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Left, Right & Center

KCRW

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Left, Right & Center

Left, Right & Center

KCRW

292
Followers
1.6K
Plays
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About Us

Left, Right & Center is KCRW’s weekly civilized yet provocative confrontation over politics, policy and pop culture.

Latest Episodes

The eleventh hour

The Senate impeachment trial has officially begun, and yet...new information is still coming out and senators are still divided about witness testimony. Do the Lev Parnas documents released this week change anything? What about the Government Accountability Office determination that the Trump administration broke the law in withholding the Ukraine aid? If some Republican senators mount a campaign for witness testimony, what might that fight look like? Even so, don’t we already know how this is going to end? This week, in a moment of bipartisan cooperation, the Senate approved the USMCA trade agreement. It’s a victory for President Trump. And then there’s the phase one trade deal with China. President Trump signed it this week. Is it also a victory? Or is a bit weak? There was a debate this week in Iowa ahead of the caucuses. The candidates talked trade, foreign policy, and then there was that moment between Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Felicia Wong talks about a new project from the Roosevelt Institute on the failures of neoliberalism and what comes after for progressives.

57 MIN1 d ago
Comments
The eleventh hour

Iran, Iraq and impeachment

Iran’s response to our attack that killed Qassem Soleimani looks like a climbdown, for now. Is it time for President Trump to take a victory lap? Should we be watching for unconventional reprisals from Iran? Much of the coverage this week has centered around Iran, but what impact has this had on our already-fragile relationship with Iraq?Jarrett Blancof the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace talks about the way forward with Iran, including what remains of the Iran nuclear deal and if there’s any way more sanctions could have an impact on Iran. Plus: lawmakers’ reaction to the strike, flashbacks to 2002, and impeachment -- is that still happening?

50 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Iran, Iraq and impeachment

Iranian general killed in US airstrike

Iranian general Qassem Soleimani was killed in an American airstrike at the Baghdad airport. General Soleimani was arguably the second most powerful person in Iran and a destabilizing force in the Middle East for decades. He led Iran’s interventions in other countries in the region, including support for militias in Iraq that killed hundreds of American soldiers. The targeted killing of Soleimani was a major escalation in the conflict with Iran. Lawmakers are debating over whether the strike was wise, and what the costs to American interests will be. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the attack on Soleimani was based on intelligence that he was imminently going to undertake an attack that could have killed Americans. What Iran will do now that Soleimani is dead? And could the US be drawn into a broader war?Michael Singhof the Washington Institute for Near East Policy joins the panel to analyze the attack and the aftermath so far. Then:Natahsha Sarinof the University of Pennsylvan...

62 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Iranian general killed in US airstrike

Where is the Center?

Who is the center? Are there swing voters anymore, and what do they want? How did Donald Trump succeed at appealing at enough of the center to win the 2016 election, and what kind of candidate do Democrats need to pick to win the center back over? Political scientist Lee Drutman will tell us who these voters are, and how being a swing voter doesn’t necessarily mean being an ideological moderate. Maya MacGuineas, president of the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, and Erin McPike talk about policy making, what’s misunderstood about voters in the center, and what centrist voters are looking for in the 2020 field. Then, Josh talks with two Left, Right & Center regulars, Kelli Goff and Tom Nichols, about their difficulty figuring out where we can fit in this increasingly polarized political system. They talk about the road to political independence and Josh makes the case for being in a political party, even if you don’t like it very much.

50 MIN3 w ago
Comments
Where is the Center?

Impeached

Donald Trump is officially the third president to be impeached. The Democrats held together, with just one defection to the GOP and one “present” vote than they had a few weeks ago to open the impeachment inquiry. After the impeachment vote, Nancy Pelosi surprised everyone by saying she wouldn’t send the impeachment articles to the Senate for now. What’s up with that? Then, the Democratic presidential candidates had their liveliest debate yet. They fought over who has the necessary experience to win, Afghanistan policy, trade, health care, and who’s been spending too much in wine caves, and more. Josh Barro, Rich Lowry, Liz Bruenig and Gustavo Arellano discuss.

