Democratica

OD Action

The official podcast for OD Action - Occupy Democrats’ partner action network with over 250,000 members. Recorded in Mitch McConnell's backyard, Democratica features the founder of OD Action and 12-year veteran of Capitol Hill giving smart and savvy coverage for people too exhausted keeping up with a political climate with a new WTF moment each day. Get ready to take action!

All Episodes

Stu and AJ celebrate the clear defeat of America's fascist wannabe dictator in the 2020 election, and break down why Trump's schemes to stay in office have already failed. TAKE ACTION: Do your part to help Democrats win the Senate by taking 2 seats in Georgia. Visit SwingLeft's GA Runoff and make the calls necessary to fire Mitch McConnell as Senate Leader. MOMENT OF UPLIFT: A woman fired by a bigoted Sheriff takes his job on Election Day, and Stu's daughter makes him cry when he tells her that Kamala Harris is the new Vice President! This is your country for the week of Nov 17, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Recorded in Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Nov 2020

23 min 57 sec

The polling could not be better for Biden and Democrats, but the Republican cheating could not be worse. Still, a historically fired-up electorate seems primed to seal the deal for Biden. But with the tremendous damage done over the last four years, can it make a difference? YES! Stu gets into some of AJ's deepest fears about the long term damage done by Trump and Republicans — specifically regarding the courts and census — and breaks down why Democrats are feeling really good. TAKE ACTION: You don't have to live in a swing state to make a difference in one, or even all, of them. Check out SwingLeft's SuperStates and find out how to bring home the election for Democrats at the state and federal level. MOMENT OF UPLIFT: The Pope endorsed same sex civil unions and said LGBTQ couples deserve family. Yes, that Pope. The freakin' Pope! This is your country for the week of October 26, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Recorded in Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Oct 2020

26 min 26 sec

Stu and AJ from the heart of Louisville bring different perspectives to the horrifying aftermath of Breonna Taylor's death at the hands of city police. Breonna Taylor is dead, no arrests have been made against the offending officers who killed her, and Mitch McConnell's handpicked attorney general is waffling to secure charges with a grand jury. But we got you covered. From the backyard of the incident to the foreground of the problem, Stu and AJ take a deep and powerful look at how a society system built on fear continues to plague American progress. Meanwhile, an election is coming. Your Call To Action is to make the click and register to become a poll worker where you live. Moment of Uplift: The NFL season is being played without fans and entire teams (!!) are taking a knee during the pre-game ceremony. This is your country for the week of September 20, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Recorded in Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Sep 2020

29 min 53 sec

This week on Democratica, Stu and AJ slog through the White House swamp of disease and deception. 'Don't listen to those pesky health experts, listen to me!' Trump doesn't care if his staffers die, as long as they take their loyalty to the grave.   Because it doesn't matter to Trump if you die. He self-vaccinates every day with presidential power. Injected into his ego by all the soulless Republicans working for him.   Let's all sing the Republican fight song! Corruption, nepotism, cronyism, autocratism...did we mention Attorney General William Barr trying to dismiss charges against Trump's former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. You know, the guy that admitted his guilt for lying to the FBI and was convicted for his role in Russian meddling with the 2016 election?   Meanwhile, in Georgia, three months after Ahmaud Arbery was murdered for jogging through a white neighborhood, a national uproar resulted in the arrest of two white supremacists who committed the atrocity. Justice is coming.   Take Action: Contact Kroger's grocery and tell them to extend the $2 hourly wage increase for their hardworking employees!   Moment of Uplift: A classroom teacher wraps herself in PPE to dole out some serious hugs. We've got pictures. You bring the happy tears.   This is your country for the week of May 15, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Recorded in Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

May 2020

23 min 39 sec

Again, in case you missed it: Do. Not. Ingest. Disinfectant.   Four words AJ and Stu never thought they'd have to string together for adults, especially not in response to the President of the United States. And yet here we are. This week, the duo breaks down just how bad things could get as a result of Trumpers' revolt against sheltering in place and the media's responsibility when the president is advising Americans' to defy even his own experts' advice.   Take Action: Contact your Members of Congress and demand funding for vote-by-mail in the coming election.   Moment of Uplift: Kentucky's governor had to apologize to Tupac Shakur and New York's governor expressed heart-felt thanks for a single N-95 shipped to him by an elderly Kansas farmer trying to do his part.   This is your country for the week of May 1, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Recorded in Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

