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Heartland Politics with Robin Johnson
Saturday at 6:30 a.m. on WVIK HD2

Heartland Politics with Robin Johnson is a political podcast discussing current issues we face as a country featuring interviews with senators, congressman, governors, and other political elite.

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Latest Episodes
  • Alec Macgillis, author of Fulfillment: Winning and Losing in One-click America, discusses key themes form his book including regional inequality, economic concentration, the decline of Main Street and the decline of manufacturing jobs as seen through the emergence of Amazon as a dominant player in the US economy. The impact of the tech economy also created fissures in both political parties that are still playing out.
  • Brenden Moore, state government reporter for Lee Enterprises, talks about key accomplishments of the Illinois legislature including passage of the budget, allocating federal Covid relief dollars and passing anew legislative map.
  • State Senator Neil Anderson (R-36) shares his thoughts on the recently concluded legislative session and ‘bad policy’ that results from one party having too much power. He also talks about the budget, economic climate, criminal justice reform, FOID card repeal, ethics and more.
  • State Rep. Mike Halpin (D-Rock Island) shares his thoughts on the 2021 Illinois General Assembly session and addresses the state’s fiscal standing, the clean energy bill, criminal justice reform, the economic outlook and the new state Democratic legislative leadership.
  • Pulitzer-prize winning author TJ Stiles talks about his book, Jesse James: Last Rebel of the Civil War, including how the outlaw was able to shape his image and legacy, the Civil War’s impact on Missouri, the role of Iowa in James’ banditry, and the lasting effects of the Civil War that still shape our lives and culture.
  • As we celebrate July 4th, author Ted Widmer talks about President-elect Lincoln’s dependence on our founding principles to keep the union together from his recent book, Lincoln on the Verge, Thirteen Days to Washington. Widmer takes us inside Lincoln’s train ride to assume the presidency and offers a colorful look at the nation from stops along the way.
  • Author Edward-Isaac Dovere, lead political correspondent for the Atlantic magazine, talks about his book Battle for the Soul: Inside the Democrats’ Campaigns to Defeat Trump including the “twists of fate” that led to Biden’s nomination, Obama’s inadvertent role in creating what followed, the continuing battle between progressive and moderate elements of the party, and much more.
  • Kathie Obradovich, Editor of the Iowa Capital Dispatch, assesses the Iowa legislative session and covers Covid, workforce development, tax cuts, charter schools, election reform, policing issues and more.
  • Iowa Democratic House Leader Todd Prichard (D-Charles City) provides his take on the recently concluded legislative session and addresses school funding, election reform, the economy and more.