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The Al Franken Podcast

Author: District Productive

Subscribed: 7,112Played: 178,040


A five-time Emmy winning SNL comedy writer/producer, joins a four-time #1 NYT bestselling author, a three-time highest-rated national progressive radio host, a two-time Grammy winning artist, and a former US Senator. So, it gets a little crowded in the booth when Al talks public policy and sometimes political comedy with notable guests. Think “The Daily” without the resources of the NYTimes.

68 Episodes
Yang and Al Discuss, Among Other Things – Yang’s Past, the Future of Work, and the Present.
Al in conversation with the co-chair of Obama’s police reform commission.
Al and Dahlia discuss the Court's top decisions, including Bostock, which held that federal law prohibits employment discrimination agains LGBT workers, and whether Alito's dissent in that case was "very gay."
Al and Former Detroit Public Health Commissioner on the Mistakes Trump Keeps Making.
Recent high school graduate Rajit Gulhati contacted Al for guidance on how he and his friends could vote by mail. So, Al brought in Democratic super lawyer Marc Elias.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter Discusses the Aftermath of George Floyd’s Murder
In his new book: Democracy: In One Book or Less fmr. Obama speechwriter and NY Times bestselling author brings fascinating and often startling detail to all the ways the GOP thwarts democracy. 
Packer and Al discuss the how a corrupt political class, a heartless economy, systemic racism, and Donald Trump have led to the failures Americans have been witness to and the victims of these last several months.
Former Congresswoman Edwards talks about being the mother of a young black man and whether George Floyd's murder has finally brought us to an inflection point.
The host (and former member of the Senate Education Committee) and the president of the National Education Association talks about an important subject: how awful Betsy DeVos is. But also, education.
COVID-19 Trailer

COVID-19 Trailer


This COVID-19 pandemic is arguably the greatest global crisis since World War II. Since the coronavirus hit, Al has been talking with guests about the various aspects of this horrible scourge. To date, guests include:Andy Slavitt, former head of Medicare/Medicaid;Austan Goolsbee, former Chair of the President's Council of Economic Advisors;Dr. Leana Wen, former president of Planned Parenthood; andMichael Lewis, author of the Fifth Risk.
The NYT columnist and Nobel Prize winner discusses how Republicans operate in bad faith on issues like climate, tax cuts, deficits, income and wealth inequality, and now, the pandemic.
The former GOP strategist trashes Trump and his enablers. And gives a surprisingly personal explanation of why it took him so long to leave his old party.
From 1973-76, Dr. Larry Brilliant was part of the World Health Organization team that eradicated smallpox and is Chairman of the Board of Ending Pandemics. He discusses how we go forward on Covid-19 after blowing it in the first six months.
Democrats want every eligible American to vote. Republicans don’t. Nationally renowned election lawyer Marc Elias discusses the battles ahead from now until November.
The brother and sister team who have been doing this work for 35 years talk about how the pandemic has shined a light on childhood hunger and what we can do about it.
In The Fifth Risk, Lewis portrayed Donald Trump as a man totally ignorant of and disinterested in the actually functioning of the federal government. The book’s title refers to the potential catastrophe that an administration fails to plan for and prevent. 
Dr. Wen is an emergency room physician, professor at GW School of Public Health, and fmr. Public Health Commissioner for Baltimore under two mayors. The second, who was recently sentenced to 3 years in prison, is arguably crazy, giving her unique insight into the dilemma that Fauci and Birx face in dealing with an inarguably crazy president.  
The former Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers under President Obama speaks with clarity and common sense about how virus economics are different than normal economics.
One of the earliest and most outspoken critics of Trump's mishandling of the pandemic, Slavitt reviews its tragic consequences and where we go from here.
Comments (79)

Alex Mercedes

disheartening. I think it's going to be impossible to get police to understand the dramatic overhaul being demanded. Listening to this intelligent, experienced police professional defending the necessity for tanks on American streets and rejecting the term "militarization of policing" said it all.

Jul 27th

Ed Potter

Hi Senator Franken! Your theme is familar, what is it? Thanks.