May 2020

22 min 6 sec

This week, Stu and AJ try to resist the temptation to call shutdown protesters idiots. Spoiler: They fail.   Yes, even as Trump's own administration is issuing lifesaving guidance to control a once-in-a-century deadly pandemic, he is encouraging his followers to defy and protest that guidance. Spoiler 2: People will die because of this. At the same time, Trump is refusing to do his job and help states get the supplies they need to save lives, and some governors are going to incredible lengths to get things done despite him.   Take Action: Contact your governor and tell them to release nonviolent offenders who are in increasingly unsanitary and often deadly conditions as a result of the pandemic.   Moment of Uplift: As short-sighted protestors take to the street in protest, making challenges to health care providers even more difficult, a few brave nurses took to the street (in between 18-hour shifts saving lives) to confront protestors and make a bold statement.   This is your country for the week of April 24, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber   Recorded in Louisville, KY   Music by Mike Michel

Apr 2020

18 min 54 sec

Stu and AJ discuss the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on communities of color and why, when we say Trump's response was inept, we're giving him way too much credit.   Take Action: Contact your state senator and representative (202-224-3121) and tell them to investigate Trump for firing seven inspectors general under the shadow of the pandemic in an un-American effort to eliminate accountability and oversight.   Moment of Uplift: In a chance encounter, Stuart witnesses a caravan celebrating the birthday of a new student who had never attended his school or made any friends. The kindness of those strangers warmed his heart and may just warm yours.   This is your country for the week of April 15, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber   Recorded in Louisville, KY   Music by Mike Michel

Apr 2020

23 min 27 sec

This week, Stu gets mad. Really mad. As he and AJ break down the ways Donald Trump and his allies have sealed the untimely deaths of the Americans they were elected to serve, Stu goes on an epic rant about the ways this coldblooded president has broken his own already unthinkable records for cruelty.   Take Action: Contact your state senator and representative (https://odaction.com/findmyreps/) and tell them it's time for secure, nationwide vote-by-mail!   Moment of Uplift: In much of the world, work outside the house has been limited to essential services. This is awakening many around the world to just how essential jobs are that used to be considered "menial," and a living wage and true appreciation are gaining momentum that won't go away when the pandemic is over.   This is your country for the week of April 1, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room and AJ's apartment in Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Apr 2020

19 min 49 sec

Stu and AJ phoned it in this week (literally, while sheltering in place) as they broke down how Trump and Republicans have taken a natural crisis and turned it into a man-made disaster.   Take Action: Call your Senators at 202-224-3121 and tell them to reject Mitch McConnell's so-called emergency response bill, which is really just another giveaway to the wealthy, and demand they pass something that will actually help workers and struggling families!   Moment of Uplift: We may be facing a once-in-a-century pandemic, but around the country and planet, people are rising to the occasion in surprising and inspiring ways.   This is your country for the week of March 23, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Mar 2020

23 min 16 sec

Trump has made a global pandemic into a national catastrophe. Stu and AJ explain how Trump lied, avoided, manipulated and deceived America to help his reelection chances while selling out his country. And the worst is yet to come. But the best is also yet to come. Because Americans are taking this medical malaise seriously, and banding together to reduce the rate of transmission. That is, unless you're a Republican governor like Jeff Kottkamp who is just devastated his ski vacation got canceled.   So the worst and the best is yet to come. Which one will it be? The choice is ours.   Take Action: Call your Senators at 202-224-3121 and tell them to pass the Emergency Response legislation immediately!   Moment of Uplift: Deep Canvassing works! Find out how compassionate conversations on the doorsteps of voter homes flipped the House in 2018 and can vote Trump out of office.   This is your country for the week of March 16, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Mar 2020

21 min 54 sec

There was voting last Tuesday. Oh, was there voting. But what does it mean now that the dust has settled and it's a two person race for the Democratic nomination?   It means Democratic voters across the country turned out in record numbers. Stu and AJ discuss one Super Tuesday statistic that should make Trump afraid. Terrified even. Does an energized Democratic base signal doom for Trump and his swarm of lying Republican sycophants?   Meanwhile! Republicans use the term 'politicization' to skirt their responsibility for their inept and corrupt actions. Our government's response to the coronavirus is appalling, risking American lives, and we list how Trump has politicized his way to making a bad situation much worse.   Take Action: using www.votefwd.org you can write postcards to voters in key states reminding them to take action at the November polls and to get Trump out of office!   Moment of Uplift: In Tennessee, following the city's destruction by a deadly hurricane, Nashville moms with their young kids waiting in long lines to vote have water brought to them by caring neighbors.   This is your country for the week of March 9, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Mar 2020

