Washington Center

Political Reform

Semester Elective
Seminar 318

Efforts to eliminate corruption and equalize political power in America are ongoing in US politics. In recent years alone, there have been federal efforts at campaign finance reform (McCain-Feingold), tighter lobbying regulations and more accurate balloting procedures. But what are the ultimate goals of these reforms' Have they changed over time' Have they been successful, and if not why not' This course will cover such topics as conflict of interest regulation, bribery, campaign finance reform, redistricting, the Voting Rights Act, transparency, election administration, and direct democracy. Reading materials will include works from the social sciences, law and journalism. The classes will include guest speakers from the reform community. In addition, Professor Cain will draw from his personal experiences as a redistricting/Voting Rights Act consultant and advisor to various reform efforts. The course requirements are two small case study papers and a final exam.

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