Podcast

The Weeds

In politics, you’re often told not to get lost in the weeds. But we love the weeds! That’s where politics becomes policy – the stuff that shapes our lives. Every Tuesday and Friday, Matthew Yglesias is joined by Ezra Klein, Dara Lind, Jane Coaston and other Vox voices to dig into the weeds on important national issues, including healthcare, immigration, housing, and everything else that matters. Produced by Vox and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

Episodes

  • Does America need trade deals?

    Aug 23 2019

    Yale's Hilary Matfess joins Matt to debate Elizabeth Warren's trade proposals, and the role of trade policy in progressive politics.Recommended reading:“The progressive case for free trade” by Hilary Matfess-------------------------------------------------------Join the Weeds Facebook group!News comes at you fast. Join us at the end of your day to understand it. Subscribe to Today, Explained

  • Slavery and its legacy

    Aug 20 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt discuss the 1619 project and its criticsRelated reading:“The 1619 Project” New York Times Magazine“Henry Clay, Edward Baptist, and the Whipping Machine” by Bradley A. Hansen“Cotton, Slavery, and the New History of Capitalism” by Alan L. Olmstead and Paul W. Rhode“Capitalism and Slavery” by John J. Clegg, New York University“Slavery and Anglo-American capitalism revisited” by Gavin Wright, Stanford UniversityWhite paper--------------------------------------Join the Weeds Face...more

  • Trump's war on Medicaid

    Aug 16 2019

    The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' Jessica Schubel explains how Medicaid works, and how the White House is trying to undermine it.Join the Weeds Facebook group!

  • Epstein conspiracy time

    Aug 13 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt try to offer actual facts about prison suicide and new research on hot weather and crime.Related reading:“Jeffrey Epstein’s Death, in Context”’ by Ken White, the Atlantic"Jeffrey Epstein’s Death Underlines A Nationwide Problem" by Jesselyn Cook, Huffington PostWhite paper**********************************National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255Join the Weeds Facebook group!

  • The case for a Green New Deal

    Aug 09 2019

    Julian Brave NoiseCat of Data for Progress joins Matt to discuss the vision of the Green New Deal, the need to link it to social justice, and whether or not it’s politically viable.Recommended reading:“No, climate action can’t be separated from social justice” by Julian Brave NoiseCatJoin the Weeds Facebook group!

  • Domestic terrorism after El Paso

    Aug 06 2019

    ProPublica’s Dara Lind joins Jane and Matt to talk about the mass shooting in El Paso and what it means to take white nationalist violence seriously.Recommended reading:“The top House Republican is blaming video games for the weekend’s mass shootings” by Jane Coaston, Vox“A question for conservatives: what if the left was right on race?” by Jane Coaston, Vox“Crush This Evil” by The Editors, National Review“Who are the Trenchcoat Mafia?” BBC News“Columbine: Whose Fault Is It?” by Marilyn Manson, ...more

  • The second Democratic debate

    Aug 02 2019

    Ezra and Matt dissect the six-hour, two-night July debate marathon.Vox’s guide to where 2020 Democrats stand on policyJoin the Weeds Facebook group!

  • The many mysteries of Jeffrey Epstein

    Jul 30 2019

    ProPublica’s Dara Lind joins Jane and Matt to discuss the sexual assault case that’s also a political scandal and a financial puzzle.**White paper starts at 45:20**Recommended reading:“Jeffrey Epstein, the convicted sex offender who is friends with Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, explained” by Jane Coaston, Vox“Who Was Jeffrey Epstein Calling?” by the editors of The Intelligence“Jeffrey Epstein Burrowed Into the Lives of the Rich and Made a Fortune” by Khadeeja Safdar, Rebecca Davis O’Brien, Greg...more

  • Dysfunctional federalism

    Jul 26 2019

    Yale law professor David Schleicher joins Matt to talk about why state and local politics don’t work anymore.Join the Weeds Facebook group!

  • Go back to Cincinnati

    Jul 23 2019

    ProPublica reporter Dara Lind joins Jane and Matt to discuss President Trump’s rhetoric around the small group of congresswomen known as “the Squad”: Reps. Ayanna Presley, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib. They also dive into Trump's crackdown on refugee resettlement and a white paper about the connection between student debt and job satisfaction. Recommended reading:“The Trump racism spin cycle” by Jane Coaston“Asylum Seekers That Followed Trump Rule Now Don’t Qualify Bec...more

  • Why everyone hates Big Tech, with The Verge's Nilay Patel

    Jul 19 2019

    Verge editor-in-chief and Vergecast host Nilay Patel joins Matt in this special crossover episode to explain what Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which allows platforms to circumnavigate liability for user content, really means. They also discuss Elizabeth Warren’s proposal to break up big tech platforms, and how it may or may not fix anything. Recommended reading:Why the internet's most important law exists and how people are still getting it wrong by Alex CastroFacebook’s $5 bil...more

  • Space Force all the way!

    Jul 16 2019

    Worldly's Alex Ward joins Jane and Matt to explain Trump's more-tedious-than-it-sounds plan for military domination of the final frontier.Recommended reading:“Trump really, really wants troops in space” by Alex Ward“Trump wants a ‘Space Force.’ We have many questions.” by Alex Ward“Trump’s call for a Space Force, explained” by Alex WardJoin the Weeds Facebook group!

  • School’s out for summer

    Jul 12 2019

    Cristina Novoa from the Center for American Progress joins Matt to talk about child care disruptions and possible solutions.“When Parents Can’t Find Summer Child Care, Their Work Suffers” by Cristina NovoaJoin the Weeds Facebook group!

  • Ask Weeds Anything

    Jul 09 2019

    ProPublica reporter Dara Lind joins Jane and Matt to answer your questions. 

  • A progressive case for globalism

    Jul 05 2019

    Reed College economist Kimberly Clausing joins Matt to talk about trade and the middle class.

  • Democracy's week in court

    Jul 02 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt on two big Supreme Court cases on gerrymandering and the census.White paper

  • Debate Weeds: Ezra and Matt on the long-awaited Democratic presidential debate

    Jun 28 2019

    Matt and Ezra weigh in on the first Democratic presidential debate of the 2020 cycle.Read more of Vox's coverage of the debate here: Winners and losers from night one of the debateWinners and losers from night two of the debateMatt on Warren's performanceEzra on Harris' performance

  • What’s really going on with child detention?

    Jun 25 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt on the breakdown of trust that’s driving the latest crisis at the border.Related reading:The horrifying conditions facing kids in border detention, explainedWhite paper

  • What’s really happening in Central America

    Jun 21 2019

    Adriana Beltrán of the Washington Office on Latin America joins Matt to explain the deep roots of the migration crisis.

  • Jamestown: Utopia for Whom

    Jun 19 2019

    Nice Try! is a new podcast from Curbed and the Vox Media Podcast Network that explores stories of people who have tried to design a better world, and what happens when those designs don't go according to plan. Season one, Utopian, follows Avery Trufelman on her quest to understand the perpetual search for the perfect place. Enjoy this special preview of the first episode, Jamestown: Utopian for Whom, and subscribe to Nice Try! for free in your favorite podcast app.

  • The “illiberal” right

    Jun 18 2019

    Jane and Ezra discuss the ongoing conservative crackup and the case of Parkland teen Kyle Kashuv.Related reading:A New ConsensusKyle Kashuv Becomes a Symbol to Conservatives Who Say the Left Can’t ForgiveAgainst David French-ismJane’s article about David French vs. Sohrab AhmariAgainst the Dead ConsensusKyle Kashuv on his Harvard crisisThe Illiberal Right Throws a TantrumIs the Religious Right Privileged? by Ross Douthat

  • 5 big ideas to use tax credits to fight poverty

    Jun 14 2019

    Meg Wiehe from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy explains the leading progressive tax plans in Congress and how they differ from Trump’s tax cuts.Related reading:Understanding Five Major Federal Tax Credit ProposalsAmerican Family ActWorking Families Tax Relief ActLIFT ActLIFT+ Act

  • Into the weeds with Elizabeth Warren

    Jun 11 2019

    The Massachusetts senator joins Ezra Klein to explain her plans, and her plan to make the plans happen.

  • A user's guide to antitrust

    Jun 07 2019

    Matt sits down with Public Knowledge policy counsel Charlotte Slaiman to explain how US antitrust enforcement works and how it might better wrestle with Big Tech.

  • Trump’s tariff triple option

    Jun 04 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt discuss Trump's efforts to halt unauthorized immigration through Mexico by threatening tariffs, and a white paper on private prisons. Related reading:Dara’s “remain in Mexico” explainerTrump’s plan, explainedMexican president’s response to TrumpWhite paper

  • Monetary mysteries revealed

    May 31 2019

    Bloomberg’s Karl Smith joins Matt to explain how the Federal Reserve’s errors discredited capitalism and how full employment can fix almost everything.

  • Building the Trump state

    May 28 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt break down Trump's multi-front resistance to congressional oversight and increasing pressure on the civil service.Related reading:Trump vs. IRS lawyersThe shift at USCISWhite Paper

  • Rethinking education reform

    May 24 2019

    Libby Nelson and Dylan Scott join Matt to talk about 2020 Democrats' K-12 policyBernie's charter school plan - linkHarris' teacher pay plan - linkElizabeth Warren's case against the neighborhood school - linkOnline charter schools are bad - linkJoin The Weeds' Facebook community here

  • The loneliness of Justin Amash

    May 21 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt analyze the Michigan Republican's call to consider impeaching Trump.White paper

  • America's two housing crises

    May 17 2019

    Brookings's Jenny Schuetz joins Matt to discuss subsidies, zoning reform, and much more.

  • Make America 2015 Again

    May 14 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt discuss Joe Biden's claim that Trump is an aberration, plus some fresh research on the macroeconomics of bankruptcy.Related reading:Biden/aberration explainerBiden/bankruptcy explainerMOVE bombing

  • Green New Weeds

    May 10 2019

    David Roberts joins Ezra and Jane to explain the policy and politics of the Green New Deal. Plus: Which candidate has the better climate plan, Beto O’Rourke or Jay Inslee?Related reading:The Green New Deal, explainedDavid Roberts on what’s in the Green New DealThe Green New Deal criticsThe case against incremental climate policyGov. Jay Inslee’s climate policy

  • Sarah's Last Stand

    May 07 2019

    Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to talk about single-payer's big day on Capitol Hill and some hot administrative data from Rhode Island.Related reading:CBO reportDylan’s article on a Medicare-for-all hearingDylan’s other article on the Medicare-for-all hearing Sarah and Dylan on the different Democratic health care plans

  • Mexico: America's waiting room

    May 03 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt discuss Dara's fresh reporting on asylum officers' complaints about Trump's "wait in Mexico" policy initiative.Related reading:Dara’s piece on asylum officers

  • Incels and bullshitters

    Apr 30 2019

    Senior correspondent Zack Beauchamp joins Jane and Matt to share his reporting on the origins and evolution of a troubling new internet community.Related reading:“Our incel problem” by Zack BeauchampResearch paper

  • Was The Weeds on the wrong side of history?

    Apr 26 2019

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt celebrate Vox's fifth anniversary with a look at the changing nature of the policy dialogue in Washington.This special episode of The Weeds was taped in front of a live audience at The LINE DC to celebrate Vox’s fifth anniversary. If you enjoyed it, we think you’ll also enjoy this live taping of Recode Decode with Kara Swisher featuring Julia Angwin, and this special episode of The Ezra Klein Show with Vox’s co-founders Ezra Klein, Matt Yglesias, and Vox Media’s Publisher M...more

  • What to obstruct when you’re obstructing

    Apr 23 2019

    Matt, Jane, and Andrew Prokop talk about the Mueller report — which one of them has actually read to the end.Related reading:Quinta Jurecic’s color-coded analysis of Mueller’s obstruction languageRick Hasen’s article on Mueller not prosecuting Donald Trump Jr.Full Mueller reportWhite paper

  • Maybe collusion, probably obstruction [Special Crossover Edition]

    Apr 18 2019

    Ezra Klein joins Zack, Jenn, and Alex in a crossover episode with Worldly on Robert Mueller’s just-released report. They explain the special counsel's main findings on collusion with Russian election interference and on obstruction of justice and why they aren’t good for Trump. Then they zoom out and talk about what this whole episode reveals about the health of American democracy and how this gives a green light for Russia and other authoritarian powers to intervene in future US elections. Give...more

  • Trump Family (Tax) Values

    Apr 16 2019

    Dara, Sarah, and Matt talk about the suspiciously timed retirement of Trump's sister, IRS enforcement, and new research on how police stops can actually cause crime.Related reading:ProPublica study on the EITC auditsWhite paper

  • How Canada got Medicare-for-all done

    Apr 12 2019

    Ezra returns to discuss filibuster reform and the legacy of Tommy Douglas with Sarah and Matt.Recommended reading:Tommy Douglas named greatest CanadianFilibuster reform explainerSanders and reconciliation explainerDoctor strike explainerWhite paper

  • The Purge: DHS

    Apr 09 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt discuss Trump's personnel shake-up at the Department of Homeland Security and what's next for immigration policy.Recommended reading:Jake Tapper on Trump telling border patrol agents to ignore the lawThe White House’s wish list for DHS actionsHomeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen’s resignation, explained

  • Attack of the clone bills

    Apr 05 2019

    Matt, Sarah, and Dara copied this discussion of model legislation from an asbestos lobbyist.Recommended reading:USA Today articleArticle on 'ALEC'Research on model legislation 1Research on model legislation 2Research on model legislation 3

  • Learning from Norway's lesbian mothers

    Apr 02 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt on President Donald Trump’s latest border moves and a new wrinkle in the story of the gender pay gap.Recommended reading:Explainer on Trump cutting off aidExplainer on border closureCNN report on Trump’s border briefingsThe US policy of returning Central American asylum seekers to wait in MexicoAn optimistic take on aid and El SalvadorA pessimistic take on aid and El SalvadorWhite paper

  • Infrastructure Week (and Farm Week and Teacher Week)

    Mar 29 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt analyze three new policy proposals from Amy Klobuchar, Elizabeth Warren, and Kamala Harris.Recommended reading:Amy Klobuchar's infrastructure plan Elizabeth Warren's agriculture planKamala Harris's teacher-pay planHuffPost feature on Harris's truancy policy We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • Mueller's investigation is over. Obamacare repeal isn't.

