13 episodes

Democracy faces a wide range of pressing challenges - from extreme partisanship and divisive politics to persistent inequities in access, voice and participation in public institutions and decision-making processes, from civic unrest to institutions that aren’t responsive to public needs. It's not enough to just identify problems, we also have to locate solutions and work collectively to address them. Welcome to Politics Is Everything, a podcast of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia.

Politics Is Everything The Center for Politics at UVA

    • News
    • 5.0 • 2 Ratings

Democracy faces a wide range of pressing challenges - from extreme partisanship and divisive politics to persistent inequities in access, voice and participation in public institutions and decision-making processes, from civic unrest to institutions that aren’t responsive to public needs. It's not enough to just identify problems, we also have to locate solutions and work collectively to address them. Welcome to Politics Is Everything, a podcast of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia.

    'I was just simply doing my job.' ft. Sergeant Aquilino Gonell

    'I was just simply doing my job.' ft. Sergeant Aquilino Gonell

    On Friday, September 23, the Center for Politics honored and recognized all of the police officers, state troopers, national guard, firefighters, and emergency responders who protected members of the U.S. Congress, their staff, journalists and other public servants at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 as the legislative branch of America’s democracy carried out the Constitutionally prescribed certification of the results of the 2020 presidential election.
    In this episode, we talk with one of the recipients of the award, U.S. Capitol Police Sergeant Aquilino Gonell. Sergeant Gonell served in Iraq with the U.S. Army during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Even with the threat of bomb-filled roads, he volunteered to conduct supply missions for U.S. and allied forces and local Iraqi schools. On January 6, 2021 while on American soil, he said he was more afraid of the violence that took place at the Capitol than he ever felt while serving in Iraq. On the west side of the Capitol, he spent hours trying to stop the wave of assailants from entering the building. He was hit with an American flag pole and a bat, and at one point fell to the ground and was dragged by a group that beat and insulted him.
    “I had to work for my citizenship. I had to earn my citizenship. Having so many people who were born in this country attacking the very same thing I swore an oath to protect and attacking the place I call home, that is what bothers me so much,” Sergeant Gonell tells us. “I bought into the American system, into American values. The things we hear when we live overseas - that America is the land of opportunity, that everyone is treated equal, that no one is above the law. And all this was tested on January 6 and onward… Without what we did, there would have been a lot of people who died. It would have been a massacre. When they were trying to get into the Capitol, they were telling us that they were there to hurt people. They told me that they were going to execute anyone in there that deserves it. Some of them yelled at me that I wasn’t an American…but, what is more American than protecting the Capitol?”
    Links in this episode:
    Donate to support the documentary about January 6, 2021 from the perspective of the law enforcement who responded to the call of duty to defend democracy. UVA Center for Politics Awards Officers Defending Capitol on Jan. 6 As ‘Defenders of Democracy’

    • 26 min
    Why Is the U.S. Constitution in Jeopardy?

    Why Is the U.S. Constitution in Jeopardy?

    Activists have been campaigning behind the scenes for years now to change the U.S. Constitution to limit the federal government, with implications for education, health care and the environment. In this episode, we talk with former Senator Russ Feingold, President of the American Constitution Society, and Peter Prindiville, a non-resident fellow at the Stanford Constitutional Law Center about their new book, The Constitution in Jeopardy.
    Feingold and Prindiville trace the origins and developments of Article V of the U.S. Constitution and its provision and the ways in which it embodies an underappreciated tension that the Constitution both reflected and embedded between institutionalist theories of democracy and governance and more radical grassroots theories of resistance and change. They caution that a Constitutional Convention could run away and fundamentally alter our nation's laws and civic life. 
    Links in this episode: 
    The Constitution in Jeopardy Public Affairs Books

    • 49 min
    Making Complex News Clear ft. Robert Costa

    Making Complex News Clear ft. Robert Costa

    Robert Costa, chief election and campaign correspondent for CBS News and a scholar at the Center for Politics this academic year, shares his approach to covering campaigns, elections and politics to help the public make sense of the complex issues facing the nation. “It can become a blizzard that's hard to follow," says Costa, "You have to report deeply and you want to break news...Unless it's breaking ground on the biggest players, it's important, but not THE story."
    Links in this episode: 
    Peril Watergate at 50: The political scandal that changed Washington Rep. Liz Cheney Speaks joins Robert Costa, CBS Sunday Morning, June 5, 2022

    • 35 min
    Are Republican Chances for the Midterm Underrated?

    Are Republican Chances for the Midterm Underrated?

    There’s been some mixed electoral indicators - including the recent rise in President Biden’s job approval rating and Democrats doing better in the generic ballot - that are making the 2022 elections more challenging to analyze. Henry Olsen, Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and Washington Post columnist joins us to discuss why the Republicans are now being underrated, including through persistent and unaddressed biases in survey research, and what that means for the 2022 elections. “We should be very careful when we’re looking at state-level polling,” says Olsen.
    Links in this episode: 
    Ethics and Public Policy Center The Midterms Swing Voter: People who Disapprove of Biden Only a Little Yes, the Polling Warning Signs Are Flashing Again, Nate Cohn, New York Times

    • 19 min
    House Ratings: 'What the hell’s going on out here?'

    House Ratings: 'What the hell’s going on out here?'

    Kyle Kondik, Managing Editor of Sabato’s Crystal Ball at the Center for Politics, talks about redistricting, the special election in Alaska and new ratings for House of Representative seats.
    Links in this episode: 
    Notes on the State of Politics: Sept. 7, 2022
     

    • 20 min
    Where Have Trump's Endorsements Mattered and Why? ft. Leah Askarinam

    Where Have Trump's Endorsements Mattered and Why? ft. Leah Askarinam

    In August, Representative Liz Cheney (R-WY) became the seventh House Republican to fall to a Donald Trump-backed challenger since 2018. Rep. Cheney has taken a prominent role in calling for accountability for the January 6, 2021 insurrection and calling out false election narratives. In this episode, we talk with Leah Askarinam, senior editor at Grid News, about the extent to which and where have Mr. Trump’s endorsements mattered in the 2022 election and why. “Trump undoubtedly is the most powerful endorser in the Republican Party, but even that has its limits,” says Askarinam.  Askarinam also discusses the role of candidate quality, the impact of the Dobbs decision, the economy and other issues and why this might not be a typical midterm election year. 
    Before joining Grid, Leah was co-author of the On Politics newsletter for the New York Times and editor in chief of National Journal's Hotline.
    Links in this episode: 
    Leah Askarinam on Twitter Leah Askarinam, “Senate candidates might not be able to ride a red wave. Can they paddle their way to the majority?,” Grid News Elena More, Tracking Trump's endorsements: Here's how his picks have fared in primaries, NPR

    • 25 min

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