2019 Government Publications And Grants
Podlich Family Professor of Government, George R. Roberts Fellow, and Director of the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies
Appel, Hilary. “Are Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin Partners? Interpreting the Russia-China Rapprochement.” PONARS Eurasia, 2019, Policy Memo No. 603.
Abstract: How should the warming relationship between China and Russia be characterized? Without question, the areas of cooperation and collaboration have grown and are more prominently on display over the last years. While the relationship has yet to reach the level of a strategic alliance, Presidents Xi and Putin have highlighted if not celebrated their joint military exercises (such as the joint naval exercises in the Baltic Sea in 2017 and the Vostok exercises in 2018), their expanded arms sales and military technology transfers, and their numerous long-term investment projects, especially in infrastructure and energy. While there remain key areas of disagreement that limit for now the scope and affect the nature of the Sino-Russian relationship, there is nonetheless ample motivation to cultivate these bonds, as Russia and China's bilateral relationships with the United States continue to dwindle, especially in the context of a US sanction regime with Russia and US trade war with China. Moreover, Presidents Xi and Putin can be said to share the strategic goals of containing US interference in sovereign countries, discouraging US support for regime change in authoritarian states, and building alliances with countries falling within China and Russia's perceived zones of interest.
Appel, Hilary. Review of Russia’s Response to Sanctions: How Western Economic Statecraft is Reshaping Political Economy in Russia by Richard Connolly. The Russian Review, vol. 78, issue 2, 2019, pp. 359.
Abstract: The postcommunist countries were amongst the most fervent and committed adopters of neoliberal economic reforms. Not only did they manage to overcome the anticipated domestic opposition to 'shock therapy' and Washington Consensus reforms, but many fulfilled the membership requirements of the European Union and even adopted avant-garde neoliberal reforms like the flat tax and pension privatization. Neoliberalism in the postcommunist countries went farther and lasted longer than expected, but why? Unlike pre-existing theories based on domestic political-economic struggles, this book focuses on the imperatives of re-insertion into the international economy. Appel and Orenstein show how countries engaged in 'competitive signaling', enacting reforms in order to attract foreign investment. This signaling process explains the endurance and intensification of neoliberal reform in these countries for almost two decades, from 1989–2008, and its decline thereafter, when inflows of capital into the region suddenly dried up. This book will interest students of political economy and Eastern European and Eurasian politics.
William L. Ascher
Donald C. McKenna Professor of Government and Economics and Director of the Roberts Environmental Center
Barter, Shane Joshua, and William Ascher, editors. Internal Migration: Challenges in Governance and Integration. Peter Lang, 2019.
Abstract: Cases from Africa, Asia, and Latin America explore the challenges of governance to manage the severe risks of destructive conflict and other deprivations facing internal migrants and host communities. Internal migration, whether state-sponsored or not, forced or voluntary, is of greater magnitude in numbers and suffering, then international migration. the role of state actors, the international community, and the most direct stakeholders themselves are assessed through these multiple cases.
