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Thomas Frederick Vietor IV (born August 31, 1980) is an American political commentator and podcaster.He is a former spokesperson for President Obama and the United States National Security Council from 2011 to 2013. He is a founder of Crooked Media and co-hosts the podcasts Pod Save America and Pod Save the World. The official online store for Crooked Media and Vote Save America merchandise. Featuring t-shirts, sweatshirts, masks and accessories for podcasts like Pod Save America, Lovett.

  1. Jon Favreau Pod Save America Twitter

In This Episode

Multiple Trump officials agree to testify for the impeachment inquiry, Trump’s call with Erdogan leads to disaster in Syria, and the Democratic candidates prepare for their fourth and largest debate yet. Then Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ronan Farrow talks to Jon Lovett about his new book, Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators.

Show notes


  • NYT: Ukraine Envoy Says She Was Told Trump Wanted Her Out Over Lack of Trust
  • Vox: The former ambassador to Ukraine says she was ousted because of her anti-corruption work
  • WaPo: Why Trump can’t stop all witnesses from testifying in Congress’s impeachment inquiry
  • Esquire: The Latest Hero Exposing Trump’s Corruption Has a Name, and She Is Not F*cking Around.
  • Guardian – Marie Yovanovitch’s testimony on Trump cracks the wall of silence
  • NYT Op-Ed: Marie Yovanovitch Fought Corruption, Then Lost Her Post
  • WaPo: A local reporter grilled Mike Pompeo about Ukraine. He accused her of working for the DNC.
  • WaPo: Trump’s envoy to testify that ‘no quid pro quo’ came from Trump
  • CNN: Washington Post: US envoy to the European Union to tell Congress Trump relayed to him ‘no quid pro quo’ text
  • NBC News: Ambassador to E.U. to testify he doesn’t know why Ukraine aid was held up
  • WaPo: Gordon Sondland is about to blow a hole in Trump’s Ukraine defense
  • CNN: Trump’s former top Russia adviser to testify she was unaware of some aspects of Ukraine scandal, source says
  • NBC News: Trump’s former Russia aide set to give revealing testimony on Giuliani, Sondland
  • NYT: Subpoenas and Requests for Evidence in the Trump Impeachment Inquiry
  • Politico Magazine: The Russia Hawk in the White House
  • Politico: Adam Schiff says whistleblower may not testify in impeachment probe More:
  • Axios: House Democrats’ impeachment roadmap
  • Politico: Polo ponies and private planes: Trump impeachment fight deepens a rift among ambassadors
  • NYT: Giuliani Is Said to Be Under Investigation for Ukraine Work
  • CNN: Rudy Giuliani tells CNN he’s unaware he’s under investigation for Ukraine involvement
  • NYT: 2 Giuliani Associates Arrested With One-Way Tickets at U.S. Airport
  • WSJ: Indicted Florida Pair Known for Flashy Style, Claim of Trump Ties
  • WaPo: How two Soviet-born emigres made it into elite Trump circles — and the center of the impeachment storm
  • NYT: Amid Show of Support, Trump Meets With Giuliani Over Lunch
  • WaPo: Trump defends Giuliani amid reports of federal investigation
  • Vox: As the Ukraine probe heats up, Trump and Giuliani are sticking together. Mostly.
  • Politico: ‘Stop talking’: Trump advisers want Giuliani dumped
  • WaPo: Hunter Biden says he will resign from Chinese company board and won’t take foreign work if his father is president


