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The Argument

The New York Times Opinion

The other side is dangerously wrong. They think you are too. But for democracy to work, we need to hear each other out. Each week New York Times Opinion columnists David Leonhardt, Michelle Goldberg and Ross Douthat explain the arguments from across ...Show More
Which 2020 Underdogs Stand a Chance? (LIVE from NYC)

35:26 | Apr 17th

What should U.S. immigration policy look like? The columnists debate Kirstjen Nielsen's resignation, Trump's xenophobia and Obama's legacy on immigration live on stage at the Times Center in New York. Then, in response to listener voicemail, Ross, Mi...Show More
Should Weed Be Legal?

37:13 | Dec 20th, 2018

Has "big cannabis" downplayed the dangers of legalization? Michelle Goldberg debates author Alex Berenson, whose forthcoming book makes the case against marijuana. Then, David Leonhardt, Ross Douthat and Michelle argue about which pot policy the Unit...Show More
One-on-One With Marianne Williamson

31:59 | Aug 22nd

Marianne Williamson, the primary candidate infusing spirituality into the Democratic debates, sits down with Ross Douthat to discuss her journey to faith, her writings on illness and disease and how religious and spiritual language have inflected bot...Show More
Is Josh Hawley the Future of the G.O.P.?

37:07 | Aug 15th

Is Missouri Senator Josh Hawley the future of the Republican Party? Ross Douthat sits down with the first-term lawmaker to discuss the conservative case for cracking down on powerful tech companies and reducing the price of prescription drugs. They d...Show More
Does Trump Help Fuel Mass Shootings?

33:37 | Aug 8th

How much responsibility does President Trump bear for violence motivated by racism? The columnists discuss gun control, the recent shootings in El Paso, Tex. and Dayton, Ohio and their connections to Trump's dehumanizing statements about immigrants. ...Show More
Is Impeachment Finally Happening?

35:31 | Aug 1st

Did Robert Mueller’s testimony before Congress bring Democrats any closer to impeaching President Trump? The columnists debate the fallout from the former special counsel’s testimony. Then: You asked, the columnists answer. Ross, Michelle and David t...Show More
Why Isn’t Trump Trying to Win the Center?

34:09 | Jul 25th

Presidents running for re-election often appeal to the political center. So why isn’t Trump? Op-Ed columnist Jamelle Bouie joins Ross Douthat and David Leonhardt to discuss Trump’s refusal to moderate and his possible pathways to win a second term. T...Show More
Will Trump's Racism Sink the G.O.P.?

32:54 | Jul 18th

Trump's racism presents an existential challenge to Republicanism. Has he fully transformed the G.O.P. into the Party of Trump? The columnists argue about the limits of Trumpification and how it has stripped away the Republican mask of economic liber...Show More
What Is Nancy Pelosi Thinking?

31:29 | Jul 11th

Can corporate America be a force for social liberalism? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt debate the corporatization of Pride Month, Nike's about-face on the Betsy Ross flag and the political efficacy of “woke capitalism.” Then they...Show More
Is Biden Doomed?

31:40 | Jul 3rd

Was Kamala Harris’s debate-stage takedown the beginning of the end for Joe Biden’s frontrunner status? Columnists Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt take stock of the 2020 Democratic primary so far. Then, are the presidential candida...Show More
One-on-One with Cory Booker

41:22 | Jun 26th

Cory Booker has executive experience, bipartisan bona fides and a raft of ambitious policy goals. So why is he running in the middle of the 2020 Democratic pack — and how does he plan to distinguish himself? David Leonhardt sits down with the senator...Show More
Are We Headed For War With Iran?

41:13 | Jun 20th

Is the United States barreling toward war with Iran? Op-Ed columnist Bret Stephens joins his colleagues to discuss the recent uptick in tensions between Washington and Tehran — and what can be done about them. Then, what are religious conservatives r...Show More
Death to the Meritocracy with Andrew Yang

52:00 | Jun 13th

Democratic presidential contender Andrew Yang sits down with Ross Douthat for a one-on-one interview to discuss the future of work in America, universal basic income, Yang's unorthodox path to the presidency and whether he considers himself a traitor...Show More
Are Democrats Too Scared to Impeach? (LIVE from Boston)

40:25 | Jun 6th

Why aren't the Democrats ready to impeach President Trump? The columnists ask Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey in this live episode recorded at WBUR CitySpace in Boston on May 29. They also talk about Robert Mueller’s first public remarks and the Demo...Show More
The United States of Socialism?

