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October 10, 2019
Is the threat of impeachment making President Trump more erratic — and more dangerous? Jamelle Bouie joins Ross Douthat and David Leonhardt to discuss Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria and his defiance in the face of Democrats’ impeachment inquiry. Then, with the conservative-leaning Supreme Court back in session and a slew of big cases on the docket, should Democrats answer Republicans’ constitutional hardball with court packing? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
October 3, 2019
As evidence mounts that Donald Trump abused the power of the presidency, could members of his own party start to turn against him? The columnists debate Republicans’ response to the impeachment inquiry, Trump’s proliferating scandals and Attorney General William Barr’s efforts to undermine the Mueller report findings. Then, whose armrest is it anyway? The columnists debate airplane etiquette. Warning: Sexual violence is briefly mentioned in the final segment of this episode. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
September 26, 2019
Is the impeachment of Donald Trump finally just a matter of time? The columnists discuss how the president’s attempt to pressure a foreign government to undermine a political rival quickly turned a progressive pipe dream into an inquiry backed by most House Democrats. Then, the other 2020 primary: three eclectic Republicans running to unseat the incumbent president of their own party. What do their quixotic campaigns say about the state — and the future — of the G.O.P.? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
September 19, 2019
Is Joe Biden’s shakiness on the stump a sign that he’s just too old to run for president? Or is it just proof that some of his critics are ageist? The columnists debate the state of Biden’s 2020 campaign. Then, has “cancel culture” run amok? Or is it a deserved consequence for conduct society shouldn’t tolerate? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
September 12, 2019
Is the Democratic Party prematurely winnowing its crop of presidential candidates? The columnists discuss the narrowing 2020 field, and whether the D.N.C.'s arbitrary criteria is stripping ideological diversity from the Democratic debates. Then, can American conservatism exist free of racism? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
September 5, 2019
Are Democrats already blowing their best chance to take the Senate back from Mitch McConnell next year? This week on “The Argument,” the columnists talk the state of the other 2020 race(s) worth paying attention to. Then, a conversation with Times editorial board member Binyamin Appelbaum about how much we should blame economists for the rise of income inequality. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
August 22, 2019
Marianne Williamson, the primary candidate infusing spirituality into the Democratic debates, sits down with Ross Douthat to discuss her journey to faith, her writings on illness and disease and how religious and spiritual language have inflected both the country’s history and the current political climate. Then, Michelle Goldberg joins Ross to debate Williamson’s candidacy, record and New Age messaging. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
August 15, 2019
Is Missouri Senator Josh Hawley the future of the Republican Party? Ross Douthat sits down with the first-term lawmaker to discuss the conservative case for cracking down on powerful tech companies and reducing the price of prescription drugs. They discuss who the 2017 Republican-passed tax law really helped and whether conservative economic populism can exist free of President Trump’s racism. Then, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt join Ross to debate Hawley’s ideas. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
August 8, 2019
How much responsibility does President Trump bear for violence motivated by racism? The columnists discuss gun control, the recent shootings in El Paso, Tex. and Dayton, Ohio and their connections to Trump's dehumanizing statements about immigrants. Then, several 2020 Democrats took shots at Barack Obama’s legacy during last week’s presidential debates. Were they just trying to undermine Joe Biden’s appeal, or does the breakup with the most recent Democratic president signify something deeper? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
August 1, 2019
Did Robert Mueller’s testimony before Congress bring Democrats any closer to impeaching President Trump? The columnists debate the fallout from the former special counsel’s testimony. Then: You asked, the columnists answer. Ross, Michelle and David tackle listener questions about climate change, Puerto Rico’s political crisis, student debt-forgiveness and more. And finally, David’s recommendation of the week is the last straw. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
July 25, 2019
Presidents running for re-election often appeal to the political center. So why isn’t Trump? Op-Ed columnist Jamelle Bouie joins Ross Douthat and David Leonhardt to discuss Trump’s refusal to moderate and his possible pathways to win a second term. Then the columnists debate whether Democrats should be fighting about busing and desegregation in 2019. Finally, Jamelle recommends a collection of recipes sure to curry favor with adventurous eaters young and old. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
July 18, 2019
Trump's racism presents an existential challenge to Republicanism. Has he fully transformed the G.O.P. into the Party of Trump? The columnists argue about the limits of Trumpification and how it has stripped away the Republican mask of economic libertarianism in favor of grievance-based politics. Then, fellow Op-Ed columnist Farhad Manjoo joins his colleagues to debate the case for pressing the pronoun “they” into wider use. Is "they" the solution to society’s prison of gender expectations? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument.
