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Practically Political

Author: Dave Spencer, Carrie Sheffield

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Pragmatism is Patriotism. The goal of Practically Political is to engage and motivate citizens who are fact- and issue-oriented, invite conversation, respect differences of opinion, believe in compromise and put sound policy before partisanship. Whether you’re a Republican, Democrat or Independent, if your bottom line is to get our government working again to serve the best interests of all Americans, then please join us in making our voices heard. This is not the time to give into hopelessness, anger or despair; it’s a critical opportunity to redefine what democracy really means.
73 Episodes
In this special episode of Practically Political, host Carrie Sheffield is joined by guest Carla Sands, former U.S. Ambassador to Denmark and Republican Senate candidate from Pennsylvania. Together with  co-host Dave Spencer, they dive into a spirited discussion about the future of the Republican Party and the key strategies needed to win in 2024.Ambassador Sands emphasizes the critical importance of Republicans embracing early voting, citing examples from her own Senate race and other key states where Democrats have capitalized on this voting method. The conversation also turns to President Trump's legal troubles and their potential impact on the party, with Sands defending Trump's legacy and accomplishments during his tenure.Throughout the episode, the hosts and guest engage in a lively debate on election integrity, the weaponization of the justice system, and the contrasting records of the Trump and Biden administrations. While opinions differ, the discussion remains respectful and insightful, offering viewers a nuanced look at the challenges and opportunities facing Republicans as they look ahead to the 2024 election. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
Chapters00:00 FDIC Chairman's Resignation and Political Fallout06:19 Debating the Supreme Court's Moral Standards11:59 Nikki Haley's Support for Donald Trump and Political Strategy27:32 Remembering Alice Stewart: A Tribute to a Friend  Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this spirited episode, former Republican Congressman Dave Brat debates hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield on hot-button issues like illegal immigration, the integrity of the 2020 election, and the war in Ukraine. While the discussions are passionate and the disagreements are sharp, the conversation remains friendly and highlights the importance of open and honest dialogue across political divides.Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube
In this conversation, Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield discuss various topics including Nikki Haley's refusal to endorse Trump, Trump's outreach to voters, college demonstrations, spirituality and mental health, and the impact of the trial on Trump's candidacy. They also touch on the reputation of the Trump administration, the importance of logistics in elections, and the economic challenges faced by the Biden administration. Overall, they highlight the need for effective communication, community building, and a focus on policy and the economy in order to win over voters. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this episode of Practically Political, special guest Charlie Sykes joins hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield to discuss the current political climate and key issues heading into the 2024 election. The conversation covers the challenges Biden faces with inflation and border security, the recent developments in Republican support for Ukraine aid, the looming US debt crisis, and the potential impact of Donald Trump's legal troubles on the upcoming election. Sykes, a prominent conservative voice, shares his insights on these topics and the overall state of American politics as the nation looks ahead to what promises to be a contentious and unpredictable election cycle. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this episode of Practically Political, hosts Carrie Sheffield and Dave Spencer engage in a thought-provoking discussion about the challenges faced in today's polarized political climate. They delve into the public's dwindling trust in media, examining potential biases in reporting and the impact on shaping public opinion. The conversation also touches upon the complex issues surrounding illegal immigration, its perceived impact on the civil rights of U.S. citizens, and the need for a more merit-based immigration system. Additionally, the hosts address the controversy surrounding the Transgender Day of Visibility coinciding with Easter and the broader implications for respecting religious holidays. Throughout the discussion, Sheffield and Spencer offer diverse perspectives, backed by data and examples, as they navigate these multifaceted topics. Join them as they aim to shed light on these pressing matters and encourage listeners to become more discerning consumers of media and political discourse.Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube
