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Not Another Politics Podcast
45 minutes | 13 days ago
To Block Or Not To Block: Obstruction In The Senate
Does the ability for minority parties to delay and obstruct legislation force the majority party to only pass bills that are more moderate? It’s a question that informs much of our political debate around dilatory tactics like the filibuster. University of Michigan Political Scientist, Christian Fong, has a paper that models this question and argues that these delay and obstruct abiliities lead to policies that are closer to what the median voter may want. We discuss that paper, the filibuster and the possible strategies of Sen. Joe Manchin on this episode.
41 minutes | a month ago
What the Data Say About Voter ID Laws
There’s a lot of debate in our politics about whether we should have stricter voter ID laws. But both sides are having an argument based almost entirely on assumptions because data on the real effect of these laws are scarce. Not anymore. In a brand new paper, Stanford Political Scientist Justin Grimmer gives us a fresh look at whether stricter voter ID laws decrease turnout during elections. The numbers may surprise you.
45 minutes | a month ago
Why Democrats Should Move To The Suburbs If They Want To Win More Legislative Seats
This year the U.S. will go through its decennial redistricting process, which is resurfacing our national conversation around gerrymandering. But Stanford Professor of Political Science, Jonathan Rodden, says gerrymandering isn't the least of our problems when it comes to the politics of geography. In his book, "Why Cities Lose", Rodden illustrates how we can still end up with minority majority rule, regardless of gerrymandering, due to the urban-rural divide. So, if the Democrats want to win more legislative seats, should they move to the suburbs?
41 minutes | 2 months ago
The Institutional Racism Of Land-Use Regulation
Is there anything more boring than land-use regulation? Not quite. As our guest today argues, these seemingly banal policies could be causing modern-day segregation. In a new paper, Jessica Trounstine, chair of the political science department a the University of California Merced, makes a strong case for why land-use policies aren’t as race-neutral as they seem, and why we need to pay more attention to them.
44 minutes | 2 months ago
Are Media Echo Chambers As Big As We Think?
We’re constantly told that we’re trapped in media “echo chambers”, that our media diets mirror our political leanings. But what do the data say? Is it possible that a majority of us have a much more moderate media diet than we assume? A new paper by Andrew Guess, Assistant Professor of Politics at Princeton, provides a completely unique data set that complicates our assumptions about America’s “echo chambers” and media diets. Paper: https://csdp.princeton.edu/publications/almost-everything-moderation-new-evidence-americans-online-media-diets
47 minutes | 3 months ago
Nationalized Elections, The End Of Local News, And Government Accountability
When was the last time you voted split-ticket in an election? It may not be surprising to hear that our elections have become increasingly nationalized in the last few decades. Most people vote for a single party straight down the ballot. The question is, why? Daniel Moskowitz, Assistant Professor of Political Science at the Harris School of Public Policy, says the answer may be the massive reduction of local news. On this episode, we speak with Moskowitz about why nationalized elections are a problem, the key role of local news, and what we might do to fix things. Paper: https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/american-political-science-review/article/local-news-information-and-the-nationalization-of-us-elections/4AEEA64CB7EC2CF384434AB0482E63F4
35 minutes | 3 months ago
A New Theory of Political Scandals
Political scandal is a historically defining aspect of American politics. But, there’s been very little scholarship on the political incentives that surround the production and consequences of scandals. In a recent paper, “Political Scandal: A Theory”, our very own Will Howell and Wioletta Dziuda create a new model of political scandal that makes these incentives clear. On this episode, we discuss how these incentives should reshape the way we think about political scandals.
35 minutes | 4 months ago
The State of Our Democracy, with James Robinson: Just Another Politics Podcast
One of the defining discussions of the Trump presidency centers on the fate of our democracy. In the aftermath of his populist presidency, and as we transition to the Biden era, we’re wondering whether the future is bright or dim. There’s no better scholar to put this question to than the University of Chicago Professor and co-author of “Why Nations Fail”, James Robinson. We look forward and backward with Robinson to diagnose the health of our democracy.
54 minutes | 4 months ago
Do Americans Support Democracy As Much As They Say?
It’s an extraordinarily distressing time for democracy in America. The storming of the Capitol and the votes by some Republican elected officials questioning the results of the 2020 election have many asking what force could act as a check on these increasing anti-democratic tendencies in American political life? A paper from Milan Svolik, Prof. of Political Science at Yale, may hold some answers. He investigates whether the American public would act as a check on anti-democratic politicians, and reveals how much we truly value democracy when we’re presented with tradeoffs.
38 minutes | 5 months ago
Best Of: Are We Really Living In Separate Worlds?
It’s been an incredibly divisive year, and we’re constantly told we’re more politically divided than ever. But, as our team takes some time with their families for the holidays, we want to re-share a more hopeful conversation with you that sheds some new light on these seemingly unbridgeable divides in our country. We hope you enjoy it, and we’ll be bringing you brand new episodes after the holiday.
44 minutes | 5 months ago
Do Government Programs Get People More Involved In Politics?
