulls. Biden's Afghanistan Drawdown.

    President Biden has declared the war in Afghanistan over. The George Floyd murder case continues to unfold. Coronavirus variants are spreading fast. And the J & J vaccine is on pause. It’s still a tough time in America. 100 days into the Biden presidency, things remain pretty damn turbulent. And Americans are still deeply divided. But millions are vaccinated, our troops are coming home from the longest war in our history, and summer will be here soon. And we are finally looking back on the last few very tough years, and trying to chart a better course forward. That includes exploring what it means to be a leader, to be a citizen, to be a patriot, and to be tough. Far too often in America lately, tough has been defined by a fist. But some are trying to redefine toughness with an open hand--instead of a clenched one. With soft power, instead of hard. And most of all, with an open heart. As we all process the brutal drama of the last year, we’re all exploring what it means to be survivors of this life, this time, and his pandemic. And we’re all at least a little bit tougher. 
    And few have defined American toughness on our screens over the last decade like Jon Bernthal (@JohnnyBernthal). And few define toughness better in real life. After growing up DC, facing down tremendous adversity, and grinding for two decades, Jon has now emerged as one of the most dynamic and exciting actors in Hollywood. America has come to love him in defining roles on The Walking Dead, The Pacific, The Wolf of Wall Street, Fury, Sicario, Baby Driver and Ford v Ferrari. And as Frank Castle, in The Punisher. Soon, he’ll star in The Many Saints of Newark, the prequel of The Sopranos, the reboot of American Gigolo on Showtime, and King Richard, a story about the early days of Venus and Serena Williams. Bernthal’s one of the hardest-working actors in America. He’s also one of the coolest--and one of the most real. 
    He’s married to a nurse, dedicated to his family, and worked for causes ranging from the USO to protecting pitbulls to founding Drops Fill Buckets. Bernthal’s a guy who shaped what it means to be American to the world. And he joins us on Independent Americans for a raw and real conversation spanning the debate around statehood for DC, to the George Floyd trial, to the insurrection in his hometown. Bernthal (a boxer) pulls no punches. He’s known our host, Paul Rieckhoff (@PaulRieckhoff), for 20 years. And he opens up about what makes him happy, the impact of DMX on his life, and why he’s optimistic about the future..
    America is deeply divided. But not about the things Jon’s been a part of. And Independent Americans is killing misinformation like Shane Walsh killed zombies in The Walking Dead. And we're bringing a punishing Frank-Castle-like blast of light to contrast all the heat of other political pods. We're bringing the Fury of the Righteous Media 5 I’s: independence, integrity, information, inspiration and impact. If you’re a concerned citizen who cares about the future of your country, this is your pod. Be a part of the solution. Join us for exclusive access and events by becoming a member of our Patreon community. Get access to events, guests, merch discounts, a Zoom Happy Hour event this Friday, and exclusive content. And check out new IA merch! Camping mugs, t-shirt and more.

    You can also see video of this conversation with Jon Bernthal and 100 others from Sarah Jessica Parker to Meghan McCain; Stephen Colbert to Mayor Pete Buttigieg on the Righteous YouTube page. Independent Americans connects, informs and inspires--and is powered by Righteous Media. Find us on your social media platforms or www.IndependentAmericans.us.

    Watch video of this full conversation:
    https://youtu.be/T_GI9cXbGfE

    And stay vigilant, America. 
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 1 hr 16 min
    Ethan Nadelmann. Pre-4/20 Marijuana Special Episode. New York Legalizes Cannabis. Should All Drugs Be Legal? Can Weed Spark America’s Post-Pandemic Economic Recovery?

    Ethan Nadelmann. Pre-4/20 Marijuana Special Episode. New York Legalizes Cannabis. Should All Drugs Be Legal? Can Weed Spark America’s Post-Pandemic Economic Recovery?