In this episode of Practically Political, hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield are joined by Ryan Clancy, chief strategist for No Labels, to discuss the organization's strategy for the 2024 presidential election. No Labels aims to provide an alternative choice to the American public by potentially fielding a unity ticket.Clancy shares updates on No Labels' progress in securing ballot access across the country and their plans to select a ticket that embraces their governing values and has a chance of winning the White House. The hosts question the viability of a third-party candidate in the current political climate and express concerns about the potential spoiler effect, particularly in relation to the Trump and Biden campaigns.The discussion also touches on the challenges of building a robust campaign infrastructure, the importance of selecting a compelling and charismatic candidate, and the legal aspects of No Labels' status as a 501(c)(4) organization.Tune in for an engaging and civil debate on the potential impact of No Labels on the 2024 presidential race, as Clancy addresses the hosts' concerns and outlines the organization's long-term strategy to give voice to the common sense majority. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this episode of Practically Political, hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield engage in a lively discussion on several pressing political issues. They start by examining Alabama's decision to grant personhood to embryos and its potential impact on IVF treatments, debating the ethics and political implications.Next, they delve into the topic of school choice, addressing the mixed record of charter schools and the perceived hypocrisy of politicians who oppose school choice while sending their own children to private schools.The conversation then shifts to foreign policy, as they discuss Donald Trump's stance on NATO and the importance of member countries meeting their financial commitments to the alliance.Finally, Dave and Carrie speculate about what a potential second term for Donald Trump could look like, expressing concerns about his authoritarian tendencies and the challenges of Joe Biden's age and leadership.Throughout the episode, the hosts offer their unique perspectives and engage in thoughtful, sometimes contentious dialogue on these complex issues facing the nation. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this episode, Maria Snegovaya, an expert on Russian affairs, discusses the situation surrounding Alexei Navalny and the actions of Vladimir Putin. She highlights the boldness of Putin's actions and the impact of Russia's relationship with China. Snegovaya also discusses the incentives for Putin's actions, including the perceived weakness of the Biden administration. She explores the support for Putin among certain groups and the rise of populism. The conversation concludes with a discussion on the cost of Putin's success and the importance of addressing inequality.TakeawaysPutin acts boldly when he feels invincible and unchallenged.Russia's relationship with China plays a significant role in its actions.The perceived weakness of the Biden administration may have emboldened Putin.Populism and inequality contribute to support for Putin and the rise of right-wing parties.Chapters00:00 Introduction01:14 Alexei Navalny's Situation05:41 Putin's Bold Actions08:58 Russia-China Relationship09:56 Incentives for Putin's Actions13:21 Impact of Biden's Policies18:03 Support for Putin24:40 Populism and Inequality25:38 The Cost of Putin's Success26:17 Closing Remarks Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield discuss the latest debates around border security and immigration policy, including Republican calls to impeach Secretary Mayorkas and bipartisan negotiations around a border security bill. They also cover disagreements over aid to Ukraine in its war with Russia. Additionally, they debate a proposal to financially require fathers to support a child even before birth. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
Welcome to another riveting episode of "Practically Political" with your hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield. In this episode, we dive deep into the dynamic world of American politics, dissecting the latest developments and speculating on the future landscape.Join us as we unravel the intriguing journey of Nikki Haley and explore the twists and turns of her path to the Republican nomination. From her political roots to the challenges she faces, we provide a comprehensive analysis of the rising star within the GOP.But the political landscape is ever-changing, and in this episode, we also shine a spotlight on Ron DeSantis, examining the factors contributing to his potential demise. From policy decisions to public perception, we dissect the elements that may impact the future of this prominent political figure.And of course, the burning question on everyone's mind – who should Trump pick as his running mate? Dave and Carrie engage in a thoughtful discussion, offering insights and considerations on potential candidates that could shape the upcoming political narrative.Tune in to "Practically Political" for a thought-provoking exploration of the political arena, where analysis meets speculation, and every episode brings you closer to understanding the intricacies of the ever-evolving political landscape. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
2023 Wrap Up

2023 Wrap Up