D’Souza, Lauren K., William L. Ascher, and Tanja Srebotnjak. “Renewable Energy on Tribal Lands: A Feasibility Study for a Biomass-to-Energy Plant on the Cocopah Reservation in Arizona.” Case Studies in the Environment, May 20, 2019,
Abstract: Native American reservations are among the most economically disadvantaged regions in the United States; lacking access to economic and educational opportunities that are exacerbated by “energy insecurity” due to insufficient connectivity to the electric grid and power outages. Local renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, and biomass offer energy alternatives but their implementation encounters barriers such as lack of financing, infrastructure, and expertise, as well as divergent attitudes among tribal leaders. Biomass, in particular, could be a source of stable base-load power that is abundant and scalable in many rural communities. This case study examines the feasibility of a biomass energy plant on the Cocopah reservation in southwestern Arizona. It considers feedstock availability, cost and energy content, technology options, nameplate capacity, discount and interest rates, construction, operation and maintenance (O&M) costs, and alternative investment options. This study finds that at current electricity prices and based on typical costs for fuel, O&M over 30 years, none of the tested scenarios is presently cost-effective on a net present value (NPV) basis when compared with an alternative investment yielding annual returns of 3% or higher. The technology most likely to be economically viable and suitable for remote, rural contexts—a combustion stoker—resulted in a levelized costs of energy (LCOE) ranging from US$0.056 to 0.147/kWh. The most favorable scenario is a combustion stoker with an estimated NPV of US$4,791,243. The NPV of the corresponding alternative investment is US$7,123,380. However, if the tribes were able to secure a zero-interest loan to finance the plant’s installation cost, the project would be on par with the alternative investment. Even if this were the case, the scenario still relies on some of the most optimistic assumptions for the biomass-to-power plant and excludes abatement costs for air emissions. The study thus concludes that at present small-scale, biomass-to-energy projects require a mix of favorable market and local conditions as well as appropriate policy support to make biomass energy projects a cost-competitive source of stable, alternative energy for remote rural tribal communities that can provide greater tribal sovereignty and economic opportunities.
Blitz, Mark. “Defending Liberalism through Thick and Thin.” Review of Thick and Thin: Moral Argument at Home and Abroad, by Michael Walzer. Law & Liberty, September 2, 2019,
Blitz, Mark, editor. “Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil,” by Leo Strauss. The Leo Strauss Center, 2019,
Blitz, Mark. “Platonic Beginnings.” Socrates in the Cave: On the Philosopher’s Motive in Plato, edited by Paul J. Diduch and Michael P. Harding. Palgrave Macmillan, 2019, pp. 39-52.
Blitz, Mark. “Socrates’ Failures.” Review of Glaucon’s Fate: History, Myth, and Character in Plato’s Republic, by Jacob Howland. The Claremont Review of Books, Summer 2019,
Blitz, Mark and J. Michael Hoffpauir. “Plato’s Political Thought.” Oxford Bibliographies in Political Science, edited by L. Sandy Maisel. Oxford University Press, June 26, 2019,
Bou Nassif, Hicham. Review of Copts and the Security State: Violence, Coercion, and Sectarianism in Contemporary Egypt, by Laure Guirguis. Perspectives on Politics, vol. 17, issue 2, 2019, pp. 601-602.
Andrew E. Busch
Crown Professor of Government, George R. Roberts Fellow, and Director of the Rose Institute of State and Local Government
Busch, Andrew E. A Brief History of Public Policy Since the New Deal. Rowman & Littlefield, 2019.
Abstract: A Brief History of Public Policy Since the New Deal traces the development of national domestic policy from the Great Depression through the early Trump years. A chronological look that illuminates the cumulative effects of policy change, the book also focuses on themes such as the interplay of ideas, events, politics, and people; models such as incrementalism, multiple streams, and punctuated equilibrium; the importance of foreign policy issues to the development of domestic policy; and features including the importance of problem definition and the "law of unanticipated consequences." Following the narrative, each chapter includes a summary of seven key policy areas: economic policy, social welfare, civil rights, environmental and education policy, moral/cultural issues, and federalism. The material is organized by eras identified by presidencies and by whether the era represented a burst of policymaking, made possible because key inputs of ideas, events, politics, and people aligned for change, or a rough equilibrium. Although presidencies are used to define eras, the role of all the institutions are given their due.
Ceaser, James W., Andrew E. Busch, and John J. Pitney, Jr. Defying the Odds: The 2016 Elections and American Politics, Post 2018 Election Update. Rowman & Littlefield, 2019.
Abstract: Now updated to include the 2018 midterms and previewing the coming 2020 election cycle, Defying the Odds provides the most comprehensive and authoritative account of the national election, including the presidential nomination process and election and congressional elections. With its keen insights into the issues and events that drove the 2016 election, Defying the Odds will be an invaluable resource for students and all political observers seeking to understand an election that was decades in the making and will continue to resonate throughout American politics for many years to come.
