The Run-Up

The Run-Up


The Run-Up is your guide to the final months of the 2016 election. Michael Barbaro, who has covered the last two presidential races for the Times, hosts our twice-weekly conversation about the biggest stories and surprises coming out of the campaign. The show features Times political reporters, Opinion columnists and data analysts. You’ll also hear interviews with some of the election's key players. It’s the access and authority The New York Times does best.


The Final Debate: A Late-Night Analysis  

Who won? What surprised us? How much will it change the race? We recruited Amy Chozick and Nicholas Confessore, political reporters for The New York Times, for a bleary-eyed post-debate discussion fueled by cheap rosé.

Is This Election Over, Statistically?  

We talk numbers with Nate Cohn, a reporter for The Upshot and our most trusted translator of polls. We also check in with seasoned pollsters from each party — Geoff Garin, a Democrat, and Whit Ayres, a Republican — about Mr. Trump’s chances. Finally, we speak to a longtime researcher of polling psychology, Kyle Dropp, about a phenomenon that could be Mr. Trump’s last hope.

‘He Was Like an Octopus’  

A woman in Manhattan is watching the second presidential debate and hears Donald J. Trump say that, no, he has never kissed or groped a woman without her permission. She goes to bed deeply upset. The next morning she writes an email to The New York Times to say, yes, in fact, he has. It happened to her, she says. Mr. Trump denies her account. Michael Barbaro and Megan Twohey tell the story of the days that followed.

Sex and Power  

Michael Barbaro hands the host chair to his editor, Carolyn Ryan, who runs campaign coverage for The New York Times, to discuss the tape of Donald J. Trump talking unguardedly about women and his behavior toward them and why it has blown open a discourse on gender, politics and culture. She speaks with Maggie Haberman, who has covered both Hillary Clinton and Mr. Trump, and Maureen Dowd, The Times’s Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and a historian of the Clintons.

Worst Job Ever?  

The vice presidency has been the butt of jokes for generations. But politicians beg for the job, and with the right chemistry and personal dynamic, it can be a powerful position. We talk with the former chief White House reporter for The New York Times, Peter Baker, who has written a book about Vice President Dick Cheney’s relationship with President George W. Bush, “Days of Fire: Bush and Cheney in the White House.” We also talk with Amy Chozick and Jonathan Martin, political reporters for The New York Times, about what we know about Senator Tim Kaine and Governor Mike Pence, the current candidates for the job and whether, once elected, Hillary Clinton or Donald J. Trump is prepared to hand over real responsibility and stature to either of them.

Inside the Trump Tax Bombshell  

David Barstow and Susanne Craig, reporters for The New York Times, explain how they cracked open the biggest story of the campaign, overcoming nagging doubts to nail down Donald J. Trump’s tax returns. We also talk to Stuart Stevens, the chief strategist for Mitt Romney, about why the 2012 Republican nominee was so reluctant to release his tax returns and to Alex Burns, a Times reporter, about how the latest tax revelations are reshaping the last few weeks of the presidential campaign.

What Carmela Soprano Understood About Hillary Clinton  

Both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are full-blown stars in their own right, and have spawned and inspired television characters and shows. We talk to the chief television critic at The New York Times, James Poniewozik, about how television and film characters past and present inform our views of both candidates. We also chat with Susan Dominus, of The Times Magazine, about the surprising ways that gender is playing out in pop cultural depictions of Mr. Trump and Mrs. Clinton in this campaign.

Who Won the Debate?  

Instead of leaving the office, we pour a round of drinks and dissect the spectacle we just witnessed. Michael Barbaro is joined by Mark Leibovich, chief national correspondent for The New York Times Magazine, and Carolyn Ryan, senior editor for politics at The Times. Michael Grynbaum, a Times media reporter, parses the performance of Lester Holt, the moderator.

The Big Showdown  

Debate night is coming. Tony Schwartz, the man who channeled Donald Trump to write “The Art of the Deal” and has lived to regret it, explains why he is turning his intimate knowledge of how Mr. Trump thinks and behaves into advice for how Hillary Clinton should conduct herself in Monday night’s highly anticipated presidential debate. We also talk about what to expect on Monday with Frank Bruni, a New York Times opinion columnist, and Amy Chozick, a New York Times reporter who has covered Mrs. Clinton for the last two years.

