The State of the Union: Putting First Things First

February 13, 2013
State of the Unions.  What are they good for?  Absolutely nothing. Ok “absolutely nothing” is an oversimplification.  But as best political scientists are able to discern, presidential speeches in… Read More

The Ratings War: Does It Matter?

September 12, 2012
Nothing epitomizes the horse race nature of presidential politics quite like the conventions ratings war.  For example, Matt Drudge and Rush Limbaugh were quick to dismiss the DNC’s higher… Read More

The Veepstakes: What’s the Electoral Value of a Vice President?

August 11, 2012
A few hours ago, Mitt Romney announced Wisconsin representative Paul Ryan as his running mate.  It seems obvious that in picking Ryan, Romney is trying to solidify his position with fiscal conservatives… Read More

Rick Santorum’s Measurement Problem: The Religious Left

February 23, 2012
As our national dialogue pivots from jobs and deficits toward religion, birth control and politics, Rick Santorum has positioned himself at the center of said debate.  His claim that Obama’s… Read More

Polarization on Obama

January 27, 2012
Gallup reported this morning that Obama’s ratings are historically polarized. In the 60 years gallup has measured presidents’ approval and disapproval, Obama has received consistently higher approval… Read More

Congressional Salary = Congressional Disapproval?

December 28, 2011
Aaron Blake (aka The Fix) at Washington Post recently wrote about congressional disapproval with respect to member salaries. It’s an interesting take but I have a couple points to… Read More

Don’t Play With Your Food: Reconsidering The “Cracker Barrel v. Whole Foods” Meme

December 14, 2011
According to David Wasserman of the Washington Post, every presidential election has its cultural divisions: The 1896 presidential contest, for instance, is remembered as a battle between William Jennings… Read More

Sarah Palin Emails at an Eighth-Grade Level: Comparable to Obama’s First State of the Union

June 15, 2011
AOL Weird News conducted an analysis of Sarah Palin’s emails using the Flesch-Kincaid score.  The analysis revealed that Plain drafts emails at an eighth-grade level.  (The actual scores, according to… Read More

The Marginal Significance of NY-26

May 25, 2011
Much has been made of Kathy Hochul’s victory in New York’s 26th congressional district–a district that has elected a Republican since 1970.  Most observers have cited her victory as a… Read More

Where’s the Realignment?

May 24, 2011
It dawned on me today just how much America has gone through over the last decade. A major terrorist attack, systemic economic failure, credit freezes, massive failures in disaster response,… Read More