Senator Olympia Snowe to Retire from the Senate

Earlier this week and to the surprise of pretty much everyone, Maine Senator Olympia Snowe announced that she would not be running for re-election this year. Snowe has served as Senator since 1994, when she became the first woman to have served in both houses of a State Senate as well as both houses of Congress. Her departure brings up some interesting points to ponder. Read More Senator Olympia Snowe to Retire from the Senate

Does Electability Matter?

I recently came across a very interesting post on YouGov, a polling data site, that analyzed whether electability makes a difference in Republican voters’ candidate preferences. Political scientists usually agree that in a two party system, there’s a sophisticated pattern of strategic decision-making that happens when people vote, whether consciously or unconsciously. The prevailing idea is that when the winner only needs to earn the most votes, people don’t want to “waste” their votes on a sure loser. In the YouGov piece, John Sides and Alex Lundry tested this hypothesis with the prominent Republican candidates running in the 2012 Presidential race to see whether hearing potential chances of winning would make voters more likely to change their preferences. The results were interesting, although not surprising. Read More Does Electability Matter?

Everything Old is Newt Again

Let’s talk about Newt Gingrich for a minute. Growing up in the 1980s and 90s, Gingrich was at the height of his career right around when I started to pay attention to politics and the world around me. He was everywhere you turned in the newspaper and on television. It seemed that he loomed practically larger than life for my family, revered by my upper class Republican grandparents and reviled by my dues-paying union member parents. Read More Everything Old is Newt Again