56 MIN2019 DEC 21
Comments
Impeached

Impeach and cooperate

The House of Representatives is almost ready to impeach President Trump, but they’re also working weirdly closely with him. This week they’ve approved a spending deal, signing off on his Space Force in exchange for federal employee parental leave, getting ready to approve his signature Nafta update. And the president’s phase one trade deal with China is maybe sorta done? On the other side of the pond, Boris Johnson won a resounding victory in the United Kingdom and is somehow set to be the most politically successful conservative prime minister since Margaret Thatcher. How the bloody hell did that happen?Andrew Sullivanjoins the panel to talk about Johnson’s strange appeal, how the British Left went so wrong, and what lessons (if any) there are for the United States.

51 MIN2019 DEC 14
Comments
Impeach and cooperate

Laughed out of Europe

President Trump was in the UK earlier in the week for the annual NATO summit, where he fought openly with French President Emmanuel Macron about policy toward ISIS. Macron was caught on camera having an incredulous conversation with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. They were laughing about Trump’s rambling press conferences. So Trump cancelled his final press conference at the summit and left early to head back to Washington. Jonathan Katz, senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund, discusses what the President’s odd diplomacy means for U.S. relationships and alliances. Plus, the impeachment process moved to a new phase with law professors making the case for or against Impeachment to the House Judiciary Committee. But did the professors add anything useful? Jonathan Adler, Case Western Reserve law professor explains.

56 MIN2019 DEC 7
Comments
Laughed out of Europe

Pragmatic but still undecided

If you think about it, the Iowa caucuses aren’t THAT far away. This week, Josh Barro interviews two political scientists who have been studying major trends and shifts. First,Lara Putnamfrom the University of Pittsburgh updates us on the Resistance groups: middle-aged, college-educated women in American suburbs who became politically active after the 2016 election. Where is the Resistance now ahead of the 2020 primaries? Then, Davin Phoenixexplains his work studying the “anger gap”: why anger moves voters, why white voters can channel it more readily than black voters, and how that gap shapes the choice Democrats will make this winter. Then, we put it all together with two campaign trail reporters.Astead HerndonandCharlotte Altertalk about the field, what they’re seeing on the ground and the inroads the candidates are making into these voting blocs.

52 MIN2019 NOV 28
Comments
Pragmatic but still undecided

Should Democrats go for it?

It’s been two weeks of dramatic public testimony in the impeachment inquiry. The House, almost certainly, will move forward with articles of impeachment and it seems Democrats are hell bent on finishing the impeachment process by Christmas. But the inquiry hasn’t swayed public opinion of President Trump, and as a result, Republicans don’t feel political pressure to support impeachment. As for the White House, President Trump is calling for a Senate trial, so it seems he’s eager to present his case. So what will impeachment actually accomplish? And what should the articles of impeachment be? Plus, this week, President Trump intervened in three military justice cases, pardoning or vacating charges against three military service members who were accused of war crimes. How does that square with Trump’s law-and-order hardline? And, oh, by the way, the fifth Democratic debate was this week. Was it a snooze? How are things looking for the candidates?

52 MIN2019 NOV 23
Comments
Should Democrats go for it?

The impeachment hearings begin

The impeachment hearings have begun. Thirteen million Americans tuned in on Wednesday, and President Trump himself was angry tweeting about them on Friday. Will they change minds as the House heads toward what could be a near party line vote to impeach President Trump before Christmas? On the first day of impeachment hearings, President Trump met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. What explains their cozy relationship, even as the US and Turkey drift apart? Top White House adviser Stephen Miller’s emails leaked and we know he was sending around links from white-supremacist websites. Former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley is promoting her book. Is she promoting herself as a possible vice president? And Deval Patrick is running for president. Does anyone care?