July 11, 2019
Can corporate America be a force for social liberalism? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt debate the corporatization of Pride Month, Nike's about-face on the Betsy Ross flag and the political efficacy of “woke capitalism.” Then they discuss the tensions roiling Democrats in the House of Representatives. By lobbing criticism at progressive members of the caucus, just what is Speaker Nancy Pelosi playing at? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument.
July 3, 2019
Was Kamala Harris’s debate-stage takedown the beginning of the end for Joe Biden’s frontrunner status? Columnists Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt take stock of the 2020 Democratic primary so far. Then, are the presidential candidates moving too far to the left? How can the party build a winning coalition? How should they weigh economic versus cultural issues? And which candidates will be able to pivot for a general election audience? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument.
June 26, 2019
Cory Booker has executive experience, bipartisan bona fides and a raft of ambitious policy goals. So why is he running in the middle of the 2020 Democratic pack — and how does he plan to distinguish himself? David Leonhardt sits down with the senator from New Jersey to discuss his plans to tackle America’s housing crisis, the racial wealth gap, gun violence and more. Then Ross Douthat and Michelle Goldberg join David to debate Booker’s candidacy. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
June 20, 2019
Is the United States barreling toward war with Iran? Op-Ed columnist Bret Stephens joins his colleagues to discuss the recent uptick in tensions between Washington and Tehran — and what can be done about them. Then, what are religious conservatives really fighting about? The columnists discuss the Sohrab Ahmari vs. David French debate over tactics, values and goals that’s roiling the right-wing intelligentsia. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
June 13, 2019
Democratic presidential contender Andrew Yang sits down with Ross Douthat for a one-on-one interview to discuss the future of work in America, universal basic income, Yang's unorthodox path to the presidency and whether he considers himself a traitor to the meritocratic class. Then Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt join Ross to debate Yang's candidacy and the idea of universal basic income. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
June 6, 2019
Why aren't the Democrats ready to impeach President Trump? The columnists ask Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey in this live episode recorded at WBUR CitySpace in Boston on May 29. They also talk about Robert Mueller’s first public remarks and the Democrats’ evolving approach to climate politics. Then, as right-wing populists and nationalist parties gain ground in countries around the world, is global liberalism on the decline? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
May 30, 2019
Why is socialism so popular in the United States right now? Michelle Goldberg talks with Bhaskar Sunkara, the editor of Jacobin magazine, to discuss democratic socialists vs. liberals, the failures of past socialist movements and Bernie Sanders vs. Elizabeth Warren. Then, Ross Douthat and David Leonhardt join Michelle to debate socialism’s role in the future of the political left. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
May 23, 2019
Why is the 37-year-old mayor of South Bend, Ind., running for president — and what would he do if he won? David Leonhardt sits down with Pete Buttigieg to discuss the radicalization of the Republican Party and his plan to resuscitate American democracy. Then, Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David debate Buttigieg’s unconventional candidacy. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
May 16, 2019
What's the right way for the United States to take on China? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt debate Trump's trade war and China's economically aggressive, increasingly authoritarian behavior. Then, is America's labor movement, long in decline, finally enjoying a comeback? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
May 9, 2019
How strong is the American economy — and how much credit should President Trump get for it? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt disagree on where the boom is coming from and what it means for America's future. Then, as the president asserts executive privilege over the unredacted Mueller report while his administration fights congressional subpoenas, is a constitutional crisis inevitable? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
May 2, 2019
What’s the best way to solve America’s mass incarceration crisis? NYT Magazine writer and "Charged" author Emily Bazelon joins Michelle Goldberg to discuss the unchecked power of prosecutors as problem and potential solution. Then, the columnists debate what a better criminal justice system could look like. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
April 25, 2019
Robert Mueller's (redacted) report is out, but now what? Can the Democrats use it to impeach President Donald Trump? Ross Douthat, David Leonhardt and special guest Michelle Cottle of The Times's editorial board disagree about what comes next for the president and the country. Then David and Ross revisit one of their sharpest recurring disagreements: What can be done about climate change? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument For tickets to our live show in Boston, visit https://timesevents.nytimes.com/theargumentboston
April 17, 2019
What should U.S. immigration policy look like? The columnists debate Kirstjen Nielsen's resignation, Trump's xenophobia and Obama's legacy on immigration live on stage at the Times Center in New York. Then, in response to listener voicemail, Ross, Michelle and David discuss the 2020 candidacies of Pete Buttigieg, Kirsten Gillibrand, Andrew Yang, Cory Booker and Amy Klobuchar. For background reading on this live episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument For tickets to our live show in Boston, visit https://timesevents.nytimes.com/theargumentboston
April 4, 2019
Is Joe Biden the Democrats’ best hope to beat Trump in 2020? Or is he woefully behind the times? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt disagree about the former vice president's potential run for POTUS. Then the columnists debate what America's sex recession means for the country. For background reading, visit nytimes.com/theargument
March 28, 2019
Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia has wrapped, and Attorney General William Barr's letter to Congress has been delivered. Michelle, Ross and David debate whether there really was "no collusion," if the media oversold the scandal and what should happen next. Then, is it time to abolish the Electoral College? The columnists disagree. For background reading, visit nytimes.com/theargument. For tickets to the live show, visit https://timesevents.nytimes.com/OpinionApril. If you are having thoughts of suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 (TALK). You can find a list of additional resources at SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources.
