Episode #32: Iraq returns, Hill lifers depart

There’s a four-letter word in the headlines lately:  Iraq. The withdrawal of U.S. troops in 2011 was done with the expectation that Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki would unite his country and ease ethnic tensions.  Instead, Maliki, a Shiite, did what he could to ostracize minority Sunnis… perhaps in response to what Saddam Hussein did to Shiites during his ruthless decades …

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Episode #29: More Ginsburg, More Brown & Morticians

With 8 states holding primaries on Tuesday, June 3, the Political Junkie focuses on California, where Jerry Brown is the odds-on favorite to win a fourth, non-consecutive term for governor.  KQED politics editor John Myers outlines the long path of Brown, who was first elected governor in 1974. He’s seen his share of ups and downs in his decades in politics, but …

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Episode #25: High House hopes, low Obama numbers

So how do you run your campaign in 2014 if you’re a Democrat and your president’s job approval numbers are not so good?  That’s the question host Ken Rudin put to Democratic pollster and strategist Anna Greenberg in the latest installment of the Political Junkie.  Greenberg acknowledges the weak numbers, the disappointing foreign policy and the history of the party …

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Episode #23: Wild politics in LA & ME, LBJ’s comeback

With the 50th anniversary of the 1964 Civil Rights Act — and with the revived reputation of President Lyndon Johnson — comparisons between LBJ and Barack Obama are being made.  Johnson, who left office in 1969 with the cloud of Vietnam hanging over him, is remembered as a master tactician who, with huge Democratic majorities in Congress, pushed a …

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Is There Such A Thing As A Sex Scandal In Louisiana? Freshman Rep. McAllister Will Find Out

Edwin Edwards probably put it best.  “The only way I can lose this election,” he famously once said, “is if I’m caught in bed with either a dead girl or a live boy.” That, in a nutshell, describes the tolerance for scandal in Louisiana.  Or at least the understanding of it.  Edwards, a former congressman …

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