POLITICS

Dec 8, 2017
B. Rose Kelly
How the media covers race remains a palpable concern in today’s America. In this episode, award-winning journalist Tanzina Vega chats with Professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang about the many issues related to race and the media. Vega is speaker on issues of race, media and inequality in the United States as well as a Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University and an Eisner Fellow at the Nation Institute. Her forthcoming book is...
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Nov 30, 2017
Public Affairs
Photographers are often on the front lines of war, risking their lives to document deadly conflict zones. One such photojournalist is Jonathan Alpeyrie, a French-American photographer who was captured and held hostage by Syrian rebels in 2013. In this episode, Alpeyrie describes his 81 days of being bound, blindfolded, and beaten — an experience that forced him to question the value and risks of his career. */ Link: http://bit.ly/...
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Nov 9, 2017
Public Affairs
In episode #66, Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang take a look back at the past year and analyze all that has unfolded since Donald Trump was elected president of the United States. Podcast here Other recent episodes include: Episode #65: Alaskan Politics with Rep. Bryce Edgmon (D-Dillingham; Speaker of the Alaskan House of Representatives) Episode #64: Congressional Races in 2018
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Oct 24, 2017
Public Affairs
Leading conservative thinker David Frum was one of the earliest and most prominent conservative voices to come out in opposition to President Donald Trump. A CNN contributor and senior editor at The Atlantic, Frum said in a public radio interview that Trump “is shattering the safeguards that protect democracy.”  In this episode, Julian Zelizer interviews Frum about being a conservative in the age of Trump. */ Link: http://bit.ly/...
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Oct 17, 2017
Public Affairs
This episode is about one of Sam Wang’s favorite topics: gerrymandering. Wang visited the U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 3 to hear arguments in Gill v. Whitford, a case challenging Wisconsin’s 2011 redistricting plan as being the product of partisan gerrymandering.  In this episode, Julian Zelizer and Wang discuss the case, Wang’s day in D.C. and whether this case could potentially put guardrails on the partisan gerrymandering process. */ Link:...
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Oct 10, 2017
Public Affairs
Are identity politics hurting the Democratic Party? Some argue Democrats have strayed away from core economic issues, favoring religion, race, sexuality, gender or social background (to name a few) to form their political alliance – thereby undercutting the party’s effectiveness. */ Joining this episode is an author who has written extensively on the rise of identity politics: Mark Lilla, professor of humanities at Columbia University and...
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Oct 3, 2017
Public Affairs
With special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, some have drawn comparisons between the Russia investigations and the Watergate scandal. How are the two events similar? In what ways do they differ? And is it too early to really link the two? */ Elizabeth Drew discusses her reporting of the Watergate scandal as it relates to today in this episode of Politics & Polls. Podcast here.
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Sep 27, 2017
Public Affairs
Recent episodes of the Politics & Polls podcast series hosted by professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang include: */ Episode #59: Is Free Speech Alive and Well on College Campuses? Episode #58: America's Political Storms Episode #57: The Heart of the American Right Episode #56: The Aftermath of Charlottesville
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Aug 10, 2017
Public Affairs
Joining today’s episode is Nancy MacLean, an award-winning scholar of the twentieth-century United States, whose new book, “Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America,” has been described by Publishers Weekly as “a thoroughly researched and gripping narrative… [and] a feat of American intellectual and political history.” Booklist called it “perhaps the best explanation to date of the roots of the...
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Aug 4, 2017
Public Affairs
Spin. It’s used by public relations gurus and politicians to shape an image or message, thereby influencing the public’s perception of a story. And it’s engrained in American politics, as presidents and presidential candidates both have used the art of spin to frame stories and public opinion. */ To discuss the art of spin, David Greenberg, a professor of history and journalism and media studies at Rutgers University, joins this episode of...
