Inside the Episode: Richard Painter

I almost didn’t get to meet Richard Painter.

We had planned a 10 a.m. recording in my Center City office/studio.  I had some personal business in the morning, so I was getting a late start into the office, when I got a call from Mitch Brudy, our communications director and the executive producer of Good Law Bad Law.

“Painter just called,” Mitch reported.  “He has an interview with MSNBC he has to do and he wants to know can we do the podcast. . . now! He is on his way here!”

I was still a good 40 minutes from the office.  “Tell him I will be there as soon as I can.”  As best I could, I stepped on it.  But even taking the back roads, the morning commute can be such a pain in the ass.  And it certainly was this morning.

Mitch called back as I was slogging through traffic around the circle in front of the Art Museum (near the famous “Rocky” statue.)  “He wants to know can we start the podcast right when you walk in the door.  He will hold off MSNBC as long as possible!”

Now usually, I like to sit with my guest for a few minutes in my office and chat, get to know one another a little bit, and just broadly discuss how we will approach the episode.  There is no script and no practicing.  But the ten or fifteen minutes we spend together before the recording start often is enormously helpful in our establishing a good conversational rapport and also in helping figure out what we are going to talk about!

On this morning, I was going to have to wing it.

OK, not completely.  I was almost all of the way through Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury,” the sensationalist but riveting account of the first chaotic year inside the Trump White House.  The evening before, I had read all about the 25th Amendment and its never-before-tested provisions for removing a President in case of mental unfitness.

When I got to the office, Richard was ready.  And, really, so was I.  We had a great conversation on this enormously important topic.

I don’t think it comes across too much just how chaotic the morning was for me, too.  At least I hope not!

Enjoy the episode.  Share it with your friends, please!  And do let me know any feedback you have.  It’s always appreciated.


Listen to the full episode: