Can He Do That?

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Donald Trump’s historic presidency is unlike any other that’s come before it. From a record-setting staff turnover rate to unpredictable policy decisions to an ongoing investigation into his campaign, each episode of this podcast focuses on one aspect of Trump’s time in the White House that raises t…

The Washington Post


    • Nov 24, 2021 LATEST EPISODE
    • weekly NEW EPISODES
    • 25m AVG DURATION
    • 277 EPISODES

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    Latest episodes from Can He Do That?

    The state of Trump's affairs

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 24, 2021 22:49

    A close look at the state of Donald Trump post-presidency — his businesses, his finances, the ongoing criminal investigations into his actions and how all of those things could affect a potential political comeback.

    Prices are going up. Can Biden bring them down?

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 18, 2021 18:15

    What levers do presidents have to slow inflation? How much of our current economic situation can be attributed to President Biden's policies and what can he really do to change the course of the American economy in the months ahead?Inflation emerges as defining economic challenge of Biden presidencyWhite House takes aim at oil industry as gas prices create economic and politics rifts

    Are Biden's vaccine mandates an overreach of presidential power?

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 11, 2021 19:43

    Now that the Biden administration has released rules for vaccine and testing mandates, court battles are starting to heat up. The Post's labor reporter, and a legal expert, weigh in on what the future might hold for Biden's vaccine workforce rules.Related episodes and readingBiden mandates vaccines for millions. Can he do that?Legal battle over Biden's vax-or-test mandate for businesses is just beginningGOP-appointed judges freeze Biden vaccine requirement after federal lawsuit

    Biden promised unity. Voters are still divided.

    Play Episode Listen Later Nov 3, 2021 19:39

    In a major upset for Democrats Tuesday, Republican Glenn Youngkin eked out a victory in Virginia's gubernatorial race. Today, we look at the results of that election, and others, to understand the nation one year after the divisive 2020 elections.Elections spur doubts for Biden's agenda, party's outlookA sobering reality hits Democrats

    McCarthy walks the Trump tightrope

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 28, 2021 23:20


    McCarthy says he can recapture the House, but navigating an unpredictable former President Trump and keeping donors happy at the same time is sizable challenge. McCarthy wants to win in 2022 and unify the Republican party. Can he do that?Would-be speaker Kevin McCarthy walks the Trump tightrope, pursuing a GOP HouseThe voter-fraud allegation that perfectly captures the post-2020 Republican PartyOne big threat to Biden's agenda: The map


    The Exit

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 21, 2021 23:20

    In the last episode of our series about President Biden and the War in Afghanistan, he takes the reins as commander-in-chief and withdraws U.S. forces. Ultimately, Biden rethinks his stance on military intervention and America's role in the world. Listen to Part One: The Senator and Part Two: The War.

    The War

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 14, 2021 27:06

    In the second episode of our series about President Biden and the War in Afghanistan, we look at the years after the Sept. 11 attacks when Biden called for a major nation-building effort. Over time, though, he begins to doubt his own instincts.Related links: Part One: The Senator

    The Senator

    Play Episode Listen Later Oct 7, 2021 22:26

    On the 20th anniversary of the first U.S. strikes on Afghanistan, this three-part series explores President Biden's career as it intertwines with the war there. He ultimately chose to end the ‘forever war.' But what role did he have in starting it?

    American democracy in ‘Peril'

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 30, 2021 26:23

    Journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa uncovered details about the tumultuous transition of power from President Trump to President Biden in their new book, "Peril." They reveal how close we came to constitutional and international crises. Top general was fearful Trump might spark war, new book saysThousands have been evacuated from Afghanistan. Where will they go?The presidential power to strike

    Biden's climate agenda is bold. Is it enough?

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 23, 2021 24:30

    In this episode, as President Biden address the U.N. for the first time since taking office, we revisit a conversation from August about the climate's "unprecedented" state and Biden's big goals toward repairing it. Can his agenda succeed?

    Biden mandates vaccines for millions. Can he do that?

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 16, 2021 16:53

    How can vaccine mandates effectively be enforced across the country? What precedent is there in history and law? And how do Americans and business owners feel about President Biden's executive orders mandating immunization? Biden announces sweeping new vaccine mandates for businesses, federal workersBiden's ratings sag and workers split on vaccine mandates, Post-ABC poll finds

    America's Song, Part 2

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 10, 2021 31:36

    With his performance of “God Bless America” during Game 3 of the 2001 World Series, New York City Police Department Officer Daniel Rodriguez comforted a nation still grieving in the wake of 9/11. It felt like a timeless moment. Instead, it proved fleeting. Twenty years later, the reasons for that tell a sad American story of political divisions and the embellished patriotism that now polarizes sports. The weight of it all can be felt through the struggles of Rodriguez, a man still trying to bless people with his voice, while America attempts to rediscover its own. Join Washington Post sports columnist Jerry Brewer, sports features writer Kent Babb and audio producer Bishop Sand as they explore how a man and a nation attempt to heal and find meaning after trauma and tragedy. In Part 2, Jerry, Kent and Bishop visit Daniel in L.A. to see what his life is like now, and look into the origins of the song that made him famous. Then they look at what else happened to him, the song and the country in the years after 9/11, as shifting political winds drove Americans further apart. To find photos of Daniel Rodriguez then and now, visit wapo.st/911.

    America's Song, Part 1

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 9, 2021

    With his performance of “God Bless America” during Game 3 of the 2001 World Series, New York City Police Department Officer Daniel Rodriguez comforted a nation still grieving in the wake of 9/11. It felt like a timeless moment. Instead, it proved fleeting. Twenty years later, the reasons for that tell a sad American story of political divisions and the embellished patriotism that now polarizes sports. The weight of it all can be felt through the struggles of Rodriguez, a man still trying to bless people with his voice, while America attempts to rediscover its own. Join Washington Post sports columnist Jerry Brewer, sports features writer Kent Babb and audio producer Bishop Sand as they explore how a man and a nation attempt to heal and find meaning after trauma and tragedy. In Part 1, Jerry, Kent and Bishop revisit Daniel Rodriguez's iconic performance and mull over what made it so powerful. Then they go looking for the real Rodriguez, and hear how an aspiring opera singer became a policeman catapulted to fame after a national tragedy. To find photos of Daniel Rodriguez then and now, visit wapo.st/911.

    The presidential power to strike

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 2, 2021 28:39

    How much power should the president have to act unilaterally on drone strikes? And how will that question define a new era of U.S. warfare? Plus, Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) weighs in on the balance between the president and Congress on war powers. Biden vowed a smooth exit from Afghanistan. Now what?Thousands have been evacuated from Afghanistan. Where will they go?

    Thousands have been evacuated from Afghanistan. Where will they go?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 26, 2021 17:31

    The Biden administration faces a big challenge as they try to resettle Afghanistan refugees, and while also ensuring each person arriving to the U.S. undergoes significant security checks. The political debate around what happens next has started to heat up.Biden vowed a smooth exit from Afghanistan. Now what?Biden headed for divisive debate over resettlement of Afghanistan refugeesAmericans prepare to welcome thousands of Afghan refugees, even as political rhetoric heats up

    Biden vowed a smooth exit from Afghanistan. Now what?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 19, 2021 26:29

    Biden sold himself as the experienced leader to undo Trump's foreign policy missteps. But his push to withdraw U.S. troops from Afghanistan and the ensuing chaos has called that claim into question. Is this moment a test for Biden? And is he passing?Biden's promise to restore competence to the presidency is undercut by chaos in AfghanistanPost Reports: A disastrous American exitBiden says ‘America is back' on the world stage. Is it?

    Biden's climate agenda is bold. Is it enough?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 12, 2021 24:47

    Climate legislation moves forward as a U.N. report warns that humans have pushed the climate into "unprecedented" territory unless greenhouse gas pollution falls dramatically. President Biden has big goals to cut that pollution. Will his agenda succeed?Tracking Biden's environmental actions

    One big threat to Biden's agenda: The map

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 5, 2021 18:29

    The 2022 midterm elections are still more than a year away. But the battle to win those races has already begun in the form of redrawing legislative and congressional districts. What can we learn about which party will emerge with the greatest advantage?Related episodes and reading‘How to Flip the House' series Not the'normal' Washington Biden promisedHow a voting law ignited a culture war

    The future of the Jan. 6 commission

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 29, 2021 23:52

    The ongoing probe may have implications for the 2022 midterm race and for President Biden's promise to tackle white supremacist violence. What might findings reveal about where the U.S. is headed? And what can the hearings tell us about what's to come?Republicans voice opposition to Jan. 6 investigation as police officers call for accountabilityWill Trump stop Congress from obtaining documents and testimonies?What happens when a president asserts executive privilege?