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Aug 3, 2017
Public Affairs
*/ Drawing connections between the past and present often sparks fierce debates within the American political landscape. In this episode, Eric Foner, one of America’s most distinguished historians, discusses these interpretations of history and how they relate to today. His latest book, “Battles for Freedom,” explores this “use and abuse of American history,” unearthing the hidden history of American radicalism. Podcast here.
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Jul 17, 2017
President Donald Trump has spent his first months faced with a potential scandal involving Russia, an issue that’s only grown since the election with discussions and investigations about possible obstruction and collusion. In recent weeks, this has dominated national political debates, especially in Congress and the White House. Benjamin Wittes, co-founder and editor-in-chief of the Lawfare blog, joins this episode of Politics & Polls to...
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Jun 28, 2017
Public Affairs
America’s experienced a blitz of political twists and turns in the past few months, which may cloak some of the deep-rooted challenges still facing the nation. Still looming large in the background are issues related to the political process — like democracy, gerrymandering, voting laws and federalism. */ In this episode, the focus turns toward the structure of politics with special guest Heather Gerken, one of the country’s leading experts on...
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Jun 16, 2017
Public Affairs
One of the ongoing challenges in American politics is appealing to younger demographics - not simply through elections and voter turn-out but engaging young people with the political process. Today’s young people - and even some adults – find politics difficult to digest and unappealing, presenting challenges in the ways that Americans learn, interpret and analyze politics. */ Gabe Fleisher, a 15-year-old student in St. Louis, is looking to...
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Jun 13, 2017
Public Affairs
Race remains a potent political force in America, as evidenced by the 2016 presidential election. Despite the progress that’s been made, race continues to infiltrate many areas of public policy from health care to education to employment. Princeton professor Eddie Glaude joins this episode of Politics & Polls to discuss current race relations in America. */ This episode also aired on Princeton’s Facebook Live. Podcast here.
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Jun 1, 2017
Public Affairs
President Donald Trump’s attacks on the media persist while journalists continue to grapple with how to cover such a tumultuous presidency. Amidst the clamor, new voices in journalism have risen to the top, positioning themselves as political power players in a media-saturated world. Among these voices is Lauren Duca, an award-winning journalist at Teen Vogue. In December 2016, Duca penned an essay, “Donald Trump is Gaslighting America,” which...
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May 25, 2017
B. Rose Kelly
More than 100 insider sources helped journalists Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes lift the veil on Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the many avoidable missteps that turned a winnable election into a stunning defeat. Allen and Parnes’ new book, “Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign,” digs deeper to illuminate a flawed campaign that resulted in a defeat that shocked the world. */ In this episode, professor Julian Zelizer interviews...
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May 18, 2017
Public Affairs
Washington has been hit with a trifecta of catastrophic events in the past week. First, President Donald Trump fired Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey, justifying his decision by pointing toward Comey’s mishandling of the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails. Just days later, news broke that Trump shared classified information about the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) with Russian diplomats in the Oval Office — a...
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Apr 25, 2017
Public Affairs
Under President Donald Trump, the political landscape changes daily. Catch up on recent episodes of Politics & Polls with professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang, as well as special guests each week. Recent episodes include: Politics & Polls #40: The 115th Congress with Rep. Leonard Lance (R-N.J.) Politics & Polls #39: National Security with Gen. David Petraeus Politics & Polls #38: Unraveling the ‘Trump-Russia Saga’ Politics...
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Mar 28, 2017
Sarah M. Binder
President Trump’s budget blueprint proposes deep cuts to research at the National Institutes of Health and the Environmental Protection Agency. What lies ahead for scientific expertise and evidence-based policymaking? Are facts, evidence and truth under siege by the new administration? In this episode of Politics & Polls, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang interview Rush D. Holt about the current state of science in the U.S., from public...
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Mar 24, 2017
B. Rose Kelly
The election of President Donald Trump has challenged the political machine of conservativism. Now, many on the right are grappling with how to make sense of “Trumpism” and whether it fits into the conservative movement that’s been developing over the past few decades. A new policy and political journal, “American Affairs,” aims to intellectualize the Trumpism movement as it unfolds. The publication is led by Julius Krein, a 2008 Harvard...
