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Why 1920 can offer clues about the 2020 elections

In 1920, as Americans were preparing to choose their next president, the country — just out of World War I — was still reeling from a flu pandemic that killed nearly 700,000 Americans, recovering from a sharp economic recession and grappling with riots resulting from violence against Black people. Today, the coronavirus pandemic has set the stage for unprecedented party conventions — but the issues and the political divisions the country is facing now echo many of those that existed 100 years ago. In this episode, as Democrats and Republicans prepare for their party conventions, Yale University professor Beverly Gage walks us through how the political tradition has changed since 1920, what promises politicians made then and what questions we face now.

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