Sinopsis

Donald Trumps historic presidency is unlike any other thats come before it. From his outsider status in Washington to his familys continued residence in New York to his complicated business empire, each episode of this podcast will focus on one aspect of Trumps time in the White House that defies conventions and ask the question, Can he do that? Hosted by Allison Michaels and co-hosted each week by a different Post reporter, Can He Do That? features original reporting that will illuminate the ways Donald Trump can reshape the presidency and explain what that means for people in the United States and the rest of the world.

Episodios

  • Is the federal government to blame for wildfires gone out of control?

    Is the federal government to blame for wildfires gone out of control?

    17/09/2020 Duración: 25min

    Reporter Seung Min Kim on how Trump’s refusal to acknowledge human-caused climate change affects the country’s wildfire management and response plans. Plus, environmental analysis professor Char Miller on who's really responsible for fire mitigation.

  • The Justice Dept. intervenes on behalf of Trump in defamation case. What happens next?

    The Justice Dept. intervenes on behalf of Trump in defamation case. What happens next?

    10/09/2020 Duración: 09min

    The Justice Department on Tuesday intervened in the defamation lawsuit brought by a woman who says President Trump raped her years ago, moving the matter to federal court and signaling it wants to make the U.S. government — rather than Trump himself — the defendant in the case. In this segment from "Post Reports," Matt Zapatosky talks about the unusual move, and where it fits into the larger story of Trump's Justice Department.

  • Two different stories of American unrest

    Two different stories of American unrest

    03/09/2020 Duración: 18min

    Jacob Blake was shot seven times in the back by a Kenosha, Wis., police officer in late August.Since that shooting, Kenosha has been the site of unrest, protests, vandalism and violence.Days after the protests and unrest began, 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse traveled a short trip from his home to Kenosha where self-declared militia members and armed counterprotesters had been appearing. Rittenhouse was armed with a rifle. Later, authorities say Rittenhouse shot three protesters, killing two of them.President Trump has condemned the violence from those he calls“rioters” and“looters,” yet Trump suggested Rittenhouse acted in self-defense.Trump has emphasized what he calls his message of“law and order,” defending law enforcement, condemning protesters and insisting Democratic leaders, and Democratic nominee Joe Biden, are responsible for the country’s turmoil.Biden, meanwhile, has focused on a message of unity. He’s sought to strike a difficult balance between condemning violence on all sides of the political

  • Trump suggested sending law enforcement to the polls. Can he do that?

    Trump suggested sending law enforcement to the polls. Can he do that?

    27/08/2020 Duración: 21min

    Faith in the U.S. electoral system is one of the most important fundamentals of this country’s democracy.And this year, it’s being tested in unprecedented ways.Some of those challenges are emerging from the rhetoric of the president himself. President Trump has discredited mail-in voting, suggested rampant voter fraud and said he might not accept the results of the election.Most recently, Trump has threatened to use law enforcement officers to patrol polling places.In an interview last week with Fox News host Sean Hannity, Trump said,“We’re going to have everything. We’re going to have sheriffs, and we’re going to have law enforcement, and we’re going to hopefully have U.S. attorneys and we’re going to have everybody, and attorney generals. But it’s very hard."The suggestion raised concerns about voter intimidation and voter suppression.And while reporting suggests the president isn’t actively making plans to send federal law enforcement to polls, it raised significant questions about whether he could, and th

  • Postal problems persist. (But your mail-in ballot is probably safe.)

    Postal problems persist. (But your mail-in ballot is probably safe.)

    20/08/2020 Duración: 24min

    President Trump’s rhetoric about the Postal Service has grown bolder. He’s said that if he stops the Democrats from providing emergency funding to the Postal Service, it’s harder for them to process a surge in mail-in ballots. And according to Trump himself, he wants less mail-in voting, because he thinks too much vote by mail may cost him the election.Meanwhile, a new postmaster general has taken over the agency. Louis DeJoy, previously a logistics executive, was named to head the Postal Service in May, He’s also a major Republican donor.In his short time in the new role, DeJoy has upended the mail system. He has shaken up USPS leadership, ordered the removal of hundreds of high-speed mail-sorting machines, eliminated overtime hours for delivery workers and banned them from making extra trips for on-time delivery.The cumulative effect of Trump’s words and mail delivery slowdowns caused by DeJoy’s changes left many Americans uneasy about the ability of the Postal Service to deliver mail-in ballots effectively

