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Divided States is the American politics podcast from Sky News looking at all the issues that divide the most powerful country on the planet.
5 days ago
Swinging into battle
He claims to be Covid-free, and President Trump is back on the campaign trail - but is he fighting a losing battle? US Correspondent Cordelia Lynch and Washington Bureau Chief Emily Purser Brown discuss the state of the race with just over two weeks to go until election day, diving deep into key swing states Florida and Pennsylvania. They're joined this week by Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania John Fetterman.
Oct 8, 2020
A long week in Washington: President Trump gets Covid
It’s been a week since President Trump became America’s highest profile Covid-19 patient: the White House is now a hotspot, and the election campaign is in complete disarray. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown take you through a rollercoaster Washington week, which took the President from parties at the White House, to hospital, to celebrating a ‘cure’ for the disease. They also review the Vice Presidential debate in Salt Lake City – and the new row over whether the next presidential debate will even take place. And we speak to former GOP communications director Tara Setmayer about the presidential race and how her group the Lincoln Project, made up of conservative 'Never Trumpers', is trying to make a difference.
Sep 30, 2020
“Will you shut up, man!” - The fallout from the first presidential debate
The first presidential debate was a chaotic, rowdy affair – more of a verbal brawl than a political high point. Donald Trump and Joe Biden interrupted and insulted each other, and many voters weren’t impressed. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown are in Cleveland, Ohio, and break down the highs and lows from an astonishing night. They’re joined by Doug Rivers, Chief Scientist at YouGov, who polled people on the night with fascinating results.
Sep 27, 2020
BONUS: The life and legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Measuring just 5ft in height, the late Supreme Court judge was both small in stature and softly spoken. But the Brooklyn-born woman – known affectionately as the "Notorious RBG" – was a towering giant for gender equality and civil rights throughout her life. On this edition of the Sky News Daily podcast, Jayne Secker speaks to Christopher Scalia – the son of former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia - and opera singer, Lawrence Brownlee, as they share their personal stories and fondest memories of the 87-year-old who passed away earlier this month. We are also joined by our US correspondent Cordelia Lynch, as we look back at Justice Ginsburg’s life and discuss her legacy. Subscribe to the Daily podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Spreaker Daily podcast team: Podcast producer - Annie Joyce Podcast producer - Nicola Eyers Podcast producer – Emma Rae Woodhouse Interviews producer - Oli Foster Interviews producer – Reece Denton Archive - Simon Windsor Music - Steven Wheeler
Sep 25, 2020
The fight for RBG's Supreme Court seat
This week on Divided States, Emily Purser Brown and Cordelia Lynch reflect on the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a champion of gender equality who became a pop culture icon: the notorious RBG. Her dying wish was that her seat on the Supreme Court not be filled until after this November's election but Donald Trump and the Republican Party have made clear that, despite just 40 days to go until election day and early voting already underway in some states, they intend to appoint a new justice. Democrats have accused the Republicans of hypocrisy after they blocked Barack Obama's nominee to the Supreme Court, Merrick Garland, in 2016, when they said it was 'too close to the election' and 'the people should decide.' His nominee was made nine months before the 2016 election. Emily and Cordy discuss what a new Trump-appointed justice would mean, tipping the court 6-3 in favour of the conservatives, for hundreds of millions of Americans whose healthcare and abortion rights, among other issues, are on the line. Listen and subscribe to Divided States wherever you get your podcasts.
Sep 17, 2020
Wildfires and wild science
As wildfires burn across the West Coast, climate change has finally become an election issue. Donald Trump and Joe Biden disagree on even the most basic of facts – with Trump saying this week “I don’t think science knows”. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown discuss how the issue could move votes in this cluttered election. We also dig into Biden’s challenge with Hispanic voters in Florida, a key swing state, in conversation with Democrat Sean Shaw who’s in Tampa.
Sep 10, 2020
The race for the White House tightens
With just eight weeks until the presidential election, we’re back with a new season. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown discuss the state of the race as we enter the final, intense period of the campaign, and why the polls have been narrowing in the past few weeks. Plus they consider if President Trump’s messaging about law and order is working in critical swing states. This week, they’re joined by Neil Levesque, the director of the New Hampshire Institute of Politics.