    The marijuana reform movement is on fire. In the election last year, beneath all the Biden and Trump drama, every single state-level cannabis ballot initiative passed--from New Jersey to Mississippi to South Dakota. And now, New York state has legalized the green stuff. Federal legalization is gaining steam, the industry is exploding and everyone wants in on the weed movement. Marijuana is no longer a partisan or fringe issue--it’s popular, mainstream and key to the future of the American economy post-pandemic. And it’s got tremendous support from most independent Americans. 7 in 10 independents and moderates back legalization. So as 4/20 (the unofficial marijuana holiday) nears, Independent Americans is sparking up the cannabis conversation again--and continuing our focus on the state of affairs, the controversies, and the future of cannabis. And we’re also digging into broader drug policy changes happening in America from opioids to psychedelics to criminal justice reform.  
    And so The Godfather of Drugs returns to IA! Ethan Nadelmann (@EthanNadelmann) has been called America’s real Drug Czar. He joined us way back in Episode 12--and he’s back again to bring his unparalleled insight and experience. Ethan has been the mastermind behind the biggest changes to drug policy in US history. A Harvard PhD and the son of a rabbi, Ethan founded the trailblazing Drug Policy Alliance in 1994 and was a lead strategist behind 30 years of reform--including California’s historic 2014 Prop 47 referendum that reduced drug possession for personal use to a misdemeanor. This pivotal political victory proved to be the first domino to fall in a string of historic national changes and unleashed the wave of legalization of marijuana in states all across America we see now—with more to come soon.
    Easter and Passover are behind us, March Madness is over, the vaccine is hitting millions of arms daily, and things are warming up nationwide. But few issues are heating up more than cannabis. And few have a more fascinating past--or a more exciting future.
    Ethan returns to Independent Americans to chop it up with our host, Paul Rieckhoff (@PaulRieckhoff) to break it all down. Rieckhoff is a longtime advocate for drug reform, who has appeared in the media often on the subject, written about it extensively, testified before Congress about the impacts of cannabis for veterans, and spearheaded the landmark VA Medicinal Cannabis Research Act of 2018.
    America is deeply divided. But not about marijuna anymore. And Independent Americans is packing a bowl of light to contrast all the heat of other political pods. Every show is pre-rolled with the Righteous Media 5 I’s: independence, integrity, information, inspiration and impact--to keep you empowered. If you’re a concerned citizen who cares about the future of your country, this is your pod. Be a part of the solution. Join us for exclusive access and events by becoming a member of our Patreon community. Get access to events, guests, merch discounts, Zoom Happy Hour events, and exclusive content. Go check out our cool new IA merch! Durable camping mugs, t-shirts, cool hats and more.
    You can also see video of this conversation with Ethan Nadelmann and 100 other leaders from Chuck D to Chuck Hagel; Sarah Jessica Parker to Meghan McCain; Stephen Colbert to Mayor Pete Buttigieg on the Righteous YouTube page. Independent Americans connects, informs and inspires--and is powered by Righteous Media. Find us on your favorite social media platforms and www.IndependentAmericans.us.
    Watch video of this full conversation:
    https://youtu.be/_K4MxFkoPjU

    And stay vigilant, America.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 1 hr 22 min
    Rick Sorkin & Sharon Koppelman Spring Break Special! Meet The Son and Mother Hosts of the New Righteous Media Pod: Everybody & Their Mother Has a Podcast. Also, Cannabis is Finally Legal in NY!

    Rick Sorkin & Sharon Koppelman Spring Break Special! Meet The Son and Mother Hosts of the New Righteous Media Pod: Everybody & Their Mother Has a Podcast. Also, Cannabis is Finally Legal in NY!

    It’s spring break this week for millions of kids across America. School’s out, Passover, Easter, and March Madness are also here, and millions nationwide are spending extra time with family. And so are we. In this special episode, we are thrilled to introduce you to two new members of our media family: the captivating hosts of the newest Righteous Media production: Everybody and Their Mother Has a Podcast. 
    Rick and his mom (Sharon) are quarantining together in a secret desert location. And it’s been VERY interesting. And fun and inspiring. This charming, new, weekly podcast will be like a warm cup of cocoa with your mom or best friend. Everybody takes you inside the house with Rick and Sharon, two other humans (and their cat), and along for some very special adventures. From Rick’s music-making, to Sharon’s painting, to their shared passion for supporting and understanding the developmental disabilities of Rick’s brother, to breaking down current events, this show will bring smiles and warmth to your ears every time you download. 
    Rick Sorkin (@RickSorkin) is a Santa Monica-based Music Producer, Multi-Instrumentalist, Creative Strategist, Plant-based Chef and Co-host of Everybody.... He’s also 6’5”, ambidextrous and followed on Twitter by Barack Obama. Born and raised in Philly, Rick earned a Business and Music Degrees from The George Washington University. He’s spent time on Madison Avenue and in the center of Hollywood, where he created and contributed to many of the now-common global digital advertising and talent practices.
    Rick’s co-host is his amazing mom. Sharon Koppelman is an artist and a career educator. Sharon’s guiding philosophy is that everyone benefits personally by contributing to their household and their community, and therefore should be supported to do so regardless of ability level. She is Past Board Chair of SPIN, Inc., a non-profit that provides a life of possibilities and assistance to thousands. Sharon taught in the Philadelphia public school system and was adjunct Assistant Professor at Drexel University, where she taught in the Education program. Sharon’s stand-up comedy experience has so far been limited to a single performance in Philly at the now-legendary Cabaret L’Etage. And now, she has a podcast with her son.
    Things are improving quickly in much of America. But we’re not done with the pandemic yet. The emotional trial in the death of George Floyd is underway, disgusting attacks on Asian-Americans continue, and COVID cases and hospitalizations are rising. But the vaccine is rolling out fast, cannabis was legalized in New York, and Michael Strahan closed the gap in his teeth. These are weird times. And Rick and Sharon join Independent Americans and our host Paul Rieckhoff (@PaulRieckhoff) to break it all down. It’s a light-hearted break from the intensity of the last year. And an introduction to two new Righteous Media voices that will help guide you through whatever comes next. 
    America is deeply divided. But Independent Americans is a warm cup of reason that adds light to contrast all the heat of other political pods. Every show brings the Righteous Media 5 I’s: independence, integrity, information, inspiration and impact--to keep you empowered. If you’re a concerned citizen who cares about the future of your country, this is your pod. Be a part of the solution. Join us for exclusive access and events by becoming a member of our Patreon community. Get access to events, guests, merch discounts and exclusive content. Go check out our cool new IA merch! Durable camping mugs, cool hats and more.
    You can also see video of this conversation with Rick Sorkin and Sharon Koppelman and 100 other leaders on the Righteous YouTube page. Independent Americans connects, informs and inspires--and is powered by Righteous Media.
    Subscribe to Everybody & Their Mother Has

