LSE Comment

In this section you can read recent expert commentary from LSE academics on important issues around American Politics and Policy. This section also contains reviews of recent books by LSE academics and book reviews from LSE staff and alumni.

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    The results of next week’s midterm elections will either force Trump to play defense 24/7 or hobble the Democratic Party

The results of next week’s midterm elections will either force Trump to play defense 24/7 or hobble the Democratic Party

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This year’s midterm elections are some of the most important in living memory – but what are the US Congress, and Donald Trump’s presidency, likely to look like after all of the votes are counted? LSE US Centre Director, Peter Trubowitz foresees two likely scenarios – that the Republican Party is able to hang on to both the US […]

Eslanda Robeson – acting, activism, Africa and LSE

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In celebration of Black History month, Howard University’s Sherese R Taylor introduces the life of American anthropologist, author and civil rights activist, Eslanda Robeson, who studied at LSE in the 1930s.

Eslanda Cordozo Goode Robeson, also known as Essie, was an anti-racist, anti-colonialist, anti-capitalist, and feminist born in Washington, DC on 15 December 1895. She received a scholarship from the University of Illinois […]

2018 Midterms live blog with the LSE US Centre

Welcome to our live blog for the 2018 midterm elections. From 7pm UK time until the very early hours of Wednesday morning, the LSE US Centrewill be your go-to source for commentary and analysis on the vote and on the results as they come in.
Featured image credit: “”I Voted” sticker; N. Pleasant Street Amherst MA” by Léa Aliberti is licensed under CC BY […]

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    Trump’s tax cut was a well-timed giveaway for the midterms

Trump’s tax cut was a well-timed giveaway for the midterms

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When we talk about elections, the role of the economy inevitably looms large. Less than a year ago, Congress passed a $1.5 trillion tax cut bill, which alongside increased spending, may stimulate economic growth until 2019. Linda Yueh writes that the Trump-sponsored tax cut and fiscal stimulus are likely to influence voters to a greater degree than the president’s […]

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    Five minutes with Peter Trubowitz: “For Trump, the principal focus on China is domestic and not geopolitical”

Five minutes with Peter Trubowitz: “For Trump, the principal focus on China is domestic and not geopolitical”

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Since July, the Trump administration has targeted China with growing tariffs on imported Chinese goods, with the country responding in kinds. In this interview, US Center Director, Professor Peter Trubowitz, comments that Trump’s trade conflict with China is more about satisfying his supporters at home rather than competing with China on the world stage. 
Donald Trump has set out to disrupt […]

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    Trump’s $12 billion farm subsidies are a solution to a political problem of his own making

Trump’s $12 billion farm subsidies are a solution to a political problem of his own making

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Last week, President Trump announced a $12 billion program of farm subsidies to assist farmers hurt by his escalating trade war with China, Canada, and other countries. Stephanie Rickard, author of a new book on government subsidies, Spending to Win, argues that this kind of financial assistance is almost always introduced to help domestic producers harmed by tariff reductions, […]

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    Five minutes with Peter Trubowitz: “Presidents usually stay out of British politics, but this is no ordinary president”

Five minutes with Peter Trubowitz: “Presidents usually stay out of British politics, but this is no ordinary president”

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This week President Trump will visit the UK for the first time following his attendance at a NATO summit in Brussels. In this short interview, US Center Director, Professor Peter Trubowitz, talks on how Trump may try to get concessions on trade from NATO members and how he might further complicate the UK’s current Brexit crisis. 
What is Trump’s agenda […]

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    High prices, not waste or over-use, drive high health care costs in the US 

High prices, not waste or over-use, drive high health care costs in the US 

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The US spends nearly 18 percent of its GDP on health care, making it a real outlier among high-income countries in this area. But what is behind this unusually high level of health care spending? Irene Papanicolas investigates common beliefs about why spending is so high, including that US residents use more health care services, have poorer quality of care, and use ‘too much’ inpatient care. She finds that higher costs […]

What might be behind Trump’s tariffs on steel imports?

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An analysis of possible motives and what they imply for a possible EU reaction – by Stephen Woolcock.

Last Thursday President Trump acted to impose 25 per cent tariffs on steel and 10 per cent tariffs on aluminium. This action followed an investigation under Section 232 of the 1962 US Trade Expansion Act by the US Commerce Department of whether […]

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    The Supreme Court’s ‘fair share’ case is an existential threat to public sector unions. But it may force them to engage and embrace choice.

The Supreme Court’s ‘fair share’ case is an existential threat to public sector unions. But it may force them to engage and embrace choice.

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The US Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in the Janus v. AFSCME Council 31 case, which maintains that mandatory public sector union dues violate workers’ First Amendment rights. Jonathan E. Booth argues that despite the case’s free speech claims, such ‘fair share’ fees actually enhance the voice and representation of workers. He writes that if the Court finds […]

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