UCL experts provide leading analysis around the US election

UCL academics have been providing critical commentary and expert analysis on the 2020 US elections, with regular appearances in UK, US, and international media outlets discussing one of the most hotly-contested races in American history.

As the world has looked on at President Donald Trump and Former Vice President Joe Biden battling for the White House, UCL’s newly launched Centre on US Politics (CUSP) --housed within UCL’s School of Public Policy --has been at the forefront of commentary, with scholars providing incisive analysis of US politics and its implications for an international audience.

Dr Thomas Gift, founding Director of CUSP, said: "2020 has been one of the most fraught and high-stakes elections in US history. As a Centre, we want to pioneer an outward-looking approach to understanding the structures, influence, and reach of contemporary American politics, providing a diversity of perspectives and informing a global view on US politics."

In addition to appearing regularly on CNN, BBC, CNBC, and other leading outlets throughout the election season, Gift provided 10 hours of "around-the-clock" coverage for the BBC World Service as part of its election night programming.

From October and running through January, CUSP is hosting a series of events, sponsored by the US Embassy in London, under the theme "Decision 2020: Interpreting the US Elections" . The events are free and open to the public. The goal is to encourage a greater understanding of the US electoral process, as well as to engage policymakers, academics, thought-leaders, the media, students, and practitioners in a nonpartisan, informed, well-rounded discussion of the topic.

As part of the series, CUSP will jointly host events with the US and Americas Programme at Chatham House and the Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice at Queen’s University Belfast. Panelists include top academics from universities such as Harvard, Stanford, and Duke, as well as journalists from outlets including the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

CUSP brings together a range of UCL experts shaping salient conversations about US politics in the UK, in the US, and around the world. Scholars include CUSP founding Director, Dr Thomas Gift ; Dr Brian Klass, a UCL political scientist and columnist for the Washington Post; and Dr Julie Norman, a UCL foreign policy expert and a frequent contributor on US politics to the BBC and CNN.

Together, CUSP scholars have given more than 100 interviews for leading media outlets on the US elections over the last 6 months, while writing for well-known outlets like the Washington Post, Newsweek, and The Hill. For featured commentary, please visit CUSP’s Twitter page @CUSP_UCL.

Media highlights:

  • Real-time analysis of the US election. Dr Thomas Gift (UCL Centre on US Politics) analyses the US presidential election results as they come in, discussing potential swing states and who will ultimately be the next president of the United States. Listen: BBC World Service ’America Decides’ (appearances at 41 mins 48 secs, 1 hour 19 mins 22 secs, 2 hours 8 mins 40 secs, 2 hours 36 mins 6 secs, 3 hours 8 mins 50 secs, 3 hours 37 mins 25 s ecs, 4 hours 40 mins 30 secs)
  • Trump contesting election result is ’not an impossibility’ . Dr Thomas Gift (UCL Centre for US Politics) discusses how Trump needs to ’flip the script’ on his time in the presidency if he is to win the upcoming election, and may contest the result if he loses to Democratic candidate Joe Biden. Watch: CNBC News.
  • I’ve seen rigged elections, and they don’t look anything like this. Dr Brian Klass (UCL Centre on US Politics) describes clear examples of rigged elections and explains why there is no evidence the US election was rigged. Read: Washington Post.
  • Have Trump’s attacks fallen flat? Dr Brian Klaas (UCL Centre on US Politics) says President Donald Trump’s personal attacks in the first presidential election debate have not "reset the narrative that Biden is somehow unqualified or unprepared to be president of the United States." Listen: Times Radio’s ’Matt Chorley Show’ (from 1 hour 3 mins 30 secs) .
  • US Presidential election finish line. Dr Julie Norman (UCL Centre on US Politics) discusses final counts, swing states and Trump’s legal challenges for what he claims is voter fraud. Watch: France 24 .
  • What is the legacy of Trump’s 2016-2020 term? Dr Julie Norman (UCL Political Science) discusses the events of Trumps 2016-2020 presidential term, including his foreign policy in the Middle East and his domestic policies including tax reform and rollbacks of environmental rules and regulations. Listen: Times Radio’s ’Mariella Frostrup show’ (from 39 mins 5 secs) .

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