  • NYT: Defense Secretary Announces Withdrawal From Northern Syria
  • WaPo: Deepening disarray in northeast Syria as Turkish troops advance, U.S. troops pull back and Kurdish defenses crumble
  • Daily Beast: U.S. ‘Withdraws’ Forces to Let Turks Advance on America’s Allies
  • Reuters: Exclusive: U.S. could pull bulk of troops from Syria in matter of days
  • CNN: Exclusive: Pro-Turkish forces cut off main road to Kurdish city of Kobani
  • CNN: Turkey claims its first town as offensive into northern Syria intensifies
  • CBS Face the Nation: Transcript: Secretary of Defense Mark Esper on “Face the Nation,” October 13, 2019
  • WaPo: Unswayed by top advisers, Trump doubles down on decision to withdraw troops
  • AP: Turkish invasion threatens to escalate; US orders pullback
  • WaPo: Trump faces bipartisan criticism for Syria withdrawal
  • Politico: Amid chaos, U.S. to pull last troops out of northern Syria
  • Axios: Behind the scenes of the Trump bluff that kicked off Turkey’s invasion
  • NYT: Syrian Arab Fighters Backed by Turkey Kill Two Kurdish Prisoners
  • NYT: The Kurds’ Prisons and Detention Camps for ISIS Members, Explained
  • NYT: Hundreds of ISIS Supporters Flee Detention Amid Turkish Airstrikes – AKCAKALE, Turkey
  • NYT: America’s Former Allies in Syria Team Up With Damascus Government
  • WaPo: U.S. forces say Turkey was deliberately ‘bracketing’ American troops with artillery fire in Syria
  • WaPo: Turkish-led forces film themselves executing a Kurdish captive in Syria r
  • Independent: ‘Civilians have become the fuel in this terrible war … to be consumed and burned’
  • NYT: Pullback Leaves Green Berets Feeling ‘Ashamed,’ and Kurdish Allies Describing ‘Betrayal’
  • WaPo: European leaders criticize Turkish offensive in Syria as U.S. accelerates pullout
  • NYT: 12 Hours. 4 Syrian Hospitals Bombed. One Culprit: Russia.
  • CNN: Trump and Mnuchin ramp up threats of sanctioning Turkey. Here are the facts
  • Axios: Lindsey Graham threatens Turkey with “most crippling sanctions” since Iran
  • US News: As Options Narrow on Syria, Trump Prepares to Drop Sanctions Hammer on Turkey
  • Politico: Lindsey Graham: Trump’s vow to sanction Turkey ‘a game changer’
  • Vox:Trump says he’s ending the US role in Middle East wars. He’s sending 1,800 troops to Saudi Arabia.
  • Slate: Trump Wants to Stop “Endless Wars.” He’s Making That Impossible.
  • NYT: Trump Orders Troops and Weapons to Saudi Arabia in Message of Deterrence to Iran
  • NYT: Trump’s Abrupt Shifts in Middle East Unnerve U.S. Allies
  • The Atlantic: Top Military Officers Unload on Trump


  • CBS News: CBS News Battleground Tracker: Warren extends lead across early states, New Hampshire and draws even with Biden in Iowa
  • NYT: October Democratic Debate: The Biggest Stage Ever
  • NYT: The Times and CNN Will Host the Next Democratic Debate in Ohio
  • Time: Everything You Need to Know About the October Democratic Debate
  • NYT: What, Exactly, Is Tulsi Gabbard Up To?
  • NYT: Democrats Will Hope for a ‘Bump’ at Next Week’s Debate. What’s It Worth?
  • NYT: Why Populist Democrats Have Gained the Upper Hand in the 2020 Race
  • Politico: Tulsi Gabbard’s return sets stage for debate fireworks
  • Politico: Dems are grumbling about crowded debate stage
  • ABC News: Bernie Sanders draws contrast with Elizabeth Warren: She says ‘she is a capitalist through her bones. I’m not.’
  • Politico: Buttigieg elbows Warren and Sanders on health care — and Biden too
  • The Hill: Klobuchar takes shots at health and education plans supported by Sanders and Warren
  • Boston Globe: Elizabeth Warren picks her battles as attacks against her increase
  • Axios: Warren overtakes Biden in RealClearPolitics national poll average
  • Daily Beast: Elizabeth Warren’s Rivals Start to Turn on Her
  • WaPo: The Democratic presidential field finds a new target: Elizabeth Warren
  • Politico: Giuliani bungling gives Biden a new punchline
  • WaPo: Hunter Biden says he will resign from Chinese company board and won’t take foreign work if his father is president
  • Yahoo News: Democrats don’t plan to attack Biden over son’s business during October debate
  • Bloomberg: Biden Camp Warns Rivals Off Attacks on His Family in Ohio Debate
  • NYT: Tiptoeing Around Hunter Biden
  • WaPo: Tuesday’s debate: A moment of truth for Sanders
  • ABC News: Bernie Sanders draws contrast with Elizabeth Warren: She says ‘she is a capitalist through her bones. I’m not.’
  • Politico: Bernie Sanders: Voters have a ‘right to know’ about my health
  • The Guardian: Bernie Sanders says he has no plans to slow down campaign: ‘I misspoke’
  • The Hill: Sanders ‘getting stronger every day,’ promises quick return to campaign after heart attack
  • NYT: Highlights From the L.G.B.T.Q. Town Hall, Where Protesters Took the Spotlight