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Mar 15, 2017
B. Rose Kelly
The start of Donald Trump’s presidency has been anything but predictable. So far, his first 100 days in office have been filled with a lot of heat, noise — and executive orders. But is this that abnormal? Or is it par for the course? Where do we draw the line between what is unprecedented, and what we’ve seen before? Professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang discuss these questions — which are based on a recent article in The Upshot, a column for...
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Mar 6, 2017
Public Affairs
In this episode of Politics & Polls, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang interview (Ret.) Amb. Michael B.G. Froman ’85 about his outlook for international trade in a ‘Trumpian World.’ Amb. Froman served in President Obama’s cabinet as the U.S. Trade Representative from June 2013 to January 2017. There, he worked to open global markets for U.S. goods and services, enforce America’s rights in the global trading system and foster development...
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Mar 2, 2017
Public Affairs
Almost every U.S. president has struggled to broker peace agreements in the Middle East, especially among Israel and Palestine. For many, the possibility of a peace agreement seems dire, with a two-state solution that seems to be fleeting. But what can we expect to see from President Donald Trump? To unravel these complex issues, Amb. Daniel Kurtzer joins this episode of Politics & Polls with co-hosts Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang. Podcast...
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Feb 21, 2017
Public Affairs
Donald Trump’s presidency has evoked strong emotional and psychological responses from both the public and the president himself, raising issues not often brought forth in public policy and governance. Many, including members of the media, are trying to make sense of this complicated web of anger, passion, rationality and irrationality. Among those reporters is Jesse Singal of New York Magazine, who is bringing the social sciences into the news...
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Feb 14, 2017
Public Affairs
A federal appeals court has blocked President Donald Trump’s executive order issuing an immigration ban barring people from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States. Trump also has made moves toward building a border wall with Mexico, which recent figures suggest may cost an estimated $21 billion. If implemented, what would an immigration ban and a border wall accomplish? In this episode, professors Julian Zelizer and...
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Feb 10, 2017
Public Affairs
It seems as if America is watching two shows in parallel. On one hand, we’re seeing the political process unfold with cabinet nominees being appointed and executive orders being signed. On the other hand, the country has front-row seats to The Donald Trump Show, a gripping drama filled with unexpected twists and turns. Are we seeing the birth cries of an authoritarian regime? Or is it the gang that couldn't shoot straight? Professors Julian...
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Jan 31, 2017
Public Affairs
Hailed as one of the largest protests in American history, the Women’s March on Washington gathered hundreds of thousands of people in the district and millions in sister marches across the world. Held just a day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, the protest was an opportunity for Americans to bring gender and reproductive rights to the forefront, an issue many feel is under threat by a Trump administration.    In this episode of...
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Jan 26, 2017
Public Affairs
The Democratic Party may be in a “crisis,” many argue, and not only because of a Donald Trump presidency but also due to continued Republican control of Congress. Given these challenges, will the Democrats be able to rebuild their strength? In episode #27 of Politics & Polls, professsors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang interview leading political scientist Theda Skocpol about her recent article in Vox: “A Guide to Rebuilding the Democratic Party...
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Jan 12, 2017
Public Affairs
Since the election, Democrats have struggled with how to respond to a Donald Trump presidency. But one group is starting to get some traction - the authors of an online guide that is going viral: “Indivisible: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda.” Originally posted as a Google document, the guide was co-written by former Congressional staffers Ezra Levin and Angel Padilla, who both received their Master in Public Affairs from ...
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Dec 27, 2016
Public Affairs
Should the government play a major or minor role in the lives of American citizens? This core question resurfaces during each election and continues to divide the political parties. It turns out that this argument is not new. In his newest book, Yale historian Steve Pincus challenges those who argue that the Declaration of Independence should be used for political guidance today, saying it’s in favor of limited government. Pincus shows that the...