    Mar 26 2019

    Sarah, Dara, and Jane discuss the Hill's response to Mueller, the DOJ's siege of Obamacare, and the benefits of IUDs.National Review articleZack Beauchamp's article on the reaction to William Barr's Mueller letterNew York Times article on Mueller reportWhite paperWe are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • Should presidential candidates get into the weeds?

    Mar 22 2019

    Sarah, Jane, and Matt debate the value of policy details in the primary.We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • The reparations primary

    Mar 19 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt on the unexpected issue of the moment, plus Swedish administrative data on what makes a CEO.Suggested reading:White PaperOriginal Ta-Nehisi Coates essay on reparationsWe are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • Live Weeds with Julián Castro

    Mar 15 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt sit down with the former US secretary of housing and urban development and 2020 presidential candidate, live from South by Southwest.We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • Introducing Switched on Pop

    Mar 13 2019

    Vox takes culture seriously. Our coverage seeks to understand how our cultural touchstones work — and what they reveal about who we are.That's why we’re excited to introduce you to Switched on Pop. It's a podcast that digs into the cultural context and musical theory of pop music, and it's now part of the Vox Media Podcast Network.In this episode, you'll meet hosts Nate Sloan and Charlie Harding. You'll hear some of their favorite interviews, as they pull back the curtain on how pop hits work th...more

  • Live Weeds with Pete Buttigieg

    Mar 12 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt sit down with the South Bend, Indiana, mayor and presidential candidate, live from South by Southwest.We are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • The long con

    Mar 08 2019

    Jane and Matt discuss Jacob Wohl and the intermingling of grift and conservative politics.Jane's article on Jacob WohlIraqi dinar on YouTubeCasey Newton's newsletter - The InterfaceWe are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • But seriously, how are you going to pay for it?

    Mar 05 2019

    Sarah, Dylan, and Matt discuss Pramila Jayapal’s Medicare-for-all bill, its lack of pay-fors, and an interesting white paper on income transparency. Sarah on private insurance in other countriesDylan's interview with Matt BruenigSarah's interview with Rep. Jayapal on her billWhite paperWe are conducting an audience survey to better serve you. It takes no more than five minutes, and it really helps out the show. Please take our survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/3X6WMNF

  • The Weeds fixes racism

    Mar 01 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt excavate the most contentious moment in the Cohen hearing in a hunt for "racist bones."Recommended reading:Dara on the Meadows/Tlaib standoff Jane on Steve King 

  • Amy Klobuchar and the Jill Robinson effect

    Feb 26 2019

    Sarah and Matt discuss the recent spate of stories about the Minnesota senator — and an announcement from Ezra!Relevant articles:Paper on the Jill Robinson EffectBuzzfeed Klobuchar storyHuffington Post Klobuchar storyKelsey Piper story on the fake white paper

  • Day care for all!

    Feb 22 2019

    Sarah, Dara, and Matt discuss Elizabeth Warren's universal child care plan — and the other options on the table.Relevant articles:Alvin Chang wealth tax explainerJonathan Cohn day care storyQuebec day care studyWarren's child care planThe Family Fun PackHead Start negative evaluationHead Start positive evaluation

  • Collusion and the Mueller endgame

    Feb 19 2019

    Andrew Prokop joins Dara and Matt to explain what we've learned from the latest developments in the Russia investigation.Andrew's article on Jerome Corsi's unreliable bookArticle on the redacted Manafort transcriptMarcy Wheeler articleSpecial counsel regulation textTrump Tower Moscow explainer

  • Emergency Weeds

    Feb 15 2019

    Dara, Sarah, and Matt explain the border security deal and Trump’s plan to bypass Congress.Dara's articleMatt's article on non-legislative priorities

  • What’s the best way to help the poor?

    Feb 12 2019

    Dylan Matthews joins Sarah, Ezra, and Matt to discuss five new plans on poverty from leading Democrats.Dylan's ArticleSarah's Article on Childhood WealthElizabeth Warren's Housing BillCory Booker's HOME Act

  • WTF, VA?

    Feb 08 2019

    Virginia is embroiled in multiple blackface scandals — and Jane Coaston, Sarah Kliff, and Dylan Scott are here to talk about it.Video about Slavery in the US Medical SystemJane's Article

  • Do we need private insurance?

    Feb 05 2019

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down the latest twist in the Medicare-for-all debate — plus rigorous new research on Facebook.White Paper

  • House Democrats’ plan to save democracy

    Feb 01 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt break down HR 1 — the first bill from the new Democratic majority.

  • Elizabeth Warren and the Two-Income Trap

    Jan 29 2019

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt analyze the presidential candidate’s first popular book and review new evidence on the dangers of opioid marketing.Ezra's ArticleMatt's ArticleWhite Paper

  • The end of the shutdown

    Jan 25 2019

    Jane, Ezra, and Matt have a slightly ill-timed discussion about the Pelosi-Trump showdown and the politics of the wall.

  • Investigating ER bills and SNAP fraud

    Jan 22 2019

    Sarah, Dara, and Matt discuss Trump's latest proposal, suspicious ER billing practices, and SNAP investigationsSarah's articles about hospital ER feesWhite Paper

  • You can't eat your principles for dinner

    Jan 18 2019

    Sarah, Dara, and Matt analyze the prolonged shutdown's impact on the future of the federal workforceReference Articles:The shutdown threatens the promise of government jobs — and a way of lifeFBI, federal agents see cases hampered, lives rattled as shutdown continuesThe American Action Forum explainer on the Anti-Deficiency ActHow the Border Patrol union became Trump’s closest shutdown alliesby Dara LindWhy Don’t Unpaid Federal Workers Walk Off the Job? 

  • Taxing the rich

    Jan 15 2019

    Jane, Ezra, and Matt consider the ethics and economics of a 70 percent top marginal rateAmericans misperceive racial economic equality

  • Tucker Carlson vs the free market

    Jan 11 2019

    Jane, Dara, and Matt explain the argument over economic populism that’s roiling the conservative world

  • Ask Weeds Anything

    Jan 08 2019

    Matt, Sarah, and Dara take questions from our audience Book Recommendations: The Field of Blood by Joanne B. Freeman Theodore Roosevelt: A Strenuous Life by Kathleen Dalton Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou Stories: The 17 saddest moments of Jeb Bush’s very sad campaign by Dara Lind Despite congressional pressure, Amtrak can’t get its story straight on train-boarding rules by Matthew Yglesias Do No Harm by Sarah Kliff

  • New year, no government

    Jan 04 2019

    Dara, Jane, and Matt explain why a shutdown is not The Purge and delve into the all-important difference between slats, bollards, and walls 

  • Classic Weeds: The great white panic

    Jan 01 2019

    Jane Coaston joins Dara, Ezra, and Matt to talk about the racial panic tearing America apart and also salt. References and further reading: Ezra's piece on the changing demographics in America Identity Crisis book mentioned by Ezra Salt white paper This episode is a rebroadcast from July of 2018. 

  • The Weeds Year-End Spectacular

    Dec 28 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt share what they learned in 2018, predictions for 2019, and their favorite research of the year. Links: Matt's white paper pick Sarah's white paper pick Ezra's white paper pick Sarah’s ER opus Ezra on white threat

  • Congress actually did something important

    Dec 21 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt analyze the substance and political context of the big bipartisan criminal justice reform bill. References and further reading: German Lopez explains the First Step Act Jane’s piece on Kanye West’s meeting with President Trump James Forman Jr. examines why many African American leaders supported the war on crime 

  • Bernie and Biden and Beto, oh my!

    Dec 18 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt decide it’s not too soon to start talking about the 2020 election. Plus — Obamacare litigation forever! References and further reading: Matt’s explainer on the Democratic field for 2020 Matt’s piece on Joe Biden’s policy ideas A previous episode of The Weeds on the Obamacare lawsuit Ezra’s piece on the Texas ruling against Obamacare 

  • A big, beautiful podcast about the border wall

    Dec 14 2018

    Matt, Dara, and Jane discuss what happens when engineering crushes dreams. Links: For an in-depth read on the border wall, here's a great explainer. The GAO report Dara cited can be found here. And here's the Atlantic article that Matt mentioned about the ICE crackdown 

  • A Weeds farewell to Paul Ryan

    Dec 11 2018

    Jane, Ezra, and Matt consider Paul Ryan’s legacy and new research on crime and the minimum wage. References and further reading: Ezra’s piece on House Speaker Paul Ryan’s legacy Matt’s essay following the announcement of Paul Ryan’s retirement Ted Cruz’s confusing tweet of Beto O’Rourke speaking on the shooting of Botham Jean A white paper examines the effects on criminal recidivism when states increase minimum wages Annie Lowrey’s piece in the Atlantic on a jobs guarantee 

  • Pod Save the US-Saudi alliance?

    Dec 07 2018

    Special guest Tommy Vietor of Crooked Media’s Pod Save the World joins Dara and Matt to break down the anti-Saudi backlash sweeping Washington. 

  • Midwest Republicans lost in 2018 — but they’re not giving up power

    Dec 04 2018

    Jane, Ezra, and Matt talk about state-level GOP power grabs and the curious case of Trump’s disappearing populism. References and further reading: Tara Golshan’s piece on the recent legislation proposed by GOP lawmakers David Frum’s book and Yascha Mounk’s book on populism and the threat to democracy Ezra’s conversation with Nate Silver Matt’s explainer on the Indiana Carrier factory Michael Brendan Dougherty’s essay on the support Trump needs after the 2018 elections A research paper on America...more

  • Mexico was the wall all along

    Nov 30 2018

    Dara and Matt explain the situation at the border now that the caravan has finally arrived. References and further reading: Li Zhou explains the liberal blowback against Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer Vox’s piece on the shutdown negotiations The weird outlet mall at the border Dara’s article on the asylum bottleneck A New York Times piece on the current conditions in Tijuana The Washington Post breaks down the “Remain in Mexico” policy Dara outlines what we still don't know about “Remain i...more

  • The many flavors of Medicare-for-all

    Nov 27 2018

    Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to break down eight different plans circulating to expand government health insurance programs. References and further reading: Sarah breaks down five competing health care plans from Democrats Dylan lays out the Urban Institute’s proposed health care plan   A white paper finds ICE partnerships with local police led to a decline in elementary-school enrollment of Hispanic students Are you interested in more discussions around health care policy? Join our Fac...more

  • The Impact: How do you make education funding fair?

    Nov 23 2018

    Our Thanksgiving special is an episode of The Impact -- a show about how policy shapes our lives hosted by Sarah Kliff. This season, Sarah and her team are focusing on the most exciting, innovative ideas at the state and local level. This episode, they're in Vermont, looking at a radical law to equalize education funding. Like what you’re hearing? Find The Impact on Apple Podcasts|Google Podcasts|Spotify|Stitcher|Overcast|ART19 

  • The future of conservatism is being forged in California

    Nov 20 2018

    Jane, Ezra, and Matt explain a new brand of right-wing politics rising under conditions of permanent opposition. References and further reading: Jane’s piece on the driving force that is California-style conservatism A white paper examining which voters supported Medicaid in Maine’s 2017 referendum John Sides, Michael Tesler, and Lynn Vavreck explain the 2016 presidential election through identity politics in their book Identity Crisis 

  • Facebook is bad, please join our Facebook group

    Nov 16 2018

    Dara, Jane, and Matt analyze the social network that America loves to hate and can't escape. References and further reading: New York Times exposé on Facebook’s reaction to Russian interference on their site Michelle Goldberg tells Democrats to leave Facebook in a Times opinion piece An article from the New York Times on advertisers’ reactions to the Facebook report An interview with Sheryl Sandberg from CBS News Ask Weeds Anything is back! Sarah Kliff, Dara Lind, and Matt Yglesias will answer y...more

  • Jeff Sessions is gone but not forgotten

    Nov 09 2018

    Dara, Jane, and Matt talk about the endgame for the attorney general Trump loved to hate. References and further reading: Dara reports on Trump’s asylum ban Dara defines Jeff Sessions’s legacy through immigration crackdowns and deportation Heather Mac Donald’s “The War on Cops” The Trump administration enters its Leeroy Jenkins phase A piece from Politico on the magical powers of Trump Jane’s essay from National Review on Trumpism McKay Coppins’s Atlantic article on the GOP’s adoption of Trumpis...more

  • About last night

    Nov 07 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down seven key takeaways from Tuesday's election. References and further reading: Ezra’s piece on Trump’s failing political strategy Ezra’s essay on William Kristol’s 1993 health memo 

  • Seattle’s plan to save democracy

    Nov 06 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt offer midterm predictions, look at democracy vouchers, and analyze the real impact of Daylight Savings Time. References and further reading: Sarah explores the effects of Seattle’s democracy vouchers on The Impact Nicholas Carnes’s piece on the representation of the working class in government A working paper presents evidence that Daylight Savings Time results in an increase in electricity demand An article in Quartz explains the lobbying behind Daylight Savings Time Matt’...more

  • Bad for the Jews

    Nov 02 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt dissect the rising currents of anti-Semitism in the Trump era. References and further reading: Adam Serwer’s piece on the Pittsburgh shooter Dara joins Today, Explained to discuss the migrant caravan Time analyzes Ted Nugent’s anti-Semitic Facebook post about gun control The Atlantic’s profile of a neo-Nazi who took Trump’s speech as an endorsement of anti-Semitism Michael Brendan Dougherty’s piece in National Review on why he’s disappointed Jane's essay on conspiracy theori...more

  • Operation Win the Midterms

    Oct 31 2018

    Defense correspondent Alex Ward joins Dara and Matt to analyze Trump’s dispatch of thousands of US soldiers to the border. References and further reading: Alex’s piece on the role of troops at the US-Mexico border An article from Reuters on the clashes at the Mexico-Guatemala border Dara explains the migrant caravan Dara’s piece on the shrinking caravan Dara reports on a new “travel ban” that the Trump administration is considering 

  • Republicans’ health care message: Lie a lot

    Oct 30 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down rhetoric and reality on preexisting conditions. References and further reading: Sarah outlines the position of Republicans on preexisting conditions Sarah’s piece from 2016 on the future of Obamacare Robert Draper’s article on Priorities USA and its campaign against Mitt Romney Ezra makes the case that Trump is a moderate 

  • Our elections are being hacked

    Oct 26 2018

    In this episode, Ezra and Jane dig into the dismal state of election security, as well as the many, many ways that people’s votes are obstructed, distorted, and prevented. Isn’t democracy grand? References and further reading: Benjamin Wofford’s piece on our hacked election system Jamelle Bouie in the Daily Beast breaks down the motive behind voter ID laws Issie Lapowsky of Wired clarifies that you cannot cast a vote with a text message The Atlantic reports on black civic engagement versus voter...more

  • What's next for House Democrats?

