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What Makes Us Politic

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How Small-D Democratic Should Our Political Parties Be?

We need to decide how primaries should work in this country before they get completely out of hand and the voters are left out entirely.

The Law Won

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Protecting Abortion Clinics in a New Age of ‘McCullen v. Coakley’

After the recent Supreme Court decision, clinics will likely have to turn to injunctions to keep protesters away, taking on the additional expense themselves or passing it on to those they serve.

What Makes Us Politic

primary-voting

How Can We Fix the Broken Primary Election System?

A look at the Bipartisan Policy Center’s comprehensive consideration of the issue.

Quick Studies

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Americans Want Elected Leaders Who Act on Climate Change

Members of Congress who oppose climate action are out of touch with most American voters. But they are in touch with the noisy members of the misinformed Tea Party clan.

What Makes Us Politic

bush-charleston

The Bankruptcy of Authenticity

Every presidential candidate is essentially playing some sort of role. That doesn’t mean that they’re lying.

Findings

mitch-mcconnell

Accurately or Not, Conservatives Perceive Themselves as United

New research suggests this impression of consensus can cut two ways, inspiring both activism and a false sense of confidence.

Sociological Images

vote-button

The Extreme Political Polarization of the Average American Voter

Today’s America is highly polarized, but the voting booth is even more so.

What Makes Us Politic

capitol-dc

What Matters in Mid-Term Elections?

It’s not that the Bowe Bergdahl story isn’t important; it’s just unlikely to influence voters in November. So what will?

The Law Won

supreme-court-gun-control

How the Supreme Court Just Green-Lighted Gun-Control Legislation

In a 5-4 decision, the SCOTUS blocked a conservative effort to overturn a law that makes it illegal to buy a gun for someone else. While the ruling maintains the status quo by preserving long-standing legislation, it opens the door for stricter limits on gun ownership.

What Makes Us Politic

cantor-obama

A Lesson From Eric Cantor’s Loss: It’s Time to Prepare for the Weird Stuff

Primaries are forcing officeholders into increasingly extreme positions.

What Makes Us Politic

liberal-gun-club

The Agony of the Liberal Gun Lover

Shunned by peers and bummed by the NRA: What it’s like to be left-leaning and gun-toting in America.

What Makes Us Politic

political-parties-networked

Political Parties Are Networks, and You Want Them on Your Side

Even a very loose network of candidates, activists, donors, and interest groups can exert a powerful influence over elections.

ProPublica

irs-building

Why Is the IRS Delaying New Rules for Dark Money Groups?

The agency has pushed back indefinitely a hearing on new regulations for social welfare non-profits that spend money on politics.

What Makes Us Politic

voting-rights-act

How Not to Close the Gender Gap in Politics

As long as the Republican Party resists the welfare state, it’s going to have trouble attracting more female voters.

What Makes Us Politic

us-capitol-building

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About State Politics

Hispanics are—and will continue to be—significantly underrepresented, open primaries attract more extreme voters, and other lessons from the 14th annual State Politics and Policy Conference.

Findings

first-born-child

First-Born Children Are More Likely to Grow Up Into Conservatives

New research from Italy suggests the effect is independent of the ideology of one’s parents.

Quick Studies

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Politicians Should Curse More

When used correctly, phrases like “pissed off” and “up shit creek” can signal informality and lead to more positive evaluations by potential voters.

What Makes Us Politic

colorado-denver-map

Fetishizing All the Pretty Districts

Creating nice-looking congressional districts can often undermine their far more important political qualities—but that hasn’t stopped people from trying.

Findings

female-politician

Even Slight Gender Ambiguity Is Costly to Female Candidates

New research finds women politicians whose faces are instantly categorized as female are more likely to win elections.

Poll Dancing

washington-caucus

The Case for a National Primary

With the way things are currently structured, most voters don’t participate in choosing the candidates that ultimately go on to represent them. But there’s a relatively easy fix.

What Makes Us Politic

capitol-building-dc

Why Polarize?

Why are state legislatures and voters both growing more polarized when it’s clear that almost no one gets into politics with the goal of driving the parties further apart? Presenters at a recent conference proposed some answers.

Sociological Images

woman-voting-vector

How Republican Women Are Losing Out in the Polarization of Politics

As both of our political parties move to the ideological extremes, Republican women, who, unlike their Democratic counterparts, tend to be more moderate than the men in their party, are being left behind.

What Makes Us Politic

political-parties

Different Parties, Different Cultures

Fearing bias, and because the differences are difficult to measure with reliability, most—but not all—political scientists shy away from describing the cultural differences between Democrats and Republicans.

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For Charitable Products, Sex Doesn’t Sell

Sexy women may turn heads, but for pro-social and charitable products, they won't change minds.

Carbon Taxes Really Do Work

A new study shows that taxing carbon dioxide emissions could actually work to reduce greenhouse gases without any negative effects on employment and revenues.

Savor Good Times, Get Through the Bad Ones—With Categories

Ticking off a category of things to do can feel like progress or a fun time coming to an end.

How to Build a Better Election

Elimination-style voting is harder to fiddle with than majority rule.

Do Conspiracy Theorists Feed on Unsuspecting Internet Trolls?

Not literally, but debunkers and satirists do fuel conspiracy theorists' appetites.

The Big One

One in three drivers in Brooklyn's Park Slope—at certain times of day—is just looking for parking. The same goes for drivers in Manhattan's SoHo. September/October 2014 new-big-one-3

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