Michael A. Smith

Can Gerrymandering be Measured? Here Come the Mathematicians

By Brian Hollenbeck and Michael Smith of Emporia State University Just weeks ago, the U.S. Supreme Court acted to sharply limit the role of the courts with regards to partisan gerrymandering. In Rucho v. Common Cause, the Court majority upheld the Davis v. Bandemer case of 1976, reaffirming that…


Democrats Want to Get Rid of the Electoral College. It is Not Going to Happen (and Maybe that’s Best).

By Michael A. Smith, Emporia State University With the 2020 campaign season having already begun (ugh), Democrats are revving up to do away with the Electoral College. For them, the case is a strong one. In the entire history of the United States, only five Presidential elections have seen the…


The Only Thing We Have to Fear

By Michael A. Smith of Emporia State University Senator and Vice-President Hubert Humphrey‘s nickname was The Happy Warrior. He worked tirelessly on behalf of causes he championed, and usually seemed joyful when doing so, even though he lived through and served during one of the most divisive…


Save the Swamp

By Michael A. Smith of Emporia State University The Trump Administration’s recent reversal on immigration policy regarding children has gotten me to thinking. What exactly does it mean to “drain the swamp?” First, let me share a bit of background about the current situation. In 1997, a court ruling…


More Bridging, Less Bonding: New Views of Social Capital

(or, Why I am Going to Watch Roseanne) by Michael A. Smith of Emporia State University Social capital has been a popular concept in political science, at least since the publication of Almond and Verba’s classic book The Civic Culture in 1963.  The idea waned for a while, then came roaring back in…


The New Political Scientists—We’re Live, We’re Nationwide, and We’re Online

By Michael A. Smith, Professor of Political Science at Emporia State University On the first day of the Midwest Political Science Conference (#MPSA18 on Twitter), I spotted both a roundtable and a vendor booth on the same topic: using Wikipedia in the classroom. That’s right—Wikipedia may be…


What George Washington Really Meant About Political Parties -- and Why It Matters

By Michael A. Smith of Emporia State University Did George Washington really hate political parties? For our first president’s 286th birthday, it is time for historians to set the record straight. For political scientists, a nuanced view of Washington’s stand helps us understand the modern-day…