October 2020 Newsletter

Looking up at the columns and roof at the Northrop Auditorium entrance


As I’m sure you’ve all noticed, it’s debate and election season! Will the high profile debates between presidential candidates and their running mates make a difference in the election? Probably not, because most voters have already made up their minds about the candidates. Instead, debates serve to motivate partisans to turn out on election day. I spoke with WCCO last month on this topic as part of their Good Question series.

I’m not the only political science professor analyzing the upcoming election from all angles. Please join us for Views from the U: The Political Science of Election 2020. This pertinent conversation will happen on October 27 from 6:30-8:00pm CT via Zoom. To attend Views from the U, be sure to register.

Presenters and topics will include:

  • Kathryn Pearson on The Electoral Context: The Presidency, Congress, and Swing States 
  • Timothy R. Johnson on The Impact of the Election on the Supreme Court 
  • Howard Lavine on Why Policy Attitudes Don't Matter to Voters and Why That's A Problem
  • August H. Nimtz on George Floyd, White Backlash, and the 2020 Election in Minnesota
  • Andrew Karch on Redistricting, Gerrymandering, and State-Level Elections 

Under these most unusual and challenging circumstances, our graduate and undergraduate classes are going reasonably well. Students and faculty would much rather be meeting in person, but everyone is doing their best to make things work. You can read in one story we share below how undergraduate alumna Cassidy Drummond made it through a challenging semester and how our department provided her support. 

Please take some time to read all the stories of work our students and faculty are engaged in.


Paul Goren
Professor and Chair

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