Politics & Polls is a podcast produced by the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs.
#220: The President’s Cabinet (Lindsay Chervinsky)
Once all members are confirmed, President Joe Biden’s cabinet will be the most diverse group of advisers ever appointed. This team even includes Princeton’s Cecilia Rouse, who currently awaits a Senate vote.
In this episode, historian Lindsay Chervinsky joins Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang to discuss Biden’s senior leadership team, as well as the history of presidential cabinets. Chervinsky is author of a new book, “The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution.”
Chervinsky is the scholar in residence at the Institute for Thomas Paine Studies at Iona College, a senior fellow at the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies, and a professorial lecturer at the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University. She’s a historian of Early America, the presidency, and the government, especially the president’s cabinet.
#219: How War Shapes Us (Margaret MacMillan)
From World War I to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, conflict has long been a part of American history. These events have molded society and culture, producing effects that ripple through generations.
Author and historian Margaret MacMillan joins Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang in this week's episode to discuss how war is in our bones. She is author of the new book, “War: How Conflict Shaped Us" and a professor of history at the University of Toronto and emeritus professor of international history and the former Warden of St. Antony's College at the University of Oxford.
#218: How the Religious Right May Have Provoked the Insurrection (Katherine Stewart)
At the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, religious messaging echoed through the streets as Christian-right activists protested the 2020 presidential election. What role did the religious right play in the uprising at the Capitol? And will they continue to be emboldened despite President Donald Trump’s departure?
Katherine Stewart joins Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang in this episode to discuss the religious right’s rise to power and its role in the insurrection. She penned an op-ed last month for The New York Times on “The Roots of Josh Hawley’s Rage,” which the trio disentangle on the show.
Stewart has reported on the religious right for more than a decade. She is the author of “The Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism.”
#217: An Insurrection, an Inauguration & an Impeachment
January has been a politically charged month. Georgia flipped blue in two runoff U.S. Senate races, followed by a violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. A week later, President Joe Biden was inaugurated, and now debates in the U.S. Senate continue to thunder as a second impeachment trial for Trump approaches. Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang unpack all that’s unfolded so far this month in this week’s episode.
#216: Presidential Legacies (Jonathan Alter)
People often wonder what a U.S. President’s legacy will be — especially those who only serve one term in office — but the ways we remember Presidents can change over time. One such case is President Jimmy Carter who, to some, was considered the embodiment of a failed presidency. In retrospect, however, many of the ways in which President Carter governed were ahead of their time.
Author and journalist Jonathan Alter joins Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang in this week’s episode to take a deep dive into President Carter’s legacy. Alter is an award-winning documentary filmmaker and author who has written three books about American presidents. The latest is “His Very Best: Jimmy Carter, a Life,” published in 2020 by Simon & Schuster.
#215: All About JFK (Fredrik Logevall)
Today, many are examining leadership in American politics. Historians, biographers, and journalists are turning to the past to uncover how leadership, especially the presidency, has changed throughout the decades.
Among those is historian Fredrik Logevall, who recently published a book on President John F. Kennedy, titled “JFK: Coming of Age in the American Century, 1917-1956.” Logevall joins Julian Zelizer in this episode to dispel some of the myths surrounding John F. Kennedy, presenting a complex and sometimes vulnerable American leader.
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I've enjoyed Politics and Polls for some time now, so I figured it was time to give it my written endorsement! Sam and Julian are very good hosts who ask great questions and bring their own unique academic backgrounds to the table in every show. The guests too ofer a wealth of expertise, and I enjoy the variety that we get as the audience: politicians and pollsters (as you might expect), but also historians, economists, and even speechwriters. If you are interested in current events and the ideas that are shaping them, I highly recommend Politics and Polls.
Great political content, could stand better audio
I really enjoy this podcast. The subjects are always interesting and wide-ranging. I’ve listened to every one of these since the very start. The only critique I’d offer is that the audio production is not always the best. Sometimes the levels are too low and not at the same volume among the different people speaking making it hard to hear occasionally.
The Audio should be such an easy fix.. reach out to WHYY
Honestly this Podcast deserves a listen but the poor quality Audio makes listening a chore. Anke Koning