22 min 7 sec

America has been hit by a deadly disease, and every one of us has been infected by what scientist are calling "Trump." This week, Stu and AJ break down why Coronavirus has not given us reason to panic, but Trump and his enablers have made a grave situation worse through incompetence, arrogance, and dangerously misaligned priorities.   Plus! South Carolina's primary was a dramatic departure from the previous three contests and may have changed the shape of the race completely. Or not. (NOTE: This episode was recorded just before the candidates' mass exodus and a flurry of endorsements for Biden on the eve of Super Tuesday.   Take Action: AJ breaks down the things we can do to protect ourselves from the spread of coronavirus, and panic is not one of those things. See for yourself at ODAction.com/WHO   Moment of Uplift: Harvey Weinstein is convicted! This could have some seriously uplifting ramifications for how sexual assault cases are treated in the future.   This is your country for the week of March 3, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Mar 2020

33 min 11 sec

It's been another week since Donald Trump was acquitted in Mitch McConnell's sham trial and another week where he has stepped on the gas in his drive toward authoritarianism. This week, Stu and AJ dive into how he's doing just that, from pardoning not only cronies but those whose crimes resemble his own, declaring himself (erroneously) America's top law enforcement official, appoint blindly loyal stooges to critical posts, and even calling for the removal from office of Barack Obama (who, um, isn't in office).   Plus! A look at Nevada's caucuses and what it means going forward, the many ways Bernie dominated, and why — whether you support Sanders or not — all Democrats and Trump resisters should be very happy with how things played out.   Take Action: Call your senators at 202.224.3121 and tell them to fund election security and pass measures to stop Russia from meddling in our democracy once and for all.   Moment of Uplift: At a Catholic school outside of Seattle, Paul Danforth and Michelle Beatty were forced out of their teaching jobs after getting engaged to their same sex partners. It looked like they may have no recourse against the school... until their students got involved.   This is your country for the week of February 23, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Feb 2020

24 min 15 sec

In the second week since his acquittal, Donald Trump stopped trying to hide his corruption and started flaunting his crimes in plain sight. This week, Stu and AJ discuss our accelerating descent into tyranny and the sincerity of William Barr's smack down of the president (spoiler: there was absolutely no sincerity).   Take Action: Even many Senate Republicans acknowledge that Trump's actions on Ukraine were far from perfect but, they insist, they do not rise to the level of impeachment. Time to call their bluff! Call 202.224.3121 and tell your senators to censure the president for withholding Congressionally appropriated military aide as he demanded an investigation into a political opponent.   Moment of Uplift: In the hyper-masculine world of professional sports, NBA legend Dwyane Wade is celebrating his trans daughter Zaya and shedding powerful light on the wonderful uniqueness in each of us.   This is your country for the week of February 17, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Feb 2020

24 min 21 sec

The nation turns the page from impeachment to election season. Stu and AJ break down what impact (if any) Trump's impeachment and cover-up will have going forward and what (if anything) we can read into the Iowa cluster f'caucuses.  Take Action: Indivisible has Launched the Payback Project, a new peer-to-peer textbanking outreach campaign to engage voters across nine target states to take action with Indivisibles in their area and mobilize locally to flip their Senate seats! Sign up, get active, take back the Senate, fire Mitch McConnell.   Moment of Uplift: AJ and Stu check back in with Virginia after record turnout flipped the state's entire government Democratic to see if anything has changed. Spoiler alert: EVERYTHING has changed.   This is your country for the week of February 10, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Feb 2020

27 min 1 sec

Never in the history of the republic has the axiom, "the cover-up is worse than the crime" been more true. This week, Stu and AJ break down all the ways Republicans harmed our country with their unconstitutional defense of and cover-up of Trump's crimes.    Take Action: Visit SwingLeft.org/takeaction and connect with key voters (from the comfort of home!) to make Republicans pay for their cover-up of Trump's crimes this November!    Moment of Uplift: Three years ago, Meir Kay invited six homeless people to a Super Bowl party on a whim. This year, he hosted 20 parties for homeless Americans throughout the country and connecting with people in unexpected ways.    This is your country for the week of February 3, 2020!    Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Feb 2020

18 min 51 sec

Yeah, you read that title right. Stu and AJ discuss the two big things this past week that were even bigger than opening remarks at the Senate impeachment trial. Listen! Take Action: Call 202.224.3121 to tell your Senators to get (those two big things!) evidence and witnesses into Trump's impeachment trial.  Moment of Uplift: How the Democratic party sticks together. This is a movement and we won't be broken. This is your country for the week of January 27, 2020!  Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Jan 2020

