The Issue Is

40 Episodes

By: The Issue Is

Discussions and debates with top newsmakers about the most controversial and interesting issues impacting California, hosted by FOX 11’s Elex Michaelson and airing on several TV stations across the state.

Gavin Newsom on GOP Debate
Last Saturday at 7:50 AM

California Governor Gavin Newsom reacts to the second GOP Presidential debate, which took place in Simi Valley.

Dan Schnur, Lynn Vavreck

This week, Dan Schnur and Lynn Vavreck look ahead to 2024.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

Elex goes one-on-one with Democrat Robert F. Kennedy Jr. The environmental lawyer discusses his primary challenge to President Joe Biden, his thoughts on COVID, the growing immigration crisis at the U.S. Southern Border, family, misconceptions about him, and much more.  

Doug Burgum

Elex is joined in studio by North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum. Burgum, a Republican, talks energy and China policies, basketball, as well as how he plans to break-through in a primary field dominated by Former President Trump, currently leading the GOP race by a margin of more than 40 points.

Ro Khanna, Chris Matthews

Rep. Ro Khanna responds to concerns about President Biden's age. Political commentator Chris Matthews weighs in on Trump's dominance in the GOP Primary.

Bob Shrum, Melanie Mason, Toni Atkins

This week on "The Issue Is," Elex Michelson is joined by the all-start political panel of legendary Democratic strategist Bob Shrum and Politico writer Melanie Mason. Next, Michaelson is joined by California Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins.

Karen Bass, Steve Hilton

This week, Elex sits down with Mayor Karen Bass to discuss LA homeless crisis. Then, he is joined by Fox News Contributor Steve Hilton to discuss his efforts to save California.

Vivek Ramaswamy, Bret Baier

 This week on "The Issue Is," Elex Michaelson looks ahead to the 2024 Presidential election. 

Tony Thurmond, Katie Couric

This week on "The Issue Is," Elex Michaelson sits down with California's Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond to discuss education controversies across the state. Then, Michaelson is joined by legendary journalist Katie Couric to discuss the latest "Stand Up To Cancer" telecast, and the incredible advancements made in the fight against cancer.

Juju Smith-Schuster, Anthony Munoz, Marquise Lee

Clayton and Ellen Kershaw, Juju Smith-Schuster

This week, Elex is joined by Clayton and Ellen Kershaw and Juju Smith-Schuster.

Jen Siebel Newsom, Alex Padilla, David Ambroz

This week on "The Issue Is," Elex Michaelson sits down with California's first partner Jen Siebel Newsom to discuss California's efforts to address childhood mental health, California Senator Alex Padilla on his legislation to help workers from heat-related injuries, and author David Ambroz on his inspiring story of overcoming homelessness and foster care. 

James Gallagher

 Elex Michaelson is joined by State Assembly Minority Leader James Gallagher.

Marianne Williamson

Democratic Presidential Candidate Marianne Williamson joins Elex in The Issue Is.

Brian Goldsmith, Dan Schnur, Elizabeth Wagmeister

This week, Elex is joined by political analysts Brian Goldsmith and Dan Schnur to discuss the politics of crime in California. Variety's Elizabeth Wagmeister reacts to the SAG-AFTRA strike and the Hollywood shutdown.

Isaac Bryan, Jessica Naziri, Katie Roof

This week on “The Issue Is,” the newest power players in the worlds of social media and California politics.

Rick Caruso, Peter Hamby, Mike Murphy

Peter Hamby is the co-founder of Puck News. Mike Murphy is a longtime Republican strategist who has advised the likes of John McCain, Jeb Bush, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Former LA Mayoral candidate Rick Caruso also joins the show.

Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, Matt Friend

This week on “The Issue Is,” Elex Michaelson sits down with outgoing California Assemblyman Anthony Rendon to discuss his tenure as Speaker, his relationship with his successor, education funding, homelessness, and his future. Then, comedian Matthew Friend and his repertoire of spot-on impressions makes their big return.

Exclusive interview with Gov. Gavin Newsom

This week, an exclusive sit-down with California Governor Gavin Newsom. This, as Newsom to Southern California for a pair of events related to Pride month.

Rep. Barbara Lee; Tomi Lahren vs. Ethan Bearman debate

This week, Elex is joined by Rep. Barbara Lee as she discusses voting against the proposed debt ceiling deal. Also this week, a debate between Conservative commentator Tomi Lahren and Progressive attorney Ethan Bearman.

Larry Elder, Brian Tyler Cohen

This week, Elex catches up with Larry Elder and Brian Tyler Cohen as they both look ahead to the 2024 Presidential Election.