50 MIN2019 NOV 16
Comments
The impeachment hearings begin

Latest Episodes

The eleventh hour

The Senate impeachment trial has officially begun, and yet...new information is still coming out and senators are still divided about witness testimony. Do the Lev Parnas documents released this week change anything? What about the Government Accountability Office determination that the Trump administration broke the law in withholding the Ukraine aid? If some Republican senators mount a campaign for witness testimony, what might that fight look like? Even so, don’t we already know how this is going to end? This week, in a moment of bipartisan cooperation, the Senate approved the USMCA trade agreement. It’s a victory for President Trump. And then there’s the phase one trade deal with China. President Trump signed it this week. Is it also a victory? Or is a bit weak? There was a debate this week in Iowa ahead of the caucuses. The candidates talked trade, foreign policy, and then there was that moment between Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Felicia Wong talks about a new project from the Roosevelt Institute on the failures of neoliberalism and what comes after for progressives.

57 MIN1 d ago
Comments
The eleventh hour

Iran, Iraq and impeachment

Iran’s response to our attack that killed Qassem Soleimani looks like a climbdown, for now. Is it time for President Trump to take a victory lap? Should we be watching for unconventional reprisals from Iran? Much of the coverage this week has centered around Iran, but what impact has this had on our already-fragile relationship with Iraq?Jarrett Blancof the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace talks about the way forward with Iran, including what remains of the Iran nuclear deal and if there’s any way more sanctions could have an impact on Iran. Plus: lawmakers’ reaction to the strike, flashbacks to 2002, and impeachment -- is that still happening?

50 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Iran, Iraq and impeachment

Iranian general killed in US airstrike

Iranian general Qassem Soleimani was killed in an American airstrike at the Baghdad airport. General Soleimani was arguably the second most powerful person in Iran and a destabilizing force in the Middle East for decades. He led Iran’s interventions in other countries in the region, including support for militias in Iraq that killed hundreds of American soldiers. The targeted killing of Soleimani was a major escalation in the conflict with Iran. Lawmakers are debating over whether the strike was wise, and what the costs to American interests will be. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the attack on Soleimani was based on intelligence that he was imminently going to undertake an attack that could have killed Americans. What Iran will do now that Soleimani is dead? And could the US be drawn into a broader war?Michael Singhof the Washington Institute for Near East Policy joins the panel to analyze the attack and the aftermath so far. Then:Natahsha Sarinof the University of Pennsylvan...

62 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Iranian general killed in US airstrike

Where is the Center?

Who is the center? Are there swing voters anymore, and what do they want? How did Donald Trump succeed at appealing at enough of the center to win the 2016 election, and what kind of candidate do Democrats need to pick to win the center back over? Political scientist Lee Drutman will tell us who these voters are, and how being a swing voter doesn’t necessarily mean being an ideological moderate. Maya MacGuineas, president of the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, and Erin McPike talk about policy making, what’s misunderstood about voters in the center, and what centrist voters are looking for in the 2020 field. Then, Josh talks with two Left, Right & Center regulars, Kelli Goff and Tom Nichols, about their difficulty figuring out where we can fit in this increasingly polarized political system. They talk about the road to political independence and Josh makes the case for being in a political party, even if you don’t like it very much.

50 MIN3 w ago
Comments
Where is the Center?

Impeached

Donald Trump is officially the third president to be impeached. The Democrats held together, with just one defection to the GOP and one “present” vote than they had a few weeks ago to open the impeachment inquiry. After the impeachment vote, Nancy Pelosi surprised everyone by saying she wouldn’t send the impeachment articles to the Senate for now. What’s up with that? Then, the Democratic presidential candidates had their liveliest debate yet. They fought over who has the necessary experience to win, Afghanistan policy, trade, health care, and who’s been spending too much in wine caves, and more. Josh Barro, Rich Lowry, Liz Bruenig and Gustavo Arellano discuss.