    Oct 24 2018

    Ella Nilsen and Dylan Scott join Matt Yglesias to talk about Democrats' midterm message and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's future. References and further reading: Ella’s piece on the priorities of House Democrats if they take the House in November. Ella breaks down the fight for leadership over House Democrats Dylan outlines the 2018 midterms using an ad from Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) Dylan explains the role of health care in the Missouri Senate race 

  • Cory Booker’s plan to close the racial wealth gap

    Oct 23 2018

    Dara, Sarah, and Matt talk about a new "baby bonds" proposal and new research that explores perceptions of illegal immigrants. References and further reading: Sarah’s piece on Sen. Cory Booker’s (D-NJ) plan for baby bonds A report on the racial wealth gap An article on unclaimed cash from baby bonds in the United Kingdom Ira Katznelson on racial inequality in “When Affirmative Action Was White” A white paper on the social construction of illegality 

  • Trump versus the Caravan

    Oct 19 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt explain the reality behind the migrant caravan fueling the latest MAGA conspiracy theories. References and further reading: Trump’s first campaign ad Rep. Matt Gaetz’s tweet claiming to share footage relating to the caravan 

  • Republicans run everything, and they’re mad as hell

    Oct 17 2018

    Tara Golshan joins Jane and Matt to analyze the state of the GOP on the brink of the midterms. References and further reading: Ella Nilsen gives a rundown of the creative political ads from this midterm season. Tara’s piece on Rep. Duncan Hunter’s attacks on his opponent. Jane’s article in the National Review on “Trumpism.” Matt Schlapp’s tweet about Sens. Kamala Harris and Cory Booker. 

  • America’s moral failure on climate

    Oct 16 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt debate the new IPCC report, William Nordhaus's Nobel Prize, and a hot new working paper about Medicaid contraction. References and further reading: The IPCC report on the impact of global warming David Roberts’s piece on the fight over the carbon tax in Washington state during 2016 Earl Swift tells of the disappearing Tangier Island in his book Chesapeake Requiem A white paper on the effects of disenrollment from Medicaid A contrasting paper on the effects of disenrollment ...more

  • I’mma let you finish

    Oct 12 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about Kanye West, Taylor Swift, the black conservative political tradition, and the shifting politics of the Trump era. References and further reading: Jane dissects Trump’s meeting with Kanye West Jemele Hill’s article on black men and Brett Kavanaugh Hoteps, explained Jane’s piece on racism within the Republican Party Vann Newkirk’s piece on black civic engagement in the Trump era Vox's Constance Grady analyzes the Taylor Swift voter registration bump 

  • As tough as Texas

    Oct 10 2018

    Tara Golshan and Ella Nilsen join Matt to talk about the critical midterm races in the Lone Star State. References and further reading: Ella’s piece on Democrats running in Texas Tara outlines key themes in the race between Ted Cruz and Beto O’Rourke Tara’s piece on a potential blue wave in the state Tara details more on the battle between Cruz and O’Rourke 

  • The craziest Obamacare lawsuit yet

    Oct 09 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Obamacare (again!), waning democratic legitimacy, and why retaking the SAT drives class and racial gaps in college enrollment. References and further reading: Josh Blackman’s piece on the ACA lawsuit Amicus brief from the pro- and anti-ACA law professors Katie Keith’s article on oral arguments John Harris’s piece on the ruthlessness of the Republican Party David Farris's book on fighting dirty Jennifer Victor's pinned tweet on the meaning of democracy A white pap...more

  • Alexa, raise the minimum wage

    Oct 05 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about Amazon's pay raise, Sen. Bernie Sanders’s Stop BEZOS Act, and the new politics of big tech. References and further reading: Alexia Fernández Campbell’s piece on Vox about Amazon’s pay raises Sarah Butler of the Guardian lays out the pay raise versus bonus situation Matt’s piece in Slate on Jeff Bezos’s relationship with Wall Street Dylan Scott explains Medicare-for-all Kevin Roose’s daily Twitter updates on sources of the top-performing Facebook posts about Christ...more

  • When women run

    Oct 03 2018

    Congressional reporter Ella Nilsen joins Sarah and Matt to explain the unprecedented surge in women running for Congress this year. References and further reading: Michele Swers’s paper that highlights how women representatives bring back more funding to their district Sarah’s piece on how electing women changes the way the government functions Jennifer Palmieri’s book that examines the criticisms of Hillary Clinton 

  • Death to NAFTA! Long live USMCA!

    Oct 02 2018

    Ezra, Sarah, and Matt dive into the latest on the Kavanaugh nomination — and why USMCA is great for Canadians who drink milk. References and further reading: Alvin Chang charts every question the Senate asked Kavanaugh Ezra’s piece on the Republicans’ strategy to save Kavanaugh Catherine Rampell compares Trump’s new trade deal to the old A white paper on “College Party Culture and Sexual Assault” 

  • Do Republicans even care if Kavanaugh is guilty?

    Sep 28 2018

    Sarah, Jane, and Matt break down an excruciating day in American politics. References and further reading: Laura McGann’s piece on sexual harassment claims against Glenn Thrush of the New York Times Constance Grady explains rape culture of the 1980s A poll found evangelicals would support Kavanaugh even if allegations against him were true Eric Erickson argues Trump will escalate matters if Kavanaugh is rejected 

  • What Sarah learned on parental leave

    Sep 25 2018

    Sarah, Matt, and Ezra dive into how other countries design parental leave policies — and what the US could do better. Plus: a white paper on subways, and outer space! References and further reading: RAND review on child care allowance Pew research finds birthrates are down while the desire to have kids is not ProPublica relates mothers to candy wrappers Henrik Levin charts attitudes toward working mothers with school-age children White paper on subways and pollution in urban centers 

  • What could stop the next Botham Jean?

    Sep 21 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt discuss a tragic death in Dallas and the difficult politics of police reform. References and further reading: Adam Serwer’s piece in the Atlantic on the National Rifle Association’s Catch-22 Numbers on the NRA David French names this “the worst police shooting yet” Jane Esberg and Jonathan Mummolo paper explaining the misperceptions of crime Josh Sugarmann explains the ties between the firearm industry and the NRA Pew poll on how the police and the public view policing Justi...more

  • #MeToo goes to the Supreme Court

    Sep 18 2018

    Dara, Ezra, and Matt discuss the allegations that could derail Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation References and further reading: Christine Blasey Ford speaks out to the Washington Post Malcolm Gladwell's episode of Revisionist History on Brian Williams Twitter thread from Sandra Newman on false accusations Report on binge drinking by high school students since the 70s Slate article on Judge Kozinski's inappropriate emails Caitlin Flanagan's piece on why she believes Ford Jian Ghomeshi reflects afte...more

  • Can Elon Musk save Tesla from himself?

    Sep 14 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about the potential meltdown of one of America’s most important entrepreneurs. References and further reading: Emily Stewart's piece on Elon Musk smoking pot 

  • I am the Resistance inside The Weeds podcast

    Sep 11 2018

    Dara, Ezra, and Matt talk about Bob Woodward’s book, that op-ed, and the two-track Trump presidency. References and further reading: The infamous NY Times op-ed written by a White House insider Andrew Prokop's explainer of Bob Woodward's new book White paper: Does Rape Culture Predict Rape? 

  • Colin Kaepernick, the most important election issue in the world

    Sep 07 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt get ready for some football. References and further reading: Jane's explainer of the NFL protests Jane's piece on Nike's new "Just Do It" campaign Jane's piece "Nike has made billions selling rebellion to young people" 

  • What’s at stake in the midterms

    Sep 04 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt kick off the unofficial beginning of campaign season by asking what happens if Democrats win in November and what if they lose? References and further reading: Matt's piece on the House Republican list of investigations that could happen if Dems win David Mayhew's Divided We Govern, mentioned by Matt Dara's piece on where DACA stands now 

  • America picked a lousy time to turn its back on refugees

    Aug 31 2018

    In an unexpectedly globe-hopping episode of The Weeds, Dara and Worldly co-host Zack Beauchamp examine the ripple effects of Trump’s America First attitude toward the refugee crisis. References and further reading: Politico article about how the Trump administration is slow walking refugee resettlement for 2018 with rumors of even lower levels for 2019 Trump's turn away from global leadership on refugee issues  The disqualifying comments of Trump's nominee to lead the International Organiza...more

  • John McCain vs. the idea of John McCain

    Aug 28 2018

    Vox politics editor Laura McGann joins Dara and Matt to talk about John McCain's legacy and Donald Trump's response to his death, then Dara and Matt tackle a white paper that looks at the connection between financial decisions and partisanship. References and further reading: Matt's piece about John McCain's death Laura's piece on John McCain's ties to Sarah Palin Ryan Lizza's piece on the 2013 immigration plan, mentioned by Dara White paper: Partisanship and Risky Financial Decisions 

  • The art of the squeal

    Aug 24 2018

    Jane, Dara, and Matt talk about Paul Manafort’s guilty verdict, Michael Cohen’s guilty plea, and what comes next for Donald Trump. References and further reading: Dara's piece about Donald Trump's tweets and what they say about his relationship with Manafort and Cohen Matt's piece about Trump's Fox & Friends interview Jane's piece on how the right is spinning the Cohen and Manafort news Ken White's tweet thread, mentioned by Dara 

  • Elizabeth Warren’s plan to save/destroy capitalism

    Aug 21 2018

    Dara, Ezra, and Matt discuss a big idea to make the economy great again. References and further reading: Matt's piece on Elizabeth Warren's corporate accountability bill Matt's piece on Kevin Williamson's attack on Warren's accountability bill The Varieties of Capitalism, book mentioned by Matt David Ciepley's writing on corporations, mentioned by Dara Dylan Matthews' piece on co-determination , mentioned by Ezra Sam Hammond's piece on Warren's bill, mentioned by Ezra and Dara Aaron Klein's anal...more

  • We’re not gonna pay rent

    Aug 17 2018

    Jane Coaston joins Matt and Dara to talk about exploding housing costs in America’s coastal cities and what we can do about them. References and further reading: Jeff Stein's piece on rent and housing 

  • Lordy, Omarosa has tapes

    Aug 14 2018

    Emily Stewart joins Dara and Matt to talk about the perhaps-unbelievable book everyone’s talking about, and the dysfunctional White House that spawned it. References and further reading: Emily's piece on Omarosa's recording of John Kelly Emily's highlights from Omarosa's book Unhinged Maggie Haberman tweet confirming that earlier secret White House tapings were not Omarosa, mentioned by Dara White paper "Unemployment, Temporary Work, and Subjective Well-Being: The Gendered Effect of Spousal Labo...more

  • #FakeScience

    Aug 10 2018

    Senior health correspondent Julia Belluz and science reporter Brian Resnick join Dara and Matt to discuss the replication crisis in scientific studies. References and further reading: Brian's piece on the marshmallow test John P. A. Ioannidis' "Most Published Research Findings Are False," mentioned by Julia Scientists tired to replicate 100 psychological studies, 40% passed, mentioned by Brian Scientists also tried to replicate 100 economic studies, 60% passed Vox's survey of 270 scientists abou...more

  • The Great Twitter Wars of 2018

    Aug 07 2018

    Jane Coaston and Dylan Matthews join Ezra to discuss the Sarah Jeong fracas, the Ben Shapiro-Mark Duplass meltdown, the problems with Twitter, the ways partisan dehumanize each other, and more. References and further reading: The context for Sarah Jeong's "goblins" tweet The context for Sarah Jeong's "cut white people" tweet  German Lopez's piece on what makes people less racist Brian Resnick's piece on reducing prejudice William F. Buckley supporting segregation Zack Beauchamp's piece in d...more

  • Paul Manafort, alleged ostrich-collar criminal

    Aug 03 2018

    Andrew Prokop joins Dara and Matt to talk about Paul Manafort’s trial and what it means for the larger Russia investigation. References and further reading: Andrew's piece on the trials of Paul Manafort Andrew's breakdown of the opening statements at Manafort's trial Franklin Foer's profile of Manafort, mentioned by Andrew 

  • The great white panic

    Jul 31 2018

    Jane Coaston joins Dara, Ezra, and Matt to talk about the racial panic tearing America apart and also salt. References and further reading: Ezra's piece on the changing demographics in America Identity Crisis book mentioned by Ezra Salt white paper 

  • “Mission Accomplished,” trade war edition

    Jul 27 2018

    Congressional reporter Tara Golshan joins Dara and Matt to break down Trump’s kinda sorta trade deal with the EU and ongoing trade tensions with China” References and further reading: Tara's piece on Trump's mischaracterization of the US trade deficit Politico Europe rundown of the trade deal, mentioned by Matt The Weeds has been nominated for this year's People's Choice Podcast Awards! Cast your vote for The Weeds for free before Tuesday, July 31st at podcastawards.com.