Chasten Buttigieg, Bill Melugin, Rep. Adam Schiff

Chasten Buttigieg talks about his latest book, coming out, the fight over trans rights and more. Bill Melugin of FOX News talks about his time at the U.S.-Mexico border and the end of Title 42, and Rep. Adam Schiff discusses the ongoing writers strike.

The Issue Is: with Elex Michaelson is California's only statewide political show. For showtimes and more information, go to

Sammy Hagar

This week on “The Issue Is,” an exclusive sitdown with The Red Rocker himself, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee and former Van Halen frontman, Sammy Hagar.

The Issue Is: Gavin Newsom on show's 5th anniversary

This week, “The Issue Is” celebrates our fifth anniversary. To mark the occasion, FOX 11’s Elex Michaelson is joined, once again, by the show’s very first guest: California Governor Gavin Newsom.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, April 28

This week on “The Issue Is,” an extensive interview with Arnold Schwarzenegger. California’s former Governor sat down with FOX 11’s Elex Michaelson at two recent events.

Mike Pence, Arnold Schwarzenegger, stars of 'Star Trek: Picard'

This week, one of the most star-studded episodes in “The Issue Is” history, an episode that takes us from the streets of Brentwood to the halls of power in Washington D.C. to the deepest corners of space, the final frontier.

Katie Porter, Apr. 2023

This week, Rep. Katie Porter joins The Issue Is to discuss her push to move to the upper Congressional chamber in 2025, in addition to her new book.

Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Congressman Adam Schiff

Elex Michaelson is joined on "The Issue Is" by Speaker McCarthy - the two talking at the Reagan Presidential Library shortly after the Taiwanese President’s visit. Also joining Michaelson this week is California Congressman Adam Schiff (D.).

Mike Murphy, Ro Khanna

An unprecedented week in American politics as Former President Trump was indicted by a grand jury in New York.

Karen Bass reflects on 100 days in office

With 100 days now behind her, LA Mayor Karen Bass discusses her progress, and lessons learned, in the fight against homelessness, as well as against rising crime.

Harvey Levin

Elex Michaelson visits TMZ for an extensive conversation on TMZ's new 9/11 documentary, the history of TMZ, the stories behind breaking the deaths of Michael Jackson and Kobe Bryant, 2024, and more. 

California storms and the 95th Academy Awards

This week on The Issue Is we talk about the recent California storms and potential flood dangers with Karla Nemeth, then the 95th Academy Awards takes the spotlight as Variety’s Elizabeth Wagmeister and Steve Mason, host of the “Culture Pop” podcast, join us to talk all things Oscars.  

John Kirby and Seema Mehta

National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby talks about the war in Ukraine, tensions with China, his storied career, and more. 
L.A. Times writer Seema Mehta discusses the 2024 California primary polling and the battle between Governor Newsom and Governor Ron DeSantis. 

Mayor Todd Gloria

Elex Michaelson sits down with San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria during USC’s Herb Klein Lecture Series in La Jolla.

Barbara Lee, Andrew Yang, Christine Todd Whitman

California is now just over a year from the all-important 2024 primary.

George Clooney

This week, an exclusive conversation with George Clooney.

In 2022, the Oscar-winning filmmaker helped establish the Roybal Film and Television Production Magnet School at the Edward R. Roybal Learning Center in Los Angeles.

The program, a public-private partnership aims to provide a pipeline to the film industry for students from underserved communities, has been described by U.S. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona as a model for the nation.

Following a visit to Roybal with Cardona, advisory board members Don Cheadle and Mindy Kaling, Second Gentleman of the U.S. Doug Emhoff, and other high profile...

Bob Costas

This week on "The Issue Is," politics takes a backseat, and sports reigns supreme, as Elex Michaelson is joined in-studio by legendary broadcaster Bob Costas.

Bob Costas, Feb. 2023

This week on "The Issue Is," politics takes a backseat, and sports reigns supreme, as Elex Michaelson is joined in-studio by legendary broadcaster Bob Costas.

Rob Bonta, Shane Harris, John McEntee

This week, Elex is joined by California Attorney General Rob Bonta, Democratic activist Shane Harris and former Donald Trump advisor John McEntee.

Adam Schiff, Gavin Newsom, Jennifer Siebel Newsom

This week, Elex spoke with Rep. Adam Schiff, who gave his first TV interview since announcing his run for Senate. Governor Gavin Newsom discusses recent mass shooting in California and First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom talks youth mental heath and gun violence during a visit to Santa Monica.