March 21, 2019
How much blame does President Trump’s deserve for New Zealand’s white-supremacist mosque shooting? Jamelle Bouie joins hosts Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt for a debate about xenophobic ideology, internet troll culture and their connection to hate crimes. Later, they turn to whether college admissions can ever be a fair system, and what can be done about meritocracy, elitism and college sports recruitment. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
March 13, 2019
Senator Elizabeth Warren sits down with David Leonhardt for a chat about her 2020 presidential campaign. They talk Donald Trump, her proposed wealth tax and universal childcare program, antitrust policy and her dog Bailey. Then, Ross Douthat and Michelle Goldberg join David to debate whether Warren’s economic agenda could be a winning one. For background reading, visit: nytimes.com/theargument
March 7, 2019
Is prekindergarten for all a liberal pipe dream? The columnists sit down with special guest Mara Gay of The Times editorial board to discuss the successes and pitfalls of New York City's universal pre-K program. Then, Ross Douthat and New York magazine's Andrew Sullivan debate the Roman Catholic Church's dual crises around sexuality and sexual abuse — and what should be done about them. For background reading, visit: nytimes.com/theargument
February 28, 2019
Was there anything in Michael Cohen's congressional testimony on Wednesday that could actually threaten Donald Trump's presidency? Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt break it down. Later Ross Douthat joins them for a debate over whether Bernie Sanders's candidacy is giving off Reagan vibes. Then Ross takes the socialism discussion in a cinematic direction with his recommendation of the week. For background reading on this episode, visit: nytimes.com/theargument
February 21, 2019
From bypassing Congress to try to fund a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, to accusing administration officials of treason, is Donald Trump America’s national emergency? Michelle sees authoritarianism while Ross thinks the real threat to American democracy is more competent presidents abusing their expanded constitutional authority. Then, Mara Gay of the Times editorial board disagrees with David about whether Amazon's abrupt headquarters departure from New York is really such a victory for cities against corporations. For background reading on this episode, visit: nytimes.com/theargument
February 14, 2019
Is the Green New Deal a symbol of the future of the Democratic Party, or is it just socialism disguised as climate reform? Ross Douthat and Michelle Goldberg are joined by Times editorial board member Michelle Cottle to debate the new initiative and its viability in Congress. Then, David Leonhardt asks fellow columnist Roger Cohen and Steve Hilton, the former adviser to David Cameron, what should be done about Brexit. For background reading on this episode, visit: nytimes.com/theargument
February 7, 2019
This is not your typical argument about abortion. Ross Douthat and Michelle Goldberg debate women's reproductive health this week and while it's no surprise that they disagree, they manage to hear each other out. Then Medicare Rights Center founder Diane Archer joins David Leonhardt and Ross to argue whether the Democrats' new favorite slogan — “Medicare for All” — could actually work in the U.S. And Ross has de Gaulle to recommend a doorstop of a biography. For background reading on this episode, visit: nytimes.com/theargument
January 31, 2019
Democrats are throwing their hats in the ring for the 2020 presidential election, but who has a real shot? Opinion's new columnist, Jamelle Bouie, joins Michelle Goldberg and Ross Douthat to weigh in on who has an edge, whose campaign needs sharpening, and who to watch out for in the primary. Then David Leonhardt joins Michelle and Ross to debate the media's biases in the Trump era. Finally, Michelle has a suggestion for anyone planning a big, fat, expensive wedding: don't. For background reading on this episode, visit: nytimes.com/theargument
January 24, 2019
Is anti-Zionism just another form of anti-Semitism? Michelle and special guest Bret Stephens debate liberal critiques of Israel and the future of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Then, is Tucker Carlson really a populist? Bret and Ross discuss what the Fox News host’s recent anti-elite turn says about the G.O.P. And finally, why David wants to make American football more Canadian. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
January 17, 2019
An ongoing government shutdown. More Russia revelations. Ross, David and Michelle agree there’s a point at which Republicans could turn on Trump. But what will it take? Then, the columnists debate anti-Semitism on the left and the controversies roiling the third annual Women’s March. And finally, Ross recommends a less sugary “Mary Poppins.” For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
January 10, 2019
The government shutdown continues as Trump and the Democrats battle over the border wall. Who is winning? Which side makes the stronger immigration argument? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt debate. Later, they discuss why America is so afraid of female leaders, and why Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez makes the Republicans so bananas. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument Warning: this episode contains explicit language.