  • What Republicans can do on Trump and Russia

    Jul 24 2018

    Matt, Dara and Ezra talk about Republicans, Trump and Russia. Plus: A research paper reveals how Dara lost on College Jeopardy. References and further reading: Politico Playbook piece mentioned by Matt, "GOP to the world: What would you like us to do?" Law Review paper "Separation of Parties, Not Powers" The Weeds has been nominated for this year's People's Choice Podcast Awards! Cast your vote for The Weeds for free before Tuesday, July 31st at podcastawards.com.

  • It’s surprisingly easy to get away with murder in America

    Jul 20 2018

    Senior criminal justice reporter German Lopez joins Dara and Matt to talk about the high number of unsolved homicides in America. References and further reading: Ghettoside: A True Story of Murder in America by Jill Leovy German's reporting on the violent crime clearance rate in America Study referenced by Dara that looked at community cooperation from Secure Communities (a massive federal immigration enforcement program) In-depth reporting on the low murder clearance rate across the US fr...more

  • There’s collusion, and then there’s collusion

    Jul 17 2018

    Dara, Ezra, and Matt discuss President Trump's remarkable performance in Helsinki and new research on employers colluding to hold down pay. Links: Dara mentioned Quinta Jurecic's piece tying Trump in Helsinki to Trump on Charlottesville. Here's the Ari Fleischer tweet Ezra referenced. Ezra walked through what we know about Trump's dealings with Russia. Here's that rundown (and more analysis) in text form. Trump tweeted during recording — here's the full text Matt read. Matt mentioned Adam ...more

  • Republicans' plan for health care: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Jul 13 2018

    Dylan Scott joins Dara and Matt to talk about the Trump administration’s latest moves to destabilize health insurance markets. Dylan's piece on risk adjustment payments, and another piece on the Trump administration’s latest steps to undermine the Affordable Care Act. Dylan also specifically referenced Nicholas Bagley. Read him on risk adjustments here.

  • Brett Kavanaugh and the future of the Supreme Court

    Jul 10 2018

    Dara, Ezra, and Matt break down what we know about Trump’s pick for the Supreme Court References and further reading: Paper about Norwegian immigrants, mentioned by Matt "Twice a Stranger: The Mass Expulsions that Forged Modern Greece and Turkey" good book with background on the refugee paper

  • 1,2,3,4 Trump declares a trade war

    Jul 06 2018

    Staff writer Zeeshan Aleem joins Dara and Matt to break down what's really happening with Trump and trade, and how much it matters. References and further reading: Zeeshan's piece on the US-China trade war

  • Family detention is the new family separation

    Jul 03 2018

    Matt, Dara and Ezra talk about the Trump administration's use of family detention as an alternative to family separation. Then they turn to a white paper that looks at racial attitudes and white privilege. References and further reading: Tara Golshan's piece on the latest immigration bill Politico piece on the Senate efforts to fix family separation "Racial attitudes in response to thoughts of White privilege" white paper Kate Manne's piece on Bernie Sanders' white male problem mentioned b...more

  • America’s Next Top Supreme Court Justice

    Jun 29 2018

    Vox senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Matt and Dara to talk about the future of the Supreme Court without Justice Kennedy. References and further reading: NYT piece on Justice Kennedy's son's connections to the Trump family Dara's piece on the most likely picks for Kennedy's replacement Jane's piece on Senator Mike Lee Jane's piece on polling that show's Trump voters were motivated by the Supreme Court vacancy Examiner piece on overturning Roe v. Wade

  • With borders wide open

    Jun 26 2018

    Ezra returns from the wilds of book leave to talk about open borders with Dara and Matt. References and further reading: Dara's piece on the 1996 immigration bill "Trillion dollar bills on the sidewalk" white paper Bryan Caplan paper on open borders Ezra's interview with LA Mayor Eric Garcetti

  • The messy drama queens of the Supreme Court

    Jun 22 2018

    While Sarah, Matt and Ezra are away Dara is joined by Dylan Matthews and Andrew Prokop to talk about the friction between how the Supreme Court says it makes its decisions, and the way everyone assumes it really works. Is it time for the Court to stop getting polite and start getting (legal) real(ist)? References and further reading: Andrew’s explainer on the gerrymandering decision The “efficiency gap,” explained by one of its creators  Dylan on the public-sector union case Janus v. AFSCME ...more

  • Which children matter?

    Jun 19 2018

    Senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Dara and Matt to talk about the ideological roots of Donald Trump's family separation policy. References and further reading: Dara's piece on "operation wetback" the immigration policy Donald Trump loves Jane's piece on Stephen Miller Jamelle Bouie's piece on Stephen Miller Politico piece about Trump possibly shutting down the government in September over border wall, mentioned by Jane Dara's piece on the number of families separated at the b...more

  • Ask Weeds Anything...Again!

    Jun 15 2018

    Sarah, Dara and Matt answer your questions.

  • Why 12-step programs work — and family separation doesn’t

    Jun 12 2018

    While Sarah and Matt are away Dara is joined by Vox.com congressional reporters Tara Golshan and Ella Nilsen to talk about immigration and family separation. Then she's joined by Vox.com criminal justice reporter German Lopez to talk about a white paper that looks at the effectiveness of 12- step programs. References and further reading: Ella's piece on Democrats trying to stop family separation at the border Tara's piece on the chaos in the House over immigration Sarah's piece on the miss...more

  • Can we get tough on rapists without being “tough on crime”?

    Jun 08 2018

    Sarah, Dara and Matt talk about the recent recall of Judge Aaron Persky, the California judge who sentenced former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner to six months when he was convicted of sexual assault in 2016. References and further reading: Julia Ioffe's piece on the Stanford professor who led the charge against Persky AP reporting on Persky's record as a judge Rachel Marshall's Vox.com piece on why the recall isn't a progressive victory John Pfaff Twitter thread on how elections ...more

  • Cake Wars, Supreme Court edition

    Jun 05 2018

    Dara, Sarah and Matt trace the Supreme Court Masterpiece Cakeshop ruling back to peyote and then discuss a Swedish study about lottery winners. References and further reading: Vox.com explainer on the Masterpiece Cakeshop ruling Vox.com piece about religious liberty in American history The Gallup poll on rates of support for gay marriage, mentioned by Sarah White paper on Swedish lottery winners

  • Trump isn’t losing immigrant kids, but he is taking them from their parents

    Jun 01 2018

    Sarah and Matt are joined by Vox.com Congress reporter Tara Golshan to talk about missing children, separated families, and the latest immigration action on the Hill. References and other reading: Sarah's piece with an immigration expert explaining the 1,500 "missing" migrant children Sarah explainer on family separations Tara's piece on Republican moderates and immigration Dara's explainer on the family separation policy

  • The debate over “no excuses” charter schools, explained

    May 29 2018

    Libby Nelson, Vox.com news editor and former education reporter, joins Matt and Sarah to talk about the discipline practices and educational outcomes at so-called "no excuses" charter schools. Then they turn to a white paper that looks at lead poisoning and fertility. References and further reading: Illinois Public Radio story on Noble Academy Video of teacher at Success Academy ripping up student's homework Research mentioned by Libby on outcomes at the Harlem Children's Zone Upper West S...more

  • Nobody has babies anymore (except Sarah)

    May 22 2018

    Sarah and Matt talk about America’s rapidly falling birthrate, and a study on the long-term benefit of the 1980s Medicaid expansion. References and further reading: National Center for Health Statistics report on declining birth rates Vox's Julia Belluz's piece on the low birthrate trend NPR piece on the CDC report on declining fertility rates in the U.S. Sarah's piece on why teen births are declining Lyman Stone paper Sarah mentioned arguing that government interventions don't boost fer...more

  • Caught in the Intellectual Dark Web

    May 18 2018

    Senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Dara and Matt to debate the “identity politics” backlash and the prospects for pluralism. References and further reading: Bari Weiss' piece on the 'intellectual dark web' Conor Friedersdorf's piece on how the left fuels the right's bigotry

  • Drugs! (But not the fun kind)

    May 15 2018

    Sarah, Dara and Matt discuss the the exorbitant cost of prescription drugs and a white paper that looks at the correlation between counties that vote Republican and the number of low and high-skilled immigrants living in those communities. References and further reading: Dylan Scott's piece on the price of prescription drugs mentioned by Sarah The white paper on 'The Political Impact of Immigration: Evidence from the United States'

  • The many scandals of Michael Cohen

    May 11 2018

    Vox.com senior political reporter Andrew Prokop joins Dara and Matt to explain the strange tale of Donald Trump’s lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen, who now seems to be in serious legal hot water. References and further reading: Andrew's piece on the corporations that hired Michael Cohen Andrew's piece on the Cohen's ties to Russia Andrew's Stormy Daniels explainer

  • Did you read the memo about the TPS reports?

    May 08 2018

    Sarah, Dara, and Matt analyze Trump’s drastic rollback of Temporary Protected Status for immigrants from Honduras, El Salvador, and Haiti and discuss new research on the never-ending “economic anxiety” debate. References and further reading: Dara's TPS explainer White paper on attitudes toward social change

  • Should psychiatrists diagnose Trump? Should journalists?

    May 04 2018

    Vox's science reporter Brian Resnick joins Dara and Sarah to talk about psychiatry's Goldwater Rule, which has never met a test like Donald Trump. References and further reading: Brian's piece on why Trump's fitness for office is not a medical question Brian's explainer on the Goldwater Rule Sharon Begley's article Trump's mental health mentioned by Sarah Sarah's piece on fax machines Dara's piece on why the palace intrigue stuff matters to Trump

  • What if the government guaranteed everyone a job?

    May 01 2018

    Vox's Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt to break down the jobs guarantee debate and discuss research on a promising school desegregation initiative undermined by racist police practices. References and further reading Dylan's jobs guarantee explainer (with links to Stephanie Kelton's writing) Dylan's explainer of Sen. Cory Booker's jobs guarantee proposal (with links to Darrick Hamilton and Sandy Darity's writing) Bryce Covert's piece on the case for a jobs guarantee Gallup poll on worke...more

  • Ambien for all, Ronny Jackson and the VA, explained

    Apr 27 2018

    Congressional reporter Ella Nilsen makes her Weeds debut joining Sarah and Matt to break down the botched nomination at the Veterans’ Administration, they also address the questions around the troubled agency’s future. References and further reading: Sarah's piece on the Ronny Jackson scandal Ella's piece on the controversy surrounding Jackson's nomination CNN piece on Ronny Jackson's alleged 'grab-and-go' clinic NY Times piece on the concierge emergency room

  • Speaker Ryan had a farm bill (E-I-E-I-O)

    Apr 24 2018

    Sarah, Dara and Matt discuss a Republican farm bill that would impose work requirements on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) beneficiaries. Then they turn to a white paper on OxyContin and the heroin epidemic. References and further reading: Good Politico article summarizing the farm bill Marion Nestle's piece on the farm bill White paper on OxyContin's impact on the heroin epidemic German Lopez's piece on the OxyContin white paper

  • Boiling the frogs of war

    Apr 20 2018

    Zack Beauchamp joins Dara and Matt to explain the ever-expanding 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force and Trump's even more expansive legal rationale for bombing Syria. References and further reading: Vox's history of the AUMF A primer on the legal dispute in Doe v. Mattis Chesney primer on the Corker-Kaine Draft AUMF Who is Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben?

  • Honor cults in the FBI and Norwegian military

    Apr 17 2018

    Matt, Sarah and Dara work backward from James Comey through FBI history and discover an 18th-century demon hidden in the Constitution. No, really. References and further reading: Dara's piece on the tension between the rule of law and political leadership Recent PBS poll on how Americans view the FBI Max Weber, explained White paper on gender integration in the Norwegian military

  • All 👏 payer 👏 rate 👏 setting 👏

    Apr 13 2018

    Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to talk about Paul Ryan's retirement, his legacy, and the Weedsiest health reform of all. References: Sarah's all-payer rate setting explainer Dylan's piece on Paul Ryan's legacy Melanie Mason's piece on California's healthcare bill RTI evaluation of all-payer rate setting Health Affairs evaluation on changes in hospital use in Maryland

  • The imprudent Scott Pruitt

    Apr 10 2018

    Sirens galore, as the team races through Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt's many, many scandals and a white paper about unnecessary ambulance use. References: Trump's defense of Scott Pruitt A good explainer on the Pruitt scandal How EPA deregulations impact toxic air pollution Michael Grunwald's piece on Pruitt's rollback of Obama era environmental regulations Elaina Plott's pieces on Scott Pruitt and more Working paper on ambulance usage in New York

  • Sinclair’s alarming takeover of local TV news

    Apr 06 2018

    Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt to break down the history of Sinclair Broadcast Group, its politics, and the regulatory favors that fueled its growth. References: Dylan's piece on the Sinclair media takeover Timothy Burke's Sinclair anchor mashup Alving Chang's piece on Sinclair media, see if your local news station is owned by Sinclair Martin and McCrain's paper on local news and national politics Good Mother Jones piece on Sinclair's local news takeover

  • Is Donald Trump ruining the Census?