In This Episode

The MAGA vs. Mitch McConnell battle heats up with Trump’s return to public life, Joe Biden and progressives debate how much student debt to cancel, and Texas suffers from freezing storms and rolling blackouts while Ted Cruz jets off to Cancun. Then Dr. Anthony Fauci talks to Jon about variants, vaccination timelines, and what he’s learned from this pandemic.

For resources about how to help those affected by the storms in Texas or get help, check out this Texas Tribune article.

Pod Save America Twitter

Show notes

Mitch and Trump

TwitterCrooked media debate live stream
  • The Hill: READ: Trump statement ripping into McConnell
  • Politico: Trump attacks McConnell in fiery statement
  • NYT: Trump, in Scorching Attack on McConnell, Urges G.O.P. to Replace Him
  • Politico: Johnson: McConnell doesn’t ‘speak for the conference’ on Trump’s culpability for riot
  • TPM: Ron Johnson Joins Graham In Bashing McConnell For Scolding Trump After Acquittal
  • CNN: McConnell’s plan to deal with Trump: Ignore him
  • Business Insider: Lindsey Graham says Republicans ‘don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell’ of regaining a Senate majority without Trump
  • WaPo: County GOP chairman in Kentucky calls on McConnell to resign from leadership over remarks on Trump’s responsibility for Jan. 6 attack
  • Daily Beast: Hannity Calls for McConnell to Be Replaced as GOP Senate Leader
  • United States Senate: Responsibilities of Majority and Minority Leaders
  • CNN: McConnell and Schumer reelected as Senate party leaders
  • The Hill: Trump to appear on ‘Hannity’ in wake of Limbaugh’s death
  • NPR: Trump Praises Limbaugh, Who Died Wednesday, As A ‘Legend’

Student debt

  • NYT: In Milwaukee, Biden Offers Reassurance, and Tries to Avoid Mention of ‘the Former Guy’
  • Politico: Biden focuses on K-8 in recasting benchmark on opening schools
  • WaPo: Biden indicates he’s open to negotiation on $15 minimum wage
  • CNN: Biden again rejects $50,000 student loan debt forgiveness plan pushed by other top Democrats
  • Vox: The debate over Joe Biden canceling student debt, explained
  • CNBC: President Biden’s executive order extends federal student loan payment freeze for 8 months—what experts say borrowers should do
  • NPR: President Biden Extends Student Loan Payment Freeze Through Sept. 30
  • WaPo: After Biden request, Education Department extends pause on federal student loan payments through September
  • Slate: Biden Says “No” to Democrat-Backed $50,000 Student Debt Forgiveness Plan
  • USA Today – Fact check: Student loan debt still exists, despite viral social media claim
  • Axios: Warren, Schumer double down on push to cancel student debt after Biden rejects plan
  • Bloomberg: Schumer, Warren Challenge Biden on Student Debt Cancellation
  • Reuters: Biden will ask DOJ to review his authority to cancel student loan debt – White House
  • Forbes: Why Biden Can’t Cancel Student Loans—This Memo Explains All
  • The Hill: Ocasio-Cortez: ‘The case against student loan forgiveness is looking shakier by the day’
  • CNN: Key Democrats unhappy with Biden’s reluctance to cancel $50,000 in student debt
  • Business Insider: Several top Democrats break with Biden and push back on his reluctance to cancel $50,000 in student-loan debt
  • NBC: Most Black voters support eliminating student loan debt, new survey finds
  • Vox: Americans want to cancel student loans — but not all of them
  • CNBC: Students lament Biden refusal to cancel $50,000 in student debt
  • The Cut: Biden’s Cowardly Answer on Student Debt