Camp, Roderic Ai. “Foreword: Memories of My Grandfather.” Surviving the Forgotten Genocide: An Armenian Memoir, by John Minassian. Rowman & Littlefield, 2020, pp. ix-xi.
To be published in 2020 but celebrated this year before Professor Camp’s retirement
Abstract: A rare and poignant testimony of a survivor of the Armenian genocide. The twentieth century was an era of genocide, which started with the Turkish destruction of more than one million Armenian men, women, and children—a modern process of total, violent erasure that began in 1895 and exploded under the cover of the First World War. John Minassian lived through this as a young man, witnessing the murder of his kin, concealing his identity as an orphan and laborer in Syria, and eventually immigrating to the United States to start his life anew. A rare testimony of a survivor of the Armenian genocide, one of just a handful of accounts in English, Minassian’s memoir is breathtaking in its vivid portraits of Armenian life and culture and poignant in its sensitive recollections of the many people who harmed and helped him. As well as a searing testimony, his memoir documents the wartime policies and behavior of Ottoman officials and their collaborators; the roles played by foreign armies and American missionaries; and the ultimate collapse of the empire. The author’s journey, and his powerful story of perseverance, despair, and survival, will resonate with readers today.
Camp, Roderic Ai and William Beezley. “Democratizing Mexican Politics.” Formal Interview, Jorge Madrazo, Attorney General of Mexico, 1996-2000, video-taped hour long interview for edited digital recording in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Latin American History, editor, Bill Beezley. Grant from Oxford University Press and the Mexico Institute, Woodrow Wilson Center, Smithsonian Institution, Mexico City, February 14, 2019,
Camp, Roderic Ai and Shannan L. Mattiace. Politics in Mexico: The Path of a New Democracy, Seventh Edition. Oxford University Press, 2019.
Abstract: Thoroughly grounded in Mexican history and based on extensive field research, this introduction examines the roots of Mexico's contemporary political culture and its democratic transformation. Now in its seventh edition, Politics in Mexico: The Path of a New Democracy has been revised and updated in order to address several major changes that have occurred since 2013, including the broad effort of Mexico to achieve a functional democracy; Peña Nieto's continued reliance on the armed forces to combat organized crime; an analysis of the 2018 presidential election and what López Obrador's victory means for Mexico; and the country's slow economic growth and the importance of emphasizing poverty as a central policy issue.
Koch, Lisa Langdon. “Frustration and Delay: The Secondary Effects of Supply-Side Proliferation Controls.” Security Studies, vol. 28, no. 4, 2019, pp. 773-806.
Abstract: Do trade barriers help slow the spread of nuclear weapons? Supply-side controls on proliferation equipment and material are often dismissed as ineffective because nuclear weapons–- seeking states can develop methods to circumvent the controls. However, these global export controls have important secondary effects. By creating barriers to trade, export controls force states to develop costly and inefficient methods that interfere with progress toward nuclear weapons development. Using case evidence beginning with the advent of the Nuclear Suppliers Group’s export control regime in 1974, I argue that the resulting delay and frustration can change leaders’ strategic calculations regarding the value of their nuclear weapons programs. These findings demonstrate that proliferation controls do slow the spread of nuclear weapons, both by delaying existing programs, and by decreasing the likelihood that leaders will make decisions to continue with, or even start, nuclear weapons programs.
Koch, Lisa Langdon, and Matthew Wells. “Do Americans Support Nuclear Weapons Because They Don’t Understand the Consequences?” Political Violence at a Glance, August 13, 2019,
Abstract: Last year we conducted a study with the polling firm YouGov, and results showed that learning about the real-life consequences of nuclear weapons can make a difference in Americans' attitudes about using them against foreign civilians. We presented our survey respondents with a choice: they could use either nuclear weapons or conventional bombs to strike an enemy foreign country that was trying to develop nuclear weapons that could someday pose a threat to the United States. When we provided real-life information about the suffering and damage that nuclear and conventional strikes would cause, Americans were significantly less likely to support the use of nuclear weapons. The survey respondents who learned about the human suffering caused by nuclear weapons also had higher levels of sympathy for potential civilian victims.
