Ron Steslow, a political strategist who hosted the Lincoln Project podcast, is launching a new podcast company called Politicology, promising “politics without blinders.”
Why is this important: His business could attract a large audience seeking to understand America’s troubled political currents.
The big picture: It comes amid a transition and crisis for Lincoln Project, a hugely successful anti-Trump advocacy group started by Republicans and former Republicans, which has raised millions of dollars for viral ads and memes advocating the election of Joe Biden.
- Sunday, the New York Times published a story that another Lincoln Project co-founder, John Weaver, has been accused of sexual harassment by 21 young men. The Lincoln Project disowned Weaver’s actions in a statement.
- Steslow and his co-founder Mike Madrid resigned from the Lincoln Project in December.
- George Conway, another co-founder, said he was taking a leave of the group in August.
Driving the news: Politicology will launch on February 3 as a stand-alone podcast on the same RSS feed on which the Project Lincoln podcast was previously available, according to sources at Axios.
- It will air twice a week, focusing on the social forces that contributed to the rise of Trumpism and the Capitol uprising on January 6.
- “It’s politics without the blinders,” Steslow says in a trailer played for Axios. “The storming of Capitol Hill was a heartbreaking reminder that the fight for the soul of our democracy is not over.”
- Steslow says in the trailer that he will speak with doctors, behavioral economists, demographers, philosophers, anthropologists, historians and poets for the podcast “to broaden our view of what politics”.
- Steslow is bringing some members of his production team with him, according to sources at Axios. Prior to joining The Lincoln Project, Steslow founded Tusk Inc., a political consulting firm.
Catch up quickly: The Lincoln Project was founded in late 2019. Its podcast, hosted by Steslow, launched in mid-June last year and was almost immediately a success. Its popularity has helped the group to expand its audience.
- As Axios previously noted, the podcast has consistently been rated one of the best podcasts on Apple in new and Politics. It recorded around 1.5 million downloads per month.
- “The Lincoln Project Podcast 2.0 has spent the last few weeks in production and we will be unveiling new episodes very soon,” a Lincoln Project spokesperson told Axios.
- “(We) view the podcast and our other verticals such as LPTV as fundamental parts of Project Lincoln. We will also be announcing an expansion of LPTV programming in the coming weeks. “
And after: Sources say Steslow plans to launch more series, which will require more staff in the future. The company’s website is politiology.com.
- The podcast will be available on all podcast platforms on the same RSS feed on which The Lincoln Project podcast was previously available. It’s unclear what the Lincoln Project’s podcast plans are going forward.
- When contacted for comment, Steslow said: “The number one question we receive from our listening community is, ‘Where do we go from here?’ Exploring the answers to this question is precisely the work that we are going to do together on politics. ”