Top Elections Experts To Discuss Voting Rights, Election Issues on Wednesday

This article was originally published in the Cornell Daily Sun on November 3, 2019.

With a year left until the 2020 presidential elections, two top political scientists will bring a discussion on the electoral climate in America to Cornell’s campus.

Political scientists Prof. Steven Ansolabehere, government of Harvard University, and Professor Charles Stewart III, political science, of MIT, will be presenting on voting rights issues and the importance of “Securing the Vote” this Wednesday in Kennedy Hall’s Call Auditorium.

Voting registration, courtesy of the Andrew Goodman Foundation, will also be available at the event.

Both Absolabehere and Stewart, experts and prolific authors in public opinion and elections, will be discussing the most pressing issues in voting today, including redistricting, voter identification laws redistricting, voter identification laws, election fraud and their clarifications on the shortcomings and common conflations about the right to vote and the equal protection rights of the 14th Amendment.

Ansolabehere is the author of five books, including titles examining the relationship between media and politics and the impact of negative campaign strategies. He directs the center for American Political Studies at Harvard, and has sat on boards including the Board of Overseers of the Reuters Institute of Journalism at Oxford University.

His research areas include political contributions — in a recent co-authored paper, Ansolabehere wrote that campaign donations have little effect on the voting patterns of candidates, who instead stick to their own beliefs.

Stewart has taught political science at MIT since 1985, and researches polarization and Congressional politics. He previously provided input to the to the Presidential Commission on Election Administration, and published a 2014 book on the American electoral process.

Stewart also helped develop the Pew Elections Performance Index, an assessment tool that ranks voting administration processes across the nation.

Audience attendees can expect to leave the event feeling more informed about the American voting system and its faults and triumphs.

The talk will take place in Call Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.