Lynch, Frederick R. “‘How Did This Man Get Elected?’ Perspectives on American Politics, Populism, and Donald Trump.” Review of Us vs. Them: The Failure of Globalism, by Ian Bremmer, Suicide of the West, by Jonah Goldberg, and The Great Revolt, by Salena Zito and Brad Todd. Society, vol. 56, issue 3, 2019, pp. 290-294.
Abstract: This article examines and compares three very different interpretations of populism and Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential election: Ian Bremmer’s Us vs. Them: The Failure of Globalism; Jonah Goldberg’s Suicide of the West; and Salena Zito and Brad Todd’s The Great Revolt. Bremmer contends populism resulted in the U.S. and other nations when ruling elites failed to respond effectively to globalization’s rapidly rising inequalities. Goldberg sees deep-rooted divides in classical political philosophy (Rousseau v. Hobbes) as sources for contemporary identity politics on the sex-and-gender obsessed left and on the nativist/nationalist right. Based on direct interviews and supplementary survey data, Zito and Todd construct varying typologies of voter groups who supported Trump. None of the authors recognize that populism’s future may be seen in California where the effects of globalization, immigration and inequality are most pronounced.
Lynch, Frederick R. "Prospects for Senior Power." GENERATIONS, vol. 43, no. 4, 2019, pp. 67-74.
Abstract: This article offers a behavior-social movement perspective on factors that might facilitate or impede “senior power,” a political movement and-or voting bloc, which, thus far, has been a latent force. The likely scenario for senior power’s emergence would be major threats to Social Security and Medicare benefits, in conjunction with a major fiscal-economic crisis. Factors inhibiting senior power include class differences, identity politics, a looming age-race political divide, shifting political party coalitions, and Medicare-for-All proposals viewed as weakening Medicare and Social Security. AARP’s voter mobilization efforts are examined.
Nichols, James H., Jr. “Preface.” The Concept, Time, and Discourse, by Alexandre Kojève. St. Augustine’s Press, 2019.
Nichols, James H., Jr. Review of Atheism, by Alexandre Kojève. The Review of Metaphysics, vol. 73, issue 1, 2019, pp. 142-143.
External Grant: Bradley Foundation Research Fellowships, 2019, $25,000.
Fellowships awarded by Prof. Nichols, on the basis of academic merit, to graduate students in political philosophy.
Pears, Emily. “Visible States and Invisible Nation: Newspaper Coverage of Nineteenth Century Lawmaking.” Journal of Policy History, vol. 31, issue 3, 2019, pp. 354-381.
Abstract: Researchers and the public alike have long recognized that in American politics visibility matters. To claim credit for policies, to recruit supporters, and to maintain democratic legitimacy, the lawmaking process must be visible to the American public. Yet little is known about how the public perceived the legislative process during the nineteenth century. This article uses systematic qualitative and quantitative analysis of newspapers in Baltimore, Maryland, Portland, Maine, and Charleston, South Carolina, to measure the comparative visibility of lawmaking at the state and federal levels between 1830 and 1880. The research demonstrates how analysis of newspaper coverage can be used to better understand public perceptions of state and federal lawmaking during time periods without polling data. The visibility of congressional lawmaking varied greatly from one state to the next, and competition for coverage between state legislatures and Congress remained strong across the country throughout the studied period.
