Jeffrey E. Cohen, Ph.D. – Professor of Political Science at Fordham University
Thursday October 4, 2012, 4:30-6 p.m.
Sponsored by the Center for Policy Studies at Case Western Reserve University
When an incumbent is running, presidential elections are primarily – normally – referenda on the incumbent’s performance. Knowing this, the logical incentive for the out-party is to try to ensure that the incumbent president fails. Some observers believe congressional Republicans and their allies outside Congress have followed this logic over the past four years.
Yet discussions of this pattern often treat it with surprise – as if partisanship in the past was not so extreme. Republicans would reply that the charge itself is extreme partisanship. Either way, there is a sense that partisan conflict has burst some bounds. If so, what does that tell us about what Presidents can accomplish? Would the answer be the same for a President Romney as for President Obama?
The Department of Political Science is very pleased to welcome one of the nation’s leading scholars of the Presidency to discuss one of the most basic issues about its future. There is good reason to believe the U.S. has a new party system. How can the Presidency fit into it, with what consequences?