  • How an extraordinary election season affects Trump’s reelection chances

    How an extraordinary election season affects Trump’s reelection chances

    13/08/2020 Duración: 26min

    Usually, in presidential election years of the past, August marks a new phase in election season. Conventions wrap up, rallies and events pick up on the campaign trail and candidates debate in front of large audiences, all leading up to the moment voters go to the polls.But this year, pretty much none of those things will happen in the way that we’re used to. The novel coronavirus fundamentally changed this election year. Many of the traditional events still populate the calendar between now and Election Day, but they will look a lot different: less door knocking, no mega rallies, an increase in mail-in voting, among lots of other tweaks.But the pandemic isn’t the only thing that makes this election unique. President Trump has disrupted political norms since his first run at the presidency. No president in modern times, perhaps ever, has been as dominant a figure on the national stage as Trump. He creates conversations and controversy.He’s also the incumbent. Historically, being the incumbent has been a major

  • TikTok flip-flop: What’s the president’s power over foreign companies?

    TikTok flip-flop: What’s the president’s power over foreign companies?

    06/08/2020 Duración: 25min

    If you’d never heard of TikTok before the coronavirus pandemic sent us all into our homes for months, you’ve probably heard of it now. With little to do at home, millions of Americans turned to TikTok to create and watch short, fun videos of mostly teenagers mostly dancing, lip syncing or pranking their parents.While this social video app may seem harmless when you’re somehow mindlessly scrolling through hours of 30-second antics, the Trump administration insists it might not be so harmless after all.See, TikTok is owned by a Chinese company, ByteDance. For months, the Trump administration has worried that the Chinese government could gain access to to the user data of Americans who use the app. The United States has also raised concerns over the potential for Chinese censorship on TikTok.Late last week, in response to all of this, President Trump said that he planned to ban TikTok altogether — that he would outright ban a very popular social media app used by 100 million Americans. So, naturally, many of our

  • How America votes is inherently unpredictable. So why do polling?

    How America votes is inherently unpredictable. So why do polling?

    30/07/2020 Duración: 30min

    In the run-up to any modern presidential election, assessing a candidate’s successes and failures has served as fodder for political pundits, analysts and campaign advisers. And in part, those assessments of who is winning and which messages are working are drawn from a whole sprawling effort designed to take the pulse of the American voter: political polling.These days, there are public polls, private polls and polling shops out of news organizations, universities and research centers. There’s also internal polling specifically conducted for candidates with a stake in a given race. Each kind of poll serves a different purpose and often a different audience. But they have in common an effort to learn more about how Americans make choices about what issues to value, what causes to believe in and about which candidates to support.Reporting shows that President Trump has been watching polls closely as the November election nears. And, at this point, things are not looking great for Trump, who trails Joe Biden in

  • A double down on federal force, a do-over on coronavirus

    A double down on federal force, a do-over on coronavirus

    23/07/2020 Duración: 35min

    The United States is in search of leadership on many significant challenges we face at this difficult moment in our country.And on two major issues — the handling of the coronavirus pandemic and protests against racism and police brutality — most Americans are dissatisfied with the leadership they’ve seen thus far.As cases rise across the country and fears persist, a Washington Post-ABC News poll found that 60 percent of Americans disapprove of President Trump’s handling of the virus.Meanwhile, polls also show that a majority of Americans disapprove of Trump’s handling of protesters and race relations. In fact, a Post-Schar School poll last month showed that a large margin of voters said it was more important to have a president who could heal racial divisions than one who could restore security by enforcing law.Trump started off this week seemingly with hopes of turning polls around. But his strategy has been somewhat perplexing.On the coronavirus, Trump is seemingly attempting to reset, almost start over. H

  • Conventions vs. covid-19: Trump’s push for a spectacle while the virus surges

    Conventions vs. covid-19: Trump’s push for a spectacle while the virus surges

    16/07/2020 Duración: 26min

    The 2020 presidential nominating conventions will look little like the political mega-events we’ve seen in this country for the past few decades.The novel coronavirus pandemic has made the notion of huge stadiums full of cheering supporters plus countless meetings, rallies and after parties, unadvisable under U.S. public health guidelines.Now, for both parties, rejiggering their conventions has been a significant challenge.Democrats have decided to take a largely virtual approach to their party’s event after initially pushing it from July into August.Republicans, led by urging from President Trump, hoped to hold as close to a normal convention as possible. So much so that they changed the location of the Republican National Convention celebrations from Charlotte, N.C., to Jacksonville, Fla. The original site in Charlotte refused to go along with Trump’s demands for a crowded large-scale event. So Republicans searched for a city that would disregard health guidance and let thousands of people from all over the

  • Will the Court’s decision on electors prevent (at least some) election mayhem?

