In the documentary, President Obama speaks to Vice founder Shane Smith about the fierce partisan fighting that dominated his presidency and divided the country. Featuring interviews with Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, former House Speaker John Boehner, members of the president’s inner circle and key opponents, Smith examines the rise of the Tea Party, the faltering of key congressional deals and the growing extremism that has left America more divided than ever.
“I could not be prouder of the work that my administration has done,” Obama tells Smith. “But there is no doubt that one of the central goals that I’d had, which was to make the politics in Washington work better, to reduce the knee-jerk partisanship, to elevate the debate – I haven’t accomplished that.”
Featuring archival news footage and interviews with politicians, policymakers and journalists, A House Divided chronicles some of the most divisive issues of Obama’s presidency over the past eight years through the eyes of both parties, including the 2009 stimulus package, the Affordable Care Act and a government shutdown. It looks at how these issues, and the battles around them, contributed to a political climate that gave rise to the candidacy and ultimate election of a non-politician and Washington outsider.
Vice Special Report: A House Divided is written, directed and executive produced by Smith. Josh Tyrangiel, Jonah Kaplan and Tim Clancy also executive produce. Beverly Chase and David Schankula are supervising producers and Alex Chitty and Jana Kozlowski produce.