DU in the News: Election Edition
Experts in the media
Seth Masket analyzes Colorado's impact on the presidential election for ABC
Before the election, Seth Masket, professor of political science, weighed in on the nature of the presidential and other campaigns in Colorado. "We usually expect Colorado to be a swing state, and then it was pretty quiet here," he said. "Hillary Clinton was ahead pretty substantially in the polls, neither campaign was running many ads, there weren't many candidate visits, and then the race tightened up nationally and this is one of the places where we saw some of the most movement in Trump's direction." He also talked about Colorado's voters. "Latino voters were 14% of the electorate at the 2012 elections, and their numbers have been increasing with each cycle," Masket said. "They've also become more Democratic with each cycle." Masket also wrote about early voting for FiveThirtyEight in a post that was mentioned by Vox and Slate and contributed to FiveThirtyEight's election-night blog. After the election, Masket analyzed the performance of third party candidates in Colorado for CPR's Colorado Matters and commented on Congressman Mike Coffman's re-election for the Denver Post.
Sam Kamin on the legal consequences of marijuana legalization in TIME magazine
Nine states voted Nov. 8 on marijuana-related measures and eight of them passed. While several states now allow for recreational use of marijuana, it's still viewed as a highly addictive substance by the federal government, which causes problems when it comes to enforcing the law. Sam Kamin, Vicente Sederberg Professor of Marijuana Law and Policy at the Sturm College of Law, said that changes in policy in places like California "put big pressure on the federal government, not necessarily to legalize and to remove all restrictions but to ease some of the contradictions of the current legal status of marijuana." Kamin was also quoted in this LA Times article before the election, answering questions about the consequences of California's Proposition 64 which legalizes recreational use of marijuana.
César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández on immigration policy for 9 News
Many students in Denver expressed concerns Nov. 9 about Trump's victory, specifically over his immigration policies. Trump has said that he will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an executive action issued by President Obama in 2012. César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández, assistant professor at the Sturm College of Law, said "I imagine [Trump] will move very quickly in January to repeal DACA." He believes Trump will be aggressive in his enforcement of immigration laws. "If that's the case, then I think immigration communities are correct in being fearful for their lives, for their ability to live with their families," he added.
Floyd Ciruli on 9 News discussing why the polls wrongly predicted the presidential race
One of the biggest stories in the wake of the election has been the polling errors. How did so many polls wrongly represent the state of the race? Floyd Ciruli, director of the Crossley Center for Public Opinion Research at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies said "There have been some big polling misses around the world, but we have by and large been an exception. In the U.S. our polls have been reasonably accurate." Not all of the polling was inaccurate though, Ciruli said. "Many pointed out that the national vote may be very close--as a matter of fact Hillary could win the national vote. It's the state polls that stopped 3 or 4 days before the end of the race, and that's when things were moving so dramatically. When we go back and look at it, that will be one of the main flaws." Though most of the presidential polls were wrong, Ciruli discussed the relative accuracy of polling for state races and ballot initiatives. The Crossley Center for Public Opinion Research also released a poll the week before the election on the presidential race in Colorado that was widely covered in national outlets: CNN, CNBC, Fox News, Politico, MSNBC and Bloomberg, as well as Colorado media: the Denver Post, 9 News, KOA radio, 7 News, CBS 4 and Fox 31.
Jonathan Adelman's Op-Ed at the Jerusalem Post on Israel and Trump
Jonathan Adelman, professor at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies, published his 100th Op-Ed, in which he considers what a Trump presidency will mean for US-Israeli relations. Adelman asserts that Trump's likely foreign policies--working with Russia, negating the Iran deal, rebuilding the American military and working wh the Sunni bloc in the Middle East--closely align with Israeli policy. He writes, "So although January 20, the day Donald Trump will assume the presidency, is still distant and his policies are somewhat murky, the early indications are that he will bring a more supportive American foreign policy that Israelis will eagerly welcome."
Experts in the Newsroom
Many Democrats were surprised by the number of Latino voters who didn't turn out for this election. Clinton won the Latino vote in Colorado by 40 points, but President Obama won it by 52 points in 2012. Lisa Martinez, associate professor of sociology, offers a few conjectures as to why that might have happened. "I didn't see the same mobilization efforts towards Latinos as I did in '08 and 2012," she says. She also explains that perhaps Latino voters thought the Democrats were taking their support for granted. Voter disenchantment may have also played a role during this polarizing election cycle, Martinez says.
While many countries may have been rooting for Hillary Clinton to take over the White House, President-elect Trump has several pockets of support. "I think right now ISIS and other dictators are celebrating," says Nader Hashemi, director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies. "The best-case scenario for them was someone like Trump, who really does not have a clear view of what he wants to do, and anything that he has said is so radical and so extreme that it is hard to take seriously.” Christopher Hill, dean of the Josef Korbel School of International Studies, comments on the implications of Trump's policies on Russia's involvement in Syria's civil war, China and North Korea in the next four years. "I don’t think you can come to the conclusion that it’s a good thing to have Russia do whatever it wants in Syria,” says Hill. "I think Trump will want to have more cooperation with Russia, but I think he is going to find that Putin is a difficult person to deal with.” Hill was also interviewed on CNBC to discuss what Trump's foreign policy might look like, who his Secretary of State might be and whether it matters that so many state department employees signed a "Never Trump" petition.
During his campaign, Donald Trump recommended policies that would effect many areas of the U.S. economy. Mac Clouse, finance professor in the Daniels College of Business, discusses Trump's ideas about the Affordable Care Act, corporate tax rates, re-building infrastructure and taxes on imports. Regarding Trump's claim that he will bring jobs back to America, Clouse says, "Trump can make a more favorable tax environment in the U.S. compared to international, but there’s no way he can reduce labor costs compared to what you can get in China, Vietnam or other Southeast Asian countries."
One of president-elect Trump's first actions may be a Supreme Court nomination. Since the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in February and the subsequent vacancy, many cases heard before the court have ended in a tie. "The next justice will have a major impact on the Supreme Court for decades to come," says Bruce Klaw, assistant proessor in the department of Business Ethics and Legal Studies. "Currently, we have a 4-4 split largely along ideological lines that, in certain politically charged cases, appears to have paralyzed the court."