    Will the Court’s decision on electors prevent (at least some) election mayhem?

    09/07/2020 Duración: 19min

    Much of American democracy runs on precedent. How things have worked in the past helps us understand how they ought to work now. Many parts of our democracy function because years of established norms guide them.But sometimes that precedent and those standards face the courts — a chance to take long-standing norms and codify them into law. We saw one of those moments at the Supreme Court this week with a vote on the role of electors in our presidential elections.Presidential electors cast a vote in the electoral college that ultimately determines the presidency. These electors usually, almost always, vote for the winner of their state’s popular vote. So if Donald Trump wins the popular vote in Oklahoma, for example, all of Oklahoma’s electors vote for Trump in the electoral college.But in many states, it’s just an assumption that electors will vote as they’ve pledged. And that leaves open a question: What happens if an elector decides to go rogue — to cast a vote in the electoral college for someone else? And

  • July 4 special: The Framers would not recognize the modern presidency.’

    July 4 special: 'The Framers would not recognize the modern presidency.’

    02/07/2020 Duración: 28min

    Over the past few years making the“Can He Do That?” podcast, a few episodes have stuck with us. In particular, the episodes that keenly capture the role of the U.S. president that offer particular insight into the ways the presidency was designed to work in our country and how that design is incredible and also flawed.Now, we are bringing back one of those episodes.This show, which originally aired on July 4 last year, is a deep look at what the Founding Fathers wanted the American presidency to be. Jeffrey Rosen, president of the National Constitution Center, offers explanations for why there aren’t more limitations on what the president can do, and how the role has evolved over time.RELATED EPISODESA whistleblower. A phone call. A tipping point.What happens when a president asserts executive privilege?How does Attorney General Barr view presidential power?

  • Virus cases are surging in the U.S. Is our government better prepared now?

    Virus cases are surging in the U.S. Is our government better prepared now?

    25/06/2020 Duración: 27min

    In the United States, novel coronavirus infections set a single-day national record Wednesday. For now it seems like deaths are not growing at the same pace as cases, but it’s clear that this virus is not contained and this pandemic is far from over.Yet momentum behind a federal response seems to be fading. The task force is convening less often, federal funding to some test sites has been depleted, and President Trump has said that the country will not shut down again, even as some states have paused their reopening plans.On Tuesday, at a hearing on Capitol Hill, top federal health officials including Anthony S. Fauci warned that coronavirus spikes in more than a dozen states could worsen without new restrictions.So now, months into this virus outbreak, where does the federal response stand? What steps are ongoing and are they working? Plus, how does the U.S. response compare with the virus response globally? What can we learn from countries who are seeing smaller-scale spikes and have plans to contain them?

  • An ‘erratic’ and ‘stunningly uninformed’ commander in chief: Inside Bolton’s book

    An ‘erratic’ and ‘stunningly uninformed’ commander in chief: Inside Bolton’s book

    18/06/2020 Duración: 15min

    John Bolton, former national security adviser to President Trump, wrote a book,“The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir.” The book offers a portrait of President Trump as an erratic and ignorant leader who often places his own personal whims above the national interest.But whether Americans will get to read the book is the subject of an escalating legal battle between Bolton and the Justice Department. The White House says the book contains classified material. Bolton’s attorney says the book doesn’t and that the material underwent a rigorous government review process.First, on Tuesday, the administration filed a civil lawsuit against Bolton, a conservative who has worked in Republican administrations for decades and was a longtime contributor to Fox News. Then late Wednesday, things escalated when the Justice Department sought an emergency order from a judge to block the book’s publication altogether.The Washington Post, meanwhile, obtained a copy of Bolton’s memoir. On this episode of the“Can

  • Public sentiment on police reform has shifted dramatically. Will it matter?

    Public sentiment on police reform has shifted dramatically. Will it matter?

