The Axe Files with David Axelrod

CNN

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David Axelrod, the founder and director of the University of Chicago Institute of Politics, brings you The Axe Files, a series of revealing interviews with key figures in the political world. Go beyond the soundbites and get to know some of the most ...Show More
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59:20 | Apr 29th

Bryan Cranston is an actor, producer, director, and screenwriter best known for his roles on Breaking Bad, Malcolm in the Middle, and Seinfeld. He joins David to talk about acting as a catharsis, why inhabiting real-life figures poses a greater chall...Show More

1:03:39 | Jan 24th

Stanley McChrystal is a retired four-star general in the U.S. Army who led America’s Joint Special Operations Command and NATO forces in the War in Afghanistan. He joins David to share his view of Trump’s military policy both abroad and domestic, the...Show More
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59:23 | Nov 23rd, 2016

Steve Kerr, head coach of the Golden State Warriors, sits down with David to discuss his upbringing in the Middle East, his father’s assassination in Beirut, his reaction to President-elect Trump’s victory, his future in coaching, and much more.

55:01 | May 19th, 2016

Samantha Power, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, chats with David in New York about growing up in Ireland, how she went from a sports reporter at Yale to writing a Pulitzer Prize-winning book on U.S. foreign policy, and her take on the Obama ad...Show More

1:05:10 | Dec 5th

Entrepreneur and Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang joins David for a live edition of The Axe Files to discuss why he abandoned a career in law to build his own business, how rapid technological growth is shaping our society both socially ...Show More
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1:02:38 | Dec 2nd

Gary Cohn served as the Director of the National Economic Council and chief economic advisor to President Trump. He joins David to talk about how an early dyslexia diagnosis shaped his drive to succeed; his tenure at Goldman Sachs, particularly as an...Show More

20:50 | Nov 25th

Dennis Ross is a diplomat and author with over four decades of experience in Middle East policy. He joins David to talk about his service under six presidential administrations, how the political climate in the Middle East has evolved, and the status...Show More

1:12:20 | Nov 18th

Samantha Power, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, joins David to talk about the journey from her childhood in Ireland to the halls of the U.N. — and the trials she faced along the way. She shares the experiences that compelled her to beco...Show More

1:21:04 | Nov 10th

Cindy McCain joins David for a special televised edition of the Axe Files on CNN to discuss President Trump and the state of the Republican party, her advocacy on human trafficking issues, the toll living a public life took on her and her family, and...Show More

1:01:56 | Nov 4th

NBA Hall of Famer and humanitarian Dikembe Mutombo joins David for a conversation about his upbringing in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, how an international science competition ultimately steered him to the Georgetown Hoyas’ basketball team, ...Show More

28:23 | Oct 22nd

Admiral Mike Mullen, formerly the 17th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, joins David to discuss President Trump’s decision to pull U.S. troops out of Syria, the state of our alliances today, his historic testimony in support of repealing Don’t A...Show More

1:04:23 | Oct 14th

Harry Reid, former U.S. Senator from Nevada and Senate Majority Leader, sits down with David in Las Vegas, NV for a special televised edition of The Axe Files. In this extended version of the conversation, they talk about his tenure as Senate Majorit...Show More

25:14 | Oct 7th

Gina Raimondo, governor of Rhode Island and Chair of the Democratic Governors Association, joins David to talk about how her father’s early job loss moved her to enter public service, what Democrats running in 2020 can learn from the governors who ra...Show More

1:02:13 | Sep 30th

Admiral William McRaven is a retired U.S. Navy SEAL who served as the commander of U.S. Special Operations from 2011 to 2014. He joins David to talk about his foray into military service, his disagreements with Donald Trump, and his most memorable mi...Show More

25:16 | Sep 23rd

In this clip from Episode 348 of the Axe Files, conservative commentator and columnist George Will discusses how Trump has dismantled political norms and whether a return to civility is possible. He answers whether the Democrats and Speaker Pelosi sh...Show More

1:05:32 | Sep 15th

Former Attorney General Eric Holder joins David on the CNN edition of the Axe Files to discuss potential impeachment proceedings, his advice for 2020 candidates, the long-term implications of Trump’s attacks on our institutions, and the arc of his hi...Show More

56:30 | Aug 25th

For this month’s episode of the Axe Files on CNN, we took the show on the road and traveled across Iowa during a whirlwind week of campaigning at the state fair and beyond. We spoke with candidates, organizers, and voters, whose first-in-the nation v...Show More

16:16 | Jul 29th

In this clip from Episode 342 of the Axe Files, Republican Congressman Will Hurd talks about his own experiences with racism and discrimination and the consequences of sowing racial division for Republicans. To hear the full conversation, sign up for...Show More

1:17:53 | Jul 14th

Pete Buttigieg, 2020 Democratic presidential candidate and mayor of South Bend, Indiana, joins David for a televised edition of The Axe Files on CNN. He makes the case for why his executive experience as mayor prepares him for the presidency, talks r...Show More

58:57 | Jul 1st

David Remnick is a journalist, author, and editor of The New Yorker magazine. He joins the show to talk about the New Yorker’s feature on Hunter Biden, covering Russia as a young reporter for the Washington Post, his philosophy as an editor, and the ...Show More

54:46 | Jun 25th

Hacks on Tap is the latest podcast from David Axelrod, giving listeners weekly insight into the 2020 presidential race. This week the hacks talk Biden and Buttigieg’s tough week with race relations, escalating tensions with Iran, and preview this wee...Show More

1:10:31 | Jun 9th

Former Secretary of Defense and CIA Director Robert Gates joins David for the Axe Files on CNN to discuss his long career serving eight presidents, his thoughts on global tensions and America’s standing in the world today, and his experience with 202...Show More

51:42 | May 30th

In this debut episode of Fiasco: how the largely forgotten race between Al Gore and George W. Bush roiled Florida long before anyone had ever heard of a hanging chad.  For more from "Fiasco", go to LuminaryPodcasts.com.

1:01:04 | May 16th

Janet Napolitano is the former Secretary of Homeland Security and two-term Governor of Arizona. She joins the show to talk about her long career in both law and politics, including her role in Anita Hill trial, how she addressed immigration issues as...Show More

1:19:56 | May 12th

The New Jersey Senator and Democratic Presidential candidate joins David for The Axe Files on CNN in this extended conversation about his career in politics and the issues driving his run for the presidency.

1:02:11 | May 9th

Bill Burns is the former Ambassador to the Russian Federation under President Obama and currently serves as the President of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He joins David to talk about his three-decade career as a foreign service off...Show More

43:06 | May 9th

Asha Rangappa, a former FBI agent and the former dean of admissions at Yale Law School, gives us a unique perspective on the college admissions scandal.

1:00:15 | May 6th

Jason Rezaian is an author, CNN contributor, and opinion writer for the Washington Post. In 2014, while working in Iran as the Tehran bureau chief for the Post, he and his wife were detained by the Iranian authorities on espionage charges. He was fre...Show More

1:00:58 | May 2nd

James Carville is a Democratic political strategist best known for his work as the lead strategist of Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign. He joins David to talk about how growing up in segregated Carville, Louisiana motivated him to jump into ...Show More

43:13 | Apr 26th

Trevor Noah and David Kibuuka discuss the fire at Notre Dame and the ethics of philanthropy before being joined by Tiger Woods biographer Jeff Benedict to discuss one of the greatest comebacks in sports history. For more from "On Second Thought" go t...Show More