the-big-story

Podcast: What’s Moore Strange Than Alabama’s Senate Race?
The Big Story, Episode 72

Judge Roy Moore campaign worker Maggie Ford collects campaign signs after the U.S. Senate candidate forum held by the Shelby County Republican Party in Pelham, Ala., on Friday, Aug. 4, 2017. Moore is running in the special election to fill the seat vacated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Alabama’s Senate contest Tuesday is the first election skirmish in this year’s Republican civil war. Appointed Sen. Luther Strange is the candidate of the party establishment yet has the backing of the outsider president, Donald Trump. But former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore’s controversial conservatism has the ear of many Trump diehards. A preview from reporters who’ve seen the contest up close, Roll Call’s Bridget Bowman and The Economist’s James Astill.

Podcast: Quitting Congress
The Big Story, Episode 71

Rep. Charlie Dent's decision to retire made his district more competitive. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A spate of high profile lawmakers have announced they're retiring from Congress, but they are likely to be followed by others, says Roll Call elections analyst Nathan Gonzales. Senior political writer Bridget Bowman and leadership editor Jason Dick discuss who else might retire.

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Podcast: How the GOP Congress Could Help ‘Dreamers’ Now
The Big Story, Episode 70

Demonstrators outside the Trump International Hotel on Tuesday. President Donald Trump’s decision to rescind the DACA program could imperil GOP majorities in the House and Senate, Murphy writes. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Hill Republicans lambasted President Barack Obama’s deportation protections for 800,000 young people brought to the U.S. illegally by their parents, but now they sound willing to heed President Donald Trump’s invitation to turn the DACA program into law. What’s changed? CQ Roll Call immigration reporter Dean DeChiaro and education reporter Emily Wilkins explain.

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Podcast: The Suburban House Districts of Brotherly Love?
The Big Story, Episode 69

Podcast: Jeff Flake Feels the Heat
The Big Story, Episode 68

Arizona Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake talk before the start of the Senate Foreign Relations hearing to debate the authorization for use of military force in Syria on Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Jeff Flake's path to re-election is complicated. The Arizona Republican was potentially vulnerable even before President Donald Trump touched down in Phoenix to criticize him at a campaign style rally.

Now Flake, who has argued for more civility in politics, finds himself in a big fight in both the GOP primary and, if he gets past that, a compressed general election. Roll Call elections analyst Nathan Gonzales discusses the 2018 Senate race in Arizona with Roll Call leadership editor Jason Dick on the Big Story Podcast.

Podcast: After Charlottesville, Civil Rights Under Trump at the Fore
The Big Story, Episode 67

Attorney General Jeff Sessions testifies during the Senate Select Intelligence Committee hearing on Tuesday, June 13, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Last weekend’s bloody Virginia demonstrations incited by white supremacists will focus new attention on how the Trump administration is altering the Justice Department’s approach to hate crimes and other civil rights issues, CQ legal affairs reporter Todd Ruger explains. It’s a big test for Attorney General Jeff Sessions, already under fire from the president and because of his own record on race.

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Podcast: Why You Shouldn’t Be Alarmed Over North Korea...Yet
The Week Ahead, Episode 65

President Donald Trump speaks during a security briefing on Thursday at his Bedminster National Golf Club in New Jersey. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

President Trump’s fiery rhetoric over North Korea’s nuclear program should not be taken seriously just yet, says CQ Roll Call’s foreign policy reporter Rachel Oswald, adding that Congress may take further action against Pyongyang in September.

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Podcast: Alabama's Strange Election Turns Anti-McConnell But Pro-Trump
The Big Story, Episode 66

GOP candidate for Senate Sen. Luther Strange, R-Ala., speaks with attendees after the U.S. Senate candidate forum held by the Shelby County Republican Party in Pelham, Ala., on Friday, Aug. 4, 2017. Sen. Strange is running in the special election to fill the seat vacated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

CQ Roll Call's senior political reporter Bridget Bowman says Republicans competing for Jeff Sessions’ Senate seat in Alabama are striving to tell primary voters just how much they support Donald Trump and, perhaps surprisingly, are using Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as a punching bag.

Podcast: Inside the Senate’s Struggle With Civility
The Big Story, Episode 65

Senators are heading home for summer break, after a health care implosion highlighted the partisan ill will that’s festered all year. Ed Pesce, who edits CQ’s Senate coverage, explains how hardline GOP procedural tactics have taken the chamber to a new low, and what could get civil deliberations back on track.

Podcast: What's the Spiel With Democrats' Better Deal?
The Big Story, Episode 64

From left, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., Rep. Ben Ray Lujan, D-N.M., Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., and Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., attend a rally with House and Senate Democrats to announce "A Better Deal" economic agenda. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)