38:31 | May 30th

Why is socialism so popular in the United States right now? Michelle Goldberg talks with Bhaskar Sunkara, the editor of Jacobin magazine, to discuss democratic socialists vs. liberals, the failures of past socialist movements and Bernie Sanders vs. E...Show More
President Pete? One-on-One With Buttigieg

53:33 | May 23rd

Why is the 37-year-old mayor of South Bend, Ind., running for president — and what would he do if he won? David Leonhardt sits down with Pete Buttigieg to discuss the radicalization of the Republican Party and his plan to resuscitate American democra...Show More
Is Trump Right About China?

32:24 | May 16th

What's the right way for the United States to take on China? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt debate Trump's trade war and China's economically aggressive, increasingly authoritarian behavior. Then, is America's labor movement, lon...Show More
Is the Trump Economic Boom for Real?

31:11 | May 9th

How strong is the American economy — and how much credit should President Trump get for it? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt disagree on where the boom is coming from and what it means for America's future. Then, as the president a...Show More
How to Fix the Criminal Justice System

41:47 | May 2nd

What’s the best way to solve America’s mass incarceration crisis? NYT Magazine writer and "Charged" author Emily Bazelon joins Michelle Goldberg to discuss the unchecked power of prosecutors as problem and potential solution. Then, the columnists deb...Show More
Is It Time to Impeach Trump?

39:09 | Apr 25th

Robert Mueller's (redacted) report is out, but now what? Can the Democrats use it to impeach President Donald Trump? Ross Douthat, David Leonhardt and special guest Michelle Cottle of The Times's editorial board disagree about what comes next for the...Show More
Should Biden Run?

35:43 | Apr 4th

Is Joe Biden the Democrats’ best hope to beat Trump in 2020? Or is he woefully behind the times? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt disagree about the former vice president's potential run for POTUS. Then the columnists debate what A...Show More
Who Botched the Mueller Report?

35:19 | Mar 28th

Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia has wrapped, and Attorney General William Barr's letter to Congress has been delivered. Michelle, Ross and David debate whether there really was "no collusion," i...Show More
Is Trump Causing White Terrorism?

36:45 | Mar 21st

How much blame does President Trump’s deserve for New Zealand’s white-supremacist mosque shooting? Jamelle Bouie joins hosts Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt for a debate about xenophobic ideology, internet troll culture and their ...Show More
One-on-One With Elizabeth Warren

49:35 | Mar 13th

Senator Elizabeth Warren sits down with David Leonhardt for a chat about her 2020 presidential campaign. They talk Donald Trump, her proposed wealth tax and universal childcare program, antitrust policy and her dog Bailey. Then, Ross Douthat and Mich...Show More
How Does the Catholic Church Redeem Itself?

32:30 | Mar 7th

Is prekindergarten for all a liberal pipe dream? The columnists sit down with special guest Mara Gay of The Times editorial board to discuss the successes and pitfalls of New York City's universal pre-K program. Then, Ross Douthat and New York magazi...Show More
Will Michael Cohen's Testimony Doom Trump?

36:01 | Feb 28th

Was there anything in Michael Cohen's congressional testimony on Wednesday that could actually threaten Donald Trump's presidency? Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt break it down. Later Ross Douthat joins them for a debate over whether Bernie San...Show More
Is Trump the Real National Emergency?

36:23 | Feb 21st

From bypassing Congress to try to fund a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, to accusing administration officials of treason, is Donald Trump America’s national emergency? Michelle sees authoritarianism while Ross thinks the real threat to American democ...Show More
Is the Green New Deal a Leftist Fantasy?

39:06 | Feb 14th

Is the Green New Deal a symbol of the future of the Democratic Party, or is it just socialism disguised as climate reform? Ross Douthat and Michelle Goldberg are joined by Times editorial board member Michelle Cottle to debate the new initiative and ...Show More
The Abortion Argument

45:21 | Feb 7th

This is not your typical argument about abortion. Ross Douthat and Michelle Goldberg debate women's reproductive health this week and while it's no surprise that they disagree, they manage to hear each other out. Then Medicare Rights Center founder D...Show More
Who's Ahead in the Race to Beat Trump?

36:56 | Jan 31st

Democrats are throwing their hats in the ring for the 2020 presidential election, but who has a real shot? Opinion's new columnist, Jamelle Bouie, joins Michelle Goldberg and Ross Douthat to weigh in on who has an edge, whose campaign needs sharpenin...Show More
Have Republicans Betrayed the Working Class?

