Diane Rehm: On My Mind


Diane Rehm’s weekly podcast features newsmakers, writers, artists and thinkers on the issues she cares about most: what’s going on in Washington, ideas that inform, and the latest on living well as we live longer.


Washington, DC




Diane Rehm’s weekly podcast features newsmakers, writers, artists and thinkers on the issues she cares about most: what’s going on in Washington, ideas that inform, and the latest on living well as we live longer.






(202) 885-1200


Tyre Nichols and A New Push for Police Reform

Mourners gathered this week in Memphis to remember Tyre Nichols, the 29-year-old Black man whose death at the hands of Memphis police officers reignited discussions about race and law enforcement. The Reverend Al Sharpton and Vice President Kamala Harris were among those who attended the memorial, and their message was clear: something must change in our nation’s policing. This week, Diane spoke with Paul Butler, a professor at Georgetown University Law Center and author of the book...


Richard Haass and an American ‘Bill of Obligations’

Richard Haass has spent his career thinking about the United States' place in the world. A diplomat and policymaker, he served under four presidents in both Democratic and Republican administrations. Since 2003, Haass has headed the Council on Foreign Relations, a think tank focused on international policy. In his position he is often asked about the greatest threats to U.S. security from abroad. Over the years his answers have ranged from nuclear war to terrorism to climate change. But...


Untangling The Lies Of Rep. George Santos

George Santos remains in the House of Representatives – for now. Questions about the biography of the congressman from Long Island, New York became a national story when the New York Times published a piece in December, exposing lies about where Santos said he worked, went to school, and whether his family was Jewish, as he had claimed. But it was actually a small weekly paper in his district that first dug into his background months before. Grant Lally, the publisher of the North Shore...


The GOP's Plan To Investigate A "Weaponized" Government

House GOP members launched a new committee this week to investigate the “weaponization” of the U.S. government. These lawmakers claim federal law enforcement and national security agencies have targeted and silenced conservatives. The committee headed by far-right congressman Jim Jordan has been granted vast authority to collect information in an attempt to prove it. Some legal experts say this sets up the potential for a major clash between the legislative and executive branches of...


The Battle For Speaker Of The House

An historic stalemate is playing out in the fight over speaker of the House. The last time it took more than one round of voting to fill the top job in the House of Representatives the year was 1923. This week Republican Kevin McCarthy has fallen short on ballot after ballot (9 at the time of publication). Democrats predictably lined up behind minority leader Hakeem Jeffries, but it was actually a handful of far-right GOP lawmakers who have thwarted McCarthy’s bid. They continued to...


From The Archives: A Conversation With PBS NewsHour’s Judy Woodruff

Judy Woodruff will step down as anchor of the PBS NewsHour this week. Her last show will be December 30. The veteran journalist first took on the role in 2013, co-hosting the program with Gwen Ifill. When Ifill died of cancer three years later, the network tried out several replacements, but eventually gave the reins to Woodruff to guide the show on her own. In May 2018 Woodruff joined Diane on On My Mind. They talked about her start as a reporter, the changing role of journalism over her...


From The Archives: Julie Andrews and Emma Walton Hamilton on Parenting, Poetry And Lullabies

The lengthy resume of legendary singer and actor Julie Andrews includes playing Mary Poppins, Maria von Trapp, and more recently, the narrator of Netflix’s smash hit Bridgerton. But Andrews is also a prolific children’s book author, co-authoring more than 31 books with her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton. The two first joined Diane in 2006 to discuss their book “The Great American Mousical,” which introduced young children to Broadway. In 2009, Diane interviewed Andrews and Hamilton about a...


Why America's Mayors Are Pleading For Action On Guns

The number of mass shootings in the U.S. has reached more than 600 for the third year in a row. Meanwhile, daily gun violence on streets and in homes across the country remains at near-record levels, with some cities experiencing higher homicide rates than ever before. As local leaders struggle for answers, many have come to the same conclusion: there are too many guns. Mayors from nearly 70 cities whose communities experienced a mass shooting released a letter this week, calling for the...


How The Drive For Profits Changed Hospice Care In America

Hospice in America has become a big business. The hospice movement came to the U.S. from England in the 1960s, promising comfort and compassion at the end of life. Today, half of all Americans die in hospice care. But what was once a mission-driven sector run by not-for-profit organizations has become a booming industry – one that some experts say too often prioritizes profit over patients. In a piece for The New Yorker, ProPublica’s Ava Kofman traces how this transformation happened. She...