    Apr 03 2018

    Sarah, Dara, and Matt talk about the citizenship question, funding, and the potential consequences of a botched enumeration. Plus a weedsy dive into potential redistricting mischief, and research on Jose Canseco's malign influence on Major League Baseball. References: Dara's piece on the 2020 census Carlos Waters' video on the 2020 census The baseball white paper

  • The optimistic take is things have always been bad (Worldly crossover)

    Mar 30 2018

    The Weeds/Worldly crossover event continues: Jennifer Williams tries to persuade Dara and Matt they're wrong about an Islamophobic shift in Trump's new cabinet, and the old-fashioned democracy-promoting hawkery of George W. Bush.

  • Is Facebook bad?

    Mar 27 2018

    Matt, Sarah and Ezra on a new, blockbuster study on racial mobility — and whether Mark Zuckerberg should shut down Facebook. References: Race and Economic Opportunity in the United States Dylan Matthews' piece Income Mobility Charts for Girls, Asian-Americans and Other Groups. Or, Make Your Own Extensive Data Shows Punishing Reach of Racism for Black Boys Matt's case against Facebook

  • Cambridge Analytica: Scandal, hype, or both?

    Mar 23 2018

    Andrew Prokop, senior politics reporter for Vox.com, joins Dara and Matt to break down the scandal that’s rocking the worlds of technology and politics. References: The Jane Mayer piece on the Mercers Dara mentioned A study on Big Five personality attributes and voting behavior SCIENCE! on the Cambridge Analytica model A big five personality test you can do at home  Andrew's Cambridge Analytica explainer Matt's good Facebook take

  • The opioid debate: could reversing overdoses worsen the epidemic?

    Mar 20 2018

    An economics working paper finds that access to Naloxone, a drug to reverse opioid overdoses, may increase opioid abuse. Sarah and Ezra explain the paper that started a social media firestorm — and what it means for combating the opioid epidemic. References: Doleac and Mukherjee working paper A good summary of the debate from The Atlantic Health Affairs blog post  Working paper from Daniel Rees People are dying because we misunderstand how those with addiction think A lifesaving drug fo...more

  • Abolish ICE

    Mar 16 2018

    Dara and Matt break down the history of Immigration & Customs Enforcement: how it got this way, and why some on the left want it to go away.

  • Trigger warning: Discussion of White House chaos and political correctness

    Mar 13 2018

    Vox senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Ezra and Matt to talk about Trump turmoil, political correctness and the latest research on the state of the parties.

  • Nickname fights and wildcat strikes

    Mar 09 2018

    Vox Politics & Policy reporter Alexia Fernandez-Campbell joins Dara and Matt to talk about the West Virginia teachers strike. References: Alexia’s article on teachers Vox's Alvin Chang just published this amazing tool to see how teachers are paid in your state An explainer on the Supreme Court’s Janus case How public-sector unions are preparing for a post-Janus future The original “If You’re Gonna Play in Texas” Photographer evidence that he’s been called “Beto” since he was a toddl...more

  • Relief at last for America’s long-suffering banks

    Mar 06 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about a bipartisan bank deregulation bill, Medicaid work requirements, and constitutional hardball. References: Mark Tushner’s original constitutional hardball article Ron Chernow’s biography of Ulysses Grant Why there are two Dakotas Dylan Scott’s “Trump’s Hidden War on Medicaid”

  • Guns, Weeds, and Steel

    Mar 02 2018

    Vox senior politics reporter Jane Coaston joins Dara and Matt to talk about a week of extremely erratic policymaking from an increasingly chaotic Trump White House.

  • Medicare for Many More

    Feb 27 2018

    Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to talk about a new universal health care plan — plus some exciting administrative data from the good-old USA!

  • The stupidest fucking idea I’ve ever heard

    Feb 23 2018

    There are also some good ideas discussed. All of them are about guns. German Lopez joins Dara and Matt to talk about gun control in the wake of the Parkland shooting.

  • It's finally infrastructure week

    Feb 20 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about what’s really wrong with American infrastructure, the massacre in Parkland, FL, and new research on legislators’ irrational decision-making. Whitepaper! Bias in Perceptions of Public Opinion Among American Political Elites by David E. Broockman, Christopher Skovron

  • DACApocalypse in the Senate

    Feb 16 2018

    Matt, Dara, and Andrew Prokop talk about the Senate's failed immigration push, and they parse through the many-layered Rob Porter scandal. DACA/Immigration ReferencesThe 8 Republican senators who voted for the bipartisan compromiseMoran, Thune, and Portman’s new DACA proposal statementTara Golshan’s piece about Grassley’s Secure and Succeed Act Rob Porter ReferencesThe ever-shifting White House story on Rob PorterThe Rob Porter scandal, explainedJane Coaston’s piece: The White House had to pr...more

  • The gender pay gap is mostly about children

    Feb 13 2018

    Matt, Ezra, Sarah, and Dylan Matthews try to explain Trump’s budget and Disability Insurance. For today's white paper: Move over Swedish administrative data, it’s Denmark’s turn. Trump’s budget references:Dylan's explainer on Trump's proposed budgetAirports Council International report on the ownership of European airportsCongressional Research Service report on airport privatizationMatt’s explainer on Trump’s infrastructure planDisability Insurance references:Dylan's defense of SSDITerrance Mc...more

  • The six-hour shutdown, explained

    Feb 09 2018

    Matt, Dara, and Tara Golshan, all weary from lack of sleep, try to make sense of the few hours on Thursday night/Friday morning when the government was shut down. Referenced Works Republicans laughing in Tara's face about addressing immigration: Immigration anxiety got Trump elected. Congress isn’t touching it. Further Reading House Democrats’ confusing, high-risk DACA government shutdown gamble, explained Congress just funded CHIP for a full decade

  • What's up with Amazon's health venture — and the stock market

    Feb 06 2018

    Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about the Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JP Morgan announcement about their joint healthcare venture, as well as the recent volatility in the stock market. White paper: From the Bargaining Table to the Ballot Box: Political Effects of Right to Work Laws Referenced Works: Ben Thompson's Stratechery piece: Amazon Health

  • MS-13, explained

    Feb 02 2018

    Dara, Matt, and Zack Beauchamp talk about the policy failures that created the gang haunting Donald Trump's dreams. Referenced Works Are there more than 2,000 MS-13 gang members in Virginia’s wealthy Fairfax County? The Teens Trapped Between a Gang and the Law The 'one percent' statistic Dara mentioned: Why Trump is Wrong to Blame Migration for MS13 Expansion, Violence Further Reading 3 winners and 2 losers from Donald Trump’s first State of the Union Gangs in Central America

  • The state of our podcast is strong

    Jan 31 2018

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt parse through Trump's State of the Union address and the response delivered by Rep. Joe Kennedy III. Referenced Works: Matt's piece on the State of the Union: Donald Trump has no solutions for America’s big problems German Lopez's piece that Ezra mentioned: Trump’s pathetic response to the opioid epidemic The Health Care Cost Institute report Sarah referenced: 2016 Health Care Cost and Utilization Report Further Reading: Dylan Scott's piece on the address: State of th...more

  • The white genocide episode you’ve been waiting for

    Jan 26 2018

    A DACA ransom note from the White House prompts Matt, Dara and Jane Coaston to muse on whose nation this is, anyway. Referenced Works The American Conservative piece Jane referenced: Of Sh*tholes And Second Thoughts Elizabeth Bruenig's op ed for The Washington Post: The antisocial politics of Trump The Passing of a Great Race Nations and Nationalism Imagined Communities Profile of Stephen Miller in high school: How a liberal Santa Monica high school produced a top Trump advisor and speech...more

  • Shutdown deal special

    Jan 22 2018

    Dara, Sarah, and Ezra dig into the details of the new shutdown deal — and what it means for the future of shutdown politics.

  • The Shutdown Special

    Jan 19 2018

    A few hours before a looming shutdown, DC is a very postmodern place. Referenced works: Dara on the DACA situation Dylan Matthew on past shutdowns Simulacra and Simulation by Jean Baudrillard On Capitol Hill: The Struggle to Reform Congress and its Consequences by Julian Zelizer How the National Parks Became the Biggest Battleground in the Shutdown from The Atlantic, by Garance Franke-Ruta

  • No one wants to take responsibility for sick kids or fake news

    Jan 16 2018

    Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about Mark Zuckerberg's recent announcement regarding what Facebook will focus on in 2018, and the state of the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

  • Shithole special

    Jan 12 2018

    The mask slipped with Trump's "shithole" comments, and Matt and Dara take a hard look at what lies beneath it. Content warning: explicit policy discussions.

  • Lie back, light up, and enjoy some executive time

    Jan 09 2018

    German Lopez joins Matt and Sarah to talk about Attorney General Jeff Sessions' most recent move on marijuana, how Trump spends his time, and child mortality in the US.

  • Winter, explained

    Jan 05 2018

    Brian Resnick joins Dara and Matt to talk about the 'bomb cyclone' and how it relates to the climate.

  • Why is US life expectancy falling?

    Jan 02 2018

    It's only the second day of 2018, and Matt, Ezra, and Sarah are already talking about alarming statistics--this time, to do with average American life expectancy. White paper: Bias in Perceptions of Public Opinion Among American Political Elites The GOP is trying to pass a super-unpopular agenda — and that's a bad sign for democracy Impact Policy Submission URL: bit.ly/voximpact

  • The most undercovered policy stories of 2017

    Dec 29 2017

    Sarah returns from New Zealand in time to reflect with Matt on the year in policy. White paper: Uniform Pricing in US Retail Chains

  • Ask Weeds Anything!

    Dec 22 2017

    Matt, Ezra, and Sarah answer your questions.

  • Tax reforms and garbage factories

    Dec 19 2017

    Matt and Ezra talk about what the tax bill actually does, whether the deficit matters, and a white paper about rugged individualism. White paper: Frontier Culture: The Roots and Persistence of “Rugged Individualism” in the United States Other referenced works: Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America (America: a cultural history) American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America Dialect Diversity in America: The Politics of Language Change

  • The Great Awokening comes to Congress

    Dec 15 2017

    Matt, Dara, and Tara Golshan talk about how Congress does and doesn’t handle sexual harassment allegations.

  • Alabama senate special

    Dec 13 2017

    Matt and Ezra talk about the result of the Alabama senate race and the state of the GOP.

  • Is the FBI good now?

    Dec 08 2017

    Matt, Dara, and German Lopez discuss the (shallow, according to some) politics of pro-FBI liberals.

  • Net neutrality, explained (Also! Why CVS is buying Aetna)

    Dec 05 2017

    Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk through the argument around net neutrality, the possible CVS-Aetna merger, and a white paper about who becomes an inventor in America. Ben Thompson's defense of Ajit Pai Who Becomes an Inventor in America? The Importance of Exposure to Innovation

  • How the GOP is weaponizing the tax code

    Dec 01 2017

    Matt, Dara Lind, and Vox contributor Mike Konczal talk tax reform and Democrats' sexual harassment problem.

  • Five big problems with the GOP tax plan

    Nov 28 2017

    Matt and Ezra parse through the many flaws of the tax bill.

  • A very Weeds Thanksgiving

    Nov 21 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about what they're thankful for this year — plus disturbing new research about gender bias in surgical referrals. White paper: Interpreting Signals in the Labor Market: Evidence from Medical Referrals

  • Tax reform special

    Nov 17 2017

    Tara Golshan and Dylan Scott join Matt to break down the two different GOP tax bills.

  • Republicans’ Roy Moore problem

    Nov 14 2017

    Matt and Sarah discuss allegations against Roy Moore, Trump's new pick for Health and Human Services secretary, and a slightly better work week. White paper: Time as a Network Good: Evidence from Unemployment and the Standard Workweek

  • Virginia is for Democrats

    Nov 10 2017

    Dara Lind and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about this week’s election results and the implications for 2018.

  • The vaunted, versatile VAT

    Nov 07 2017

    Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about the possibility of a Value-Added Tax, midterm elections, and acid rain. Mentioned works: A Fine Mess: A Global Quest for a Simpler, Fairer, and More Efficient Tax System by T. R. Reid Creating an American Value-Added Tax The People Left Behind When Only the ‘Deserving’ Poor Get Help Mortality and Access to Care among Adults after State Medicaid Expansions White paper: Long-Run Pollution Exposure and Adult Mortality: Evidence from the Acid Rain Program

  • The tax bill's winners and many, many losers

    Nov 03 2017

    Dylan Scott and Dylan Matthews join Matt to talk about House Republicans’ tax plan.

  • Indictment special! Plus: is Paul Ryan cowardly or courageous?

    Oct 31 2017

    The gang talks about recent developments in the Russia investigation, and Sarah tells us what she learned visiting Canada with Bernie Sanders.

  • Purge 3: The Bannoning

    Oct 27 2017

    Andrew Prokop joins Matt to talk about Steve Bannon’s war on the GOP establishment.

  • Republicans: "Math" means you have to cut taxes on the rich. Weeds: Nope.

    Oct 24 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk more tax reform, John Kelly's failure to fix the Trump administration, and new research on dental scams. White paper: Health Services as Credence Goods: A Field Experiment

  • How immigration took over Virginia’s governor race

    Oct 20 2017

    Dara Lind and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about the surprisingly interesting governor’s election in Virginia.