    Biden vs. the delta variant

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 22, 2021 30:01

    The delta variant raises new challenges for the Biden administration: Will they change their approach to masking? What steps can they take to combat vaccine disinformation and get more Americans vaccinated? And is the economy at risk of another meltdown?Vaccine hesitancy at home, desperation abroadThe mystery of the pandemic's origins(and what it means for Biden)White House officials debate masking push as covid infections spike

    Should the U.S. government still invest in space?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 15, 2021 20:31

    How does NASA fit in when billionaires fly to space? What are Biden's plans for the space agency and how much of Trump's initiatives does he plan to continue? And, ultimately, why should the government still invest in space exploration at all?Related episodes and readingAs China's space ambitions grow, NASA tells Congress it needs more money to competeEverything you need to know about going to space

    Inside the Trump White House during the pandemic response

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 8, 2021 23:20

    On this episode, Post Reports host Martine Powers talks to two Post reporters who reported on chaos in the early days of the pandemic including details about how sick President Trump was and his proposal to send infected Americans to Guantánamo.Inside the extraordinary effort to save Trump from covid-19Trump and science: An erosion of our institutions, in public and behind the scenesThe president's desperate push to reopen America

    What makes a president a good (or bad) leader?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 1, 2021 18:40

    As Americans celebrates the country's founding, we examine the presidency. How is a president's leadership measured over time, and how do cultural moments change our historical perception? We offer insight from C-SPAN's Presidential Historians Survey. 'The Framers would not recognize the modern presidency.'Promises made. Promises kept?C-SPAN's Presidential Historians Survey 2021

    Biden's evolution on criminal justice

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2021 24:31

    The Biden administration is supporting a bill that would end the sentencing disparity in crack and powder cocaine offenses. But that disparity exists largely because of bills President Biden spearheaded in 80s and 90s. How much has Biden evolved?How an early Biden crime bill created the sentencing disparity for crack and cocaine traffickingBiden administration endorses bill to end disparity in drug sentencing between crack and powder cocaineMenthol cigarettes kill more Black Americans. Should Biden ban them?

    Washington's revolving door hits Biden on the way in

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 17, 2021 24:39

    President Biden promised a government where“public servants serve all Americans, not themselves or narrow special interests.” But one set of brothers pose a challenge to Biden's efforts to return to transparency and accountability in government. Related reading and episodesLobbyist brother of top Biden adviser poses challenge to president's ethics promisesNot the'normal' Washington Biden promised

    Biden says ‘America is back' on the world stage. Is it?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 10, 2021 22:32

    Can Biden rally the world's democracies to meet today's challenges? And what might this trip reveal about the Biden foreign policy doctrine? On this episode, White House reporter Anne Gearan weighs in from Europe, as she travels with President Biden.Related reading and episodesBiden's personal diplomacy to be tested on his first trip abroadOpinion: Joe Biden: My trip to Europe is about America rallying the world's democraciesBiden, Boris Johnson release updated Atlantic Charter after first meeting

    The mystery of the pandemic’s origins (and what it means for Biden)

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 3, 2021 28:01

    What are the geopolitical implications of the intelligence community"redoubling its efforts" to identify the pandemic's origins? And what are the political challenges for President Biden in acknowledging a theory once touted by the Trump administration?Vaccine hesitancy at home, desperation abroadCoronavirus‘lab leak’ theory jumps from mocked to maybe as Biden orders intelligence reviewTimeline: How the Wuhan lab-leak theory suddenly became credible

    Biden wants to end housing discrimination. Can he do that?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 20, 2021 22:24

    Discrimination is built into the American housing crisis. We examine the limits of President Biden's power to fix it, in this second episode in our occasional series about the policy challenges that President Biden faces during his first year in office.Promises made. Promises kept?How Biden stimulus bill will target homelessnessMarcia Fudge confirmed as first Black woman to lead HUD in more than 40 years

    Not the “normal” Washington Biden promised

    Play Episode Listen Later May 13, 2021 28:16

    Are the divisions within the Republican party causing real problems for Biden’s goals? And if he’s forced to move his agenda forward with only the help of his own party, how might Democratic factions and party discord make that more difficult?Related reading and episodesPromises made. Promises kept?As Biden faces a struggle to hold the Senate, Democrats’ divisions resurfaceThe fight over Liz Cheney and Donald Trump is just beginning

    Vaccine hesitancy at home, desperation abroad

    Play Episode Listen Later May 6, 2021 22:43

    As the president lays out a new vaccine strategy at home, how much can Biden also do to help curb the spread of coronavirus around the world? And what do the challenges with U.S. vaccine hesitancy mean for supply here -- and abroad? Related reading and episodesBiden commits to waiving vaccine patentsWhite House is split over how to vaccinate the worldWill Biden get you a vaccine?