Tom and Margot Pritzker Professor of Government, George R. Roberts Fellow, and Chair of Government
Pei, Minxin. “Beijing’s Credibility Deficit.” Nikkei Asian Review, March 22, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Bureaucratic Strategies of Coping with Strongman Rule: How Locals Survive in President Xi Jinping’s New Order.” China Leadership Monitor, issue 61, September 1, 2019,
Abstract: Chinese leader Xi Jinping has been attempting to transform the Chinese Communist Party into an ideologically committed, organizationally disciplined, and politically loyal regime. His efforts include enforcing strict discipline and curtailing the perks of officials. This attempt appears to be unpopular among the party's rank and file and has encountered various forms of resistance. Resourceful local officials have attempted to protect their interests and resist the leadership's efforts to strip them of the perks and benefits that until now they have taken for granted. Their passive resistance appears to be a serious obstacle to the realization of Xi's ambitious vision. Ironically, many of Xi's own policies, such as emphasizing ideological indoctrination and suppressing civil society, have made it more difficult to combat the subterfuge by local officials. The party's top-down approach is unlikely to succeed in converting ideologically cynical CCP officials into true believers, while local officials have no feasible means of forcing the top leadership to change course. This political stalemate is likely to continue.
Pei, Minxin. “China is Courting Disaster in Hong Kong.” Project Syndicate, July 13, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “China is Courting Trouble in Hong Kong.” Asian Nikkei Review, June 14, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “China Must Stop Fanning the Flames of Anti-American Nationalism.” Nikkei Asian Review, May 24, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “China’s Perilous Taiwan Policy.” Project Syndicate, January 11, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “China’s Risky Endgame in Hong Kong.” Project Syndicate, November 13, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “China Takes Growing Risks with Tough Taiwan Policy.” Nikkei Asian Review, January 16, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Chinese Communist Party Plenum Offers No Solutions to Xi’s Problems.” Nikkei Asian Review, November 4, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Chinese Leaders’ Beidaihe Gathering Will Offer Muddle, Not Answers.” Nikkei Asian Review, July 26, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “The Coming Crisis of China’s One Party Regime.” Project Syndicate, September 20, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Democrats need a China Strategy to Replace Trump’s Aggressive Policy.” Nikkei Asian Review, August 26, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “The High Costs of the New Cold War.” Project Syndicate, March 14, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “How China Loses Friends and Alienates People.” Project Syndicate, October 17, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Ideological Indoctrination Under Xi Jinping.” China Leadership Monitor, issue 62, December 1, 2019,
Abstract: The CCP under Xi Jinping's leadership has launched the most sustained and comprehensive program of ideological indoctrination in the post-Mao era. By issuing new rules and revising old ones on ideological education in the party, propaganda work, education, and patriotic education, the party apparently seeks to use ideological indoctrination to strengthen Xi's personal authority, demand strict political loyalty from its officials and members, tighten control in the mass media and on college campuses, and mobilize nationalistic support from the public. Although the program is being implemented through administrative measures, its reliance on coercion and material incentives belie the challenge facing the party to carry out ideological indoctrination in a highly materialistic society. This program reflects the regime's insecurity about the erosion of its members' ideological commitment and political loyalty. The backward-looking nature of the party's program of ideological indoctrination is symptomatic of its poverty of ideas, even as the party struggles to project a forward-looking vision. The outcome of this program is likely to be political ritualization and feigned loyalty that are more common in a regime in decay than in a regime undergoing reinvigoration.
Pei, Minxin. “The Lasting Tragedy of Tiananmen Square.” Project Syndicate, May 31, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “People’s Republic of China’s 70th Anniversary Demands Honest Reflection.” Nikkei Asian Review, September 18, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Resilience and Rebellion in Contemporary China.” Review of Out of the Gobi: My Story of China and America, by Weijian Shan, and Under Red Skies: Three Generations of Life, Loss, and Hope in China, by Karoline Kan. Project Syndicate, February 8, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Rewriting the Rules of the Chinese Party-State: Xi’s Progress in Reinvigorating the CCP.” China Leadership Monitor, issue 60, June 1, 2019,
Abstract: Since assuming power in late 2012 and especially since the conclusion of the Nineteenth Party Congress in October 2017, Chinese leader Xi Jinping has made significant progress in implementing a systematic program to rewrite the rules of the Chinese Communist Party. These changes are designed to augment Xi's personal authority, centralize decision-making power, tighten the party's organizational discipline and procedures, extend CCP control over state and society, and intensify ideological indoctrination. Even though Xi has achieved indisputable success in revising and promulgating nearly all important CCP rules, it remains unclear whether such changes in the rules have been fully accepted as legitimate and binding by the CCP's rank-and-file. Nor should we take at face value as a settled reality the assertion of Xi's supremacy in practically every revised or newly issued CCP rule book.
