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U.S. Politics & Public Policy

Volume 132 - Number 1 - Spring 2017

When Do the Rich Win?
J. ALEXANDER BRANHAM, STUART N. SOROKA, and Christopher Wlezien examine the influence of economic “haves” and “have-nots” on public policy decisions in the United States. They and that the middle class, the rich, and the poor almost always agree on policies. When they disagree, the rich win only slightly more often. They conclude that the rich may matter more than they seemingly should but they do not dominate policymaking.


 

Volume 132 - Number 1 - Spring 2017

The Triumph of Polarized Partisanship in 2016: Donald Trump’s Improbable Victory
Gary C. Jacobson discusses the reasons Donald Trump’s victory was so improbable, considers why he won anyway, and speculates about what this portends for national politics going forward. He also analyzes the 2016 congressional elections. He finds them, by comparison, uneventful, but with results that confirm the thoroughly partisan, president-centered, and polarized nature of contemporary American electoral politics.


 

Volume 131 - Number 4 - Winter 2016–17

Presidential Signing Statements and Lawmaking Credit
KEVIN EVANS and BRYAN MARSHALL analyze “signing statements” from John F. Kennedy to George W. Bush and find that presidents are more likely to give credit to members of Congress for legislative accomplishments when political conditions make bill passage difficult. They show that presidents strategically share credit with key coalition members, party leaders, co-partisans, and senators in order to support their coalition and party-building needs in Congress.


 

Volume 131 - Number 4 - Winter 2016–17

The Future of Transboundary Water Conflicts
Miroslav Nincic and MATTHEW WEISS argue that conflict over access to fresh water could threaten the future of international security. They examine conditions under which such conflict may arise in the Middle East and South Asia. The authors identify countries most at risk for water-related conflict and propose policy recommendations to mitigate for these risks.


 

Volume 131 - Number 3 - Fall 2016

The Steady Leadership of George H.W. Bush: A Review Essay of Destiny and Power
Meena Bose reviews Jon Meacham’s biography Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush. She finds that Bush’s diplomatic expertise and collegial leadership style raise important questions about the role of the presidency in the American political system.


 

Volume 131 - Number 3 - Fall 2016

The Impact of Voter Fraud Claims on Voter Registration Reform Legislation
MARGARET GROARKE examines the impact that claims of voter fraud has had on three cases of voter registration reforms in the United States. She argues that the opposition that these legislative efforts faced is best understood as a partisan strategy to redistribute the electorate.


 

Volume 131 - Number 3 - Fall 2016

Democracy, Elite Bias, and Redistribution in Latin America
VICTOR MENALDO discusses the effects of democracy on redistribution in Latin America. He challenges the view that democratization has been a credible commitment to redistribution in the region. He argues that redistribution is unlikely if authoritarian elites can manipulate the rules of the democratic game.


 

Volume 131 - Number 1 - Spring 2016

The Geographies of Economic Voting in Presidential and Congressional Elections
Jordan M. Ragusa and MATTHEW TARPEY look at whether local economic conditions affect voting behavior in the United States. They argue that economic voting is principally a national phenomenon, with variation in the national unemployment rate having robust effects in both presidential and congressional elections.


 

Volume 130 - Number 4 - Winter 2015-16

Does Strategic Planning Matter? The Outcomes of U.S. National Security Reviews
Jordan Tama examines the outcomes of U.S. strategic reviews in the area of national security. He finds that reviews rarely generate major strategic change without an external shock and direct presidential involvement. But quadrennial reviews by government agencies can still serve as valuable tools for leading and managing complex bureaucracies. 


 

Volume 130 - Number 4 - Winter 2015-16

Language Dominance, Bilingualism, and Latino Political Participation in the United States
Rodolfo O. de la Garza and Alan Yang analyze voting and political participation patterns of the Latino electorate in the United States. They find that Latino bilinguals and the Spanish dominant live in environments that provide them access to more and different information than English dominant Latinos. They argue that this results in their having equal or higher rates of participation and voting. 


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