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This category contains 11 posts

About that Pew Poll on Gun Rights

Pew recently published results of a poll showing increasing support for gun rights and declining support for gun control. The results are somewhat startling, and a bit counterintuitive (support for gun rights increased especially among black respondents), so it’s not terribly surprising that the poll received a fair amount of news coverage. Pew is one of the … Continue reading

Population Shifts and the Nationalization of Politics

Ashley Parker and Jonathan Martin’s A-1 story in the New York Times today makes an interesting argument about the nationalization of politics and its role in explaining Eric Cantor’s primary loss and Thad Cochran’s forced runoff. For all the talk about how partisan polarization is overwhelming Washington, there is another powerful, overlapping force at play: Voters … Continue reading

Annals of Bad Statistical Analysis

Nate Silver’s newly revamped site FiveThirtyEight has gotten its share of flak since launching, some of it more warranted than others. And I don’t mean to pile on; I think the site has great potential. However, this latest post by FiveThirtyEight’s senior political writer Harry Enten is so thoroughly flawed, it deserves special condemnation. Enten seeks to show … Continue reading

On Roger Ailes and Party Control of American Government

I much enjoyed Harvard historian Jill Lepore’s essay in the New Yorker on the parallels between William Randolph Hearst and Roger Ailes, but her sweeping conclusion that Ailes is less “kingmaker” than “entertainer” and “boogeyman” rests on rather shaky ground, empirically speaking. Lepore notes: Hearst died in 1951. Between 1952 and 1988, an era marked … Continue reading

The big business of being anti-gay

Yikes. Turns out there is a cost to coming out in favor of same-sex marriage equality: about half a million dollars! At least if you’ve staked your entire career on being a pseudo-centrist shill for the forces of intolerance. See tomorrow’s story in the New York Times about the reboot of David Blankenhorn’s institute for keeping … Continue reading

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