Pei, Minxin. “A Tale of Three Speeches: How Xi’s Speech Marking the 40th Anniversary of Reform and Opening Differs from Those of Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao.” China Leadership Monitor, issue 59, March 1, 2019,
Abstract: Xi Jinping's speech marking the 40th anniversary of reform and opening on December 18, 2018 recapitulates the substantial ideological and policy changes he has initiated since coming to power in late 2012. A comparison of this speech with speeches by Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao on the 20th and 30th anniversary of reform and opening respectively reveals significant differences in terms of ideological rhetoric and substantive policy issues. Whereas the speeches by Jiang and Hu adhere to the basic ideological and policy guidelines established by Deng Xiaoping, Xi Jinping's speech underscores his personal authority and political vision. Most significantly, Xi's speech emphasizes the supremacy of Communist Party centralized and unified strongman rule and China's bold and expansive role in international affairs. The uncompromising tone of his speech suggests that it is unlikely that Xi will make substantial changes to his domestic and foreign policies despite the strong headwinds both domestically and internationally.
Pei, Minxin. “Tiananmen and the End of Chinese Enlightenment.” Nikkei Asian Review, June 3, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “A Tiananmen Solution in Hong Kong?” Project Syndicate, August 12, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Is Trumps’ Trade War with China a Civilizational Conflict? Project Syndicate, May 14, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “The US Needs to Talk About China.” Project Syndicate, July 22, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Will China Let Belt and Road Die Quietly?” Nikkei Asian Review, February 15, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Why a US China Trade Deal is Not Enough.” Project Syndicate, February 18, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Xi Faces Unpalatable Choices on Trade, Politics, and Hong Kong.” Nikkei Asian Review, July 12, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Xi Jinping’s Annus Horribilis.” Project Syndicate, December 16, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Xi Right to Play for Time in Trade War with Trump.” Nikkei Asian Review, April 16, 2019,
Pei, Minxin. “Xi Should Accelerate Drive to Help Private Business.” Nikkei Asian Review, January 21, 2019,
Ceaser, James W., Andrew E. Busch, and John J. Pitney, Jr. Defying the Odds: The 2016 Elections and American Politics, Post 2018 Election Update. Rowman & Littlefield, 2019.
Abstract: This update takes the analysis of the original book through the 2018 election and explains why Republicans lost seats in the House but actually gained ground in the Senate.
Pitney, John J., Jr. After Reagan: Bush, Dukakis, and the 1988 Election. University Press of Kansas, 2019.
Abstract: Upon the 2018 death of George H. W. Bush, pundits and politicians mourned the passing of an exemplar of the statesmanship and bipartisan ethos of an earlier day. The judgment, though sound, would have shocked observers of the 1988 election that put Bush in the White House. This book analyzes a presidential campaign that few suspected marked the end of an era--or the rise of forces roiling our political landscape today. Willie Horton. "Read my lips: No new taxes." Michael Dukakis in a helmet, in a tank. Though these are remembered as pivotal moments in a presidential campaign recalled as whisker-close, this book reminds us how large Bush's victory actually was, and how much it depended on social conditions and political dynamics that would change dramatically in the coming years. A turning point toward the post-Cold War, hyper-partisan, culturally divided politics of our time, the election of 1988 took place in a very different world. After Reagan captures a moment when campaigns were funded from the federal Treasury; when Republicans had a lock on the presidency and Democrats controlled Congress; when the electorate was considerably whiter and less educated than today's; and when the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Soviet Union--and the subsequent rise of globalization--were virtually unimaginable. Many books tell us that elections have consequences. After Reagan explains how campaigns are consequential--the 1988 campaign more than most. From the perspective of the last thirty years, After Reagan shows us the 1988 election in a truly new light--one that, in turn, reveals the links between the campaign of 1988 and the politics of the twenty-first century.
