It has become commonplace that democracy in the United States faces an existential threat. This belief has gained popular currency in the wake of Donald Trump’s presidency, nourished by his conduct in office, the attempt to overturn the 2020 election, and continuing efforts to subvert the electoral process. Whether this is true only time will tell. But a common narrative among scholars of American government holds that representative democracy is failing more systematically than the Trump phenomenon suggests.
In this series of programs, Charles Beitz, professor of politics at Princeton University, talks about the current state of democratic dysfunction and what the future might hold, including how to diagnose the problem of whether or not our system of government is failing, and how to regulate rivalry in democratic representative government. He discusses these issues with Martin Gilens (professor of public policy at UCLA), Pamela S. Karlan, and Jane Mansbridge.