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Jake Wood. Reinforcements Are Here. How Team Rubicon Vaccinated 617,000 Americans The Marine Sniper Breaks Down Our Mass Shooting Problem Fighting Domestic Extremism Upstream With Purpose Coping With The Grind Jake’s New Baby Is A Hero

    Jake Wood. Reinforcements Are Here. How Team Rubicon Vaccinated 617,000 Americans The Marine Sniper Breaks Down Our Mass Shooting Problem Fighting Domestic Extremism Upstream With Purpose Coping With The Grind Jake’s New Baby Is A Hero

    Things are warming up in America. And hope is finally spreading faster than the virus. It looks like the second half of 2021 will be a whole lot better than the last year. That’s thanks to the dramatic increase in focus, coordination and teamwork. It’s also thanks to courageous leaders like Jake Wood (@JakeWoodTR)--social entrepreneur, Marine Corps combat veteran, author and CEO of the disaster relief powerhouse non-profit Team Rubicon. 

    Jake at the start of the pandemic in Episode 54. One year later, he’s back--and leading a massive effort that has administered 617,649 vaccines nationwide and counting. He launched the Veterans Coalition for Vaccination (VIC). Vaccinating over half a million people in places from Navajo Nation in Kayenta, Arizona to inner city Chicago, the unity of the six of the nation’s top veteran organizations—Team Rubicon, the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), Student Veterans of America (SVA), Team Red, White & Blue, The Mission Continues, and Wounded Warrior Project---is a model for American unity. Unitedunder Jake’s leadership, these groups have more than a million veterans at their disposal and created an unprecedented coalition to overcome geographic and socioeconomic barriers and get vaccinations to hundreds of thousands.

    Things are getting better in much of America. But it’s not all roses. A new mass shooting happened in Colorado, the FBI is still hunting down insurrectionists, domestic extremism threats are on the rise--and there is still tremendous misformation preventing millions from getting vaccinated. Jake joins Independent Americans and our host Paul Rieckhoff (@PaulRieckhoff) for a blunt and inspiring conversation about the most urgent issues facing us all. The former Marine Corp sniper and a gun owner breaks down shootings from a place of deep experience. He’s also a father of a newborn baby girl that faced down dangerous and harrowing heart surgery just days after being born. Jake opens up about what that was like---and what he learned. And the two renowned combat vets rip into how America can find a better future and how to stay strong--even when you’re tired and exhausted. 

    As we all push through the exhaustion of a year of the pandemic, Independent Americans is bringing you more information and inspiration to help you and yours power into a brighter second half of 2021 and whatever comes next.

    America is still deeply divided. But Independent Americans is a powerful jolt of reason that adds light to contrast all the heat of other political shows. Every show brings the Righteous Media 5 I’s: independence, integrity, information, inspiration and impact--and leaves you empowered and informed. 