  • The Impact: The curious case of the $629 Band Aid

    Oct 18 2017

    Introducing The Impact, a new show from Vox hosted by Sarah Kliff.  The Impact explores how policy affects real lives. This season, we’re focusing on healthcare, and the first episode tackles with one of thorniest questions in the American healthcare system: prices. Subscribe to The Impact wherever you get your podcasts.

  • How do you solve a problem like Harvey Weinstein?

    Oct 17 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt dig into the Harvey Weinstein story, talk a bit about tax reform, and cover new research on Medicaid expansion and savings. White paper: Medicaid and Household Savings Behavior: New Evidence from Tax Refunds

  • Trump couldn't repeal Obamacare, so he's making it worse

    Oct 13 2017

    Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to dive into the newest forms of Obamacare sabotage, and to talk about heroin.

  • CHIPping away at gerrymandering

    Oct 10 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about CHIP reauthorization, the Supreme Court's big gerrymandering case, and a seminal Richard Thaler paper (Mental Accounting and Consumer Choice).

  • Republicans have big dreams and big problems on tax reform

    Oct 06 2017

    Dylan Matthews and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about Republicans hopes, dreams, and nightmares on tax reform.

  • Australia solved its gun problem. Could America?

    Oct 03 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about gun control in the wake of Las Vegas, the GOP tax reform blueprint, and job-sharing in Germany. White paper: The Employment and Output Effects of Short-Time Work in Germany Referenced articles: What Do We Know About the Association Between Firearm Legislation and Firearm-Related Injuries? A Dynamic Analysis of Permanent Extension of the President’s Tax Relief After a year of work, Republicans have decided nothing on corporate tax reform (Matt's piece)

  • The Puerto Rico disaster and Trump's inadequate response

    Sep 29 2017

    Eliza Barclay and Alexia Fernández Campbell join Matt to talk about Hurricane Maria and its aftermath.

  • What's budget reconciliation, and how did it eat the Senate?

    Sep 26 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt delve into Senate procedure arcana, break down the latest GOP repeal bill, and talk about a surprisingly easy way to reduce theft. White paper: SNAP Benefits and Crime: Evidence from Changing Disbursement Schedules

  • Weeds Live: Canadian immigration and a health insurance experiment

    Sep 22 2017

    Dara Lind joins Matt and Sarah at the Now Hear This Festival to discuss the Canadian immigration system, and the audience chooses a white paper (https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/RB9174.html) for them to talk about.

  • The worst GOP healthcare bill yet

    Sep 20 2017

    Ezra and Sarah parse through Graham-Cassidy, the latest Republican repeal bill. White paper: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3025749

  • White House Chinese food summit leads to congressional chaos

    Sep 15 2017

    Congressional reporters Jeff Stein and Tara Golshan join Matt to talk about congressional Democrats' hopes and Republicans' fears.

  • BernieCare and Hillary's abandoned UBI

    Sep 13 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss Bernie Sanders' Medicare for All bill and Hillary Clinton's musings on creating a national version of the Alaska Permanent Fund.

  • Weeds Live: Atul Gawande on opioids, end of life care, and rock and roll

    Sep 08 2017

    Atul Gawande is a surgeon and the author of Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End. Sarah interviewed him live, asking about the opioid epidemic, his work with end of life patients, and his terrible college rock band.

  • Trump's art of the sabotage

    Sep 06 2017

    Sarah and Matt discuss DACA, ACA implementation, and some game-changing new research on the real history of all-payer rate setting. White paper: Uncompensated care and the collapse of hospital payment regulation: An illustration of the Tinbergen Rule by Jeffrey Clemens and Benedic Ippolito Paper on Maryland and hospital rate setting: Tracking the demise of state hospital rate setting by John McDonough

  • Deferred action podcasting

    Sep 01 2017

    Dara Lind joins Matt to talk about the past, present, and future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

  • The policy origins of America's most expensive natural disaster

    Aug 30 2017

    Sarah and Matt talk about the policy errors behind Hurricane Harvey's devastation, the single-payer wonk gap, and new research on kindergarten red shirting. White paper: School Starting Age and Cognitive Development

  • Donald Trump vs the congressional GOP

    Aug 25 2017

    Tara Golshan and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about the bad blood between Trump and Mitch McConnell. Links! Andrew's interview with Dave Hopkins Now Hear This registration (Promo code Weeds) Weeds Facebook group

  • How the rich ate all the growth

    Aug 23 2017

    Ezra and Matt discuss two big papers that help explain America's economic malaise: Income and Wealth Inequality: Evidence and Policy Implications The Rise of Market Power and the Macroeconomic Implications

  • Statue limitations

    Aug 18 2017

    Libby Nelson and German Lopez join Matt to discuss the politics and history of Confederate monuments.

  • A very meritorious podcast

    Aug 16 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt break down Trump's plan to slash legal immigration, a new way to sabotage Obamacare, and research on ER scams. Got a bill from an emergency room? We want to hear about it. The Company Behind Many Surprise Emergency Room Bills from The New York Times Surprise! Out-of-Network Billing for Emergency Care in the United States from NBER

  • Can John Kelly fix the Trump administration? Can anyone?

    Aug 11 2017

    Dara Lind and Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about Kelly's record as DHS Secretary and Trump's bizarre Twitter feud with Mitch McConnell.

  • Is Google in an "ideological echo chamber"?

    Aug 09 2017

    Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about the now-infamous Google memo, the Democrats' plan for prescription drug pricing, and a study on opioid prescriptions and medical schools.

  • The bacon fat theory of school segregation, and some White House chaos

    Aug 02 2017

    Ezra, Sarah and Alvin Chang talk about the quiet return of segregation in schools, chaos in the Trump White House, and taxing marijuana. Links!The Washington Post article on school desegregation and the Supreme Court.Alvin's piece on school desegregation and gerrymanderingAlvin's article on living in poor neighborhoodsAlvin's article on white America self-segregatingAlvin's piece on Obamacare repeal splitting neighborhoods

  • ACA repeal is finally dead (maybe)

    Jul 28 2017

    Sarah, Matt, and Dylan Scott analyze the night Trumpcare died and what's next for health care.

  • Skinny repeal and Trump's management by tweet

    Jul 26 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about yet another Obamacare repeal plan, Trump's feud with Jeff Sessions, and new research on retail health clinics.

  • A deep dive on basic income

    Jul 21 2017

    Dylan Matthews joins Matt to discuss the three different version of universal basic income, and why only one of them is good.

  • At last, a Weeds about weed (also Obamacare)

    Jul 19 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Democrats' plans to improve Obamacare and new evidence that smoking pot makes you bad at math. Links! White paper: ‘High’ Achievers? Cannabis Access and Academic Performance Ezra's conversation with Dr. Nneka Jones Tapia Latest Worldly episode Tell us (and other Weeds fans) what you thought about the episode in our Facebook group! Subscribe to VoxCare for healthcare news in your inbox daily!

  • McConnellCare II: Cruz Control

    Jul 14 2017

    Matt and Sarah sit down with Dylan Scott to talk through all the nitty gritty details of the Senate's latest health care plan. Links! Ezra debates the Senate health care bill with Avik Roy Dylan Scott's reporting leading up to this latest iteration of the bill McConnell talking to moderates about tax cuts How the Trump administration saved Obamacare in Alaska Tell us (and other Weeds fans) what you thought about the episode in our Facebook group! Subscribe to VoxCare...more

  • Minimum wage research showdown (also Russia)

    Jul 12 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt wonk out on the latest minimum wage research and Ted Cruz's new health plan — plus some Russia stuff, too. White Paper: Minimum Wage Increases, Wages, and Low-Wage Employment: Evidence from Seattle

  • Understanding the opioid epidemic

    Jul 07 2017

    Drug policy reporter German Lopez joins Matt for a close look at the biggest drug overdose crisis in American history.

  • Trumpism and travel bans

    Jul 05 2017

    Dara Lind and Dylan Matthews join Ezra to talk about the updated travel ban, how Trumpism has translated into policy, and the impact that increasingly awesome video games have had on young men's work habits. Links! White Paper: Leisure Luxuries and the Labor Supply of Young Men Peter Suderman's piece about young men playing video games instead of getting jobs

  • Meanwhile, House Republicans are trying to write a budget

    Jun 30 2017

    Jim Tankersley and Tara Golshan join Matt to talk about House Republicans' struggles to write a budget resolution and get their tax reform agenda on track.

  • CB--Oh no this health care bill is terrible too

    Jun 28 2017

    A new CBO score on the latest Obamacare repeal bill pushes Sarah to the breaking point!Links:Follow along as Matt, Ezra, and Sarah read through the CBO reportGraphs comparing silver insurance plan costs under different health care bills for different income brackets  White Paper: Health Insurance Coverage and Health — What the Recent Evidence Tells Us

  • Senate Republicans' health care idea: Make the poor pay more for less

    Jun 23 2017

    The Senate health care bill is out — and Sarah, Ezra, and Matt are back in the studio to dive into the details of what it means for the marketplaces, Medicaid, and very rich people.

  • Georgia (and Obamacare repeal) on our minds

    Jun 21 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Tuesday's special elections and the soon-to-be-released Senate health care bill.

  • Trump’s “buck stops somewhere else” foreign policy

    Jun 16 2017

    Foreign editors Yochi Dreazen and Jennifer Williams join Matt to talk about the diplomatic crisis in Qatar and the never-ending war in Afghanistan.

  • Legends of the secret health care bill

    Jun 14 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt take the deepest look they can at Senate Republicans' secret health care bill, plus a quick look at Jeff Sessions’s non-answers on Russia and new research on the long-term impact of lead exposure.Links!White paper of the week from the Brookings Institution: New evidence that lead exposure increases crimeCaitlin Owens in Axios on the Senate GOP not releasing their healthcare billDylan Scott on what it would look like it Senate Republicans voted to repeal ObamacareDavid Leonh...more

  • Infrastructure week (jk it's about Comey)

    Jun 09 2017

    Dara Lind and Yochi Dreazen join Matt to talk about Comey's testimony and the larger consequences of the Russia investigation.

  • Meet Sprinklecare

    Jun 08 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about competing single-payer bills in Nevada and California, plus research on the value of access to the Obama White House.

  • Jared Kushner: International man of mystery

    Jun 02 2017

    Dylan Matthews and politics reporter Andrew Prokop join Matt to talk about the Paris Accords and the mysterious role of the First Son-in-Law.

  • A platinum get out of jail free card

    May 31 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the real causes of mass incarceration, Trump's move to roll back contraceptive coverage, and the mysterious world of high-end credit cards.Links!German Lopez’s piece about John Pfaff’s “Locked in” Mark A.R. Kleiman, Angela Hawken, and Ross Halperin on graduated reentry as prison reform.Today’s white paper, "Status Goods: Experimental Evidence from Platinum Credit Cards" Our Weeds in the Wild Episode about birth control Ezra Klein’s conversation with Chris Hayes a...more

  • Weeds in the Wild: Tennessee's Healthcare Bald Spot

    May 29 2017

    Sarah Kliff travels to Tennessee to see what it looks like when Obamacare explodes.Links!Sarah's piece about her trip to Tennessee More details about the Missouri bald spotAn interactive map of the counties most at risk of losing all their insurers Our lovely Weeds Facebook groupEmail us at weeds@vox.com

  • CB--Oh, this bill stinks

    May 26 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the new CBO score of Trumpcare and the results of this week's special election in Montana.

  • Trump's budget has landed, and it's terrible

    May 24 2017

    A tanned and rested Ezra joins Matt and Sarah to talk budget, auto-enrollment in health care, and some eye-popping research on zoning.Links:Sarah's piece on auto-enrollmentJeff Stein's piece on reactions to Paul Ryan's agenda The wonderful Weeds Facebook group

  • All the Trump scandal drama you've been craving

    May 19 2017

    Yochi Dreazen and Jennifer Williams join Matt to talk about the new Trump/Russia special counsel and the latest scandal swirling around Michael Flynn.

  • Trump chaos, UBI, and the fracking baby boom

    May 17 2017

    Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt to talk about Trump's latest problems, his reporting on basic income in Kenya, and new research on fracking's impact on marriage and childbearing.

  • Weeds in the Wild: Free Money... For Everyone!

    May 12 2017

    One of the world’s first universal basic income experiments is happening right now in a small Kenyan village. Dylan Matthews went there to investigate.Links!Dylan Matthew's piece about his Kenya tripTwo economists make the case for and against an American UBIA longer UBI explainerPlease send us feedback! Post your thoughts in our Facebook group or email us at weeds@vox.com

  • The wall in our hearts

    May 10 2017

    Vox's Dara Lind joins Sarah and Matt to talk about James Comey's firing, the border wall, and whether incomes have really been as stagnant as they seem.

  • AHCApocalypse III

    May 05 2017

    Dylan Scott joins Sarah and Matt to discuss the surprisingly swift passage of a revised and reanimated version of Paul Ryan's repeal bill.

  • High-Risk Podcasting

    May 03 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Congress's big spending deal, Republicans' newest Obamacare repeal idea, and research on what happens when abortion providers shut down.

  • AHCApocalypse II

    Apr 28 2017

    Live at Vox Conversations, Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss the GOP's doomed effort to reboot Obamacare repeal and the White House's "new" tax reform "plan."

  • French elections, national service, and Queens at war

    Apr 26 2017

    Libby Nelson and Dylan Matthews join Matt to talk about the global nationalist tide, forcing integration across class and ethnic lines, and research on gender and foreign policy dynamics.

  • Weeds Live!

    Apr 19 2017

    In front of their first-ever live audience, Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Trump surprises, Singapore's health care system, and the impact of longevity inequality on retirement programs.

