Episode 12: The Nuclear Codes By Civics 101 • Mar 2, 2017 TweetShareGoogle+Email What exactly does it mean when we say a president “has the nuclear codes”? Is it really as simple as pressing a button? And what happens after a president does order a nuclear strike? Retired Marine lieutenant colonel James W. Weirick explains. _ Tags: Civics 101 PodcastTweetShareGoogle+EmailView the discussion thread.