20 min 6 sec

This week, Stu and AJ discuss how, even after the House voted to impeach, Rudy Giuliani's sloppiness as the president's personal attorney exposed the extreme criminality of Trump and his inner circle.   Take Action: Call 202.224.3121 to tell your Senators to allow witnesses and evidence at Trump's impeachment inquiry!   Moment of Uplift: Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) made herself vulnerable in a way that few elected officials have and the results are truly inspirational.   This is your country for the week of January 20, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Jan 2020

17 min 56 sec

Trump has taken us to the brink of war with Iran, leading to the deaths of hundreds (already), shattering any good will America had left around the world, and creating an incredibly dangerous precedent. Plus! Kentucky's new Republican Attorney General has won bipartisan praise for calling for an investigation into the state's Republican ex-governor. Stu explains why the credit is not at all deserved.   Take Action: Call 202.224.3121 to tell your Senators to limit Trump's ability to take us to war with Iran.   Moment of Uplift: Beneath the cloud of horrific war crimes committed by Edward Gallagher, Stu and AJ find inspiration in the self-less actions of his fellow SEALs who risked everything to do what is right.   This is your country for the week of January 13, 2020!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Jan 2020

19 min 4 sec

Not Two Turtle Doves - Two Articles of Impeachment! Because a certain president thought it was okay to abuse power and obstruct Congress.   Stu and AJ talk about what happens next and what we can expect as the fight to evict Trump from the White House continues.   Take Action: Call your senators at 202.224.3121 and urge them to support a fair hearing with witnesses (!) and convict President Trump should the evidence demand it. Which it does.   Moment of Uplift: Did we mention impeachment? The 2018 midterm election outcome made it possible. Rock on, voters.   This is your country for the week of December 23, 2019!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Dec 2019

19 min 16 sec

With impeachment of Donald Trump now all but inevitable, his highest ranking defenders, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Attorney General William Barr, have gone to unprecedented lengths to ensure he gets away with his crimes.   This week, Stu and AJ unpack how both these men are unabashedly assaulting the responsibilities of the institutions they lead and turning them into arms of Trump's re-election campaign.   PLUS! Call your representative and senators at 202.224.3121 to urge them to support impeachment and removal of President Trump. Then visit impeach.org and sign up to attend a "Nobody is Above the Law" event near you on the eve of the House's impeachment vote.   Moment of Uplift: Greta Thunberg is the youngest TIME Person of the Year ever! Even as the Trumps debase themselves to attack the 16 year-old, she remains classy, uncompromising in her vital goals, and a true inspiration to all of us.   This is your country for the week of December 16, 2019!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Dec 2019

21 min 29 sec

Even as investigations and hearings into Trump's crimes enter a new phase, impeachment may not be the worst news for Republicans in recent days. This week, Stu and AJ discuss how another conviction of a Republican Member of Congress and revelations of corruption against Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes (R-Fake Farmer) could have devastating consequences for the GOP for decades to come.   PLUS! Email or call your senators and tell them to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, which has helped reduce sexual assault against women by 60% since its inception. Get your senators' contact info at odcation.com/myreps or call the congressional switchboard at 202.224.3121 to be connected directly.   Moment of Uplift: Dick's Sporting Goods, in response to the activism of the student survivors of the Parkland High School massacre, defied the NRA and stopped selling assault rifles and large capacity magazines. The result: their best quarter of sales in more than six years. Sometimes, doing the right thing works out (ahem, pay attention, Republicans).   This is your country for the week of December 9, 2019!   Produced by Sam Graber Engineered by Mark Charles, recorded at the Ramshackler Room, Louisville, KY Music by Mike Michel

Dec 2019

22 min 18 sec

Donald Trump is not the first president to abuse the power of the pardon, but with his latest acts of clemency, our wannabe dictator has crossed lines our nation’s founders never imagined and no prior president ever dared to go — and with good reason. This week, Stu and AJ discuss the good and the bad of presidential clemency, the most ironic pardon in U.S. history, and why Trump’s actions are SO MUCH more dangerous than any of his predecessors.   PLUS! We get ready to show Congress, the nation, and the watching world that we are ready to impeach and remove Trump by registering for the historic nationwide mobilization on the eve of Trump's impeachment vote at impeach.org.   Moment of Uplift: Baldwin, Florida — one of America’s most conservative towns — needed a place to buy groceries, so the mayor set up a government-run store. Unlike almost everything Republicans give the label to, this IS socialism. The residents love it and so do we!   This is your country for the week of December 2, 2019.

