Welcome to my academic portfolio. I am Assistant Teaching Professor of Political Science at Drexel University, where I teach a range of courses in American politics, methods, and political institutions. My research focuses on party systems and electoral systems, mostly in American politics, and often in historical perspective.
My forthcoming book is More Parties or No Parties: The Politics of Electoral Reform in America (Oxford). It proposes a 'shifting coalitions' theory of electoral-system change, validates it against comparative cases, and applies it to local use of the single transferable vote during the Progressive Era and New Deal. I use roll-call, election, and other archival data to answer several questions: why these systems were adopted, how they worked in practice, why they were repealed, and why only 'ranked choice' was considered in the first place. The common thread is antipathy for parties, especially the idea of there being more than two.
I have two grant-funded projects on how electoral systems affect the quantity and quality of racial representation. One of these (with Jamil Scott) uses survey experiments. The other (with Michael Latner and Matthew Shugart) uses cross-national data on subnational legislatures.
Georgetown University granted my Ph.D. in July 2017. I was a Research Fellow at the Democracy Fund for the 2017-8 academic year. Before graduate school, I worked at the International Foundation for Electoral Systems, the Campaign Finance Institute, FairVote, Café Bonaparte, and a congressional district office.
Recent research publications
- Five variants of ranked-choice voting, their strategic implications, and effects on minority representation (Politics and Governance).
- A generational divide on ranked-choice voting, rooted in democratic discontent (Politics & Policy, with Devin McCarthy).
- Whether there was realignment from 2012-16 (Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties).
- More here...