  • Weeds in the Wild: Meet Joan, the Robotic Pelvis

    Apr 14 2017

    Sarah and Byrd take a look at some policy experiments working to drive down teen pregnancy and abortion rates. They're showing promising results — but they're also under threat.

  • The World's Worst Club

    Apr 12 2017

    Sarah and Matt are joined by Dara Lind for a discussion of the United fiasco, Trump-era immigration enforcement, and pre-K's surprising health benefits.

  • Nuclear Winter

    Apr 05 2017

    Jim Tankersley joins Sarah and Matt to talk tax reform, senate procedure, and the most exciting Swedish administrative data yet.

  • A cheery discussion of global warming, Obamacare repeal, and death

    Mar 31 2017

    Ezra, Sarah, and Matt pick apart Trump's next executive order on climate, exhume the AHCA's corpse, and read a white paper about death.

  • Weeds in the Wild: Postville

    Mar 24 2017

    It was the biggest workplace immigration raid the U.S. had seen to date. 389 workers, almost all of them Hispanic, were detained at a kosher meatpacking plant in Postville, Iowa on May 12, 2008.On this episode of Weeds in the Wild, we look at the effects that this raid had across the state of Iowa, and then take a step back to understand how our immigration policies made this kind of raid possible.

  • Mad Dogs and Obamacare Repealers

    Mar 21 2017

    Ezra and Matt are joined by Yochi Dreazen to talk about national security policy in the Trump era, the latest on ACA repeal, and research indicating the internet's not to blame for political polarization.

  • CB-uh oh!

    Mar 15 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Donald Trump's taxes, the disastrous CBO score of the GOP health care bill, and a study on how Chinese imports reduce Americans' marriage rates.

  • AHCApalooza

    Mar 08 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss how to pronounce the big new Republican health law, plus analyze its content and the puzzling politics surrounding its introduction.

  • Don't Call It a State of the Union

    Mar 01 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt try to discuss Donald Trump's address to a joint session of congress through the lens of actual policy.

  • Death Panel If You Do, Death Panel If You Don't

    Feb 22 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk fake news, town hall protests, and research on why your cell phone bill is so high.

  • Weeds in the Wild: Sarah Goes to Kentucky

    Feb 17 2017

    In another episode of their new podcast, Sarah and Vox's Liz Scheltens explore why Obamacare enrollees in Kentucky voted for Trump.

  • Privet, Amerika!

    Feb 15 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the latest Russia-related scandal engulfing the Trump administration, the White House's lack of progress on policy, and new research on how Medicaid expansion reduced the divorce rate.

  • The Time Traveling Emanuel Brothers

    Feb 09 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about anti-Trump protests, cabinet confirmations, and health insurance age rating (exciting!)

  • SCOTUS, DBCFT, and Hitler's Highways

    Feb 01 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Neil Gorsuch, a controversial tax reform idea, and Nazi infrastructure building.

  • The Don't-Call-It-A-Muslim-Ban

    Jan 30 2017

    Dara Lind joins Ezra and Matt to discuss Donald Trump's latest crackdown on immigrants and refugees.

  • Gag Order and Infrastructure

    Jan 26 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about widely-misunderstood Trump administration efforts to shut up career civil servants, talk about infrastructure, and ask journalism's most pressing question: What's up with eggs?

  • Inauguration Special

    Jan 21 2017

    Shortly after the inauguration ceremonies ended, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah gathered to analyze what it all means in the first Trump-era Weeds episode.

  • DeVos, Rigged Polls, and Quitting Bureaucrats

    Jan 18 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt are joined by Libby Nelson to discuss Trump's not-so-great hires, not-so-great polls, and new research into how career staff act during presidential transitions.

  • Trump Cabinet, Obamacare Update, and Heroin

    Jan 10 2017

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about the rush to hold hearings on Trump's cabinet appointees, the sudden emergence of trouble in repeal paradise, and an effort to cut down on pill abuse that backfired massively.

  • Sarah and Ezra Interview Obama About Obamacare

    Jan 06 2017

    Two weeks before he leaves office, President Obama sits down for a lengthy conversation about the lessons of the Affordable Care Act and the law's uncertain future.

  • Happy New Year

    Jan 04 2017

    Sarah and Matt offer predictions for 2017, and offer tax wonk tips about when to time your child's birth.

  • Year-End Spectacular

    Dec 28 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt each review one big thing they learned in a tumultuous year for policy and politics.

  • Kentucky, the Rust Belt, and the Big Picture on Trade

    Dec 21 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about what Obamacare-using Trump voters are hoping for, which regions really need help, and a massive overview of the evidence on globalization and inequality.

  • Russia and the American Dream

    Dec 14 2016

    Ezra and Matt discuss Russian hacking, Rex Tillerson, and inequality's role in reducing social mobility.

  • Trump's Surprisingly Ambitious Education Agenda

    Dec 07 2016

    Matt is joined by Libby Nelson to discuss Donald Trump's big plans for K-12 education and his massive financial conflicts of interest.

  • Assessing the Trump Cabinet — and Exploring How Recessions Affect Health

    Nov 30 2016

    Sarah and Matt take a deep dive into what Trump's cabinet picks say about how he will govern, with a particular focus on HHS Secretary-designate Tom Price. Also: an exciting white paper on recessions and health outcomes!

  • Conflicts of Interest, Trump and the Media, and Rethinking Teen Pregnancy

    Nov 23 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt consider the extraordinary possibility of corruption during the Trump administration, the president-elect's unusual relationship with the media, and a new study debunking the old study about 16 and Pregnant.

  • Sneak peak: a new Vox podcast, about how policy effects real people

    Nov 21 2016

    This is a pilot episode of a new show Sarah has been working on, looking at the real-life stakes of policymaking. The show's name? That's for you to help us decide.

  • The Trump Agenda

    Nov 16 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about Obamacare repeal, deportations, and the House Democrats leadership fight.

  • Trumpocalypse Now

    Nov 09 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt look at the causes and consequences of Donald Trump's shocking win.

  • The Massive Policy Stakes of 2016

    Nov 04 2016

    You may not know it from watching cable news — but both Trump and Clinton have very clear and very different policy visions for America. Ezra, Matt, and Sarah dive into their plans to change the country in the last pre-election episode.

  • Is Obamacare Failing?

    Oct 26 2016

    Ezra, Matt and Sarah go deep into what's going wrong with Obamacare's rising premiums — and take on a research paper that helps explain a lot about Gilmore Girls (really!)

  • Final Debate Special

    Oct 20 2016

    Ezra, Sarah, and Matt rally after a late night to talk about the third and mercifully last presidential debate.

  • Second Presidential Debate Special

    Oct 10 2016

    The morning after Clinton and Trump's debate in St. Louis, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt head to the studio to talk about internal Republican divisions, Trump's threat to throw Clinton in jail, and the surprising amount of policy the two candidates covered.

  • Veep Debate and Cranky Judges

    Oct 05 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt debate Mike Pence's puzzling performance at the vice presidential debate and highlight new research on the surprising link between college football and prison sentences.

  • The First Debate and Pet Health Care

    Sep 29 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt try to take the policy content of the Trump-Clinton debate seriously and discuss important new research into out of control health care spending -- on pets.

  • An Interview with Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell

    Sep 21 2016

    The Weeds' Sarah Kliff heads to Capitol Hill to interview Secretary Burwell on all things health care. They talked about how to pay doctors to provide better care, the current state of the Obamacare marketplaces, and what she's learned about management running the federal government's largest agency.

  • Best Census Ever, the Trump Foundation, and Class Discrimination

    Sep 14 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt get deep into the weeds of the latest Census report on income and poverty, briefly consider Donald Trump's ridiculous charity, and discuss new research into class-based employment discrimination.

  • Gender Wage Gap and the Mystery of State Legislatures

    Sep 08 2016

    Reunited after many summer vacations, Sarah, Ezra, and Matt take a deep dive into Claudia Goldin's theory of the gender pay gap and possible remedies. Plus hot new research that proves nobody cares about state government.

  • EpiPen Prices, the Clinton Foundation, and Lead Exposure

    Aug 31 2016

    Why did EpiPen's price skyrocket 400 percent over the past decade? Sarah and Matt dive into the complex world of American drug pricing to find out. Also on this episode: understanding why the Clinton Foundation gets so much scrutiny, and a white paper of the week that shows how problematic a small level of lead exposure can be.

  • Obamacare Update and Aging America

    Aug 24 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt are all together for a gloriously in-the-weeds discussion of the success and failure of the Affordable Care Act plus some hot new research with bad news for the future of economic growth.

  • Think Tanks, Transition, and What Drives Trumpkins

    Aug 18 2016

    Ezra and Matt talk about conflicts of interest in think tank funding, Hillary Clinton's transition team, and the biggest study yet of who supports Donald Trump and why.

  • Trump's tax plan, democratic legitimacy, and the Freakonomics of decisionmaking

    Aug 12 2016

    Ezra is joined by Dara Lind and Libby Nelson to talk about Donald Trump's new tax plan — how it shows the difference between Trump and reform conservatives, between the Donald and Ivanka, between Democrats and Republicans, and the similarities between Trump and Paul Ryan. The trio also talks about what happens when elections lose legitimacy, and mull over a fascinating new paper by Steven Levitt — yes, the Freakonomics economist — that could change how you make decisions.

  • Interview with Atul Gawande

    Aug 03 2016

    With Ezra and Matt on summer vacation, Sarah is left to her own devices — and decides to share a fantastic interview from the Ezra Klein Show with surgeon and writer Atul Gawande.  Atul talks about the fascinating academic work he has in progress, attempting to improve end-of-life care and make hospitals safer, and how he became a writer in the first place.

  • DNC-Palooza

    Jul 28 2016

    With Matt dispatched to Philadelphia, Sarah and Ezra are left to make sense of the Democratic National Convention. They discuss why it feels so different from the Republican National Convention last week, why it matters that a woman was just nominated for president, and whether Sanders could inspire a Tea Party of the left.

  • Republican Convention Special

    Jul 22 2016

    Matt, Sarah, and Ezra take a deep dive into the many detailed policies proposals discussed at the RNC in Cleveland.

  • Basic Income and Police Shootings

    Jul 15 2016

    Andy Stern joins Ezra, Sarah, and Matt to talk about his new book, Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew Our Economy and Rebuild the American Dream. Then, the regular cast considers new research on police use of force.

  • Hillary Clinton. Yes, that Hillary Clinton.

    Jul 14 2016

    A special presentation from the Ezra Klein Show: My interview this week is with Hillary Clinton. You may have heard of her.I won't bore you with Clinton's bio. Instead, I want to say a few words about what this interview is, as it's a bit different than the EK Show's normal fare (though I do ask her for book recommendations!).I got about 40 minutes with Hillary Clinton. I wanted to use that time to try to answer a question I've had about Clinton for years: why is the candidate I see on the campa...more

  • Free College, Email Extravaganza, and the China Shock

    Jul 08 2016

    Matt, Ezra, and Sarah talk about proposals to eliminate college tuition, the real issues behind Hillary's email server, and a new paper on a small policy change with huge consequences.

  • Brexit 2, SCOTUS on abortion, and the missing male workers

    Jul 01 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss the United Kingdom's descent into political chaos, a big win for abortion rights at the high court, and a big labor market mystery.

  • Welfare reform, SCOTUS deadlock, and health care jerk

    Jun 25 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt consider the alarming rise in deep poverty over the past 15 years, a fresh Supreme Court non-decision that imperils Obama's immigration policy, and what to make of the slowing rate of growth of health care spending.

  • Guns, Brexit, and Free Condoms

    Jun 17 2016

    Sarah and Matt discuss the nexus of terrorism and gun control, Britain's upcoming referendum, and an unintended consequence of school condom giveaways.

  • 5uper Tue5day

    Jun 10 2016

    Hillary Clinton's clinch of the Democratic nomination gives Sarah, Ezra, and Matt a chance to go deep on what we know about women in electoral politics.

  • Accountable Care Organizations, more Swedish administrative data, and the big city recovery

    Jun 03 2016

    With Ezra in sunny California, Matt and Sarah gets weedsier than ever as she attempts to explain to Matt the mysteries of ACOs before they discuss a brewing controversy over economic journal citations.

  • Health care innovation, did Dems rig the primary, and fetal stress

    May 27 2016

    Health care innovation, did Dems rig the primary, and fetal stress: Sarah, Ezra, and Matt look at a specific case in America's great productivity slowdown, assess Bernie Sanders' complaints, and examine some exciting Swedish administrative data.

  • 90s nostalgia, Obamacare lawsuits, and the truth about abortion

    May 20 2016

    Ezra, Sarah, and Matt look back at whether Bill Clinton deserves credit for the booming economy of the 1990s, survey the ongoing legal challenges to Obamacare, and dissect new research revealing some surprising facts about abortion rates around the world.

  • Competition in Obamacare marketplaces and how low-income housing can boost poor neighborhoods

    May 13 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about which companies are succeeding and failure in the Affordable Care Act's new individual market and why, and delve deep into the weeds of some new research on the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit.

  • Trump is the Republican nominee. What happens next?

    May 06 2016

    Trump is the last man standing in the Republican nominating contest — so Ezra, Matt, and Sarah spend this week's entire episode taking stock of what that means. How did the rise of Trump happen? What does it mean for the Republican party? And how much potential does this have to reshape America's political parties?This episode is brought to you by Texture, an app to help you binge-read your favorite magazines. get a free trial right now when you visit Texture.com/Weeds.This episode is also broug...more

  • Interview with Secretary of Defense Ash Carter

    May 02 2016

    Max Fisher sits down with Defense Secretary Ash Carter to talk about the modern international environment, why Carter thinks great power rivalry is making a comeback, and for some deep weedsy talk about nuclear weapons.

