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John Judis is an editor-at-large at Talking Points Memo, a former senior editor at The New Republic, and an old friend. Ruy Teixeira is a nonresident senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a contributing columnist at the WaPo, and politics editor of the fantastic substack The Liberal Patriot. In 2002 they wrote The Emerging Democratic Majority, and their new book is Where Have All the Democrats Gone? The Soul of the Party in the Age of Extremes.
You can listen to the episode right away in the audio player above (or on the right side of the player, click “Listen On” to add the Dishcast feed to your favorite podcast app). For two clips of our convo — on the ways the Democrats are losing on immigration, and discussing the core failings of Obama — pop over to our YouTube page.
Other topics: John’s wealthy upbringing in Chicago until parents fell on hard times and faced anti-Semitism; Ruy raised by a single mom in DC and whose dad worked at the Portuguese embassy; John and Ruy becoming friends in the early ‘70s as socialist radicals; John writing a biography of Bill Buckley in the ‘80s that garnered him respect among conservatives; Ruy working in progressive think tanks before ending up at the center-right AEI; the Reagan Era shifting to the New Democrats and a triangulating Clinton; John and Ruy writing the famous Emerging Democratic Majority that did not, in fact, write off the white working class; Brownstein’s “coalition of the ascendent” seeming to gel with Obama’s election; how Obamacare didn’t help the working class enough; the 2008 crash and recession; how Obama was “the last New Democrat” and failed to strengthen labor laws; how he enforced the border; how Hillary deployed identity politics to her peril in 2016; Trump capitalizing on trade and immigration; how even John endorsed the feeling behind “Make America Great Again”; the rise of BLM; Wendy Davis’ campaign as a harbinger for Latino support on border enforcement; Trump’s growing support among non-white voters; how the GOP became the party of the working class; how Biden hasn’t changed Dems into the normie party; his industrial policy, IRA and CHIPS; being mum on boosting energy production; his main weaknesses of age and inflation; the dearth of patriotism on the left; how blacks are a moderating force within the Dems; Asians drifting toward the GOP on education and crime; the war in Israel and Gaza; how Ukraine could be a big issue next election; the GOP weakness on abortion; Trump’s “vermin” and enemies list; and who could replace Biden among the Dems or independents like RFK Jr.
Browse the Dishcast archive for another convo you might enjoy (the first 102 episodes are free in their entirety — subscribe to get everything else). Coming up: Matthew Crawford on anti-humanism and social control, David Leonhardt on his new book about the American Dream, Cat Bohannon on Eve: How the Female Body Drove 200 Million Years of Human Evolution, Jennifer Burns on her new biography of Milton Friedman, McKay Coppins on Romney and the GOP, and Alexandra Hudson on civility. Please send any guest recs, dissent and other comments to [email protected]