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America’s “insane” politics (and what to do about it)

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Jonathan Rauch, senior fellow in Governance Studies, expands on his widely popular new article in The Atlantic titled, “How American Politics Went Insane.”

“Parties exist so politicians can hold each other accountable,” Rauch explains. “When that breaks down, you get pretty much unaccountability. It’s every person for him or herself. You get a kind of renegade politics … and out on the campaign trail, the people who are getting the furthest are not the people who play well with others. They’re the people who don’t play well with others.”

“We have never been in a situation where one of the two major political parties is having an organizational meltdown,” Rauch expands. “It’s not a time to daydream about third parties. It’s a time to focus on fixing the party system we’ve got.”

Also in this episode, Metropolitan Policy Program Associate Fellow Devashree Saha examines the impact of crashing oil prices on state and metro economies.

Show links:

How American politics went insane

The state of state parties, a neglected path to healthier politics

Political Realism: How Hacks, Machines, Big Money, and Back-Room Deals Can Strengthen American Democracy

Permanent trust funds: Funding economic change with fracking revenues

Thanks to audio producer Mark Hoelscher, plus thanks to Carisa Nietsche, Bill Finan, Vanessa Sauter, Jessica Pavone, Eric Abalahin, and Rebecca Viser.

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