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Dec 20, 2016
B. Rose Kelly
Polarization was a strong undercurrent to the 2016 presidential election, powerfully affecting the electorate and politics. Looking toward President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet appointments, those same divisions remain clear. As Trump builds his team, the nation is beginning to see the outlines of a Trump administration - one that fits well with congressional Republicans.  */ In their first live recording of Politics & Polls, professors...
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Dec 13, 2016
Public Affairs
Since Donald Trump’s election, there has been considerable debate about what the Democratic party should do next. While some Democrats argue for an openness to cooperation, others insist there isn’t room for compromise given Trump’s views on race and individual rights.   In this episode of Politics & Polls, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang interview one of the most powerful voices in this debate: Jamelle Bouie.   In his writing, Bouie...
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Dec 7, 2016
Public Affairs
In this episode of Politics & Polls, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang interview Linda Greenhouse about how a Trump presidency may affect the U.S. Supreme Court. Greenhouse is the Knight Distinguished Journalist in Residence and Joseph Goldstein Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School. She covered the Supreme Court for The New York Times between 1978 and 2008 and writes a biweekly column on law. She’s the author of several books, including,...
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Nov 18, 2016
Public Affairs
Political polarization is the worst it’s been since the Civil War, some experts argue. How did we get here? How have America’s ideologies shifted so much in the past four decades? What forces underlie the growing divide between Republicans and Democrats? And how has social media and varying sources of information widened the gap? */ In episode 21, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang discuss party polarization with Matt Grossman and David...
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Nov 11, 2016
Public Affairs
The Woodrow Wilson School is hosting a series of "Up to the Minute" events to debrief the election results and discuss the country's path forward. Each event will be livestreamed on our YouTube Channel.   We encourage prospective students to join the conversation on Twitter and submit questions for our speakers using #WooLection16.   November 14: Post-Election Impact on Inequality, Discrimination and Well-Being November 17: Election 2016 Debrief...
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Nov 10, 2016
Public Affairs
In a stunning upset, Donald Trump was elected the 45th president of the United States. Professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang react to the results in episode #20, their first post-election recording. Among a host of issues, they discuss why the polls might have been off and what a Trump presidency means to the nation and the history of democracy. Podcast Here */
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Nov 8, 2016
*/ In their last episode before the election, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang look ahead to election day 2016. Among other issues, they discuss what the results will do to the GOP, which states Wang in particular will be watching on election night (hint: it’s not what you’d think), how the Senate races might turn out and if this particular election may shape political discourse in 2020 and beyond. Podcast Here
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Oct 31, 2016
Public Affairs
Who knew that the discharge petition—signed by members of the House of Representatives to bring a bill from committee to the floor—could be good material for a Tony Award-winning play and HBO feature film? In this episode, Professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang interview Robert Schenkkan whose play “All the Way” about Lyndon B. Johnson has been brought from the stage to the screen. “All the Way” is a play and film depicting LBJ’s efforts to...
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Oct 14, 2016
Public Affairs
The issue of voting rights in America has been long debated and has changed dramatically since the country was founded. From then until now, Americans have fought for the right to vote, while many tried to stop them. In episode 14, professors Julian E. Zelizer and Sam Wang interview Michael Waldman, author of “The Fight to Vote,” a book chronicling the long struggle to win voting rights for all citizens. Podcast Here
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Oct 11, 2016
Michael Hotchkiss and B. Rose Kelly
The next president will have his or her hands full regarding issues in the Middle East: the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) remains a threat; the integrity of the Iran nuclear accord must be ensured; and decisions loom about the United States’ role in Syria. In the fourth installment of a Q&A series on challenges that will face the new president, Princeton University researchers Amb. Daniel Kurtzer and Jacob N. Shapiro examine these...
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Sep 22, 2016
Public Affairs
Since Hillary Clinton was named nominee of the Democratic Party, commentators have been taking a hard look at the way gender impacts the political process. Yet, when it comes to gender, it is rarely a clear-cut or easy discussion. Working to disentangle the role of gender in politics is award-winning journalist Rebecca Traister, the best-selling author of “All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an Independent Nation.” In this...
