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Powerhouse Politics

Headliner interviews and in-depth looks at the people and events shaping U.S. politics. Hosted by ABC News' Chief Washington Correspondent Jonathan Karl and Political Director Rick Klein.

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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Headliner interviews and in-depth looks at the people and events shaping U.S. politics. Hosted by ABC News' Chief Washington Correspondent Jonathan Karl and Political Director Rick Klein.

Authors of "Lucky: How Biden Barely Won the Presidency"

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Guests: Jonathan Allen & Amie Parnes, authors of "Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency"

There’s a new podcast we wanted to tell you about from our colleagues at ABC News. It’s called “In Plain Sight: Lady Bird Johnson” and it’s full of new revelations about Lyndon B. Johnson’s presidency and reveals the former first lady as LBJ’s closest advisor and most indispensable political partner. Drawn from over 123 hours of Lady Bird’s daily audio diaries, the podcast presents a surprising and original portrait of the former first lady, told in her own words. Hear how Lady Bird Johnson quietly shaped the future of our country and influenced the Johnson presidency — including the decision to end it. Search for “In Plain Sight: Lady Bird Johnson” wherever you’re listening right now. And we’ll leave a link for you in the episode description, too.

You can hear the “In Plain Sight” trailer here:  https://abcaudio.com/podcasts/in-plain-sight/

Mar 03 2021

31mins

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"They Crossed A Line"

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Tuesday's Senate hearing on the January 6 siege on the Capitol raised a series of questions that directly involve the previous administration. Meanwhile, Judge Merrick Garland plans to make Jan. 6 investigations his first priority after he becomes attorney general. And even with additional hearings Wednesday, Thursday and beyond, the concept of a bipartisan commission to investigate the events leading up to and during the siege is gaining traction on Capitol Hill.

Guest: Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee

Feb 24 2021

31mins

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"Truth is the Counter to The Big Lie"

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It's a plan the White House is lauding as "bold and ambitious." It's also grown less so through the early weeks of the Biden presidency -- and could reveal political vulnerabilities for the new administration as it pushes for a major COVID-19 relief bill.

Guest: Congressman Jaime Raskin (D-MD), he also served as Lead House Impeachment Manager

Feb 17 2021

33mins

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Second Impeachment Trial Begins

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Even an emotional prosecution and a mess of a defense may not change the Senate math. But while so many of the facts around the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump are settled, a key question is emerging that could matter beyond final votes on conviction. For all that is established about what rioters did, why they did it and even what Trump said to seemingly encourage them, what the then-president did in the hours that the attack was ongoing is a key piece of the case being assembled by House managers.

Guest: Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR)

Feb 10 2021

28mins

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"We Really Have To Meet The Moment"

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The impending impeachment trial guarantees refreshed memories of the horrors that took place at the Capitol less than a month ago. Any thought the trial would turn on narrow constitutional questions is effectively out, given Trump's strategy of defiance. Plus, Powerhouse Politics goes inside the White House to find out how these first weeks of the Biden Administration are progressing.

Guest: Karine Jean-Pierre, White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary

Feb 03 2021

39mins

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"Unity Requires You To Eliminate the Vitriol"

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The clock on bipartisanship is already ticking down. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is saying a vote on a budget resolution could come as early as next week -- before the Senate impeachment trial, and conceivably before any standalone COVID-19 relief bills make their way out of the legislative branch.

Guest: Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY), co-chair of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus 

Jan 27 2021

44mins

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Steps Ahead

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Joe Biden today takes the oath of office on the same steps where just two weeks ago we saw violence and unrest. ABC News Political Director Rick Klein co-hosts this episode with ABC's newly promoted congressional correspondent, Rachel Scott.

Guest: Steve Roberts, author, historian and ABC News political analyst

Jan 20 2021

35mins

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"A Fatal Condition"

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Ten is either a huge number or a stunningly small one, depending on one's views of the state of partisanship and President Donald Trump's culpability for his words and actions.

Guest: Frank Luntz, pollster and political consultant

Jan 14 2021

27mins

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"Stop Trying To Stoke Fears for Fame"

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President Donald Trump is about to become the first president to be impeached twice. The second one, while unlikely to drive him from office early, will almost certainly be the one that matters the most. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) joins from the House during the impeachment vote to discuss the events of the last week and what it means going forward. 

Guest: Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL)

Jan 13 2021

30mins

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Shocking But Not Surprising

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In this special edition of Powerhouse Politics, Jon and Rick break down the events that unfolded in United States Capitol this week, discuss some new reporting from behind the scenes in the White House and look ahead to the final twelve days of the Trump presidency.