    11/06/2020 Duración: 32min

    Public outcry and calls for police reform have erupted across the country, with movements taking aim at not just policing tactics, but also broader racial inequities embedded in American life.Many of our nation’s leaders are responding to those calls for reform.House and Senate Democrats on Tuesday united behind federal legislation, the Justice in Policing of 2020 Act. The act bans certain tactics such as like chokeholds and would make it easier to hold officers accountable for misconduct.Just a day later, Senate Republicans began drafting their own police reform legislation. That package is expected to include a national police commission that would help determine best practices for law enforcement agencies.But, even with similar goals, there are no guarantees that the Democratic-led House and the Republican-led Senate could agree on the specifics of a police reform bill. There’s also no assurance from the White House that President Trump would sign it.Trump has struggled in his response to policing and prot

  • Trump’s response to unrest raises concerns among those trained to detect democratic regression

    Trump’s response to unrest raises concerns among those trained to detect democratic regression

    04/06/2020 Duración: 18min

    Earlier this week, the country watched as the U.S. president walked across Lafayette Square outside the White House to stand in front of St. John’s Episcopal Church, hold a Bible and take a photo. In a speech from the Rose Garden moments earlier, President Trump threatened to deploy troops to control protests if state and local authorities did not immediately regain control of their streets.For Trump to make that trek to the church, flanked by the secretary of defense and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, among others, law enforcement officials forcibly and aggressively cleared peaceful protesters from the area.That moment, which we brought you an episode about on Tuesday, has not faded from the public’s mind as the week has gone on. The president has reiterated his assertion that he has the power to deploy active duty military in the United States, a suggestion that has been met with an increasing chorus of rebukes from former military and public officials. Meanwhile, protests have continued across the count

  • Trump threatened military action to quell protests. Can he do that?

    Trump threatened military action to quell protests. Can he do that?

    02/06/2020 Duración: 16min

    Protests across the United States have intensified since last week over the death of George Floyd, a black man whose final gasps of“I can’t breathe” while in police custody, were caught on video in Minneapolis.Many protests have been peaceful, but in several cities, tensions have escalated and violence has erupted.With unrest growing, President Trump decided to address the nation from the White House’s Rose Garden on Monday in a televised speech.Moments before he spoke, though, police started to forcibly push out a crowd of peaceful protesters from Lafayette Square, just outside the White House. Police fired flash-bang shells, gas and rubber bullets into the crowd.Nearby, in his speech, Trump said,“Mayors and governors must establish an overwhelming law enforcement presence until the violence has been quelled. If a city or state refuses to take the actions that are necessary to defend the life and property of their residents, then I will deploy the United States military and quickly solve the problem for them

  • Public health partisanship confronts a new reality: The virus is surging in rural America

    Public health partisanship confronts a new reality: The virus is surging in rural America

    28/05/2020 Duración: 33min

    This week, the United States reached a grim milestone: Covid-19 deaths surpassed 100,000 in this country. In recent weeks, the geographic areas and the communities this deadly virus touches, have begun to shift.The Washington Post analyzed case data and interviews with public health professionals in several states to find that the pandemic, which first struck in major cities, is now increasingly moving into the country’s rural areas.Rural America faces unique and significant challenges that make an outbreak there likely to be particularly deadly. What’s more, the virus seems to have taken hold in many of the counties where residents are more likely to flout social distancing guidelines or believe the pandemic to be exaggerated by President Trump’s political foes and a liberal media.The virus’s effect on rural America may make things more politically complicated for the president, who has at times raised doubt around key public health measures like masks, business closures and social distancing.So in our curre

  • How Trump is leveraging the presidency to campaign against Biden

    How Trump is leveraging the presidency to campaign against Biden

    21/05/2020 Duración: 28min

    This presidential campaign season is unlike any other in history. I know, that sounds like something people in world of politics say a lot. But this time, in 2020, during a global pandemic, the campaign trail looks dramatically different — and for now, mostly empty.Former vice president Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, has spent the past few months holding virtual events, largely from his basement. President Trump, meanwhile, has resumed some travel, though in an official capacity as president and not as part of the campaign.That distinction though, has been muddled as Trump’s travel schedule shows trips to the battleground states that are crucial to his reelection chances. And what’s more, these events have taken on clear campaign overtones: Supporters have lined the streets to greet his motorcade, and Trump’s campaign soundtrack even played inside a facility while he toured.Is Trump leveraging unfair advantages with an election just six months away? What powers does he have to ensure he can sa

  • Politics, pressure and pleas: The twisting case of Michael Flynn and the Justice Department

    Politics, pressure and pleas: The twisting case of Michael Flynn and the Justice Department

    14/05/2020 Duración: 33min

    Michael Flynn's legal battle brings the Justice Department into uncharted territory, with boundaries between the department and the president newly tested. National security reporter Devlin Barrett unpacks the latest in this ongoing story.

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