Who Has the Ear of Your Legislators and Why They Can’t Seem to Get Anything Done

We’re six months away from one of the most consequential midterm elections in modern history, and Americans are fed up with Congress. Politicians have gotten a bad rap throughout history, but today’s legislators are setting record lows in approval ratings and public trust. What gives? Why do they disappoint us so often? Are they really ignoring our needs and demands, or are we misunderstanding the challenges they face?

In this episode, Sarah Anderson shows that it’s a little of both: politicians don’t listen to all constituents equally, but they also can’t just snap their fingers and fulfill our wishes.

To listen to this episode of Our American Discourse, click the arrow in the player here. Or  download it and subscribe through ApplePodcastsSoundcloudGoogle Play,  Stitcher, or your favorite podcasting app – click the links or search “usc bedrosian.”

PIPE* Workshop: John Matsusaka, USC Marshall School of Business

The Power of Economic Interests Under Direct versus Representative Democracy The power of economic interest groups to influence policy outcomes is a common theme in economics and political science. Most theories posit that interest group power arises from the ability to influence elected or appointed government officials, that is, by exploiting the representative part of democracy.…

PIPE* Workshop: Steven Liao, UCRiverside

PIPE* Workshop: Steven Liao, UCRiverside
Tuesday, January 23 at 12:00pm to 1:30pm

 RSVP for location

Foreign Real Estate Investment and Incumbent Party Support in the U.S.

Few economic issues affect people as personally and universally as housing. Yet despite the increasing globalization of housing markets, little is known about its effect on political behavior. This study explores how Chinese investments in U.S. residential property shaped support for the incumbent party.

PIPE* Workshop: Thad Kousser, UC San Diego

Life, Literacy, and The Pursuit of Prosperity: Party Competition & Policy Outcomes in 50 States About the Talk: We examine whether strenuous party competition promotes economic development and improves social outcomes, drawing on evidence from the 50 American states over the last century. Our evidence includes data on party competition, state spending, and measures of health, education, and prosperity, drawn…

Let Every Voice Be Heard: How to Elevate the Public Debate in 2018

Our American Discourse is a small piece of a big effort. We’re not the only ones trying to raise the level of public debate in this country. Take a walk through the Price School, and you’ll see room after room of scholars who genuinely care about the public interest. Stop at the Bedrosian Center, and you’ll find the people who have taken it upon themselves to engage directly with the public. That’s where I spend most of my days on campus, and it’s where I want to take you today to meet the leader who makes it all happen…

To listen to this episode of Our American Discourse, click the arrow in the player here. Or download it and subscribe through ApplePodcastsSoundcloud, or Google Play,  Stitcher, or your favorite podcasting app – click the links or search “usc bedrosian.”

How the Senate Can Beat Gridlock—and Why That’s Not Always a Good Thing

Americans are fed up with gridlock in Congress, one of the least popular institutions in the country. You might think the solution is for legislators to pass major legislation. But what if the solution is even more controversial than the problem? If you’ve heard of “budget reconciliation,” you probably didn’t hear unanimously good things. That’s because it’s a risky game . . . a fascinating, strategic game deep in the trenches of our democratic tug-of-war.

In this episode, Molly E. Reynolds, fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Inst., teaches us how budget reconciliation works, where it came from, how it’s being wielded, and why you should care.

To listen to this episode of Our American Discourse, click the arrow in the player here. Or  download it and subscribe through ApplePodcastsSoundcloud, or Google Play,  Stitcher, or your favorite podcasting app – click the links or search “usc bedrosian.”

PIPE Workshop: Melinda Ritchie, UC Riverside

Legislators as Lobbyists Policy is produced by elected and unelected officials and through the interactions of branches of government. We consider how such interactions affect policy outcomes and representation. We argue that legislators try to influence bureaucratic decisions through direct communication with federal agencies, and that such contact is effective and has consequences for policy…

When Politicians Get Rich and Voters Pay the Price

Voters have long suspected that politicians are corrupt, so much so that they’ve demanded a long list of ethics rules and anti-bribery regulations over the years. But it turns out there are still plenty of tricks left up their sleeves. The question is, do they use those tricks? Do they really have the power to enrich themselves at our expense? Today, we have a wealth of new evidence that finally answers those questions…

In this episode, Jordan Carr Peterson unveils the concerning conclusions of a series of research papers that pull back the veil on the financial interests of our policymakers—and the power they wield in their own favor.

To listen to this episode of Our American Discourse, click the arrow in the player here. Or  download it and subscribe through ApplePodcastsSoundcloud, or Google Play,  Stitcher, or your favorite podcasting app – click the links or search “usc bedrosian.”

PIPE Workshop: Graeme Boushey, UC Irvine

The Gift of Gridlock: Divided Government, Bureaucratic Autonomy, and the Politics of Rulemaking in the American States Scholars of American politics debate the consequences of polarized and divided government on lawmaking, but have largely neglected the impact of institutional conflict on the policy outputs of the bureaucracy. We argue that gridlock empowers bureaucrats, as conflict…

PIPE Collaborative: Jordan Carr Peterson, PhD student, USC

September 26, 2017 “Private Interests in American Public Institutions” Much of my current research, including my dissertation, focuses on the role played by public officials’ private financial and investment choices in their policy decisions. For instance, I consider whether and by what means bureaucrats and judges make regulatory and adjudicatory decisions based on the extent to which they…