January 3, 2019
Our listeners asked: what will be the negative consequences of social media on kids? How can we solve income inequality in America? Which Democrat has the best chance of beating Trump in 2020? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt answered in this New Year's episode. Then Ashley Nicole Black, comedian and writer for "Full Frontal With Samantha Bee," joins the trio for a look back at 2018 and a look at head at their hopes for 2019. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
December 20, 2018
Has "big cannabis" downplayed the dangers of legalization? Michelle Goldberg debates author Alex Berenson, whose forthcoming book makes the case against marijuana. Then, David Leonhardt, Ross Douthat and Michelle argue about which pot policy the United States should pursue. Finally, Ross recommends you stop saying "Merry Christmas" — at least for this week. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
December 13, 2018
Trump's mounting legal problems have the columnists wondering if he'll finish his first term. Michelle Goldberg visualizes President Pelosi. Editorial board member Mara Gay makes Ross Douthat answer for his WASP nostalgia. And David Leonhardt recommends you go nuts (for donuts). For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
December 6, 2018
Trump's Russia entanglement has the columnists asking, "Is the president a traitor?" Ross Douthat sits down with Lawfare's executive editor Susan Hennessey to lay out what's happening with Robert Mueller's special counsel investigation. Later, Ross remains agnostic on Trump's collusion, Michelle Goldberg says dayenu, and David Leonhardt thinks there's a path to impeachment through Mueller's report. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
November 29, 2018
How can climate change be solved if politicians can't even agree there's a problem? The columnists brainstorm. Then, David Leonhardt visits Capitol Hill to interview California Representative Ro Khanna, "the ambassador of Silicon Valley," about Trump and progressive economics. And finally, a friendly recommendation. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
November 21, 2018
A listener's voicemail asks the columnists, does America need a third party? Then, just in time for Thanksgiving, our argumentative trio dishes out some advice for how to handle your own dinner-table debates. And finally, a Coen brothers recommendation to make your holiday weekend a little darker. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
November 15, 2018
After Amazon announced its uninspired new headquarters locations, the columnists are surprised to find they agree on the danger of the website's monopoly, for different reasons. David Leonhardt is baited into playing the "neo-liberal shill." Ross Douthat debates pro-Trump writer Daniel McCarthy over whether the president is actually good for the Republican party. And Michelle Goldberg suggests you soothe your political anxieties with CBD gummies. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
November 8, 2018
What do the Democratic gains in the House and Republican gains in the Senate mean for the country’s future? Ross Douthat dreams of a fantastic world of rainbows, child tax credits and a better president. David Leonhardt wishes racism was more decisively rejected in the midterms. Michelle Goldberg thinks women will save this country yet. And whether you’re elated or disappointed after election day, we have a suggestion: Go take a bath. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
November 1, 2018
Do Republicans have an anger problem? The columnists debate whether Trump incited the recent targeted attacks. After Michelle Goldberg reports back from the campaign trail in Georgia, they all discuss the partisan battle of the sexes: has politics become polarized by gender? Is the Republican party the party of men, and the Democratic party the party of women? For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
October 25, 2018
How rotten has our democratic system has become, the columnists wonder, and what could fix it? David Leonhardt is furious about voter suppression in North Dakota and Georgia. Ross Douthat thinks NeverTrump Republicans should cast their midterm votes for House Democrats. And we learn what Michelle Goldberg would do if she had the “pee tape.” For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
October 18, 2018
With the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, David Leonhardt asks guest Thomas Friedman about the strained future of U.S.-Saudi relations. Then, Michelle Goldberg, Ross Douthat and David debate whether Trump's foreign policy emboldens autocrats and threatens liberal democracy. No surprise: they disagree. But common ground is found over club soda. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
October 11, 2018
Did Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation break the Supreme Court? Michelle Goldberg feels the patriarchy’s boot on her neck. David Leonhardt cautions Democrats about running on the #MeToo movement in the midterms. And Ross Douthat sings. Seriously. For background reading on this episode, visit nytimes.com/theargument
October 4, 2018
Coming Thursday, October 11, a new Opinion podcast from The New York Times that answers the question, "How could they possibly think that?" Join Opinion columnists David Leonhardt, Michelle Goldberg and Ross Douthat every Thursday as they explain the range of arguments around the week's political debate. You'll learn the why's behind party decisions and doctrine, and discover new ways to make your argument appeal to people who see the world differently. For more information visit nytimes.com/theargument
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