Pitney, John J., Jr. Review of President Obama: Constitutional Aspirations and Executive Actions, by Louis Fisher. Perspectives on Politics, vol. 17, issue 1, 2019, pp. 256-258.
Pitney, John J., Jr. Review of Republican Character: From Nixon to Reagan, by Donald T. Critchlow. Political Science Quarterly, vol. 133, issue 4, 2019, pp. 778-780.
Karch, Andrew and Shanna Rose. Responsive States: Federalism and American Public Policy. Cambridge University Press, 2019.
Abstract: The US Constitution did not establish a clear division of responsibilities between the national government and state governments, so the distribution of policymaking authority is subject to constant renegotiation and debate. When national lawmakers introduce policy initiatives that implicate the states in important ways, why do state leaders sometimes respond with strong support and other times with indifference or outright hostility? Moving beyond the conventional story that state officials simply want money and autonomy from their national counterparts, this book explains how the states’ responses over the short, medium, and long term are shaped by policy design, timing, and the interaction between the two. Reaching across different historical eras with in-depth case studies of policies such as Superfund, the No Child Left Behind Act, and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the book shows how federalism has influenced, and continues to influence, the evolution of American public policy.
Rose, Shanna. Review of Conservative Innovators: How States are Challenging Federal Power, by Ben Merriman. Perspectives on Politics, vol. 17, issue 4, 2019, pp. 1188-1189.
Rose, Shanna. “State Legislatures as National Actors.” Political Science & Politics, vol. 52, issue 3, 2019, pp. 436-439.
Abstract: ;The role of state legislatures in national affairs has become both more prominent and more conflictual in recent years. Due to a variety of political forces--partisan polarization, the Trump presidency, Republican gains in Congress beginning in 2010, congressional gridlock, and growing overlap in federal and state spheres of authority--blue states find themselves both resisting federal policies in arenas such as immigration, tax reform, and marijuana and also filling in the vacuum left by federal inaction on progressive priorities such as the minimum wage and gun control. Meanwhile, red states are increasingly preempting blue-city policies--ranging from anti-discrimination to environmental laws--with the effect of helping to shore up the GOP's policy agenda.
Rossum, Ralph A. "Text and Tradition: Justice Scalia's Consistent Application of his Original Public Meaning Approach to Separation of Powers." Perspectives on Political Science, vol. 48, issue 1, 2019, pp. 24-32.
Abstract: In this article, I argue that Scalia consistently and objectively applied his original public meaning approach to preserve separation of powers, ruling both for and against the legislative, executive, and judicial branches when the text and traditional understanding of the Constitution required it. I focus, in particular, on his opinions in Morrison v. Olson (1988), Printz v. United States (1997), Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife (1992), and Plaut v. Spendthrift Farms (1995), in which he defended executive power and judicial power from congressional encroachments; NLRB v. Noel Canning (2014) and Zivotofsky v. Kerry (2015), in which he defended congressional power from executive overreach; Young v. United States ex rel. Vuitton (1987) and Hein v. Freedom from Religion Foundation (2007), in which he sought to rein in judicial power; and in Talk America v. Bell Telephone Company (2011) and Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Association (2015), in which he sought to reassert judicial power that the Supreme Court in general and he in particular had previously relinquished.
Rossum, Ralph A. “The Textual Jurisprudence of Antonin Scalia.” History of American Political Thought, Second Edition, edited by Bryan-Paul Frost and Jeffrey Sikkenga. Lexington Books, 2019, pp. 787-804.
Abstract: A substantial revision from the 1st edition, which included Justice Scalia's Supreme Court opinions through 2002; the 2nd edition included his opinions until his death in 2016. Much of the analysis and many earlier opinions were replaced with more recent opinions that were more revealing of his textualist jurisprudence.
