Rigged! Anxiety about Election Integrity in America


For as long as there have been elections, there have been those who’ve refused to trust them. But anxiety about elections has peaked at particular moments in American history – in the run-up the Civil War, in the late nineteenth century, in the Civil Rights era, and again today. All periods when sections of the population became convinced that the rules were being bent in ways that robbed ordinary Americans of their political power – by new immigrants, African Americans, or liberal elites. At each moment of anxiety, attempts have been made to purify the electoral process, and all have had mixed and unintended consequences. In this episode, Adam discusses the long history of anxiety about election rigging with Frank Towers of the University of Calgary, an expert on electoral history, and Sarah Henry, the Chief Curator of the Museum of the City of New York, with whom Adam discusses a curious glass ballot box.

Download this episode here.