Big-Money Race Foreseen as a Pritzker Eyes a Kennedy in Illinois

Sanford School professor Nicholas Carnes called the brewing Illinois governor’s race an “extreme example” in a trend toward wealthier candidates. “You almost never see middle- or working-class people running,” he says. “It’s often the case that, in a primary election for a state or federal office, you won’t see anyone run without significant personal wealth.”

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How the Democrats Lost North Carolina

“If progressives are to win again, they need to learn from the mistakes and successes of recent national campaigns. Rural America is not one unified region with one cultural narrative and one political preference. In North Carolina, there are Democrats aplenty in rural regions, as Obama’s rural wave underscores. The good news for progressives is that there is a path forward,” writes history professor Gunther Peck.

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America’s New Opposition: The Left Reborn

“The mass protests in response to Trump’s policies, both at the women’s march and at airports around the country, in the last weeks show a sense of urgency and willingness to fight for robust legal equality and inclusiveness. At the very moment when establishment politics have been severely undermined — the GOP hijacked by Trump, the Democrats confounded by Hillary Clinton’s loss — the American left has been reborn,” writes law professor Jedediah Purdy.

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Higher Legislative Pay Just Gets You Richer Lawmakers

The Duke study found states that pay lawmakers more still have legislatures dominated by white-collar professionals. “Reformers argue higher pay … would have the benefit of increasing economic diversity in our political institutions,” said Nicholas Carnes, lead author and assistant professor at the Sanford School of Public Policy. “Our research shows this isn’t true.”

Read More in The State

 

Ideological Reasons Why Democrats Have Neglected Local Politics

For progressives, the goal is ultimately about working toward a society built on one unified vision of policy and culture, rather than a diverse array of policies and cultures. “If you’re confident that you can get the right answer to something, like health care policy, or welfare, or any number of very difficult social problems, it’s hard not to say that right answer should be equally available to everyone,” says law professor Ernest Young, meaning that progressives believe their “right answers” should be legislated through federal policy.

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Why I Got Arrested at the General Assembly

“We scholars evenhandedly weigh evidence — but as citizens we should never be ‘evenhanded’ about democracy,” writes Elizabeth Oltmans Ananat, an associate professor of public policy and economics.

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The One-Person, One-Vote Myth

William Chafe, an emeritus history professor, writes that the issue of race has been a continuing thread in our country’s history of voting inequality. “If in fact we believe in one person, one vote, we need to change our electoral system now!” 

Read more in the Portland Press Herald

The Working Class When Millionaires, Billionaires are in Charge

“This is not to say that business people are bad, or rich people are bad, but it’s important to recognize that everyone’s perspective and policy and government is shaped by the kind of life you’ve lived,” says Sanford School professor Nick Carnes. “If you’ve been rich for a long time, it’s easy to forget about the perspectives of those who don’t have so much.”

 

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Crazy Districts, Lopsided Elections

In the 2012 election, Democratic candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives nationally got 1.5 million more votes than Republican candidates but the Republicans emerged with a 33-seat majority in the House. Why? Because of gerrymandering. That’s when politicians draw voting districts to favor one political party or another.

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