The Rothermere American Institute’s Future of American Politics series will bring together some of the world’s leading thinkers, historians, political scientists, journalists, and politicians to consider, discuss, and debate the ideas, the trends, and the people that will shape the next era of American politics.
Launched in response to strong interest in our America Decides series of 2020 election events, the Future of American Politics series reflects the RAI’s mission of leading discussions about America and its place in the world, and doing so in a way that is accessible to all.
All events will be held online using Zoom, and everyone is welcome. Please register in advance using the links below. The discussions will also be recorded and made available on the RAI's YouTube channel.
More events will be added across Hilary and Trinity Terms, so make sure to check back on this page!
Held a week after the Inauguration of Joseph R. Biden as the 46th President of the United States, three esteemed political scientists will discuss the governing priorities emphasised in the President’s Inaugural Address. The panel will also weigh the impact of the severe challenges facing the Biden Administration, including a lethal pandemic claiming 4,000 lives a day, an unemployment rate comparable to the Great Recession of 2008, and the displays of sedition and white supremacy vividly on display in the last days of the Trump presidency. This event will mark the first appearance by Professor Robert Lieberman as this year’s John G. Winant Visiting Professor of American Government. We are also pleased to welcome back Professor Lieberman’s predecessor as Winant Visiting Professor, Professor Margaret Weir.
Desmond King (chair) is the Andrew Mellon Professor of Government at the University of Oxford. Professor King King specialises in the study of the American state in US executive politics, race and politics in American political development, and the financial bases of US politics.
Robert Lieberman is the current John G. Winant Visiting Professor of American Government at the University of Oxford. He is the Krieger-Eisenhower Professor of Political Science at The Johns Hopkins University. His most recent book is Four Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy, co-authored with Suzanne Mettler.
Margaret Weir is Professor of Political Science at Brown University. In 2019-20, she was the John G. Winant Visiting Professor of American Government at the University of Oxford. Her research centers on social policy, poverty, and urban politics in the United States and Europe.
To discuss the future of the Republican Party and the conservative movement, we are delighted to welcome long-time Republican staffer turned 2016 Independent Presidential candidate Evan McMullin, one of conservativism’s most distinguished scholars, Professor Donald Critchlow, and the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin. Each member of the panel has a long association with Republican Party politics and the conservative movement, and we look forward to hearing their unique perspective about what the future holds in store for the Republican Party.
Evan McMullin was an independent candidate in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election. A registered Republican until 2016, he previously worked for the Central Intelligence Agency, was a senior advisor on national security issues for the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and chief policy director for the House Republican Caucus. He is currently the Executive Director of Stand Up Republic.
Donald T. Critchlow is the Katzin Family Foundation Professor at Arizona State University. One of the most distinguished scholars of American conservativism, he had published over twenty-five books including The Conservative Ascendancy, Republican Character From Nixon to Reagan, Future Right, and, most recently, In Defence of Populism.
Jennifer Rubin is an opinion columnist at the Washington Post. She was previously the editor of the Washington Post’s ‘Right Turn’ blog. Rubin has also worked for Commentary, Human Events, and the Weekly Standard. Previously a self-described ‘conservative opinion writer’ she renounced this title in September 2020, writing ‘there is no conservative movement or party today’.
Victories in both Georgia Senate runoffs capped a successful 2020 election season for the Democratic Party – defeating an incumbent President, regaining control of the Senate, and making inroads in the traditional Republican heartland of Georgia and Arizona. Yet, as the musical Hamilton reminds us, ‘winning is easy, governing is harder’ and divining a policy agenda to secure the votes of Joe Manchin and proponents of the Green New Deal will prove a challenge. To discuss the future of the Democratic Party, we are delighted to welcome political scientists Julia Azari, author of Delivering the People’s Message: The Changing Politics of the Presidential Mandate, and Seth Masket, author of Learning from Loss: The Democratic Party, 2016-20.
Julia Azari is Associate Professor and Assistant Chair in the Department of Political Science at Marquette University. Azari's research interests include the American presidency, American political development, and political parties. Her research looks at the relationship between presidents and parties, how formal and informal rules matter, and how change occurs across different institutions. Her most recent publication is Delivering the People’s Message: The Changing Politics of the Presidential Mandate. Her writing has also appeared in the Washington Post, Politico, and FiveThirtyEight.
Seth Masket is Professor of Political Science and Director of the Center for American Politics at the University of Denver. His research has appeared in the American Journal of Political Science, Journal of Politics, and British Journal of Political Science. He has also written for the New York Times, FiveThirtyEight and the Washington Post’s The Monkey Cage. He is most recently the author of Learning From Loss: The Democrats, 2016-2020 (Cambridge University Press).