40:24 | Jan 24th

Is anti-Zionism just another form of anti-Semitism? Michelle and special guest Bret Stephens debate liberal critiques of Israel and the future of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Then, is Tucker Carlson really a populist? Bret and Ross discuss what ...Show More
How Trump Loses the G.O.P.

35:32 | Jan 17th

An ongoing government shutdown. More Russia revelations. Ross, David and Michelle agree there’s a point at which Republicans could turn on Trump. But what will it take? Then, the columnists debate anti-Semitism on the left and the controversies roili...Show More
Why Do Powerful Women Make America Panic?

36:33 | Jan 10th

The government shutdown continues as Trump and the Democrats battle over the border wall. Who is winning? Which side makes the stronger immigration argument? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt debate. Later, they discuss why America ...Show More
Your Questions, Answered

37:36 | Jan 3rd

Our listeners asked: what will be the negative consequences of social media on kids? How can we solve income inequality in America? Which Democrat has the best chance of beating Trump in 2020? Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and David Leonhardt answe...Show More
Will Trump's Presidency Survive 2019?

35:11 | Dec 13th, 2018

Trump's mounting legal problems have the columnists wondering if he'll finish his first term. Michelle Goldberg visualizes President Pelosi. Editorial board member Mara Gay makes Ross Douthat answer for his WASP nostalgia. And David Leonhardt recomme...Show More
Is Donald Trump A Traitor?

35:36 | Dec 6th, 2018

Trump's Russia entanglement has the columnists asking, "Is the president a traitor?" Ross Douthat sits down with Lawfare's executive editor Susan Hennessey to lay out what's happening with Robert Mueller's special counsel investigation. Later, Ross r...Show More
What Do We Do About Climate Change?

34:13 | Nov 29th, 2018

How can climate change be solved if politicians can't even agree there's a problem? The columnists brainstorm. Then, David Leonhardt visits Capitol Hill to interview California Representative Ro Khanna, "the ambassador of Silicon Valley," about Trump...Show More
Do We Need A Third Party?

33:59 | Nov 21st, 2018

A listener's voicemail asks the columnists, does America need a third party? Then, just in time for Thanksgiving, our argumentative trio dishes out some advice for how to handle your own dinner-table debates. And finally, a Coen brothers recommendati...Show More
Is Amazon Bad for America?

38:42 | Nov 15th, 2018

After Amazon announced its uninspired new headquarters locations, the columnists are surprised to find they agree on the danger of the website's monopoly, for different reasons. David Leonhardt is baited into playing the "neo-liberal shill." Ross Dou...Show More
Did Trump Lose The Midterms?

38:01 | Nov 8th, 2018

What do the Democratic gains in the House and Republican gains in the Senate mean for the country’s future? Ross Douthat dreams of a fantastic world of rainbows, child tax credits and a better president. David Leonhardt wishes racism was more decisiv...Show More
Who's to Blame for American Political Violence?

33:56 | Nov 1st, 2018

Do Republicans have an anger problem? The columnists debate whether Trump incited the recent targeted attacks. After Michelle Goldberg reports back from the campaign trail in Georgia, they all discuss the partisan battle of the sexes: has politics be...Show More
How Screwed Up Is American Democracy?

31:56 | Oct 25th, 2018

How rotten has our democratic system has become, the columnists wonder, and what could fix it? David Leonhardt is furious about voter suppression in North Dakota and Georgia. Ross Douthat thinks NeverTrump Republicans should cast their midterm votes ...Show More
Is Trump Destroying the World Order?

31:27 | Oct 18th, 2018

With the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, David Leonhardt asks guest Thomas Friedman about the strained future of U.S.-Saudi relations. Then, Michelle Goldberg, Ross Douthat and David debate whether Trump's foreign policy emboldens autocrats an...Show More
Is the Supreme Court Broken?

30:03 | Oct 11th, 2018

Did Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation break the Supreme Court? Michelle Goldberg feels the patriarchy’s boot on her neck. David Leonhardt cautions Democrats about running on the #MeToo movement in the midterms. And Ross Douthat sings. Seriously. For ba...Show More
Introducing The Argument, an Opinion podcast from The New York Times

01:37 | Oct 4th, 2018

Coming Thursday, October 11, a new Opinion podcast from The New York Times that answers the question, "How could they possibly think that?" Join Opinion columnists David Leonhardt, Michelle Goldberg and Ross Douthat every Thursday as they explain the...Show More