Background Briefing: November 2, 2022


Questioning Pollsters and Pundits Assumptions That Republicans Will Take the House and the Senate

We begin with an assessment of the predictions and polling ahead of next Tuesday’s election and speak with Allan Lichtman, a political historian who teaches at American University and has studied both the American right and the presidency. His books include The Keys to the White House: A Surefire Way to Predicting the Next President.  His prediction system has correctly predicted the outcomes of all US presidential elections since 1984 including the 2016 election when against all odds, he predicted a Trump victory. The author of the national best-seller, The Case For Impeachment, his latest book is 13 Cracks: Repairing American Democracy After Trump, and we discuss the possibility of a surprise from Democratic turnout upsetting the pollsters and pundits’ assumptions that the Republicans will take control of the House and possibly win the Senate.


Changes in Voting Laws Make it Easier to Vote in Some States and Harder in Others

Then, along with concerns that there are almost 300 election-denying Republicans running for office to take over election machinery that would enable them to rig future elections in their favor, we look into how changes in voting laws will make it easier to vote in some states and harder in others. Joining us is Joshua Douglas, a Professor of Law at the University of Kentucky College of Law who teaches and researches election law and voting rights, civil procedure, constitutional law, and judicial decision making. He is the author of Vote for US: How to Take Back our Elections and Change the Future of Voting and we discuss his article at CNN, “Election deniers aren’t the only threats to democracy this year.”


The Need to Prevent the War in Ukraine Escalating Into a Confrontation Between NATO and Russia

Then finally we explore the need to find a way to prevent the war in Ukraine from escalating into a confrontation between NATO and Russia and speak with Charles Kupchan, who was director for European Affairs on the National Security Council during the Clinton administration. He is now a professor of International Affairs in Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, and spent the last 3 years of the Obama administration as Special Assistant to President Obama for National Security. He is the author of How Enemies Become Friends: The Sources of Stable Peace, and his latest book is, Isolationism: A History of America’s Efforts to Shield Itself from the World. We discuss his article at the New York Times, “It’s Time to Bring Russia and Ukraine to the Negotiating Table.”