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Act 1: Prologue

Ira wonders aloud, when it comes to DACA, with broad support from most Americans, including the majority of Trump voters, leaders of both parties and the president himself: Why is a permanent solution so hard? Why are politics so hard? (2 minutes)

Act 2: Fighting Amongst Demselves

Ben Calhoun spent months following some key leaders in the Democratic Party, to find out the party’s best strategy for the future. He got some answers.

Act 1: Send in the Gowns

Marshall Project reporter Julia Preston and producer Jonathan Menjivar visit an immigration court in Laredo, Texas to find out how one of Trump’s mandates—to quickly expel immigrants from the US—is going.This story was produced in collaboration with The Marshall Project where Julia is a contributing writer. Julia’s print version of the story, “Lost in Court,” is on the The Marshall Project website.

Act 2: Flake News

Producer Zoe Chace has been following Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake for the last few months, reporting on the run-up to his re-election bid in 2018.

Act 2: Phone Calls to an Undisclosed Location

The man who organized the rally in Charlottesville is named Jason Kessler. He says he’s not to blame for the violence that happened there, including the death of a counter protester.

Act 1: Fear

Brian Reed continues his story about the town of Homer, Alaska. He talked to all sorts of people involved in the debate over whether the town should welcome immigrants.

Act 2: Loathing

In the first half of the show, we documented a community that was worried about what might happen, theoretically, if undocumented immigrants arrived. In this act, Producer Zoe Chace looks at a community where the immigrants have already arrived – Rockville, Maryland.

Act 1: The Brat Pack

In 2014, in the wake of losing the previous presidential election, the Republican Party had committed itself to immigration reform as its only path to winning elections in the future. Within two years, Donald Trump would be elected on the exact opposite platform, railing against immigration.

Act 2: Who Tells Your Story?

For years Pat Buchanan ran on many of the same ideas that Donald Trump would later run on. Buchanan lost — three times.


Vice News producer Reid Cherlin tells Ira about a party he attended in Washington in 2014. At the time he thought everyone there was on the fringe of the right wing, largely irrelevant.

Act 4: A Matter of Principal

The anti-government protests last month in Russia were surprising for a few reasons – including the fact that they included tons of young people. After the protests, teenagers started posting videos to the internet of their teachers lecturing them about the protests and the kids arguing back.


The Department of Homeland Security’s new policies on deportation have sown fear and confusion among undocumented immigrants. Ira Glass and Lilly Sullivan go to Chicago and meet a family trying to navigate the situation.