Aug 20, 2020
Introducing...Polonium & the Piano Player
Two Russians agents release a miniature nuclear weapon in a 5-star London hotel. But former KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko is not the only victim? For the full series, search 'Polonium & the Piano Player.' From Sky News StoryCast.
Jul 31, 2020
Good trouble, bad trouble, election trouble
It’s just under 100 days until the election – although Donald Trump might like it to be longer. This week he floated the idea of delaying the vote, a power he does not have. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown decipher what the President actually means, and the message he’s trying to send to his supporters about the legitimacy of the election. It prompted President Obama to get political as he delivered the eulogy at Congressman John Lewis’ funeral - a sober, touching tribute to a life well-lived. We’ll be back after a break for the summer – join us for Season 3 in September.
Jul 24, 2020
Person. Woman. Man. President.
Donald Trump is cognitively brilliant - at least that’s what he says. It’s been an interesting week at the White House, as the president grapples with coronavirus cases soaring, and his election poll numbers going in the opposite direction. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown are in Florida, at the heart of America’s COVID crisis. They talk through Trump’s change in strategy this week, and his challenge getting the pandemic under control as the summer wears on. Plus, they have the tragic story of a woman who lost two of her children to COVID - who has a warning for other young people.
Jul 8, 2020
On-the-ground in America’s COVID surge
This week our team are in Texas, Florida and California as the number of coronavirus cases dramatically rises in the United States, even as states re-open. Cordelia Lynch is joined by Special Correspondent Alex Crawford, who has been inside the ICU of a hospital in Houston, Texas talking to doctors about the new ways they are treating the virus, and the worsening situation in America's second most populous state. Greg Milam is in Los Angeles, California where beaches have been shut to avoid continued spread. And Emily Purser Brown and Cordelia have been in Miami, Florida - a state that where the governor had declared victory against the virus, and where now they are dealing with a serious crisis.
Jun 12, 2020
George Floyd: Is this America’s tipping point?
A conversation with Karen Attiah, Global Opinions Editor at the Washington Post. Just back from Minneapolis, this week Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown are joined by Karen Attiah to discuss whether the movement sparked by George Floyd’s death will finally be a tipping point for America’s systemic racism, and if there will be lasting change.
Jun 2, 2020
Protests and rage engulf America
It has been an astonishing week in America. The death of George Floyd cut the country to its very core, igniting a movement that is difficult to compare. Over the past few days, we have seen America’s major cities burning. Protests from coast-to-coast that have often ended in violence and chaos. But behind it… a huge amount of national anguish and despair. Many people in America are asking questions about the decades’ long injustices against people of colour in this country, their own identities, and indeed questioning the very foundations on which this society is built. This week our team have been in the protests from Minneapolis to Washington DC. Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown talk about their experience in those chaotic moments, what protestors are hoping for, and what this moment might mean for America. And we hear impassioned and emotional speeches from George Floyd's brother, Terrence, and rapper and activist Killer Mike on the need for police refo…
May 21, 2020
Donald Trump experiments with drugs
It surprised everyone: President Trump is taking hydroxycholorquine as a prophylactic for Coronavirus. He dropped the announcement at the end of a long event, and it sent Washington into a spin. On this week’s episode we take a deep dive into the drug normally used to treat malaria, and ask why the leader of the free world is choosing to take it. His own government agencies have yet to approve hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 – so what’s driving Donald Trump? Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown talk through Donald Trump’s journey with the science behind the medicine, who else has been pushing the drug, and who, in all of this, called him fat. Download Divided States wherever you get your podcasts.
May 15, 2020
Has America had enough of experts?
On this week’s episode, we look at the stark message from the government’s scientists, not to rush re-opening – and discuss whether that advice is being followed by President Trump. A top government virologist turned whistleblower gave a damning appraisal of the Trump administration’s handling of the crisis on Capitol Hill - as the White House tries to contain its own outbreak. When will a vaccine be ready? When will America’s schools re-open? These are questions that draw division, even within the White House’s own team. Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown are in Washington to talk through the latest on the US response to Coronavirus.