Carrie and Dave wrap up 2023 with all the news headlines they were watching this year and look ahead to 2024 that will surely be a year for the record books. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this conversation, Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield discuss various political topics. They start by discussing the refusal of Hunter Biden to testify publicly and the motives behind the Republican party's focus on him. They then move on to the debate between Gavin Newsom and Ron DeSantis, comparing the policies and performance of California and Florida. The conversation also touches on funding for Ukraine and Israel, as well as the border security issue. They discuss the Israel-Palestine conflict and the role of Benjamin Netanyahu. Finally, they talk about Kevin McCarthy's retirement and the state of the Republican party.TakeawaysThe Republican party's focus on Hunter Biden is driven by a strategy to make Joe Biden look bad and protect Donald Trump.California and Florida have different policies and performance in areas such as unemployment, business formation, personal income, taxes, and spending.Funding for Ukraine and Israel should be considered separately, and conditions can be attached to the funding.The Israel-Palestine conflict is complex, with both sides having their own responsibilities and failures.Kevin McCarthy's retirement reflects the state of the Republican party and the challenges it faces.Chapters00:00 Introduction and Hunter Biden Testimony07:14 Newsom vs. DeSantis Debate14:51 Funding for Ukraine, Israel, and the Border21:57 Israel-Palestine Conflict and Netanyahu22:11 Kevin McCarthy's Retirement Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
Hosts Carrie Sheffield and Dave Spencer are joined by author Lexi Hudson to discuss her new book "The Soul of Civility" and how we can promote respect and human dignity even amidst political and cultural divides. They cover topics like social segregation, mutual harm from incivility, reclaiming civic responsibility, the timeless challenge of "othering", and more. Lexi offers insights from historical figures like Martin Luther King Jr. and Socrates as well as anecdotes from her own efforts to build community across differences. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this week's episode of Practically Political, hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield discuss the latest developments in American politics. Topics include Mike Pence's potential testimony related to the January 6th hearings, the exit of presidential candidates like Larry Elder and Mike Pence, and the rise of Nikki Haley as a potential alternative to Trump in the 2024 GOP primary. They also analyze the selection of Rep. Mike Johnson as the new House Speaker, including whether he was a good choice and his goals like addressing the national debt. Dave and Carrie have an engaging debate around Johnson's proposal to tie IRS funding to aid for Israel. Overall, they provide thoughtful analysis and differing perspectives on critical issues facing American politics today.  Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this somber episode of Practically Political, hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield are joined by Masada Siegel to discuss the recent horrific terrorist attacks in Israel. Masada reflects on the massacre at the desert rave, calling it a planned attack on Western values and innocent civilians. The hosts condemn the muted response from universities like Harvard and Columbia, saying donors are finally withdrawing funds over the schools' failure to address rising antisemitism. Looking ahead, they discuss possible responses for Israel, with Masada arguing Arab nations should provide refuge for Palestinians if they truly care about their plight. The episode provides an in-depth exploration of the turmoil in Israel and its impact on Jews worldwide. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
In this episode of Practically Political, hosts Dave Spencer and Carrie Sheffield converse with Bill Hoagland, a senior vice president at the Bipartisan Policy Center, about the critical issue of Social Security reform and its impact on the federal budget. They delve into the repercussions of ignoring this issue, the potential for higher interest rates on national debt, and the inevitable 'cliffs' in the Social Security system if proactive reforms aren't implemented. The discussion emphasizes the urgency of addressing entitlements to resolve the budget crisis, making this a must-listen for anyone interested in the future of the nation's economy. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
According to the podcast transcript, the hosts delve into President Biden's decision to impose additional drilling restrictions in Alaska. They argue that this move is counterproductive and ultimately benefits OPEC, Russia, and other foreign adversaries. The hosts assert that these countries will further enrich themselves through increased oil production, while simultaneously constraining American oil resources and negatively impacting American families. They believe that this decision hampers the goal of funding the war against Russia. Furthermore, the hosts highlight the inconsistency in the Biden administration's stance on drilling, noting their initial opposition, subsequent support, and now the imposition of restrictions. They emphasize the need for a consistent energy policy and suggest that fostering better relations with Saudi Arabia could be advantageous in terms of boosting oil production.In the episode, the issue of student loans and Joe Biden's forgiveness plan is discussed. The speaker argues that Biden's plan fails to address the underlying problem of inflation caused by universities. They contend that universities bear responsibility for the exorbitant cost of education and essentially hold students hostage, with the federal government paying the ransom through student loans. The speaker questions why Joe Biden does not hold universities accountable for their role in the student loan crisis and suggests that it may be due to universities being liberal donors with entrenched liberal ideology. Additionally, the speaker proposes that universities should be held liable for