The Lawfare Podcast: Freedom House on 'Freedom in the World'

Jen Patja, David Priess, Michael Abramowitz, Sarah Repucci
Tuesday, March 24, 2020, 12:00 PM

Published by The Lawfare Institute
in Cooperation With

As we witness democratic backsliding around the world, Lawfare is releasing a two-part podcast series on the state of global democracy. In the first segment, Benjamin Wittes interviewed Alina Polyakova and Torrey Taussig about “The Democracy Playbook” and strategies for fighting illiberal political movements. For this episode, David Priess spoke with Michael Abramowitz and Sarah Repucci of Freedom House.

Since 1974, Freedom House has compiled the “Freedom in the World” report, a comparative assessment of global rights and civil liberties that ranks each country’s level of freedom and identifies regional and global trends. And the results for 2019 do not look good.

David, Michael, and Sarah talked about the threat to civil rights in India and Kashmir; the ethnic cleansing of muslims in China; the decline of democracy even in traditional strongholds like the United States; the era of peaceful, non-violent protests across the globe; and recommendations for supporting burgeoning democracies overseas.

Jen Patja is the editor and producer of The Lawfare Podcast and Rational Security. She currently serves as the Co-Executive Director of Virginia Civics, a nonprofit organization that empowers the next generation of leaders in Virginia by promoting constitutional literacy, critical thinking, and civic engagement. She is the former Deputy Director of the Robert H. Smith Center for the Constitution at James Madison's Montpelier and has been a freelance editor for over 20 years.
David Priess is Director of Intelligence at Bedrock Learning, Inc. and a Senior Fellow at the Michael V. Hayden Center for Intelligence, Policy, and International Security. He served during the Clinton and Bush 43 administrations as a CIA officer and has written two books: “The President’s Book of Secrets,” about the top-secret President’s Daily Brief, and "How To Get Rid of a President," describing the ways American presidents have left office.
Michael Abramowitz is the president of Freedom House, a non-partisan voice dedicated to supporting democracy.
Sarah Repucci is the vice-president of research and analysis at Freedom House.

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