Unremitting rightward movement of the Republican Party is currently driving asymmetric partisan polarization in the United States. After Democrats won major victories in 2006, 2008, and 2012, Republicans responded by pushing unpopular efforts to cut taxes on the rich, eviscerate labor protections, and slash spending on education, Social Security, and health care.
Drawing from her recent research, Theda Skocpol will explain how sets of organizations expressing two separate currents of right wing extremism – billionaire ultra-free-market fundamentalism and popularly rooted ethno-nationalist resentment – have worked in tandem to remake the Republican Party. Although these elite and popular forces are often in tension, they have fused in a mutually leveraging way in the Donald Trump presidency.
Theda Skocpol is the Victor S. Thomas Professor of Government and Sociology at Harvard University. She has authored many books, articles, and reports, won many awards, and been elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the National Academy of Sciences. Her ongoing research focuses on U.S. conservatives and the Republican Party, the politics of health care policy, and citizen reactions to the Obama and Trump presidencies. Skocpol is also the Director of the Scholars Strategy Network, a nationwide U.S. organization with more than a thousand members and forty chapter that makes the work of university researchers understandable to civic groups, policymakers, and the media.
The LSE's United States Centre (@LSE_US) is a hub for global expertise, analysis and commentary on America. Our mission is to promote policy-relevant and internationally-oriented scholarship to meet the growing demand for fresh analysis and critical debate on the United States.
Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSEUSSkocpol
This event is part of the LSE US Centre's Phelan Family Lecture series.