Shields, Jon A. “Religion and the Marriage Problem.” National Affairs, no. 40, 2019, pp. 129-146.
Sinha, Aseema. “India’s Porous State: Blurred Boundaries and the Evolving Business-State Relationship.” Business and Politics in India, edited by Christophe Jaffrelot, Atul Kohli, and Kanta Murali. Oxford University Press, 2019, pp. 50-94.
Abstract: This book chapter presents new evidence and a theory to understand the changing topography of business-politics relationship in India. Such a theory helps us understand a dual movement: the emergence of a new developmental state as well as the movement of business inside democratic institutions even as India's political actors engage in numerous business activities. I argue that the Indian state has become more porous as business has moved into diverse institutions. Blurred boundaries characterize the new business-state relationships. Both corrupt and legitimate development activities take place in the shadow of this new porous state. I present evidence on the entry of business actors within legislative bodies, parties, independent agencies and many other public agencies to document this trend. New brokers, and agents such as business associations are key to this porous state. Politicians have also started to invest in diverse kinds of business activities.
Sinha, Aseema. “A Theory of Reform Consolidation in India: From Crisis-Induced Reforms to Strategic Internationalization.” India Review, vol. 18, issue 1, 2019, pp. 54-87.
Abstract: I use the policy feedback literature to present an argument regarding the new politics of reform consolidation in India. India’s reform trajectory can be understood in terms of three distinct phases of reforms interspersed by periods of slowdown. In this narrative that goes beyond 1991, an analysis of struggles, opponents, and reversals become important, revealing a more contested pathway. In the 2000s India has moved beyond the initial, crisis-driven phase to a deeper external integration with the global economy and structural reform within. I call this phase an era of strategic internationalization. Reforms of 1985, 1991, and 1998–2000, in different ways, have begun to create new constituencies of support across India, which underlies the consolidation phase of reforms. During this long trajectory, the opponents of reforms could delay reforms but failed to reverse the direction of economic reforms. The purpose of this article is to provide a temporal framework that pays attention to mechanisms underlying different phases of reforms and how new supporters and opponents of reforms were created across different phases of the reform trajectory. Policies, the social bases of the Indian economy, and classes have been re-configured as a result.
Sinha, Aseema, and Andrew Wyatt. “The Spectral Presence of Business in India’s 2019 Election. “ Studies in Indian Politics, vol. 7, issue 2, 2019, pp. 247-261.
Abstract: Shifts in the balance of India’s economy towards private production have re-opened a debate over the role of the business in its polity. Business interests have found new ways to influence the state at different levels and through multiple institutions. This article concentrates on the composition of the 17th Lok Sabha and its porosity towards business (around 28.4% of these MPs have self-reported business careers). A growing of number of ‘industrialists’ and entrepreneurs have branched out into a legislative career; they complement a fast-emerging group of entrepreneurial politicians, who already use their legislative and institutional location to develop business interests for themselves and their families. We find that the influence and power of business has become diffuse and central at the same time; it seeped into every aspect of the election campaign and voting process: political recruitment, finance, issues, and policies—in tangible and intangible ways. This spectral presence of business is shaping Indian elections, parties, and democracy and in turn consolidating India’s economic reforms and pro-business polity.
Wolford Professor in American Political Institutions and Director of the Salvatori Center for the Study of Individual Freedom in the Modern World
Thomas, George. “Donald Trump, Constitutional Ignoramus.” The Bulwark, October 16, 2019,
Thomas, George. “Fiona Hill, Alexander Vindman, and the American Creed.” The Bulwark, November 27, 2019,
Thomas, George. “How a Populist Destroys America.” The Atlantic, November 5, 2019,
Thomas, George. “Impeachment and Constitutional Rot.” The Bulwark, December 9, 2019,
Thomas, George. “Low But Solid Ground in the Struggle for Equality.” Balkanization, October 23, 2019,