Texas / Winter weather

  • Bloomberg: Texas Power Crisis Is Getting Worse With Millions Left in Dark
  • AP: Millions endure record cold without power; at least 20 dead
  • NYT: Texans are still waiting for power to return, with more snow on the way.
  • WaPo: Live updates: Deaths mount, millions still without power amid new snow, ice storm
  • Texas Tribune: “We’re in it alone”: Power outages leave millions of Texans desperate for heat and safety
  • NYT: Texas Blackouts Hit Minority Neighborhoods Especially Hard
  • WaPo: Freezing temperatures and power outages hurt Texas’s most vulnerable yet again
  • NY Mag: Extreme Winter Weather Wreaks Havoc Across U.S.
  • AP: Crippling storm hampers vaccinations as FEMA opens new sites
  • Texas Tribune: How to help and get help in Texas as the winter storm causes power outages
  • Austin American Statesman: How to help, and what to do if you need it, during Texas’ historic freeze
  • Texas Tribune Analysis: Analysis: Working political angles instead of solving problems
  • Houston Chronicle: Perry says Texans willing to suffer blackouts to keep feds out of power market
  • WaPo: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott blames wind turbines, Green New Deal policies for outages. Critics call that ‘a lie.’
  • ABC News: Texas blackouts fuel false claims about renewable energy
  • WaPo: The Texas grid got crushed because its operators didn’t see the need to prepare for cold weather
  • Vox: Why the Texas power grid is struggling to cope with the extreme cold
  • NY Mag: No, the Green New Deal Did Not Cause the Texas Power Outage
  • Media Matters: How Fox News is exploiting Texas’ power outages to fearmonger about clean energy
  • The New Republic: Conservatives Are Seriously Accusing Wind Turbines of Killing People in the Texas Blackouts
  • The Hill: ‘I got no defense’ Ted Cruz admits in controversy over energy policies in California and Texas
  • Salon: Texas Republicans mocked California for blackouts. Now their tweets are coming back to haunt them
  • The Hill: Texas lawmakers’ tweets mocking California power outages resurface amid winter storm
  • Axios: Biden administration sending generators to Texas amid power outages
  • The Guardian: Kamala Harris promises federal relief for Texas victims of winter storms
  • The Hill: Biden speaks with governors of states hit by severe weather
  • NYT: A Glimpse of America’s Future: Climate Change Means Trouble for Power Grids
  • Politico: Biden gets his first energy crisis — and an opening
  • LA Times: Texas blackouts show the power grid isn’t ready for climate change
  • Bloomberg: Biden’s Plea to Remake Grid Gets a Boost on Texas Power Crisis
  • WSJ: Biden to Meet With Unions Pushing for Infrastructure Spending
  • NBC News: Biden prepares to move to next phase of his agenda with infrastructure push
  • Politico: Biden administration talks infrastructure — but not a price tag
  • WaPo Analysis: What Does a Green Grid Mean, and Can Biden Make One?
  • The Atlantic: I’m Freezing Cold and Burning Mad in Texas
  • WaPo Analysis: The politics of energy generation don’t always line up with actual energy generation
  • WaPo Opinion: Opinion: Insane GOP lies about Texas offer a depressing preview of coming climate debates
  • Texas Tribune: Texas lawmakers have denounced Joe Biden’s energy moves, but experts say they could benefit the state

Jon Favreau Pod Save America Twitter

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For a transcript of this episode, please email [email protected]