"Manhattan is not America": Why filmmaker Alexandra Pelosi is convinced Trump will prevail


Documentary filmmaker Alexandra Pelosi explained on “Salon Talks” why stepping outside of her coastal liberal bubble has deepened her understanding around the issues that divide America. Pelosi’s new documentary, “Outside the Bubble: On the Road with Alexandra Pelosi,” premieres on HBO October 29 at 8 p.m. ET.

In a conversation with SalonTV host Dean Obeidallah, Pelosi described where her idea for the film began—inside her own circle of liberal-minded Manhattanites. “If you’re all repeating, at your cocktail parties, the same liberal chatter, are you really educated or are you just spending too much time at the Strand?” Pelosi asked.

With the goal of showing her kids what living in Trump’s America actually looks like, Pelosi set out on the road and filmed her conversations with Americans who live between the East and West Coasts. “If you go out into what Sarah Palin called ‘real America,’ you’ll find a lot more rational purple people that aren’t so red vs. blue,” Pelosi told SalonTV.

In “Outside the Bubble,” Pelosi stops at a coal mine to discuss jobs, talks climate change with Hurricane Harvey survivors in Texas, and goes to Charlottesville to hear the case for keeping Confederate monuments.

While Pelosi seems to have achieved the goal of showing a wider perspective on where America actually stands politically, when pressed by Obeidallah if there is any hope for finding common ground around pressing issues like climate change, she responded. “I wasn’t there to convert them to the liberal cause. I was just a documentary filmmaker trying to show you their perspective.” And it’s worth listening to them, Pelosi added, because, “You need their votes.”


This Salon Talks interview is hosted by Dean Obeidallah. Dean is the host of the daily national SiriusXM radio program, "The Dean Obeidallah Show" on the network's progressive political channel. Dean is also a columnist for The Daily Beast and contributor to CNN.com Opinion. He co-directed the comedy documentary "The Muslims Are Coming!" that uses humor to counter anti-Muslim bigotry and is the co-creator of the annual New York Arab American Comedy Festival. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook.


Photography by Jill Greenberg. Watch Jill's TedxTalk on the Female Lens and the problem with only seeing the world from a man's perspective. And find out more about Jill's initiative Alreadymade., a mission to hire more female photographers and content creators.


Subscribe to SalonTV’s YouTube Channel to watch SalonTV's live interview and music shows "Salon Talks" and "Salon Stage," airing daily at noon ET / 9 a.m. PT and 4 p.m.

More From This Week on SalonTV