Jan 08 2021

20mins

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"The Pressure Is Enormous"

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It’s clear how part of the story will end. President-elect Joe Biden will prevail over President Donald Trump again and perhaps for the final time. But the final public act of the post-election spectacle  -- set to play out in the House and Senate over an undetermined number of hours, starting Wednesday afternoon, even as counting in Georgia continues – will mark just a starting point for the broader debate over the future of the Republican Party.

Guest: Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC)

Jan 06 2021

34mins

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Closing The Book On 2020

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In the final episode of 2020, ABC News Chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl and ABC News Political Director Rick Klein take a look at the extraordinary final days and weeks of Donald Trump's presidency and at what a post-Trump era might bring. They also reflect on a challenging and remarkable year that the American People will not soon forget. Happy New Year and thank you for listening!

Dec 30 2020

42mins

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Flipping The White House

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On January 20th, the White House itself will undergo a major transformation as one President departs and a new one moves in to the People's House. Journalist and author, Kate Andersen Brower joins the podcast to discuss what that means for the new first family of the United States and the White House staff, including teams of ushers, butlers, cooks, and others.

Guest: Kate Andersen Brower, author of "Exploring the White House: Inside America's Most Famous Home"

Dec 23 2020

27mins

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"Respectful in Public and Very Clear in Private"

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Many Democrats might laugh at the idea that Sen. Mitch McConnell or any Republican deserves credit for acknowledging a reality that's been apparent for weeks, and simply stating that Biden is president-elect. "I applaud Mitch McConnell for talking to Joe Biden today," VP-Elect Kamala Harris told ABC News on Wednesday. "It would have been better if it were earlier, but it happened, and that's what's most important. So let's move forward." Plus, Dr. Deborah Birx joins the podcast to discuss the coronavirus vaccine, COVID trends across the U.S. and share her recommendations for holiday preparations.

Guest: Dr. Deborah Birx, Coronavirus Response Coordinator for the White House Coronavirus Task Force

Dec 16 2020

41mins

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"This Is Not for the Faint of Heart"

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It doesn't get as much notice amid the Trump show -- or, rightfully, in the midst in the dark phase of the pandemic. But intra-party rumblings about diversity and experience are more than background noise as President-elect Joe Biden builds out his governing team. 

Guest: Derrick Johnson, President and CEO of the NAACP

Dec 09 2020

27mins

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"This Has To Stop"

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To be a Republican who believes President Donald Trump and his lawyers at the moment is to believe that he's been betrayed by yet another attorney general, the GOP governors of Arizona and Georgia, plus dozens of federal and state judges -- in addition to myriad other government officials involved in increasingly bizarre and far-flung conspiracy theories. To not believe them is to potentially sacrifice your future in the Republican Party -- and maybe a whole lot more.

Guest: Anita Dunn, Senior Advisor to the Biden Campaign

Dec 02 2020

36mins

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"This is Crazy. This is Nuts."

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In the days and weeks following the 2020 election the Trump campaign has been filing lawsuits in battleground states where the race has been extremely close. Former NJ Governor and longtime ally of Donald Trump, Chris Christie said this week, "...the president's legal team has been a national embarrassment." He continued, "the allege fraud outside the courtroom but when they go inside the courtroom they don't plead fraud and they don't argue fraud."

Guest: Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-VA), author of "Bigfoot...It's Complicated"

Nov 25 2020

41mins

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"This Is Not A Search For The Truth"

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It's getting real now. From the top down and from the bottom up, the consequences of President Donald Trump and his Republican Party continuing to defy reality are making themselves evident. Trump firing a top Homeland Security official for contradicting his unfounded claims about the election, while local Republican officials in Michigan initially refused to certify results -- these mark new lows that threaten to shake the foundations of the electoral process.

Guest: Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman

Nov 18 2020

37mins

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Jim Gray: "Talking to GOATs"

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Jim Gray has won twelve National Sports Emmy Awards, interviewing the greatest of all time athletes from Muhammad Ali to Tom Brady. He has also interviewed nine US Presidents from Richard Nixon to Donald Trump, and played golf with most of them. He recently wrote "Talking with GOATS," sharing many behind-the-scenes anecdotes about his famous conversations. 

Guest: Jim Gray, sportscaster and author

Nov 13 2020

27mins

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Creating Doubt

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To rekindle an infamous discussion, taking President Donald Trump literally at this precarious moment means the president believes the election was rigged against him; that he believes he received more lawful votes than his opponent; that he believes the vote count in a series of battleground states is flawed and corrupt; and that there are election officials and state and federal judges that are ready to deliver him a second term. Taking him seriously at this moment ... might be even scarier.

Guest: Martha Raddatz, ABC News Chief Global Affairs Correspondent

Nov 11 2020

29mins

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Joni Erest

By 5948jk - May 27 2020
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Embracing interview with this major explainer is Joni Ernest.

New theme music

By ChowderBox - Jan 09 2019
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SO MUCH BETTER! Thank you for the change 😉🙃