Wednesday’s Forum

Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Teve says:

    Bill says:
    Tuesday, March 9, 2021 at 21:12
    Early voting should be for invalids, period. Trying to make it about the very few at the expense of the rest is just as stupid as it sounds. Voting is not like passing basic math, it’s so easy….even for Democrats.

    Is “bill” mentally ill, elderly, dumb, or what? Whenceforth this lunacy?

  2. Kurtz says:


    Trying to make it about the very few at the expense of the rest is just as stupid as it sounds.

    I’m not sure how ensuring “the very few” can exercise their right to vote comes at the “expense of the rest.”

    I vote. Teve votes. Kathy votes. Bill votes. Eddie votes but waits five hours in line. Jim Brown doesn’t vote, because he can’t take five hours off to wait in line so he can cast a ballot.

    Making sure Eddie and Jim don’t have to take a whole day to exercise a right obviously means Bill, me, Kathy, or Teve wouldn’t be able to vote.

    I think I see…oh wait…No, that’s as stupid as it sounds.

    Maybe Bill’s last name is O’Reilly.

  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Teve: The stupid. It hurts.

  4. CSK says:

    Mike Lindell, the My Pillow guy, is starting his own social media site. It will open in 4-5 weeks. Then again, it may launch in 10 days. As of now, it has no name. “Pillow Talk,” perhaps?

  5. CSK says:

    Roger Mudd has died. He was 93.

  6. CSK says:

    We were discussing this yesterday, but here’s another piece on how Trump is energetically fleecing the rubes:

  7. Kathy says:


    Wanna bet he voted for Trump?

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:
  9. Liberal Capitalist says:

    This is a long ass read, but it documents the fraud of the 2020 Election Fraud claims:

    So much good content, tracking the claims, dates, location, and the fact that it was all bullshit.

    I mean, if you lose Tucker Carlson…

    Fissures began to appear across the Republican firmament, including at Fox. That evening, Giuliani was warmly welcomed for interviews by Sean Hannity and Lou Dobbs. But later that evening, Fox host Tucker Carlson had a different message for his viewers—one that grabbed headlines.

    Carlson explained that his show had invited Powell on—if she’d bring evidence.

    “What Powell was describing would amount to the single greatest crime in American history,” he continued. “We did not dismiss any of it. . . . We literally do UFO segments. . . . We’ve always respected [Powell’s] work and we simply wanted to see the details. . . . We would have given her the whole hour. We would have given her the entire week, actually. . . . But she never sent us any evidence, despite a lot of polite requests. When we kept pressing, she got angry and told us to stop contacting her. When we checked with others around the Trump campaign, people in positions of authority, they also told us Powell had never given them any evidence to prove anything she claimed at the press conference. . . . She never demonstrated that a single actual vote was moved illegitimately by software from one candidate to another. Not one.

  10. CSK says:

    @Liberal Capitalist:
    I wonder how much money she’s raked in through ?

  11. KM says:

    @Kurtz :
    What’s more it makes zero sense to make something take hours unnecessarily when it can be done easily and simply at home if you choose. What kind of “well back in MY day we waited in line for weeks to vote you whippersnapper because we weren’t WEAK” logic *wants* to stand in line????

    Who wants to wait in a line if they can avoid it? Doesn’t matter if the line is shortish or long or hella long or miles long – if you can skip it and get the same result, why in God’s name would you waste precious time just standing around? I can order ahead for my coffee and swoop in to get it instead of wasting 10 mins. I can order stuff from Target to nab on my errands run, drastically reducing my time and getting back to what I want to do. Why go to the restaurant and stand around to get my pizza when delivery has been a thing for decades?

    I have never seen a walk-in voting area EVER. There’s always a line so even if it’s only 3 people ahead of you, that’s about 15 mins of your day. Add in driving time and you’re looking at a half hour minimum (if you’re lucky) that could be spent making dinner for the family or working on the chore list after you filled out your ballot at home. Maybe folks like @bill have nothing better to do than stand around in line but most of us have lives. It’s just common sense to offer an option to those who’d rather not waste precious time in queue….. unless you are deliberately trying to make their lives and voting efforts more difficult. Then it makes perfect sense why @bill’s cranky – he hate seeing Americans be allowed to do their constitutional duty in an easy and convenient fashion.

  12. Bob@Youngstown says:

    Sorry for the cross thread, but…
    “Bill” asserts that the “norm” should be ‘wait in line on election day’ – only exception is for “invalids”

    Actually the “norm” should be EVERY eligible voter gets EQUAL access to the ballot box.

    Early voting affords access to those who are not available on election day ….. for whatever reason. Equal access means exactly what it says, no distinction between voters.

  13. @Kurtz: Over the years there are always people like bill who show up and drop unintelligent bombs into the comments. I often wonder what the goal/payoff is.

    Do they think they are making actual points?

    Do they just want to oWn tHe LiBs?

    Do they just like the attention?

    Do they have some issue that leads them to act out like this?

  14. Just Another Ex-Republican says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: All of the above

  15. KM says:

    I mean, I get why he’s whining about it and why conservatives are pro-voter suppression *cough* pro-voting lines. It’s just such a weird thing to stand for in this age. Even before the pandemic, waiting in line was out of fashion and people’s tolerance for being forced to queue is WAY down from what it used to be. Folks don’t want to stand in a grocery line so why should they do so to vote?