    Promises made. Promises kept?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 29, 2021 21:24

    One hundred days into the Biden administration, how far has the president come on his campaign pledges? Biden promised a new way of governing, so has much changed? Reporter Matt Viser unpacks President Biden's progress and what's next on his agenda. Related reading and episodesBiden’s big bet on big governmentBiden signed a $1.9 trillion bill. How much relief will Americans feel?Biden urges expansion of government services, setting up struggle with GOP

    Menthol cigarettes kill more Black Americans. Should Biden ban them?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 22, 2021 19:00

    Will the Biden administration be able to strike a balance between politics and public health to regulate menthol cigarettes? And what are the implications if it does? We explain the pending decision and unravel the history of menthol marketing.Related reading and episodesBiden’s big bet on big governmentFDA weighs ban on menthol cigarettes

    Will the president cancel student debt?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 15, 2021 33:08


    Sen. Elizabeth Warren, an economist, and a student all weigh in on what to do — or not — about student debt, in this first episode in our occasional series about the policy challenges that President Biden might face during his first year in office. Related reading and episodesThe faces of student debtBiden at odds with Democratic leaders over lawmakers’ call to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student debt


    How a voting law ignited a culture war

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 8, 2021 27:06

    The political power of culture warsRepublicans ramp up attacks on corporations over Georgia voting law, threaten‘consequences’The Georgia voting law, explained

    Biden’s big bet on big government

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 1, 2021 20:09


    How did Biden become a president with an ambitious agenda for major government expansion? Where will his proposals position him in history? And is he likely to accomplish much of what he’s put forth? The Post’s Dan Balz weighs in.Related reading and episodesBiden is betting on bigger government. The pandemic may be helping him.Biden signed a $1.9 trillion bill. How much relief will Americans feel?


    Do presidents have the power to stop mass shootings?

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 25, 2021 21:51

    After tragedies in Colorado and Georgia, Biden has pledged to tighten gun laws. But the country has been here before, in the aftermath of mass shootings. Regardless of which party is in power, little reform has happened. Will this time be different? Related reading and episodesHow much can a president affect gun policy?Shootings spur Biden to call for tighter gun rules

    The political power of culture wars

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 18, 2021 29:03

    We examine why transgender rights have risen to the forefront of our politics, and what the history of the modern Republican party reveals about how social issue battles work as a political tool, with reporter Samantha Schmidt and professor Brian Conley.Related reading and episodesA transgender girl struggles to find her voice as lawmakers attack her right to existTransgender rights emerge as a growing political flash pointThe Biden era begins

    Biden signed a $1.9 trillion bill. How much relief will Americans feel?

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 11, 2021 27:11

    Will low income Americans feel their lives change in tangible ways? On the other hand, might a fast-growing economy cause big problems? Plus, how might Biden make sure Americans know the government is responsible for some of economic changes they see?Related reading and episodesHow to fix our democracy? Start in Kindergarten.Will Biden get you a vaccine?Biden wants to sell the stimulus. The White House is still figuring out how.

    How to fix our democracy? Start in Kindergarten.

    Play Episode Listen Later Mar 4, 2021 20:23

    A new report draws a line from today’s civics crises to a long-standing failure to effectively teach American government and history in our public schools. On this episode, we explain what the potential outcomes for civic engagement. Related reading and episodesBiden’s shifting benchmarks for reopening schoolsInvestment civics education proposed to address eroding trust in democracyThe Biden era begins

    Reshaping the role of the Justice Department

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 26, 2021 28:51

    Can Attorney General nominee Merrick Garland rebuild confidence in the DOJ's independence? How might his efforts on Biden policies like combating far-right extremism and curbing police violence make the perception of an independent DOJ harder?Related reading and episodesThe duty of a president during crisisTrump incited a mob. American Democracy suffered.How the Oklahoma City bombing case prepared Garland to take on domestic terrorism

    Biden’s shifting benchmarks for reopening schools

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 18, 2021 28:40

    Can President Biden come through on this promise of reopening most schools within his first 100 days? How much can the president influence when and how schools welcome students back into the classroom? And what are the political consequences?Related reading and episodesWill Biden get you a vaccine?Biden’s goal to reopen schools meets high-stakes political testThe battle over reopening schools

    The duty of a president during crisis

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 12, 2021 26:31

    Some of the arguments in Trump's second impeachment trial get at the core of presidential responsibilities. We examine two of them to clarify the duties of a president during crisis and to understand how free speech applies to the commander in chief.--Virtual event information: Want something fun to do on Presidents’ Day when you can’t leave the house? Join Presidential podcast host Lillian Cunningham for a(free!)'Presidential' trivia night with special guests, fun prizes, plus a demo of how to make Warren Harding’s favorite cocktail. Register here: bit.ly/2YwuEWyRelated reading and episodesOne impeachment is rare. Two is unprecedented.What’s next for Trump?Trump’s lawyers say he was immediately‘horrified’ by the Capitol attack. Here’s what his allies and aides said really happened that day.