Jul 19th

Fred Z

Senator Franken's proposal to make pharmaceutical commercials act out the "possible side effects" is my favorite moment from this podcast.

Jul 19th

Cynthia Arneson

Al, this was one of my favorite Pod Casts of yours. I've listened to a lot of yours, I have enjoyed all of them but, this one was my favorite! We have much to change in this country and I hope and pray that this is now the 'turning point' and we are heading in the correct direction of equality for everyone. One more thing...I liked the Steve Schmidt Podcast...I could listen to him berate Trump all day! Keep them coming! Cynthia Arneson

Jun 30th

lisa kurtz


Jun 30th

Alex Mercedes

Al, there's waking up and then there's acting. you asked your guest if things have changed yet. it's too soon to ask that question. let's see how many wake up, let's see who wakes up, and let's see what actions follow all the waking up. best wishes to the new mayor.

Jun 30th

Brian Berry

ss@,,. 4 each see e.9 no m.......... m r. MMB m. #,......,.....m.. Kim. m*

Jun 21st

Alex Mercedes

Al didn't respond to Me. Edwards' final comment but what she said is salient: the freedom of voice that she, and Al too, can exercise and enjoy unburdened by political necessities that elected officials must consider.

Jun 16th

Kim Schellenberg

Dear Senator Frankin, As a Canadian listener, this has been both informative and disturbing. I wish the Americans would look at how Elections Canada runs our elections. There isn't a need to Register to vote! As soon as you are old enough to vote, a Registration Card arrives at your place of residence, as per Gov't records. When you arrive to vote, you can present a plethora of I.D. options, including a bill in your name at your current address. We PAY and TRAIN our Elections Officers! You can Vote ahead of time at your designated Elections Location any day of the week, including Sundays! I just don't get it...why is this allowed to continue down there?!?! Good Luck in November, Kim from Canada

May 5th
Reply (1)

Philly Burbs

the audio version of this book should be given away free. Fox viewers don't read. and A movie or seris should come out now on regular tv

Apr 23rd

Pamela Alcid

Ms. Dahlia Lithwick's criticisms of the Senate's (mis)handling of the #3's impeachment "trial", referencing the Senate's failure *as a whole*, and not just the GOP side of the august body, is an injustice, not a mere slight, to the Democrats who took seriously the challenge to the Constitution and who acted to protect its veracity and existence. and please, stop calling it a "trial", as it bore no procedural actions to same, and stop calling the outcome an "acquittal", as there was no trial.

Mar 4th

Deborah White

Al Franken, You know, for a change, here's a funny thought about your podcast. I have breast cancer (hilarious experience, as we all know) - going through 16-weeks of chemo, & here's the thing: I've discovered that listening to your podcast has done something good for me - actually disturbingly helpful w/my nausea. Thought this might need help marketing your podcast to other sick fans. Thank you, Deborah White

Mar 2nd

Ravi Gumpar

Al is brilliant, hilarious, and has the #1 podcast in the world.

Feb 29th

N Me

great show & informative, well spoken guest! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Jan 27th

N Me

its power for powers "the world is not enough" for people such as the Gingrich's, McConnell 's, trump's and the like..I do not know how they continue to surprise me, yet here I sit, jaw dropped

Jan 27th


I downloaded this darn app and I still don't know what exactly this "pod cast"thing is. Crap happens all the time. I have done my share, but we NEED the old Al back. I am a schmuck from PA who struggles with words. You were my voice and I NEED you to get angry and scream for me again. "It's not the dog in the fight but the fight in the dog". I am nobody, but I BELIEVE in you. 💜💜💜

Jan 22nd

Roberta Proctor

How I wish you were still in the Senate. So glad to find your podcast.

Jan 17th

L Yu

Trump needs to get out. Al needs to come back.

Jan 2nd
Reply (1)


All Everytime you said why didn't they go to the thought was WHY DID YOU FOLD AND LEAVE WITHOUT A FIGHT. You could have changed the path this has taken.

Dec 16th
Reply (2)

jas rother

rule by mob? midwest and other small populated states will be held to east/west coast will

Nov 10th
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