    If you’re among the 40% of Americans who are independent, this is your show. If you’re a Republican or Democrat--but not a die-hard partisan--this is your show. If you’re a concerned citizen who cares about the future of your country, this is your show. All are welcome. We invite you to be a part of the solution. Join us for exclusive access and events by becoming a member of the Independent Americans Patreon community. Get access to events, guests, merch discounts and exclusive content. 

    Go check out our very cool new IA merch! Durable camping mugs, cool hats and more.

    You can also see video of this conversation with Jake Wood and over 100 leaders from Chuck D to Chuck Hagel; Sarah Jessica Parker to Meghan McCain; Stephen Colbert to Mayor Pete Buttigieg on the Righteous YouTube page.
    Independent Americans connects, informs and inspires--and is powered by Righteous Media. Find us on your favorite social media platforms and www.IndependentAmericans.us. 
    And stay vigilant, America.
    Watch video of this full conversation:
    https://youtu.be/NMGBliQbUyU
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 1 hr 13 min
    Bianna Golodryga. Should Schools Reopen Now? How Texas Represents the Future of America (Good and Bad). Breaking Down Russia, Putin, Navalny and What’s Next. March Madness, the Advantages of Running and One Shining Moment.

    Bianna Golodryga. Should Schools Reopen Now? How Texas Represents the Future of America (Good and Bad). Breaking Down Russia, Putin, Navalny and What’s Next. March Madness, the Advantages of Running and One Shining Moment.

    As we finally spring ahead and March Madness begins, Independent Americans is the #1 seed in your bracket for fresh, independent news, politics, culture and inspiration. It’s a no-BS perspective you won’t find anywhere else in the media. One that always dominates the paint on national security, foreign affairs, leadership, and social impact. 
    March Madness is here. But not just the basketball tournament. Schools are reopening, millions are getting the vaccine, and help from the government is on the way. But the final score of America’s biggest game is still undecided. Texas is still recovering from it’s lights going out, Biden has called Putin a “killer” and put new sanctions on Russia, and a young white white man murdered six Asian American women in a brutal Atlanta shooting spree. March came in like a lion--and is not letting up. And we have a pod---and an inspiring and experienced guest--to help you through to the final buzzer.
    Bianna Golodryga (@BiannaGolodryga) has been a thoughtful and trusted fixture in the media for two decades. She is CNN’s dynamic Global Affairs analyst, an expert on Russia, a native Texan, a mother, an inspiring American immigration story, and a huge basketball fan. She’s been co-host of CBS “This Morning”, co-host of ABC’s “Good Morning America”, and an anchor for Yahoo News. After migrating to the US as a child from Moldova, in the former Soviet Union, Bianna grew up in Houston as a Rockets fan, and started her journalism career as a producer for CNBC. She’s interviewed newsmakers including President Clinton, Condoleezza Rice and Warren Buffett. She also went to High School with Beyonce and Estaban Powell from the Texas classic, Dazed and Confused. 
    Bianna joins Independent Americans and our host Paul Rieckhoff (@PaulRieckhoff) for a smart and fun conversation about the most urgent issues in America. They power through the spin and complexity, and post up on how to survive hard times, parenting in the pandemic, and the importance of caffeine. And Rieckhoff shares what it was like to take one of the biggest shots of his life: the COVID-19 vaccine.

    It’s a fast-paced conversation between Rieckhoff and another iconic, important and inspiring American. The kind of conversation with a thought-leader that has defined Independent Americans for almost two years. It’s the perfect podcast to guide you through the madness and into the most anticipated spring of our lifetime. 

    America is more divided than ever. But Independent Americans adds light to contrast all the heat of other political shows. Every show brings the Righteous Media 5 I’s: independence, integrity, information, inspiration and impact--and leaves you empowered and inspired. 

    If you’re among the 40% of Americans who are independent, this is your show. If you’re a Republican or Democrat--but not a die-hard partisan--this is your show. If you’re a concerned citizen who cares about the future of your country, this is your show. All are welcome. We invite you to be a part of the solution. Join us for exclusive access and events by becoming a member of the Independent Americans Patreon community. Get access to events, guests, merch discounts and exclusive content. 

    And be sure to check out our very cool new IA merch! Durable camping mugs, cool hats and more.

