Walter Burnham

Recent Articles

The Politics of Repudiation 1992: Edging Toward Upheaval

For a generation the United States has experienced a

complex and deepening crisis of its political and economic order. Three pivotal

and highly abnormal electios have punctuated this crisis. In 1968, undermined

by the Vietnam War and the civil rights revolution, the New Deal order

collapsed. A new electoral regime emerged from the ruins, marked by three main

features: normal Republican control of the presidency; divided government as

the (unprecedented) norm; and a candidate-dominated "permanent campaign,"

in which a capital-intensive personalism crowded out labor-intensive political


Drift or Mandate?: The 1996 Elections

The voters' decision in November will determine whether the late 1990s usher in America's "fourth Republic."

American political system has been passing through one of its rare bursts of
sweeping convulsive change, culminating thus far in the electoral earthquake of
1994. That midterm election abruptly terminated a reasonably stable
institutional balance, major parts of which had lasted for more than 40 years.
Only five years ago, the Oxford professor of American politics, Byron E. Shafer,
could credibly describe this system in these words: