28 May, 2014
The Causes and Consequences of Political Polarization - Pacific Standard: The Science of Society
The Causes and Consequences of Political Polarization - Pacific Standard: The Science of Society: We also saw further evidence of Congressional polarization, with Congress increasingly hamstringing presidents of the other party and making it more and more difficult to pass anything. Frances Lee offered some interesting evidence that the Senate has become less about policymaking and more about messaging, as the percentage of Senate staffers hired to do communications work has gone from about zero to close to 50 percent over the past half century. We saw evidence that the Supreme Court has become more polarized and that the media are contributing to this as well. Boris Shor demonstrated that many (although not all) state legislatures are becoming more polarized, and I devoted my talk to showing how many reforms designed to lessen partisanship basically don’t work.