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Future in Context

Future in Context

When Alexander Hamilton Tried to Steal the Election of 1800

Donald Trump’s attempt to overturn the 2020 election results isn’t the first effort to change the outcome of a close race. In 1800, Thomas Jefferson faced a similar and chaotic post-electoral problem.

By Clay S. Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  November 20, 2020
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Future in Context

The Electoral College Explained: Its History and the Tensions of Democracy

Presidential elections, your vote, and the quest for legitimacy. Unlike Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, President-elect Joe Biden appears to have won both the popular vote and the Electoral College.

By Clay S. Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  November 13, 2020
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Future in Context

The Presidency: From Rocky Transitions to Electoral Delays

The peaceful transfer of power is a hallmark of American political life. But troubling talk from Trump, should he lose, has raised concerns and a reason to look back and examine the history of presidential changes.

By Clay S. Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  November 2, 2020
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Future in Context

Amy Coney Barrett Is in an Impossible Position. So Are We.

If Trump’s third Supreme Court nominee is confirmed by the Senate, there is no guarantee she will continue to hold views congenial to the president. But does America still want its justices to be unelected and unaccountable?

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  October 19, 2020
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Future in Context

Is it Time for Texas and California to Leave the Union?

David French’s new book, "Divided We Fall," is a warning of what might happen to America as it becomes less united than at any time since the Civil War. But there are concrete steps the country can take to bridge the gulf.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  October 15, 2020
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Future in Context

What Happens When a Sitting President Is Stricken?

President Trump’s illness from the coronavirus has become immediate news, with the entire country pondering what might happen. But previous presidents who became ill were able to keep their health problems under wraps.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  October 2, 2020
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Future in Context

Looking Back at Presidential Transitions and Sore Losers

With concerns growing that this year’s election may end up in the hands of the Supreme Court or the House of Representatives, history shows this happened once before in the "dangerous election" of 1800.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  October 2, 2020
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Future in Context

Ginsburg, Trump and Midnight Appointments to the Supreme Court

Presidential appointments to the highest level of the judicial branch, even during lame-duck sessions, have a long history in American politics, dating back to Thomas Jefferson and John Adams in 1800.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  September 22, 2020
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Future in Context

How Did America Lose Its Confidence?

Great nations have shared values, shared aspirations and a shared historical narrative. That does not mean everyone agrees, but there has to be at least a baseline understanding of our national purpose that we can agree on.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  September 17, 2020
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Future in Context

America and Race: When Sports Players Refuse to Play

Most Americans would prefer not to mix sports and politics. But when NBA players protested by canceling playoff games, they brought the issue of race relations to the forefront better than any politician or protest group.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  September 8, 2020
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Future in Context

A Lesson from Jefferson on How the Nation Can Heal

If we are genuinely searching for national healing and reconciliation, look at the aftermath of the election of 1800, which was as angry and mean-spirited as any in our history.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  August 27, 2020
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