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Sep 13, 2016
Michael Hotchkiss, Office of Communications; B. Rose Kelly, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
The next president will face a range of economic challenges from his or her first moment in office. In this Q&A, Princeton economists Alan Krueger and Cecilia Rouse explore the key economic issues ahead for the nation in the short and long term. This is the first in a series of Q&A articles with Princeton University experts leading up to the election. Full Story
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Woocast microphone
Sep 8, 2016
Public Affairs
In one of the most powerful transformations in the history of American politics, African Americans shifted loyalties to the Democratic Party while Republicans became the party of racial conservatism.   How and why did this happen? Did certain moments in history cause this bipartisan ‘racial realignment?’ How has this realignment led to the political polarization of 2016?   In episode 10 of Politics & Polls, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam...
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Aug 29, 2016
Public Affairs
Game-changing events often occur during presidential campaigns. These moments — which can transform party dynamics, voters and even the candidates themselves — oftentimes influence the outcome of the election.  But what about the 2016 presidential campaign? Have we seen moments like these? And, if we have, are they even worth looking back upon?  In episode nine of “Politics & Polls,” professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang close out the...
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Aug 25, 2016
Public Affairs
From straw polls of the 19th century to modern polling of today, polls have played a significant role in the American political landscape. But what is a poll? With dozens of new polls coming out every week, how can we make sense of the data onslaught? Is there a way to reduce the confusion? And what role can polls play in 2016, an election year fraught with drama and uncertainty? In episode eight of “Politics & Polls,” professors Julian...
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Aug 11, 2016
Donald Trump has focused on easing tensions with the Republican Party this week by endorsing House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senator John McCain and Senator Susan Collins. But while these endorsements are intended to unify the ticket, it's not clear whether these Republican candidates actually want Trump's endorsement, as evidenced by Collins's refusal to support Trump. If disaffected Republicans like Collins stay home, this could spell trouble for...
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Aug 4, 2016
Public Affairs
The media have played a powerful role in the 2016 presidential election. Some critics argue Donald Trump became a viable candidate thanks to his “free airtime,” and that he might not have won the Republican bid without the attention. Others point out blatant sexism in the media given the attention paid to Hillary Clinton’s voice and clothing—something reporters didn’t do as much with male candidates. And Bernie Sanders’ supporters contend “...
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Aug 3, 2016
Public Affairs
Within the grand speeches at this week’s Democratic National Convention lies a central message — Clinton and the Democrats, not Trump, can better serve struggling working and middle-class voters who have felt excluded from both parties. When both candidates return full-throttle to the campaign trail, they’ll be competing for these voters in key states such as Pennsylvania.   How has the Democratic Party’s relationship with these voters evolved...
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Voter Button & WooCast Logo
Jul 21, 2016
Public Affairs
It’s been an interesting week at the Republication National Convention in Cleveland. Donald Trump’s wife Melania was accused of plagiarizing her speech. Ted Cruz was booed offstage after failing to endorse Trump. And Hillary Clinton was called a “criminal” and compared to “Lucifer.”   Will such dramatic incidents have an impact on voters? Professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang debate this issue and more in episode four of Politics & Polls....
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Picture of President Obama and WooCast Logo
Jul 18, 2016
Public Affairs
People often vote based on who’s already in the White House. So how does the incumbent party affect elections? And how is President Obama’s legacy influencing the current campaign? Professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang debate this issue and more in episode three of Politics & Polls. Full Podcast Here.
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Election podcast
Jul 13, 2016
Public Affairs
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will soon announce their running mates—but does the vice president pick still matter? While it was once used as a way to bring regional balance to the ticket, it's not clear what the vice president selection means in 2016. Tune in to the second episode of Politics & Polls as Professors Julian E. Zelizer and Sam Wang debate this issue and more. Full Podcast Here.
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