May 7, 2020
Live or Let Die?
America is not out of the woods with coronavirus - far from it. But states are beginning to re-open, and Donald Trump is back on the road too. This week our team in Washington DC talk about the President’s trip to an Arizona mask factory – where he didn’t wear a mask – and the astonishing choice of music during the visit (spoiler: it’s a Guns N’ Roses classic). And as governors try and reopen and restart their state’s economies, we’ve been to Pennsylvania to talk to Trump voters about how they feel the President has handled the crisis. Lastly we can’t forget the presidential election: we’re getting ready for Joe Biden to pick his Vice Presidential candidate – we talk you through the runners and riders. Download and subscribe to Divided States wherever you get your podcasts.
Apr 23, 2020
Is it too soon to re-open America?
Over the past week, protests have begun to spring up across America, demanding that the economy re-opens. They have been partly spurred on by President Trump – but does relaxing social distancing now fit the medical data? This week on Divided States, we take you inside those protests, talking to the people there to find out what’s driving them to show up. Our team are all back in Washington DC: Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown talk though the latest developments on the miracle cure that wasn’t, and discuss what’s going on with President Trump’s latest immigration ban.
Apr 16, 2020
Trump tries to reopen America as Obama gets into the 2020 race
Across America over 30,000 people have died from coronavirus - doubling in one week - hundreds of thousands of people are sick and millions are struggling for financial survival. Donald Trump is lashing out as his handling of the crisis comes under intense scrutiny. But despite no real end in sight - the president is intent on opening at least part of the country in two weeks' time. On Divided States, Amanda Walker is in Washington and joined on the podcast by Alistair Bunkall, in New York, and Greg Milam, in California. They discuss Trump's bizarre press conference this week, where he declared he had 'absolute power', and after which he was accused of having 'the biggest meltdown ever' from a US president and of trying to 'rewrite history' over his administration's response to the coronavirus pandemic. Greg tell us how the west coast of America is coping with the lockdown, and Ali revisits a doctor in New York who a few weeks ago described the situation there as 'hell'…
Apr 10, 2020
Life, death, and hunger in COVID-19 America
The coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the United States. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser present an eyewitness report from inside one Brooklyn hospital where they are struggling to cope with the amount of patients., and report from one morgue where workers are now Facetiming victims' families so they can say one final goodbye. But is there also some hope coming out of America's epicentre, New York, with signs that social distancing is working and the curve is flattening. In the nation's capital Washington DC, Amanda Walker explains why President Trump has attacked the World Health Organisation and threatened to withhold their funding, and why he continues to encourage Americans to take the untested drug hydroxycholoroquine. And you may be forgiven for forgetting that we are in an election year but we are. Bernie Sanders, the democratic socialist, has dropped out of the Democratic race for president, leaving Joe Biden, President Obama's vice-president, as the…
Apr 1, 2020
In New York: Ground Zero of America's coronavirus crisis
The United States now has more cases of the coronavirus than any other country in the world, with more than 190,000 people testing positive for the disease and over 4,000 deaths. New York has been hardest hit. Refrigerated trucks are now being used as emergency morgues as hospitals become increasingly overwhelmed, US Navy hospital ship Comfort has been sent to New York City to offer some respite, and a field hospital has now been set up in the middle of Central Park. Alistair Bunkall brings you the latest from the epicentre of the US' battle against COVID-19 as doctors describe the pandemic as 'hell' and claim the crisis is worse than 9/11. Even funeral homes are being overrun. Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser share a special report from the Gerard J Nuefeld funeral home in New York City as families are not even allowed to bury their dead. "The crematoriums really aren't letting anybody in. The cemeteries are, for the most part, telling people to stay in their cars and just wa…
Mar 24, 2020
COVID-19 crisis: Can 15 days save America?
The Coronavirus has America in its grip, and life here is changing fast. But just as the rest of the world shuts down, President Trump has started talking about opening the US back up. Will it really only take 15 days to fight off this virus? Much like in Europe, our Sky News crew in the US are working from home and living under severe restrictions. We’ve battled the tech to get together virtually, to talk about Donald Trump’s endgame here, and how the situation in hotspots like New York might play out. Download Divided States wherever you normally get your podcasts.
