Scott Lemieux

Scott Lemieux is an assistant professor of political science at the College of Saint Rose. He contributes to the blogs Lawyers, Guns, and Money and Vox Pop.

Recent Articles


MORE FRAILER THAN THE FLOWERS, THESE PRECIOUS POLL LEADS. In discussing the many problems with the " Hillary is inevitable" meme, Jon Chait decides to bring out the heavy artillery by reminding us who was ahead in national polls at a comparable time in the last cycle: But national surveys, especially this early in the process, tend to sweep up the lightly held opinions of voters who are paying scant attention to the race, and, as such, they are little more than name-recognition contests. At this point in 2003, after all, polls consistently showed Joe Lieberman leading the Democratic pack. This, of course, merely reflected the fact that he had been the vice presidential nominee three years earlier. When Democratic voters started really paying attention to the race -- and to Lieberman -- his numbers started going south and never stopped. Yes, I think it's safe to say that, at least for candidates with Clinton's name recognition, national polls mean almost nothing at this stage of the...


SCALIA: BUSH'S ELECTION UNCONSTITUTIONAL. Antonin Scalia has done us the favor of explaining the equal protection theory behind the Supreme Court's decision in Bush v. Gore . (Which is handy, since the per curiam opinion for all intents and purposes failed to articulate anything that could be called a theory at all .) Says Justice Scalia : And this week Scalia told an audience at Iona College in New York that Florida's handling of the Florida recount in Bush v. Gore was a violation of the Constitution's guarantee of equal protection under the law. "Counting somebody else's dimpled chad and not counting my dimpled chad is not giving equal protection of the law," he said. Scalia let the crowd know that the case is one only for the history books: "It's water over the deck -- get over it," he said. Given that Bush v. Gore explicitly claims to hold no precedential value in future cases, perhaps he's right; still, such voting cases will doubtless come before the court again in the future...


GLAD WE'VE CLEARED THAT UP. Jonah Golberg : In response Matt admits to "actually knowing nothing about the historical record of Lindbergh" but seems to take offense to the comparison nonetheless -- even though I pretty clearly don't buy the conventional mythology of Lindbergh as a virulent anti-Semite (nor, I would like to think, would any fair-minded reader interpret me as calling Yglesias an anti-Semite of any kind). Is ably refuted by... Jonah Goldberg : Clark's comments, predictably, earned him denunciations from Jewish groups. After all, the notion that rich, secretive Jews living in places such as New York are pulling strings to visit war and misery on the masses is a time-honored anti-Semitic cliche heard from Charles Lindbergh , Ignatius Donnelly and "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion." Well, that's settled ! If you ever want to explain to someone what "disingenuous" means, I would suggest "analogizing someone to the famously anti-Semitic Charles Lindbergh in the context of...


THE EXCEPTION TRAP. The South Dakota legislature is planning to reintroduce an abortion ban that (unlike the law overturned by initiative last year) includes exemptions for rape and incest. Jessica Valenti notes that "this is going to mean a change of fighting words on our part. After all, a lot of what pro-choicers talked about when trying to defeat the last ban was the lack of exceptions." Although I can understand that sometimes you have to take advantage of what opportunities you have in the short-term, I've always thought that from a pro-choice perspective focusing on the lack of a rape or incest exemption is a disastrous long-term strategy. First of all, in practice rape/incest exemptions are unlikely to afford much protection to women, so women don't really gain anything. Given the compressed time frame, states determined to prevent abortions can make the procedural hurdles to proving that a pregnancy was the result of non-consensual sex so difficult and humiliating that most...


ARTICULATE! AND SUCH A GOOD DANCER! It would not be strictly accurate to say that Joe Biden (Sen-MBNA) killed his presidential campaign today ; you can't kill something that was stillborn to begin with. (In addition to racist condescension, his comments inadvertently remind us that the staunch Iraq hawk who advocated a perpetual cycle of Friedmans was running on his foreign policy judgment. Yeah, good luck with that...) But one would hope that he would spare himself and the Democratic Party further indignity and make it formal as soon as possible. --Scott Lemieux