neglecting to inform students about the value of their degrees and for establishing lending policies based on the degree's worth. Both the speaker and the podcast host agree that universities have become bloated with excessive administration and staff, and that the funds from student loans are not being utilized effectively to benefit students. They highlight the example of Yale University, which employs over 200 individuals in diversity-related roles, raising doubts about the necessity of such a large staff. Overall, the discussion underscores the belief that Biden's forgiveness plan fails to address the root cause of the student loan problem, namely the high cost of education and inflation driven by universities.According to the episode, the Democrats are portrayed as being more transparent about their willingness to spend money compared to Republicans. The host acknowledges that "all politicians love to spend money," but suggests that Democrats are more forthright in admitting it. This implies that Democrats openly express their desire to allocate funds for various initiatives and programs.Furthermore, the host references a statement made by Senator Bob Casey from Pennsylvania, who reportedly expressed his desire for all children to be automatically enrolled in Medicaid from birth. This statement serves as an example of the Democrats' inclination to expand government spending and further supports the notion that they are more candid about their willingness to spend money.Overall, the episode suggests that Democrats are more forthcoming about their intention to allocate funds for various purposes, while also acknowledging that spending money is a common trait among politicians in general. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
The special guest for this episode is Michael Singleton, a prominent conservative commentator and expert on African-American issues and the Republican Party's outreach to minority communities. Host Kerry Sheffield expresses her admiration for Singleton, noting that he has thoughtful insights to share. Sheffield also mentions that Singleton has worked in the Trump administration under Secretary Ben Carson, whom she personally admires. Given Singleton's expertise and conservative perspective, he is a fitting guest for the podcast episode.Key Moments[00:01:22] 14th Amendment discussion.[00:04:39] The timing is off.[00:09:41] Trump vs. Biden dynamics.[00:10:29] Inflation and Bidenomics.[00:14:38] Black and Latino voters.[00:19:25] Turning out voters strategically.[00:22:28] President Biden's age and perception.[00:24:48] Always great to have you.OverviewDuring the episode, the participants engage in a discussion about the potential risks and impact on democracy if Donald Trump were to be reelected. One participant expresses concern, stating that they believe there is a 5% chance of Trump being reelected, which they consider too great a risk for the country's democracy. They argue that Trump's intentions are clear and there is no ambiguity about what he plans to do if he were to win another term.The participant also highlights Trump's erratic behavior during his previous term, suggesting that it ultimately led to his defeat and was a referendum on his character. They contrast this with the possibility of the 2024 election becoming a referendum on President Biden, which is more typical for an incumbent. They suggest that if the election becomes a referendum on Biden, it could pose a significant challenge for his campaign.Furthermore, the discussion touches upon the impact of voter apathy on the election. The participant expresses concern about lower voter turnout and suggests that Biden's greatest challenge may be voter apathy. They argue that it is crucial for the GOP to focus on engaging new voters rather than solely trying to win over those who voted against Trump in the previous election. They believe that voter turnout will play a pivotal role in determining the election's outcome.Overall, the discussion highlights the potential risks and consequences of Trump's reelection, particularly in terms of its impact on democracy. The participants express concerns about Trump's behavior and emphasize the need for the election to focus on policy rather than personalities. They also discuss the importance of voter turnout and the potential challenges faced by the Biden campaign.According to the podcast transcript, the effectiveness of the GOP in associating a vote for Biden as a vote for Kamala Harris is seen as a key factor in the election. The transcript notes that the turnout and enthusiasm for Democrats is not high, as many Democrats are not excited about the vice president and hold negative perceptions of her. Therefore, the GOP's ability to successfully link Biden with Harris and highlight any negative perceptions of her could potentially sway voters away from supporting Biden. The transcript also suggests that the RNC chairwoman should advise candidates who do not have a viable path to drop out and consolidate support around a candidate who can effectively challenge Biden. This implies that the GOP needs to strategically rally around a candidate who can effectively challenge Biden and Harris in order to increase their chances of winning the election. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube 
Alexander Heffner, a journalist who writes for The Wall Street Journal,The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, USA Today, and Newsday joins Carrie and Dave to discuss media in politics, government spending, and his recently released show "Breaking Bread" on Bloomberg TV. Subscribe to Practically Political on YouTube