Mar 16, 2020
COVID-19: America in lockdown
The Coronavirus pandemic is rapidly spreading through the US, and the response has been intense. Normal life has been suspended in many parts of America: schools are closed, so too are many bars and restaurants, and the public are grappling with the prospect of social distancing for months. The crew talk through all the astonishing changes made in just the last few days. How will the US economy survive such an enormous shock? What happens to small businesses who are forced to close? Will the US election still happen? Listen to Divided States, wherever you get your podcasts.
Mar 4, 2020
Super Tuesday: The return of Joe Biden
We’re back! And what a day to return with Season Two - with more twists and turns in the race for the White House. Joe Biden's candidacy looked all but dead in the water a few weeks ago, but after an incredible comeback over four days, he is now in a two-horse race with Bernie Sanders to be the Democratic nominee for president. The crew talk through the results: Where next for Bernie Sanders? What happened to Mike Bloomberg? Catch up with all the latest with our team across America.
Feb 6, 2020
Donald Trump acquitted, the race to the White House begins
Fresh from a cold week in Iowa, the team are back in Washington and just in time for Donald Trump to be acquitted in the impeachment trial. Cordelia Lynch, Amanda Walker and Emily Purser Brown debate whether that inevitable outcome will change anything in Washington…or not. Meanwhile, the results from the Iowa caucus drip in - with a surprise winner - after a disastrous night for the organisers and their new results-service app. It's our final episode this season - what a whirlwind it's been in Washington lately. We'll be back with plenty of the news on the 2020 campaign trail soon. Listen to Divided States wherever good podcasts are broadcast.
Feb 2, 2020
Can anyone defeat Donald Trump in the 2020 election?
This week the crew discuss the bombshell new revelations that could have changed the impeachment trial – and how Democrats’ hopes fell apart. Leaks from an upcoming book by former National Security Adviser John Bolton created major jeopardy over the question of whether the Senate would call witnesses as part of the trial: would enough Republicans want to hear what he had to say to rebel against their party? In the end, they didn’t - but it prompted a lot of questions for Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown to chew through. Also this week – the Iowa caucus is upon us! Emily and Cordelia are on the road in the snowy mid-west state, finding out which candidate is whipping up the most excitement. Listen to Divided States every Saturday, wherever you get your podcasts.
Jan 24, 2020
All you need to know from the first week of the impeachment trial
The impeachment trial is upon us! After weeks of wrangling, this week the Senate finally began to hear evidence in the trial that the Democrats hope will remove Donald Trump from office. Join Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown as they catch up on the highlights of this week's evidence, and how bad it is for the president. The week belonged to the Democrats, who had three days to present their case - but much of the action was outside of the Senate floor, with both sides trying to spin the evidence as best they could. We caught up with Adam Schiff, Chuck Schumer, Bernie Sanders - and many more of the politicians at the heart of this trial. Plus - with hours spent on the Senate floor without their phones, what are senators allowed to bring in with them? And what can they drink? You may be surprised by the answer.
Jan 17, 2020
Will new evidence change the Senate impeachment trial?
The impeachment trial is upon us, and the 2020 race is heating up – all while Donald Trump goes head-to-head with Iran. This week Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown catch up on the surprising twist in the impeachment story, as new evidence comes out ahead of the Senate trial beginning in earnest. We also check in on which of the Democrat candidates is cutting through, as the ‘woman’ question comes to the fore, and chew over the impact of President Trump’s action in the Middle East. Listen to Divided States every Saturday, wherever you get your podcasts.