    It sounds like the joke about an old person ranting about how back in their day they walked uphill in the snow to go to school and how kids these days are spoiled with buses. Demanding people stand in line when they don’t have to is so….. antiquated. The stereotype of every Silent or Greatest Gen grumbling about how life was better when they were kids (it wasn’t as that were the Depression) because they were stronger back then. Doing things the hard way just to prove you can, to prove something to somebody and show you weren’t “weak”. So very odd and frankly not what people want, even Repubs. They don’t want to waste their valuable time either which is why a lot of western red states have had mail in voting so heavily used for years. It’s such an odd take….

  16. KM says:

    On a lighter note, going for my second shot next Wens! With that, only one of my extended family will have not had at least one shot and she just got moved up the priority list with her new job. We may actually survive our Disney trip later this year (damn crazy FL) – feeling optimistic for once.

  17. CSK says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:
    Good question. People like that would be much happier at, or

  18. Stormy Dragon says:


    The funny thing is that on voting, the Republicans may end up being too clever by half; outside the pandemic, mail in voting was primarily used by their voters. If the restrictions pass and people feel comfortable going back to voting in person, eliminating mail in voting my end up helping the Democrats long term, and in turn for shooting themselves in the foot, they also drive minority voters to the DNC who don’t care about liberalism but don’t like their voting rights being targeted.

  19. Pete S says:

    @Stormy Dragon:
    But I think they are trying to restrict in person voting too, particularly in neighborhoods that lean Democratic. I seem to remember reading of a lot of polling places being closed in big cities in Republican controlled states in 2020. I am sure voting will remain easy in neighborhoods that look like Bill’s.

  20. Mister Bluster says:

    Roger Mudd, longtime TV newsman, dies at 93
    In 1964 CBS sent Robert Trout to cover political conventions along with Roger. I know I saw references to the team as Mudd Trout in some media.

  21. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: Super Pac Scam. An arcade game name if ever I heard one. If only arcades were still a thing. 🙁

  22. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @KM: Once upon a time, long ago, there was an America where people who had walked miles to go to school demanded that school districts buy buses so their grandchildren wouldn’t have to. That America evolved from there to “I supported schools when my children were school aged and don’t see why I should still have to now” [ironically enough, at about the time I finished my studies for a teaching certificate]. Why should voting be any different?

  23. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    I wonder if he thinks he’ll rake in enough dough to pay Deustchbank the 400 million plus he owes them as of next year.

  24. CSK says:

    According to Reuters and, Jared Kushner is planning to write (ahem) a book about his experiences in the White House, with special focus on the Abraham Accords. I wonder who will ghost it for him.

    I notice no publisher has put in a bid for it yet. Maybe he can persuade his father to write the forward. Probably not, since they’re supposedly on the outs.

  25. MarkedMan says:

    For years I’ve been saying the Republican Party is the one for you if your most important issue is protecting the statues of the founder of the Ku Klux Klan or whether a baker has to sell a cake to the gayz. But I see they are expanding. While Democrats are working on unemployment insurance and expanding health care, Republicans are going after those offended that Mrs. Potatohead is not satisfied with her subservient role, and those that really feel strongly in favor of keeping blatantly offensive 1950’s drawings in beloved children’s books. And now: Britney Spears.

  26. dazedandconfused says:
  27. Gustopher says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: I blame the people who say “just be yourself!”. A lot of people are assholes, and the last person they should be is themselves.

    It’s a platitude that struck a chord in the American Myth of Individualism.

    You don’t have to care about others, or society at large. Community is something to be suspicious of, especially if it isn’t lily white. Just be yourself.

    The worst parts of the hippie culture were the only parts that the Baby Boomers held onto, and they twisted them into an every-man-for-himself zero-sum-gave way of life.

    And the GenX folks that appeal to them… monsters for the most part.

    Only about half joking.

    (I kept trying to work out something with the Age of Aquarius, Ayn Rand and Charles Manson… I’m sure there’s a quippy quip there somewhere, but I’m not immediately seeing it)

  28. Mimai says:

    @Gustopher: Pray tell, which half?

  29. Gustopher says:

    @Mimai: I never know.

  30. Mimai says:

    @Gustopher: Ha, touche! It’s like that old quip: Half of the empirical literature is wrong…we just don’t know which half.

  31. Bill says:
  32. Jax says:

    @Mimai: The pessimistic part, if I had to guess.

  33. Mimai says:

    @Jax: Funny, but I would have guessed the optimistic part was the joker…..assuming, of course, there is an optimistic part. But you know Gustopher better than I do.

  34. Jax says:

    @Bill: My brother found his birth parents and his wife is absolutely horrified to find out that he is OVER HALF BLACK!!! She sent out a big email and Facebook post on exact percentages and shit.

    I’ve never been so embarrassed in my life after reading her emails. Every one of US knew, how could she NOT?!

  35. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @dazedandconfused: I was thinking more “video arcade,” but that machine is too cool! I would definitely play that!

  36. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Gustopher: Indeed! And […sigh…] too!

  37. Thomm says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: I’m some areas there are bars that are more like old school arcades that serve alcohol. We have one here that has a few locations called the 1up bar.

  38. Kylopod says:


    My brother found his birth parents and his wife is absolutely horrified to find out that he is OVER HALF BLACK!!!

    That sounds just like one of the old Edward Lear poems. (Warning: racist imagery.)