Democratic National Convention: Final thoughts

July 28, 2016 0 Comments

The final night of the Democratic National Convention (DNC) included a focus on Hillary Clinton’s fit for the presidency, with military leaders making the case for her readiness to be commander in chief.  As mentioned in a previous blog, the issue of national security is one in which Clinton has failed to gain a significant […]

Continue Reading »

Democratic National Convention: 3rd night highlights

July 27, 2016 0 Comments

Last week I raised the question of whether the harsh rhetoric on display at the Republican National Convention would effectively expand the electorate for Donald Trump.  At this point, the same question can now be asked of the Democratic National Convention. Like First Lady Michelle Obama on Monday night, Vice President Biden delivered a very […]

Continue Reading »

Democratic National Convention: 2nd night themes

July 26, 2016 0 Comments

Tuesday night at the Democratic National Convention differed significantly from the previous night.  While Senators Warren and Sanders drew sharp contrasts between the qualifications of Hillary Clinton and her Republican opponent, Tuesday night’s speeches were focused on Hillary’s strength and personal qualities. Former President Bill Clinton led the way in not only heartfelt praise of […]

Continue Reading »

Democratic Convention: 1st night recap

July 25, 2016 0 Comments

Going into the Democratic National Convention, the expectation was that there would be less emphasis on what political scientists call “negative partisanship” (voting against a political party rather than for it) in favor of a more balanced approach.   As I discussed in my previous blog, this was a major theme of the GOP convention last week, with […]

Continue Reading »

GOP convention recap: Fear and the electorate

July 21, 2016 0 Comments

Although there was some variation, going into the Republican National Convention the trend among polls was that Hillary Clinton had a slight lead but within the margin of error.  Within most polls, however, there was a clear pattern among demographic subgroups and most analysts agreed that for Donald Trump to win in November, he needed […]

Continue Reading »

GOP convention, 3rd night: Congress again

July 20, 2016 0 Comments

Two more prominent members of the United States Congress, Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, addressed the convention crowd on Wednesday night.  And like Tuesday night’s speeches from Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the focus was less on Donald Trump and more on Hillary Clinton, party unity, and the appropriate role […]

Continue Reading »

GOP Convention: 2nd night highlights

July 19, 2016 0 Comments

Outside of Donald Trump’s children, three of the most prominent speakers Tuesday night were Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.  Their collective messages were less about Donald Trump and more about the role of government and avoiding the alternative. Despite being the least popular branch of government […]

Continue Reading »

GOP Convention: 1st night recap

July 18, 2016 0 Comments

Two themes seemed to emerge from the speeches given the first night of the Republican National Convention: Donald Trump’s candidacy is about projecting strength and compassion. Every speaker, from Scott Baio to Willie Robertson to Rudy Giuliani to Melania Trump to Senator Joni Ernst touched on both themes, more or less.  Not surprisingly, Giuliani focused quite […]

Continue Reading »

What can the conventions really do?

July 18, 2016 0 Comments

According to the most recent New York Times/CBS News Poll, 54 percent of Americans have a “not favorable” view of Donald Trump.  The same percentage also express a “not favorable” view of Hillary Clinton. The numbers are even worse for both candidates on the traits of “honest and trustworthy.” Sixty-seven percent of Americans think Hillary Clinton […]

Continue Reading »

The minds of voters

July 9, 2016 0 Comments

In a Pew Research Center poll released earlier this week, Hillary Clinton held a 9-point advantage over Donald Trump in a head to head matchup.  So voters clearly prefer Clinton over Trump, right?  Not quite, as the data are considerably more complex than what appears in the headlines. Starting with the personal qualities of the candidates, […]

Continue Reading »