Astead Herndon

“I’m definitely willing to break and mold the new rules for what they are. I have a lot of identities that are often lost in political journalism. Blackness, midwesterness. What I trust is that if we turn the lens back on everyone else, all types of voters can come to it.

-Astead Herndon, episode 292 of Talk Easy with Sam Fragoso

With the US midterms approaching, we’re joined by New York Times political reporter and host of The Run-Up, Astead Herndon. We start by examining this “relentlessly disorienting time” in America (5:10), where the pendulum of democracy (7:40) will be swung by four voting blocs this November: The Skeptical Trump voter (9:50), The Young Voter (13:15), The Disillusioned Democrat, and The NON-MAGA Republican (15:47).

In the back half: what Democrats previously believed to be “demographic destiny” (21:48), the media’s oversimplification of the electorate (24:02), and why President Biden has recently moved away from his message of unity (29:50). To close, Herndon outlines the importance of grassroots reporting (38:05), a potential autopsy for the Democratic Party (43:16), and how democracy itself is on the ballot this November (47:12).

Original illustration by Krishna Shenoi.

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Check your Voter Registration & register to Vote in the 2022 Midterm Elections on November 8th.