Dec 2019

21 min 32 sec

Plus! Trump gets a head start on his 2020 physical (lie!), Stu and AJ discuss some ways we're still suffering from Reaganomics, and yes, Trump really needed notes to remind himself to claim that he "No quid pro quo." Call to Action: AJ and Stu break down three tips to getting through Thanksgiving without ruining dinner or breaking up the family while keeping your soul intact. Moment of Uplift: At Stuart's alma mater, Syracuse University, racist graffiti and harassment has become endemic. That prompted about a hundred students to mount a non-violent protest pushing for the University's chancellor to agree to 19 demands. Students have already moved the needle significantly and aren't letting up. The eloquence and power of these young people banding together to bring about meaningful change gave Stu and AJ an inspirational example of what we can do when we stand together to demand better. This is your country for the week of November 25, 2019. *Click here for a photo of Trump's notes when he told reporters he wanted to "no quid pro quo" and videos of Syracuse University's powerful student leaders.

Nov 2019

25 min 9 sec

Plus! Matt Bevin FINALLY concedes the Kentucky governor's race, Trump settles a multimillion dollar lawsuit over ANOTHER fraudulent endeavor — the sham Donald J. Trump Foundation, and AJ and Stu talk about an under the radar success story that stopped a school shooting. This is your country for the week of November 18, 2019.   Main Topic: Amidst a series of damning testimonies against their party's president, House Republicans were forced to change strategies in a profound shift that signals trouble for Trump-enablers running out of ways to defend the indefensible.   Take Action: As Congress consider the FY2020 budget, take a moment to contact your Representative and Senators to tell them NOT ONE PENNY for Trump's racist, anti-immigrant policies. Go to odaction.com/myreps to find out how to email/call your Members of Congress or call 202.224.3121 and tell them you don't want your tax dollars going to mass raids, family separation, or concentration camps.   Moment of Uplift: Parkrose High School Football Coach Keanon Lowe prevented what seemed destined to be another school shooting in America. Lowe was not a good guy with a gun. He was a hero with a hug. See footage of the incredible encounter and an interview with Lowe on the OD Action website.   Featuring: Stuart Max, A.J. Johnson Produced By: Sam Graber Recorded By: Mark Charles Heidinger Special Assistance: Feifei Sun

Nov 2019

27 min 11 sec

Which big donors are now turning on Trump, the states best showing a blue wave, and the top three ways to be an electable candidate. This is your country for the week of November 11, 2019. To sign up for 2020 health insurance on the national exchange, visit healthcare.gov today.

Nov 2019

24 min 14 sec

Plus! Trump tries to take all the credit for killing ISIS, how you can help win on Tuesday, and the reason those rescue dogs are getting awards. This is your country for the week of November 4, 2019. Clips of Republicans trying to discredit Purple Heart Winner, Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman include: Former U.S. Representative Sean Duffy (R-WI) on CNN John Yoo, a Deputy Assistant Attorney General under George W. Bush on Fox's "Ingraham Angle" Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade Donald Trump Jr. on Fox & Friends

Nov 2019

21 min 54 sec

Plus! Trump busted faking ISIS raid 'war room' photo, why we need to win in Virginia, and Kentucky coal miners taking back what's owed them. This is your country for the week of October 28, 2019.

Oct 2019

28 min 36 sec

Trump melts down as top official turns on him. Plus, thoughts on Elijah Cummings, the first all-female space walk and boys in Boston taking action. This is your country for the week of October 21, 2019.

Oct 2019

25 min 17 sec

The Trump misstep that could sink his presidency. Plus: how you can help win an important election in November. This is your country for the week of October 14.

Oct 2019

20 min 22 sec

The politics of Trump's impeachment, Elizabeth Warren trolls a troll and a white cop is convicted for murdering an innocent black man. Stu and AJ answer the burning question “does impeachment backfire?” (spoiler: no) and dive into the underlying questions of racial bias in America’s justice system. NOTE: After recording this episode, Joshua Brown was found shot to death in an apartment building in Dallas, Texas. Brown was the neighbor of Botham Jean who testified against Amber Guyger, the police officer convicted of murdering Jean. Our episode remains unedited, a snapshot of a brief moment in time.

Oct 2019

25 min 42 sec

Whistleblower! Scandal! Impeachment! Stu and AJ discuss the launch of the House Impeachment process. This is your country for the week of Sept 30 2019.

Oct 2019

24 min 46 sec

Brett Kavanaugh and the politics of sexual assault. This is your country for the week of Sept 23 2019.  

Oct 2019

31 min 15 sec

Stu and AJ discuss the firing of National Security Advisor John Bolton. Or did he quit? This is your country for the week of Sept 16 2019.

Oct 2019

24 min 31 sec