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108 Segments




A Self-Described Republican Humorist

Writer P.J. O'Rourke doesn't think comedy and conservatism are incompatible. He edited the National Lampoon and serves as the "investigative humorist" for Rolling Stone. His new book, Republican Party Reptile, collects his recent writing.


William Greider Discusses the Roots of American Decay.

Investigative reporter William Greider. He's written a new book about the breakdown of democracy in the United States, "Who will tell the people: The Betrayal of American Democracy." (published by Simon and Shuster). It's also the subject of Greider's "Frontline" documentary on PBS this week. He's also the author of "Secrets of the Temple," about the inner workings of the Federal Reserve.


Conservative Columnist William Safire Admits He Might Vote for a Democrat

Safire writes a Pulitzer Prize winning op-ed column for The New York Times. He has a new book called "The First Dissident," which applies the lessons of the biblical Job to modern politics. Before writing columns, Safire worked for the Eisenhower campaign and wrote speeches for the Nixon administration. He tells Terry about his frustrations with President Bush.


Reagan Aid on the Forthcoming Election

Lyn Nofzinger was an official in the Nixon administration and was Reagan's press secretary and later his aide in the White House, where he was known as a "hatchet-man". He has a new political memoir, called "Nofziger." He Fresh Air to talk about Reagan's recent decision to campaign for President Bush.


Plotting the Future of the Republican Party

Republican leaders Ralph Reed and Senator John Chafee. Reed is the Executive Director of the Christian Coalition, based in Chesapeake, VA. Chafee is a Republican from Rhode Island. He's a member of the newly formed Republican Majority Coalition. The Republican National Committee is meeting at the end of this month to elect a new chairman. The two men will talk about what direction the Republican party needs to take to win the 1996 Presidential election, and why the party failed to win in '92.


The Republican "Face of AIDS."

Mary Fisher was the face of AIDS/HIV at the Republican National Convention in 1992 where she gave a speech imploring the party to lift the "shroud of silence" about the disease. Fisher comes from a wealthy prominent Republican family. Her father, Max Fisher was Honorary Chairman of the Bush/Quayle '92 National Finance Committee. Since she went public about her HIV-positive status, Fisher has been an eloquent voice in the fight against AIDS misinformation and discrimination. She's also the founder of the Family AIDS Network, Inc.


Bill Clinton Reckons with a Republican Congress

Washington political commentator Elizabeth Drew, author of "On the Edge: The Clinton Presidency." The book examines Clinton's first eighteen months in office. She talks with Terry about last night's election and what it will mean for the White House.


New Visions for Welfare Reform

We'll hear from Jason DeParle. He covers anti-poverty policy for the New York Times. With the new Congress in session, a major debate over America's social welfare policy is expected. DeParle talks about what proposals we're likely to see from the Republicans and from the Clinton Administration, and how these might affect women and African Americans in particular.


Republicans Work to Fulfill "The Contract with America"

Ed Gillespie, co-editor of the book The Contract With America and policy and communications director of the House Republican Conference. He believes the welfare reforms outlined in the Republican agenda are accurate assessments of what is needed to correct the current welfare system.


Ralph Reed's "Contract with the American Family."

Executive Director of the Christian Coalition, Ralph Reed. The Christian Coalition is a national organization dedicated to mobilizing the religious right, for political and legislative objectives. The coalition was founded by evangelist Pat Robertson. It's "Contract with the American Family" includes calls for: school prayer; eliminating federal funding for abortions; limits on late-term abortions; restrictions on pornography on the Internet, and eliminating federal funding for the NEA and public broadcasting.


General Colin Powell: The Fresh Air Interview.

Four-star General, and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Colin Powell. He has a new autobiography My American Journey (Random House, written with Joseph E. Persico), and an anxious audience, waiting to see if he will declare his candidacy for President of the United States. Powell first came to the attention of the American public during the Gulf War, officiating at the televised gulf war briefings. Powell retired from the military in 1993, after 35 years in uniform.


Newt Gingrich and GOPAC Revealed.

Investigative journalist for the New York Times, Steve Engelberg. He's the co-author of the article "Birth of a Vision" (Sunday, Dec 3, NYT) about Newt Gingrich and GOPAC, the political committee that supports Republican party candidates and office holders. The organization was headed by Gingrich until last spring. Documents that have just become public disclose that as early as five years ago Gingrich and his "political intimates" planned a takeover of Congress. But they failed to gain support from President Bush.


Political Satirist Al Franken Strikes Out on His Own with New Book.

Political satirist Al Franken. He was one of the original writers for Saturday Night Live. He's won four Emmys for his writing on the show. His most popular character is Stuart Smalley, the new age cable TV host. He left the show last season. His new book "Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations" (Delacorte Press) is his look at American politics and the Republican revolution. The Kirkus Reviews writes, "he attacks with a wonderful lack of civility. . .and he does it with two murderous weapons: satire and facts. . ."


Ronald Brownstein Examines the Current Republican Presidential Campaign.

National Political correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, Ronald Brownstein. He has collaborated on a new book, Storming the Gates: Protest Politics and the Republican Revival (Little, Brown and Company, written with Dan Balz, national editor of the Washington Post). In the book they look at how the Republicans captured Congress, so shortly after the defeat of George Bush in the presidential election, and how the Republican party has changed dramatically in the last ten years.


Conservative Commentator William Kristol.

"New eras demand new voices." words from William Kristol defending the creation of his new conservative magazine "The Weekly Standard." Kristol talks with Terry Gross about why he feels vigorous debate among conservatives is needed if republicans want to lead the nation. Kristol is editor and publisher of the Standard which has been criticized for highlighting divisions within the Republican Party. Kristol has served as chief of staff for one time Secretary of Education William Bennet and for Vice President Day Quayle.


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