It’s long been thought in political science that giving people resources through government programs will get them more involved in politics. But this has always been a difficult question to answer in a controlled environment. That is until the 2008 Medicaid expansion in Oregon. There was an extensive research initiative done on the roll out of that expansion, and our boss and the Dean of the Harris School of Public Policy, Katherine Baicker, was involved. On this episode, we parse through the results with her to see if we can get a new perspective on this question.
29 minutes | 6 months ago
Presenting The "Big Brains" Podcast
This week, we took some time off for Thanksgiving so we're going to feature another University of Chicago Podcast Network show. It’s called Big Brains. On this episode, they spoke with Professor James Robinson, author of the renowned book Why Nations Fail, about his groundbreaking theories on why certain nations succeed and others fail as well as the future of America’s institutions. We hope you enjoy and we’ll see you soon for a new episode of Not Another Politics Podcast.
44 minutes | 6 months ago
The Politics Of Distraction
Most of America, and a lot of the world, has been singularly focused on the U.S. presidential election. With so much media attention on this one event, could foreign actors be taking advantage of this moment to do unpopular things? In a new paper, economist Ruben Durante from the University of Pompeu Fabra argues that politicians strategically time controversial actions with major news events, when the United States is most distracted.
42 minutes | 6 months ago
What Just Happened?
Last week, the American people elected Joe Biden to be the forty-sixth president of the United States. This was an incredibly contentious and complex election. We decided to get together to try and make sense of what just happened. On this episode, we discuss what message the historic turn out, for both candidates, sends about Trumpism and the increasing left-wing of the Democratic party, why the polls got everything so wrong, again, and what a Biden Presidency will look like given the likelihood of a divided government.
38 minutes | 7 months ago
Reining In The Supreme Court
The appointment of Amy Coney Barrett would make the Supreme Court more conservative than it has been in decades. Importantly, it also would be more conservative than the majority of the public. But one piece of political science research suggests that an out-of-step Court will not simply have its way in the years ahead. Judges like to present themselves as arbiters of the law, free from the entanglements of politics. But work from Tom Clark, Professor of Political Science at Emory University, calls that idea into question, and shows why our new conservative Court may still follow public opinion.
37 minutes | 7 months ago
The Vice Presidential Debate: Just Another Politics Podcast
On this second edition of the "Just Another Politics Podcast Special", we decide to join our fellow political podcasts in sitting back in our armchairs and sharing our thoughts on the first Presidential debate. The day after the Vice Presidential debate, we recorded a response to what happened and what we think its affect on the 2020 election could be. We think this insightful conversation is worth sharing with you, even if it breaks our usual format. Don't worry, we'll be back next episode with serious-minded research and science that looks at our politics and political system!
29 minutes | 7 months ago
The Debate: Just Another Politics Podcast
On this "Just Another Politics Podcast Special", we decide to join our fellow political podcasts in sitting back in our armchairs and sharing our thoughts on the first Presidential debate. The day after the debate, we recorded a response to what happened and what we think its affect on the 2020 election could be. We think this insightful conversation is worth sharing with you, even if it breaks our usual format. Don't worry, we'll be back next episode with serious-minded research and science that looks at our politics and political system!
44 minutes | 8 months ago
How To Really “Get Out The Vote”
Every Presidential election, we talk about “getting out the vote”. But what really works and what doesn’t in terms of getting people to go to the polls? And how will the coronavirus pandemic alter those efforts? We speak to one political scientist who has conducted more studies into “get out the vote” campaigns than any other. Professor Donald Green from Columbia University shares his research about what works in terms of getting out the vote, and how we expect things to be different this years due to COVID-19.
43 minutes | 8 months ago
October Surprises and the 2020 Election
We’re heading into the homestretch of the 2020 election and, as October draws near, we want to take a research focused look at the famed “October Surprise.” It’s a political notion that says, if you want to damage a presidential candidate with a political bombshell you’ve discovered, you should wait until just before the election to release the accusations. But why should candidates wait? What do October Surprises reveal about the politics of scandal? And what can voters can infer from them? A paper by Gabriele Gratton, a professor at The University of New South Wales in Australia, gives counter intuitive insights into when you should drop a bombshell if you want to cause the maximum amount of damage to your political opponent. We discuss how this research could change the way we view “October surprises” and the 2020 election. Link to paper: http://www.restud.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/MS23024manuscript.pdf
47 minutes | 9 months ago
Discrimination: Why Women Outperform Men in Congress
In November, Kamala Harris could be elected the first woman to ever serve as president or vice president. Why are women so underrepresented in the highest levels of government? And what does this imply about the women who do reach those levels? In this episode, we discuss a paper from Professors Christopher Berry at the University of Chicago and Sarah Anzia at UC Berkeley that attempts to indirectly assess discrimination against women in the electoral process by testing whether the women who are elected perform better once in office. We discuss their study, alternative explanations of their findings, and implications for the 2020 presidential election and a potential Biden-Harris administration. Link to paper: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1540-5907.2011.00512.x
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