The Art of the Lie  

Is deliberate dishonesty an official campaign strategy for Donald J. Trump? We posed that question to two top presidential campaign strategists from both parties: Mike Murphy, who advised Jeb Bush this year and John McCain in 2000, and Paul Begala, a political strategist for Bill Clinton in 1992. We’re also joined by Maggie Haberman, who has covered Mr. Trump and Hillary Clinton for The New York Times.

Medical Histories  

Long before Hillary Clinton’s pneumonia or Donald J. Trump’s bizarre doctor’s note, there was a history of voters demanding candidates’ medical records. We get some perspective from John Dickerson, a history buff, columnist at Slate and moderator of Moderator of CBS’s “Face the Nation,” and Lawrence K. Altman, a former reporter at The New York Times who was the first to interview candidates about their medical histories.

Turning Points  

“Basket of deplorables.” A public roasting at the White House Correspondents Dinner. The Khan family. So many gaffes and stumbles in a presidential race can feel at the time like major turning points. But it often takes months of hindsight to know at which point the whole campaign actually turned. We speak with six Times campaign reporters about the moments — often subtle, often off-camera — that struck them as pivotal in this election.

Did It Have To Be Her?  

What just-right combination of factors is required for a country to embrace a woman as its leader for the first time, and was it inevitable that Hillary Clinton, or someone like her, would be the first in America to make it this far? We explore with Claire McCaskill, the senior United States Senator from Missouri, and Gail Collins, a New York Times columnist who has written several books on women’s history.

Campaign Ads, Then and Now  

Whose ads are breaking through this year, and why? We dissect this season’s campaign ads with Wesley Morris, the chief culture critic for The New York Times, and Russ Schriefer, a longtime Republican ad maker who has created some of the most memorable campaign commercials of the past decade.

Narcissism and Impulse Control  

Donald J. Trump and Anthony D. Weiner have ridden impulsiveness and narcissism to dizzying political highs but have also found that they take a toll, raising doubts about their judgment and fitness for public office. We discuss with Frank Bruni, a columnist and former political reporter at The Times, and Maggie Haberman, a national political reporter.

Black and White  

Does Hillary Clinton deserve 91 percent of the black vote? Is Donald J. Trump even trying with black voters? We discuss with two New York Times journalists who have been covering this election and its racial dynamics: Charles Blow and Yamiche Alcindor. We also hear from Tara Wall, a campaign operative who helped President George W. Bush and Mitt Romney court black voters.

The Faith Factor  

She is a quiet but devoted Methodist. He subscribes to a theology of positive thinking. The two leading presidential candidates have been molded by religion — even if they don’t often talk about it. We hear from Gwenda Blair, the author of “The Trumps”; Burns Strider, Mrs. Clinton’s religious adviser during her first presidential campaign; and Jonathan Martin, a national political correspondent at The Times.

The Faith Factor  

She is a quiet but devoted Methodist. He subscribes to a theology of positive thinking. The two leading presidential candidates have been molded by religion — even if they don’t often talk about it. We hear from Gwenda Blair, the author of “The Trumps”; Burns Strider, Mrs. Clinton’s religious adviser during her first presidential campaign; and Jonathan Martin, a national political correspondent at The Times.

The Syringe and the Truth  

Has the media lost its position as an arbiter of truth in this campaign? We discuss this possibility with two people who occupy very different places in the media world: Charlie Sykes, an influential conservative radio show host; and Sarah Ellison, a contributing editor at Vanity Fair. Jim Rutenberg, The Times’s media columnist, explains how it all comes back to the syringe.

Trump’s America  

Four of 10 voters are still squarely in Donald J. Trump’s camp. To understand who they are we turn to J.D. Vance, the author of “Hillbilly Elegy,” which has been described as the best explanation of Mr. Trump’s political rise. We’re also joined by the New York Times reporters Nicholas Confessore and Nate Cohn.

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