Abraham Lincoln And Lessons For A Divided America

As Donald Trump’s presidency deepened social, racial and political divides in the country, people began to look to the Civil War era for lessons on how to move forward. Pulitzer prize–winning author Jon Meacham was one of those people. In his new book, “And There Was Light: Abraham Lincoln and the American Struggle,” Meacham chronicles the life of Abraham Lincoln, and the evolution of his moral principles and political leadership. Digging into history is a familiar exercise for Meacham. He...


Elon, Twitter And The Decline Of The Social Media Era

It has been less than a month since Elon Musk officially took the reins at Twitter. In that short time, there have been mass layoffs, advertisers have pulled back on spending, and some of the platform’s most prominent users have threatened to leave. But Twitter is not the only social media company experiencing upheaval. In the last year, Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta has lost hundreds of billions of dollars in value and cut more than 10,000 jobs. Diane spoke with Ian Bogost, director of the film...


The Midterms Are (Almost) Over. What Happens Next?

As ballot counting continues from Tuesday’s midterm elections, one thing has become crystal clear: this was not the outcome anyone had anticipated. The Republican rout that had been splashed across headlines for months never materialized. Democrats made significant gains in state houses across the country, and when all is said and done, might even have picked up a seat or two in the Senate. In fact, the question of which party will hold a majority in the House come January is also still up...


An Exit Interview With Dr. Fauci

Dr. Anthony Fauci is leaving his post as the nation’s top infectious disease doctor after nearly four decades. As director of the The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), he acted as a key advisor to seven presidents. In his position, he helped the United States – and the world -- navigate the AIDS crisis, SARS, the H1N1flu virus, Zika and Ebola. He was also a frequent guest on The Diane Rehm Show, whose list of appearances reads like a history of infectious...


Lessons For The Media In An Anti-Democratic Age

Margaret Sullivan started her career at the Buffalo News, her hometown paper. After 19 years as a reporter, she took over as top editor and ran the newsroom for more than a decade. In 2012, Sullivan became the public editor of the New York Times, turning a critical eye on the paper’s coverage and seeking accountability for journalistic missteps. In the heat of the 2016 election, Sullivan again switched papers — and roles. She joined the Washington Post as media columnist, where she traced...


Lies About The 2020 Election Hang Over The Midterms

A majority of Republican candidates and voters question the results of the 2020 election. What does this mean for the midterms and beyond? In the run up to November’s vote, New York Times political correspondent Nick Corasaniti’s reporting has focused on right wing efforts to shake belief in the country’s free and fair election system, and the threats those efforts pose to our democracy. He and his colleagues have examined public opinion, tracked candidate statements, and followed...


Tracing America's Long Debate About Reparations For Slavery

How can a country built on the backs of enslaved people compensate for past wrongs? That is the question at the heart of Andrew Delbanco’s upcoming Jefferson Lecture in the Humanities. Each year the National Endowment for the Humanities selects a scholar to give an address, an act the NEH calls “the highest honor the federal government confers for distinguished intellectual achievement in the humanities.” This year, on the program’s 50th anniversary, Delbanco, a professor of American...


The Supreme Court Kicks Off A New Term

The Supreme Court is back in session. The fallout from last term’s blockbuster rulings on abortion and gun laws continues to play out on the ground -- and in the courts. Yet, this week saw the kick off of a new SCOTUS term, one in which the 6-3 conservative supermajority is poised to deliver another set of opinions that could profoundly alter American life. This time, the cases deal with issues like voting rights, election law, environmental protections and the constitutionality of...


What's Next For The January 6 Committee?

The clock is ticking on the House Jan. 6 committee. With the midterm elections a little more than a month away and control of the House uncertain, experts are beginning to wonder what the endgame is for the investigation, even as Hurricane Ian postponed the ninth, and perhaps last, public hearing. By most accounts, the committee's efforts thus far have proven more successful than anticipated in both unearthing new evidence and drawing attention to the role of former President Trump in...


A New History Of Trump's Presidency Reveals Lessons For The Future

Susan Glasser and Peter Baker are veteran political journalists who closely covered Donald Trump’s rise years in the oval office. He as the New York Times chief White House correspondent, she as a staff writer for The New Yorker. Yet, the husband-and-wife team felt there was more to know – more the American public should know about what went on behind the scenes. The result is their new book, “The Divider.” They say it is an attempt to create a comprehensive historical record of the era –...


Is Ukraine Winning The War With Russia?

Could Ukraine win the war with Russia? For months it looked like Russia was waging – and winning -- a battle of attrition. But last week Ukrainian forces made dramatic gains on the battlefield, retaking vast areas of land, including Ukraine’s second largest city. And now some experts say this could be the beginning of a victory for Kyiv. Angela Stent is a longtime Russia analyst and author of “Putin’s World: Russia against the West And with the Rest.” She joined Diane to help explain...