    You can also see video of this conversation with Bianna Golodryga and over 100 leaders from Chuck D to Chuck Hagel; Sarah Jessica Parker to Meghan McCain; Stephen Colbert to Mayor Pete Buttigieg on the Righteous YouTube page.
    Independent Americans connects, informs and inspires--and is powered by Righteous Media. Find us on your favorite social media platforms and www.IndependentAmericans.us. 
    And stay vigilant, America.
    Watch this full conversation:
    https://youtu.be/NMGBliQbUyU
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 1 hr 42 min
    Wes Moore. Robin Hood’s CEO on One Year of The Pandemic Coming 2 America, Harry & Meghan & The Expanse How the COVID Child Tax Credit Will Transform America Is Wes Running for Governor? The Murder of 2LT Richard Collins, Extremism & Mountains

    Wes Moore. Robin Hood’s CEO on One Year of The Pandemic Coming 2 America, Harry & Meghan & The Expanse How the COVID Child Tax Credit Will Transform America Is Wes Running for Governor? The Murder of 2LT Richard Collins, Extremism & Mountains

    As spring finally nears, Independent Americans blooms as your fresh, trusted, independent source for news, politics, culture and inspiration. It’s a smart, dynamic perspective you won’t find anywhere else in the media. And one that’s always grounded in a focus on national security, leadership and social impact. 
    The weather is getting warmer. The vaccine is coming. Spring is coming. And Wes Moore is back! After a brutal winter, the hope of spring is blooming across the country. And it’s the perfect time to bring back one of our most popular guests ever. 
    Wes Moore (@iamWesMoore) returns for an extended, candid conversation about the most pressing issues in America. An inspiring force for good and one of the most exciting thought-leaders in America, Wes is a best-selling author, father, activist, combat veteran and the CEO of poverty-fighting juggernaut Robin Hood. He joined us back in Episode 6--and he’s back now to give you hope. He talks about his decision to leave Robin Hood, his work to demand justice for murdered Army 2LT Richard Collins, changes at his alma matter, Johns Hopkins, the painful loss of a friend to suicide, and his recent announcement that he’s considering a run for Governor of Maryland. 

    His best-selling book, The Other Wes Moore describes his rise from inner city Baltimore to a Rhodes Scholarship, and is a phenomenon that will soon be a movie produced by Oprah. The combat veteran and regular on Morning Joe joins Independent Americans and his old buddy, fellow activist and veteran Paul Rieckhoff (@PaulRieckhoff), for an insightful conversation about the pandemic after year one, how poverty, education and health needs have skyrocketed, and what the expansion of the child tax credit in the new COVID relief bill could mean for you. Wes and Paul also dig into Coming 2 America, and the Meghan and Harry interview, and what they both reveal about race and change in America. 

    It’s a fun and fast-moving conversation between Rieckhoff and another iconic, important and inspiring American. The kind of conversation between two renowned thought-leaders that has defined Independent Americans for almost two years. It’s the perfect episode to help you through the final days of winter-and launch you into an exciting spring we’ve all been working for. 

    America is more divided than ever before. But Independent Americans adds light to contrast all the heat of other political shows. Every episode brings the Righteous Media 5 I’s: independence, integrity, information, inspiration and impact--and explores the most pressing issues of the day with leaders who are determining what America will be. 

    If you’re among the 40% of Americans who are independent, this is your show. If you’re a Republican or Democrat , but you’re not a die-hard partisan, this is your show. If you’re a concerned citizen who cares about the future of your country, this is your show. All are welcome. We invite you to be a part of the solution. 

    And join us for exclusive access and events by becoming a member of the Independent Americans Patreon community. For $5, get access to events, guests, merch discounts and exclusive content. 

    You can also see video of this conversation with Wes Moore and over 100 episodes with leaders from Chuck D to Chuck Hagel; Sarah Jessica Parker to Meghan McCain; Stephen Colbert to Mayor Pete Buttigieg on the Righteous YouTube page.
    Stay vigilant, America. Independent Americans connects, informs and inspires--and is powered by Righteous Media. 
    On the web: http://IndependentAmericans.us
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/indy_americans
    Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrlrGIJcmgIsJQgOR1ev-ew
    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/IndependentAmericansUS
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/IndependentAmericansUS
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 1 hr 34 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

witnessofadictatorship ,

progressives didn’t start the fight

The commentary on the dem in fighting is spot on about being annoying but the first punch was throne by moderates. Just keeping it real. Moderate Democrats who take money from the insurance industry are the ones saying people don’t want “Medicare for all”.

LouMiks ,

Thanks for the hope and positivity

Hey Paul, I’ve been listening to you in Australia. My daughter married an American and currently lives in GA with her husband

Keenan47 ,

What a free thinking inciting podcast

Paul you are doing a great service to your country and ultimately the globe. When USA finally wakes up from its Trump virus the world will be in better shape. President Mayhem is a lawless racist misogynistic narcissistic cretin and I feel people like you are the anti-virus!! Stay safe stay informed
Arte Et Marte brother.

Keep deleting the stupid. Look after the veterans.

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