    Biden says he wants to reunite migrant families. It won’t be easy.

    Play Episode Listen Later Feb 4, 2021 28:10

    Families are still separated years after President Trump's policy ended. Latin America correspondent Kevin Sieff on the experiences of some migrant families. Plus, immigration policy expert Ali Noorani explains what it would take to reunite families.Related reading and episodesThey were one of the first families separated at the border. Two and a half years later, they’re still apart.Will Biden get you a vaccine?The Biden era begins

    Will Biden get you a vaccine?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 29, 2021 31:08

    How much power does Biden have to affect vaccine distribution and where is his power limited? What role should the federal government play in the process? Plus, officials on the ground explain what it's like to work to get vaccines to their communities.If you enjoy this podcast and you’d like to support the reporting that goes into it, the best way to do so is through a subscription to The Post. A subscription gets you unlimited access to everything we publish, from breaking news to baking tips. For a limited time, listeners can get two years of access for just $59. That’s less than one dollar a week. Learn more and subscribe at washingtonpost.com/subscribe

    The Biden era begins

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 21, 2021 24:53

    President Biden campaigned on a promise to fix what’s broken, to repair divisions, to pull the country out of sickness, and to restore norms and institutions that were pillars of the Washington in which he built his career. Can he do that? Related reading and episodesWhat’s next for Trump?The 46th presidentBiden pledges to defeat extremism and culture of liesIf you enjoy this podcast and you’d like to support the reporting that goes into it, the best way to do so is through a subscription to The Post. A subscription gets you unlimited access to everything we publish, from breaking news to baking tips. For a limited time, listeners can get two years of access for just $59. That’s less than one dollar a week. Learn more and subscribe at washingtonpost.com/subscribe

    What’s next for Trump?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 14, 2021 20:09

    President Trump's businesses are taking a hit, he's been impeached a second time and he might face legal challenges after he leaves office. Reporter David Fahrenthold answers questions about what’s next for Trump.Related reading and episodesOne impeachment is rare. Two is unprecedented.Trump incited a mob. American Democracy suffered.Does Trump’s refusal to concede put national security at risk?

    One impeachment is rare. Two is unprecedented.

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 12, 2021 18:24

    Why impeach a president who is on his way out? When would a Senate trial start? Can President Trump be convicted after he leaves office? What does this mean for the GOP? Author of The Post’s Power Up newsletter, Jacqueline Alemany, answers key questions.Related reading and episodesTrump incited a mob. American Democracy suffered.Does Trump’s refusal to concede put national security at risk?What happens if Trump refuses to accept a loss?

    Trump incited a mob. American Democracy suffered.

    Play Episode Listen Later Jan 7, 2021 30:41

    The breach of the U.S. Capitol was a remarkable moment in American history. Professor Sarah Binder explains how the usually uneventful vote was expected to unfold, and reporter Philip Bump lays out the challenges a divided GOP faces in the aftermath.Related reading and episodesDoes Trump’s refusal to concede put national security at risk?What happens if Trump refuses to accept a loss?Two different stories of American unrest

    How can the Supreme Court maintain impartiality in America's modern political climate?

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 29, 2020 27:09

    Over the holiday break, we're bringing back an old episode that has resonance today. What happens to the public's perceived independence of the Supreme Court when confirmation processes devolve into partisan battles? Original air date: October 5, 2018

    The problems with pardon power

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 28, 2020 29:52

    We’re looking back at an episode that sheds light on President Trump’s actions as his term ends. Reporter Toluse Olorunippa explores the principles and controversy around presidential pardons after Trump’s clemencies. Original air date: February 20, 2020.

    donald trump original pardon power
    Trump and the economy: The administration’s biggest victories also exacerbated our divides

    Play Episode Listen Later Dec 23, 2020 27:31

    The final episode in the reprisal of our series on President Trump’s legacy focuses on uneven gains in the Trump era. The stock market and the wealthiest Americans have done better, but at the cost of growing inequality. Original air date: Oct. 29, 2020.

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