  • Land value taxes, soda taxes, and carbon taxes — oh my!

    Apr 29 2016

    Every policy nerd has their favorite tax proposal — and today on the Weeds, Sarah, Matt, and Ezra talk about a few of theirs. What would happen if we abolished all taxes and replaced them with a land tax? Is it a good idea to tax sugary sodas? And how did the carbon tax become the default option in the environmental debate?This episode is brought to you by Texture, an app to help you binge-read your favorite magazines. get a free trial right now when you visit Texture.com/Weeds.This episode is a...more

  • Our undemocratic primaries, Obama's new fiduciary rule, and the challenge of information polarization

    Apr 22 2016

    With Sarah still on vacation Ezra and Matt ask what we want out of our presidential nominating system, explain a new regulatory initiative that could save the middle class billions, and look at some new research on media consumption and polarization.The Weeds is supported by Goldman Sachs. To learn about developments currently shaping markets, industries, and the global economy, subscribe to the firm’s podcast, ‘Exchanges at Goldman Sachs,’ available on iTunes.The Weeds is also brought to you by...more

  • Interview with Jason Furman

    Apr 18 2016

    The Obama administration's top economist talks to Vox's Dylan Matthews about the challenges facing the American economy.

  • Why inequality matters, Trump's delegate problem, and the geography of life expectancy

    Apr 15 2016

    With Sarah on vacation, Matt and Ezra talk about the philosophical underpinnings of worries about inequality, take a look at Donald Trump's difficulty grappling with the delegate selection process, and discuss a blockbuster new paper that reveals huge city-to-city variation in how long poor people live. The Weeds is supported by Goldman Sachs. To learn about developments currently shaping markets, industries, and the global economy, subscribe to the firm’s podcast, ‘Exchanges at Goldman Sachs,’ ...more

  • What the hell is going on with tax havens, explained

    Apr 08 2016

    Ezra, Matt and Sarah use the Panama Papers to discuss how tax havens and shell corporations became such a big deal, and why America has done so little to stop them. Matt and Ezra argue a bit about the effectiveness of global governance. Economist Gabriel Zucman gets name-checked quite a bit. Sarah runs through some really surprising new Obamacare data (Medicaid fans — you know who you are — won't want to miss this!). Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit TheGreatCour...more

  • A medical struggle to digitize, a tax calculator, and a paper that explains Trump

    Apr 01 2016

    It would be really weird to walk into a bank and have the teller take down your information on pen and paper. But it happens all the time in medicine — and we try to explain why. Also in this episode: a new tax calculator reveals how the candidates want to change your taxes, and a political science paper from 2014 helps predict the rise of Trumpism.This episode is brought to you by Club W, offering The Weeds listeners fifty percent off your first wine order when you go to ClubW.com/Weeds.This ep...more

  • Replacing No Child Left Behind, wonky March Madness, and Uber's productivity

    Mar 25 2016

    Special guest star Libby Nelson joins Sarah and Matt to explain the Every Student Succeeds Act, examine the strange history and economics behind the NCAA's non-payment of athletes, and break down some new research on why Uber works. Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/Weeds to stream Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries and hundreds of other courses for free!This episode is also brought to you by Re:Dream, a documentary series on Youtub...more

  • Super(b) Tuesday special

    Mar 16 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt discuss the results of the March 15 primaries and the state of the 2016 presidential election.Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/Weeds to stream Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries and hundreds of other courses for free!This episode is also brought to you by Club W, offering The Weeds listeners fifty percent off your first wine order when you go to ClubW.com/Weeds.

  • The productivity slowdown, TrumpCare, and better textbooks

    Mar 11 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt talk about why Silicon Valley's technical marvels aren't visible in economic statistics, dive into the details of Donald Trump's surprisingly banal health plan, and tackle some new research on improving teaching by improving textbooks.This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today atSquarespace.com. Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off.This episode is also brought to you by Harry’s razors. Visit Harrys.com and enter WEEDS at ch...more

  • Super Tuesday/Exhausted Wednesday special!

    Mar 02 2016

    In this episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt and Sarah discuss the results of Super Tuesday. Everyone is tired, so it gets a bit weird. Topics include whether Donald Trump is actually a moderate, how the election shows American politics is either polarizing or de-polarizing, and whether Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton would be a stronger general-election candidate. Oh, and Bernie Sanders has finally convinced Matt that free college —including for rich kids — is a good idea! This week’s episode of ...more

  • TPP, the Nevada Caucus, and the Great Texas Abortion clinic shutdown.

    Feb 26 2016

    By popular demand, Sarah, Matt, and Ezra finally address the Trans Pacific Partnership before contemplating the GOP's ongoing self-immolation, and the real consequences of the war on Planned Parenthood.Today’s episode is brought to you by Harry’s razors. Visit Harrys.com and enter WEEDS at checkout to receive $5 off your first order.Today’s episode is also brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Visit TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/Weeds to stream Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries and hundred...more

  • The Supreme Court vacancy and the possible collapse of American democracy

    Feb 19 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt consider the case for reforming America's current practice of granting life tenure to Supreme Court Justices, discuss the political fight over replacing the late Justice Scalia, and ponder a 25 year-old work of political science that implies the United States is heading for a coup.Today’s episode is brought to you by The Great Courses Plus. Go to TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/Weeds for a special limited-time offer to stream hundreds of courses for free!This episode is also brough...more

  • Could more corruption fix American politics?

    Feb 12 2016

    Sarah, Ezra, and Matt use the New Hampshire primary results as a lens through which to discuss Jonathan Rauch's case for "political realism" as a governing philosophy.This episode of The Weeds is brought to you by Squarespace. Start Building your website today at Squarespace.com. Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off.This episode is also brought to you by Harry’s razors. Go to Harrys.com right now to get $5 off your first order with the promo code WEEDS.

  • The Iowa Caucuses

    Feb 02 2016

    Who wins the 2016 election will hugely influence what type of policies Washington passes — and that's why Ezra, Sarah, and Matt devote this entire episode of The Weeds to dissecting the results of the Iowa caucus. We look at Bernie's surprising success, the declining strength of political parties, and how a Cruz administration would govern.For a limited time, The Great Courses Plus is offering The Weeds listeners a chance to stream The Fundamentals of Photography and hundreds of other courses fo...more

  • Will taxing the rich hurt growth – and will third parties save politics?

    Jan 29 2016

    It’s one of the most fundamental disputes in Washington: what effect do taxes have on the economy? On this week's episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah work through some of the top papers to explain. Also on this episode: why a third party won't save American politics, and a new working paper that shows a surprising way to encourage students to attend high school.This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today atSquarespace.com. Enter offer code WEEDS at ch...more

  • Ross Douthat on campus conservatism, being thankful for Donald Trump, and how to write so liberals will read you

    Jan 26 2016

    In this preview of Ezra's coming interview podcast, he interviews New York Times op-ed columnist Ross Douthat. Douthat is the author of Privilege: Harvard and the Education of the Ruling Class, Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save Themselves, and Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics. He's also a fascinating political thinker with a skill that's rare in these polarized times: he's a conservative writing for an overwhelmingly liberal audience, and he's ab...more

  • Campaign finance and global inequality — with lead poisoning in between

    Jan 22 2016

    On this episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah dive into one of Bernie Sanders' favorite campaign trail arguments: that money causes more Congressional dysfunction than partisanship. Also on this episode: why the lead poisoning crisis in Flint matters, and a discussion of a (not so great) paper of the week on global inequality. This episode is sponsored by The Great Courses Plus. Just for a limited time The Great Courses Plus is offering our listeners a chance to stream this course: The Fun...more

  • Obama's Legacy, debating single payer, and Obamacare's jobs impact

    Jan 15 2016

    Matt, Sarah, and Ezra reflect on Obama's successes and failures, take a look at Hillary Clinton's new attack on Bernie Sanders, and consider some research on the new health law's surprising lack of impact on the labor market.This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today atSquarespace.com. Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful.

  • Immigration and the minimum wage — with an armed stand-off in between

    Jan 08 2016

    America's immigration debate is peppered with terms like "path to citizenship" and "amnesty." Those catch phrases can mean vastly different things to different people — and on this week's episode of the Weeds, Vox's Dara Lind joins Sarah and Matt to explain. Also on this episode: understanding the family behind the armed stand-off in Oregon, and a new white paper that argues against increasing the minimum wage. This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today atSq...more

  • Teen births are plummeting — and economists are judging your Christmas gifts

    Dec 25 2015

    In a very merry Christmas day episode of the Weeds, Ezra and Matt talk to Sarah about how why teen birth rate fell in half since the mid-2000s — and whether MTV's 16 and Pregnant might have anything to do with it. Also in this episode: an economic critique of Christmas presents and a deep dive into Hillary Clinton's pledge not to tax the middle class.

  • Gentrification, a budget deal, and the decline of floating voters

    Dec 18 2015

    Matt, Sarah, and Ezra lay out what is and isn't troubling about gentrification, break down congress' latest fiscal deal, and discuss a paper that explores why swing voting has become rare.

  • Ezra interviews Ben Bernanke

    Dec 15 2015

    In this special episode of The Weeds, Ezra interviews former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke about what it's like to manage the most powerful economic policymaking institution in the world during a financial crisis. They also talk about Bernanke's views on the Republican party, what he learned from George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and what happened when he went to Texas.

  • Why health premiums rise, and how partisans discriminate

    Dec 11 2015

    Ezra, Sarah, and Matt are reunited at last for a deep dive into why patients in and out of Obamacare are paying more for health insurance, the rising tide of Islamophobia in the presidential campaign, and a look at fascinating new research on the psychological depths of contemporary partisanship. Have you heard The Message? It’s an original science fiction podcast from Panoply and GE Podcast Theater. All of Season 1 is available now, so listen and find out why a 70-year-old alien recording seems...more

  • Dietary fat and climate change

    Dec 04 2015

    Matt is joined by special guest stars Julia Belluz and Brad Plumer to discuss the science of eating fat, the Paris climate conference, and the public health implications of climate change. The Weeds is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at Squarespace.com. Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful. Have you heard The Message? It’s an original science fiction podcast from Panoply and GE Podcast Theater. All of Season 1 is avail...more

  • Childbirth, retirement, and terror in between

    Nov 20 2015

    This week, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt discuss the flaws in the DC elite's favorite idea: raising the retirement age, consider how to respond to terrorist attacks (with a bonus digression about 19th century anarchist assassins), and debate a striking new data set that shows the baffling variation in how frequently different hospitals perform c-sections rather than traditional childbirths. This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at Squarespace.com. Enter offer c...more

  • We know how to eliminate poverty. So why don't we?

    Nov 13 2015

    On this week's episode of the Weeds, fellow Vox editor Dylan Matthews joins Sarah and Matt for what is certainly the most in-depth discussion of basic income ever broadcast. Would it really just work to give every American a base salary, regardless of whether they worked or not? Also on this episode: a recap of the best policy tussles in the Republican debate, and a fascinating white paper on why colleges don't punish cheaters — even when they get caught. This podcast is brought to you by Spotle...more

  • How politics is making us stupid

    Nov 06 2015

    Facts rarely seem to win any political debate — and on this episode of the Weeds, Matt, Ezra, and Sarah use political science research to explain why. Also: the case for softball debate questions and a troubling new study on rising death rates among white, middle-aged men. This episode is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at Squarespace.com. Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace: Build it Beautiful. This episode is also brought to you by Au...more

  • Are we counting poverty all wrong?

    Oct 30 2015

    This week, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt finally deliver the equivocal takes on gerrymandering that America has been waiting for, dive into the weeds of the big budget compromise, and tackle what may be the dorkiest policy issue of all time — the use of survey vs administrative data to measure household level poverty. Today’s episode of The Weeds is sponsored by the American Heart Association, which is urging lawmakers to save physical education. The average school gets just $764 every year for physical...more

  • Want to fix inequality by taxing the rich? Good luck.

    Oct 23 2015

    In this week's episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Matt, and Sarah dive head first into a new Brookings white paper about income inequality (and how to not to fix it). We also imagine what a Joe Biden administration could have been, with a commander-in-chief who considers Republicans friends rather than enemies. This episode of The Weeds is brought to you by Squarespace. Start building your website today at Squarespace.com.  Enter offer code WEEDS at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace: Build it Beauti...more

  • The Weeds: Can the government trick you into dieting?

    Oct 16 2015

    On this week's episode, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt debate a little known Obamacare program, learn all about Nordic economies, and take on a new white paper forcing health economists to rethink deductibles.

  • Arthur Brooks on think tanks, happiness, and management

    Oct 15 2015

    In a special edition of The Weeds, Ezra interviews Arthur Brooks —head of the right-leaning American Enterprise Institute, a New York Times columnist, a major influence on Jeb Bush, and a surprisingly snappy dresser. Really.

  • Would single payer health care work in America?

    Oct 09 2015

    In the second episode of the Weeds, Ezra, Sarah, and Matt debate whether nationalized health care could work in America, what solutions are really needed to solve the country's mass shooting issue — and introduce an exciting new, regular segment: white paper of the week!

  • Ezra, Matt and Sarah Try to Podcast

    Oct 02 2015

    In this first episode of the new Vox.com podcast the weeds, Ezra Klein, Sarah Kliff, and Matthew Yglesias look at why Hillary Clinton is trying to gut a major part of Obamacare, how Donald Trump's tax plan made Matt sad, and whether American politics is becoming structurally biased towards outsiders like Trump and away from insiders like Bush. It gets real nerdy, real fast. This episode was sponsored by Audible.com. For a free audio book and a 30 day free trial, head to Audible.com/WEEDS