56 MIN2019 DEC 21
Comments
Impeached

Impeach and cooperate

The House of Representatives is almost ready to impeach President Trump, but they’re also working weirdly closely with him. This week they’ve approved a spending deal, signing off on his Space Force in exchange for federal employee parental leave, getting ready to approve his signature Nafta update. And the president’s phase one trade deal with China is maybe sorta done? On the other side of the pond, Boris Johnson won a resounding victory in the United Kingdom and is somehow set to be the most politically successful conservative prime minister since Margaret Thatcher. How the bloody hell did that happen?Andrew Sullivanjoins the panel to talk about Johnson’s strange appeal, how the British Left went so wrong, and what lessons (if any) there are for the United States.

51 MIN2019 DEC 14
Comments
Impeach and cooperate

Laughed out of Europe

President Trump was in the UK earlier in the week for the annual NATO summit, where he fought openly with French President Emmanuel Macron about policy toward ISIS. Macron was caught on camera having an incredulous conversation with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. They were laughing about Trump’s rambling press conferences. So Trump cancelled his final press conference at the summit and left early to head back to Washington. Jonathan Katz, senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund, discusses what the President’s odd diplomacy means for U.S. relationships and alliances. Plus, the impeachment process moved to a new phase with law professors making the case for or against Impeachment to the House Judiciary Committee. But did the professors add anything useful? Jonathan Adler, Case Western Reserve law professor explains.

56 MIN2019 DEC 7
Comments
Laughed out of Europe

Pragmatic but still undecided

If you think about it, the Iowa caucuses aren’t THAT far away. This week, Josh Barro interviews two political scientists who have been studying major trends and shifts. First,Lara Putnamfrom the University of Pittsburgh updates us on the Resistance groups: middle-aged, college-educated women in American suburbs who became politically active after the 2016 election. Where is the Resistance now ahead of the 2020 primaries? Then, Davin Phoenixexplains his work studying the “anger gap”: why anger moves voters, why white voters can channel it more readily than black voters, and how that gap shapes the choice Democrats will make this winter. Then, we put it all together with two campaign trail reporters.Astead HerndonandCharlotte Altertalk about the field, what they’re seeing on the ground and the inroads the candidates are making into these voting blocs.

52 MIN2019 NOV 28
Comments
Pragmatic but still undecided

Should Democrats go for it?

It’s been two weeks of dramatic public testimony in the impeachment inquiry. The House, almost certainly, will move forward with articles of impeachment and it seems Democrats are hell bent on finishing the impeachment process by Christmas. But the inquiry hasn’t swayed public opinion of President Trump, and as a result, Republicans don’t feel political pressure to support impeachment. As for the White House, President Trump is calling for a Senate trial, so it seems he’s eager to present his case. So what will impeachment actually accomplish? And what should the articles of impeachment be? Plus, this week, President Trump intervened in three military justice cases, pardoning or vacating charges against three military service members who were accused of war crimes. How does that square with Trump’s law-and-order hardline? And, oh, by the way, the fifth Democratic debate was this week. Was it a snooze? How are things looking for the candidates?

52 MIN2019 NOV 23
Comments
Should Democrats go for it?

The impeachment hearings begin

The impeachment hearings have begun. Thirteen million Americans tuned in on Wednesday, and President Trump himself was angry tweeting about them on Friday. Will they change minds as the House heads toward what could be a near party line vote to impeach President Trump before Christmas? On the first day of impeachment hearings, President Trump met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. What explains their cozy relationship, even as the US and Turkey drift apart? Top White House adviser Stephen Miller’s emails leaked and we know he was sending around links from white-supremacist websites. Former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley is promoting her book. Is she promoting herself as a possible vice president? And Deval Patrick is running for president. Does anyone care?

50 MIN2019 NOV 16
Comments
The impeachment hearings begin
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