Dec 20, 2019
President Trump gets impeached
It was a momentous week in Washington: for the third time in America's history - the House of Representatives voted to impeach a president. Donald Trump will not be removed from office but that should not detract from the gravity of this moment and what it means for the future. This week, Cordelia Lynch, Emily Purser Brown and Greg Milam talk through the highlights of this historic week, why it matters and what comes next. Cordelia takes us to Capitol Hill, where she was reporting as the House debated and then voted on the articles of impeachment. She got the views of several of those voting, including New York congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Plus, Greg travelled to Michigan, where President Trump held his final rally of the year, complete with Christmas trees topped with Make America Great Again hats. He spoke to Trump’s loyal fans to get their views on all the developments in Washington. Listen to Divided States every Saturday, wherever you get your podcasts. We’re t…
Dec 13, 2019
High crimes and misdemeanors
It’s Go time in Washington DC. The Democrats have filed their Articles of Impeachment, and the stage is set for Donald Trump to be impeached by the House of Representatives. This week on Divided States, Cordelia Lynch, Amanda Walker and Emily Purser Brown catch up on the latest news in the impeachment process that is dominating politics in Washington – and get a view into how much Americans outside of the nation’s capital actually care. In part one, we discuss the highlights of the week – what’s in the articles of impeachment, what happens with the big vote next week – and are the outcomes already set in stone? In part two, Amanda travels to Racine in the south east corner of Wisconsin. A swing state, in 2016 the voters there turned away from the Democrats and helped Trump on his path to the White House. How do they feel now their president is facing such a serious challenge from the Democrats, and are they even listening? In part three, Cordelia has a conversation with…
Dec 6, 2019
The beginning of the beginning
This week on Divided States, it’s the end of the impeachment investigations, and the start of what might be the endgame for House Democrats. Amanda Walker, Cordelia Lynch and Emily Purser Brown talk you through another dizzying week of impeachment developments in Washington, as politicians hurtle towards Christmas – and Donald Trump makes a splash in London. In part 1, we discuss our highlights from this week, which saw the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee hand the baton to their colleagues in Congress. President Trump has been in at the NATO summit in London, and Nancy Pelosi has come out fighting. In part 2, Cordelia takes a deep dive in Rudy Giuliani, the president’s lawyer and the man at the heart of this investigation. How did he go from being America’s mayor, beloved for his role in New York following 9/11 – to the President’s problematic fixer? And in part 3, Amanda talks to Washington grande dame, journalist and writer Elizabeth Drew. She lived th…
Nov 29, 2019
The president punches back
This week on Divided States, Cordelia Lynch, Amanda Walker and Emily Purser-Brown have got a Thanksgiving infused feast for you - a three course impeachment banquet. In part one, we discuss some of our highlights of the week, including President Trump's expletive-filled rally in Florida. In part two, we have a revealing report from our Los Angeles Correspondent Greg Milam who’s been getting voters opinions about the inquiry in Orange County, California. He’s braved the sands of Huntington Beach - known as Surf City, USA. It’s historically been a Republican stronghold but has experienced a blue wave recently. You may be surprised by what you hear. And in part three, we speak with Jeff Mason, White House Correspondent for Reuters - always at the centre of the story, he'll tell us about spending time with the president at Mar-a-Lago in Florida this week. Subscribe to Divided States wherever you get your podcasts, and listen every Saturday.
Nov 23, 2019
Impeachment goes public
The impeachment hearings this week were a roaring success, and a complete sham. They were honest and transparent, and filled with falsehoods. The witnesses had decades of experience, and were completely untrustworthy. And that was how the first public hearings in the impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump played out. It depended on who you were; what you wanted to hear; the decision you had made when you walked in the room. There was no meeting of minds between Democrats and Republicans, even when the future of the presidency is at stake. Their leaders in the room sat inches away from each other, fuming, and unwilling to compromise. It is into that environment that we launch with our new weekly podcast, Divided States. Our team here in the US are living and breathing every moment of this impeachment inquiry, and we hope to answer your questions, explain where it might all lead, and take you to the heart of the story, in Congress and with voters across America. Every Saturday we’ll…
Nov 19, 2019
Introducing Divided States from Sky News
America seems more divided now than at any time in living memory. The impeachment proceedings are in full swing: the parties are divided, the public are divided, and we’re just months away from the first big votes in the 2020 election. There’s a lot to keep up with, and lot of questions to answer. Each week, Sky News' US team of correspondents will bring you the inside story on the impeachment process that could end Donald Trump’s presidency in our new podcast, Divided States. We'll take you into the corridors of Congress, talking to the politicians who will decide the president’s future – and across the country as we find out how this might affect next year’s race to the White House. That’s Divided States, every Saturday, from Sky News