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And the award for ‘most dangerous politician in my lifetime’ goes to …

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | December 3, 2019

He’s maybe the most dangerous politician of my lifetime. He’s helped transform the Republican Party into a cult, worshiping at the altar of authoritarianism. He’s damaged our country in ways that may take a generation to undo. The politician I’m talking about, of course, is Mitch McConnell. Two goals for November 3, 2020: The first … Continue reading »

The bizarre smear against impeachment witness Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman

Robin Lakoff, professor emerita of linguistics | November 25, 2019

Now that the impeachment hearings are over, at least for the foreseeable future, I have been reflecting on the curious behaviors of the minority members of the House Intelligence Committee. Two stand out in my mind: the repeated argument that most of the witnesses were unreliable because all of their knowledge was second-hand; and the … Continue reading »

The Supreme Court is about to determine the fate of 800,000 ‘Dreamers’

Erwin Chemerinsky, Berkeley Law dean | November 4, 2019

On Nov. 12, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a trio of cases involving whether President Donald Trump acted impermissibly in rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. The cases—Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of the University of California, McAleenan v. Vidal (previously Batalla Vidal v. Nielsen) and Trump v. NAACP—likely will determine the … Continue reading »

Don’t let impeachment furor distract us from preventing 2020 election interference

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | October 2, 2019

Amid the impeachment furor, don’t lose sight of the renewed importance of protecting the integrity of the 2020 election. The difference between Richard Nixon’s abuse of power (trying to get dirt on political opponents to help with his 1972 reelection, and then covering it up) and Donald Trump’s abuse (trying to get Ukraine’s president to … Continue reading »

Impeaching Trump could hurt the presidency and national security

John Yoo, law professor | September 25, 2019

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi authorized the opening of an impeachment inquiry over accusations that President Trump abused his foreign-relations powers to target political rivals. Realizing the gravity of the affair, the president had announced that the White House would release an unclassified and unredacted transcript of a phone call at the center of the whistle-blower complaint. Mr. … Continue reading »

Demagogues and Democracy – It Can’t Happen Here?

John Aubrey Douglass, Senior Research Fellow - Public Policy and Higher Education, Center for Studies in Higher Education | September 16, 2019

“Societies with strong democratic traditions and civil discourse may appear to be partially immune to the worst scenarios of nationalism gone haywire,” writes John Douglass, a senior research fellow at the Center for Studies in Higher Education. “But reflecting on the history of the United States … perhaps democracy itself is more fragile than many of us would like to think. Others have thought so.”

Lies about migrants, and the rise of the extreme right

Beverly Crawford, Professor emerita, Political Science and International and Area Studies | August 24, 2019

The ascendance of the far right has jolted both American and European politics. It has undermined liberal democracy in Hungary and Poland, and threatens it in the United States and throughout Europe. That ascendance depends on virulent opposition to immigration and immigrants. Opposition to  immigration is Donald Trump’s lodestar. Anti-immigrant rhetoric defines his central political … Continue reading »

Women of color present potent threat to Trump’s reelection

Taeku Lee, professor of political science and of law | August 13, 2019

Co-authored with EunSook Lee Conservatives tacitly recognize the political power of women of color when they try to discredit them through ridicule and harassment. Consider President Trump’s attacks on the members of “the squad” who have proven to be remarkably deft and savvy politicians. Or recall that Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia played referee, scorekeeper … Continue reading »

UC Needs to Rethink Tuition and Innovate

John Aubrey Douglass, Senior Research Fellow - Public Policy and Higher Education, Center for Studies in Higher Education | May 20, 2019

In their most recent meeting in San Francisco, the UC Regents approved a 2.6 percent increase in tuition for nonresident students, but left in-state undergraduate tuition steady. UC is still struggling to make-up for the huge cuts in state financing that came on the heels of the Great Recession. But why increase only nonresident tuition, … Continue reading »

Sanctuary cities should call Trump’s bluff and welcome migrants

Beverly Crawford, Professor emerita, Political Science and International and Area Studies | April 19, 2019

The White House has now proposed—or threatened—to send migrants apprehended at the border to “sanctuary cities.” “Those Illegal Immigrants who can no longer be legally held … will be… given to Sanctuary Cities and States!” Trump tweeted.  Sanctuary jurisdictions should call Trump’s bluff and welcome these migrants. To be a “sanctuary” means not only to … Continue reading »

Why Mueller had to punt on obstruction

John Yoo, law professor |

The following is an excerpt from a Politico article about the surprises in the Mueller report. I think that one of the most surprising parts of the report was its discussion of why it could not reach definite conclusions on obstruction of justice. Barr concluded on the facts and the law that DOJ could not … Continue reading »

Remembering the Red Summer of 1919

Charles Henry, professor emeritus, African American studies | March 2, 2019

One hundred years ago this July, the Chicago riot began when Eugene Williams was murdered for “swimming while Black”. Williams had gone swimming in Lake Michigan when he inadvertently crossed the invisible line that separated the black and white beaches and bathing areas. He was stoned by Whites and drowned but the police arrested a … Continue reading »

Iran: 40 Years after the Revolution

Mahmood Monshipouri, visiting associate professor, Middle Eastern Studies | February 20, 2019

Revolutions inevitably generate complicated and at times polarizing outcomes, both from an ideological and practical standpoint. Any cursory assessment of revolutions is likely to result in a shallow and grossly incomplete picture, while forecasting the current or future status of freedoms won or lost in the ultimate success of a revolution almost always invites controversy. … Continue reading »

Affirmative Action’s Last Stand? Harvard vs SFFA

John Aubrey Douglass, Senior Research Fellow - Public Policy and Higher Education, Center for Studies in Higher Education | February 11, 2019

Ever since the US Supreme Court’s 1978 Bakke vs the UC Board of Regents decision, the appropriate role of race and ethnicity as a factor in admissions to highly selective universities has been the focus of a succession of legal challenges. The list is long. Those that have reached the Supreme Court include Hopwood v … Continue reading »

Elizabeth Warren’s approach to combating inequality makes sense

Steven Vogel, political science professor | February 4, 2019

As the Democrats take over the House and Democratic presidential hopefuls begin the slog toward the 2020 primaries, their party is also debating its economic policy vision for the future. Senator Elizabeth Warren, who just announced that she is forming an exploratory committee for a presidential bid, offers a program that focuses more on what … Continue reading »

Henry H. Haight, UC’s 150th anniversary and the erasure of history in public spaces

Rasheed Shabazz, former communications fellow, Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society | January 30, 2019

Inspired by the events of Charlottesville in summer 2017, I became interested in local monuments to white supremacy here in the Bay Area. I knew Alameda had parks and streets honoring slave owners, but I had no idea that who Henry H. Haight was. An Alameda elementary school bears his name.