Tag Archives: elections

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Profs. Fox Piven and Bhargava on the Presidential Elections in the Intercept

The upcoming presidential elections could present a great test of American institutions. If the sitting US president loses the election and refuses to concede power — well, what happens? And how might he go about trying to pull it off?

SLU professors Frances Fox Piven and Deepak Barghava tackled these questions in a recent article on The Intercept. First, they describe the tactics Trump is already using to undermine the elections:

Trump is questioning the legitimacy of an election that will rely on mail-in ballots, even though he himself has often voted absentee. He has threatened to withhold funding from states that are trying to make it easier for people to vote, and he is undermining the U.S. Postal Service, both of which are essential, especially in a pandemic. His Republican allies around the country have been passing voter ID laws, purging voter rolls, and cutting the number of polling places in urban areas, forcing people to stand in line for hours to exercise their right to vote. 

Meanwhile, there’s plenty of evidence — from foreign interference to white nationalist “poll watchers” — that Trump and the Republican party are “already trying to steal the election.”

But if it doesn’t work, what tools could he trying to deploy? The authors have their suspicions:

To steal the election, we suspect he will adapt the standard playbook of authoritarians everywhere: cast doubt on the election results by filing numerous lawsuits and launching coordinated federal and state investigations, including into foreign interference; call on militia groups to intimidate election officials and instigate violence; rely on fringe social media to generate untraceable rumors, and on Fox News to amplify these messages as fact; and create a climate of confusion and chaos. He might ask the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security — which he has now weaponized against democracy — to deploy to big cities in swing states to stop the vote count or seize ballots. If he does all this right, he’ll be able to put soldiers on the streets, inflame his base, and convince millions of people that the election is being stolen from him. 

From there, could he create a “false justification” for right-wing state legislatures to appoint Trump-loyal electors? If so, the authors have a clear prescription: “take to the streets.” They go on to describe the fecklessness of institutions to beat back Trump on their own, making a strong case for why people power — and movements — will be the necessary ingredient for ensuring the transfer of power.  And, they argue, the work to build that power needs to start immediately.

Read the full chilling — and highly compelling — piece at The Intercept.

Special Event: SUPER TUESDAY RECAP: #Election2020 (3/7)

Sat, March 7, 2020, 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM EST

CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies, 25 West 43rd Street, 18th Floor, New York, NY 10036

Hear expert analysis on the 2020 primary elections and updates on the race to become the Democratic nominee in this interactive Super Tuesday recap event. Bring your questions and comments!

 

*Featuring*

BASIL SMIKLE, PhD

Political Commentator at CNN and MSNBC; Faculty at Columbia University; Former Executive Director of the New York State Democratic Party; Former Distinguished Lecturer in Urban Studies, CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies

Event: The Fight for Fair Elections: Expanding the Vote in 2020 (2/21)

Date: Fri, February 21, 2020
Time: 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM EST
Location: CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies, 25 West 43rd Street, 18th Floor, New York, NY 10036

RSVP HERE

Featuring:

  • Gloria Browne-Marshall
    Professor of Constitutional Law, John Jay College of Criminal Justice
  • Gerry Hudson
    Secretary-Treasurer, Service Employees International Union (SEIU)

Moderator:

  • Deepak Bhargava
    Distinguished Lecturer, CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies
    Former Executive Director, Center for Community Change

Doors open at 8:30am. A light breakfast will be served.

Given the especially high stakes of the 2020 election, the need for broad and unobstructed voter participation could not be greater. Yet the past decade has seen a plethora of legal curtailments on voting rights. Since 2010, 25 states have adopted strict photo ID requirements, curbs on early voting, and voter registration restrictions that have all served to gut the 1965 Voting Rights Act, a major win of the Civil Rights movement. Finally, the perennial challenge of voter turnout still exists – over 25% of eligible voters are unregistered, and only 50% of registered voters are expected to vote, making the prospects for a truly democratic election in 2020 very concerning.

What lessons can be gleaned from a long history of heroic efforts to ensure equal voting opportunities and rights for all? What are advocates, unions, and other activists doing to combat voter suppression and promote voter registration and turnout in the upcoming election? What should be the top legislative priorities of a more progressive, post-2020 federal government to strengthen our democracy by expanding the vote?

Event: BEYOND RESISTANCE: A Progressive Immigration Agenda for 2020 (12/3)

Tue, December 3, 2019
6:00 PM – 8:30 PM EST
CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies
25 West 43rd Street, 18th Floor
New York, NY 10036

RSVP HERE

What should be the top priorities of a progressive immigration agenda for 2020?

Featured speakers:

Maribel Hernandez-Rivera – District Director for U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Deepak Bhargava – Distinguished Lecturer in Urban Studies, CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies (SLU)

Muzaffar Chishti – Director of the Migration Policy Institute at NYU Law

ModeratorRuth Milkman, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies (SLU)

What should be the top immigration policy priorities of a new Democratic administration, assuming an election win in 2020? What are the labor market, social, and political impacts of merit-based vs. more humanitarian immigration streams? What are the various impacts of these two streams on the labor movement and working-class communities? What are the various political and economic interests influencing the growth of the deportation and detention industry? In what different ways are U.S. communities and jobs dependent on this industry? What are the key political distinctions among pro-immigration forces? Should the mass decriminalization of migrants and refugees be at the top of an immigration reform agenda? As war and climate change promise to accelerate this world-wide migratory trend, what policy framework should organized labor and social justice movements support?

FIRST COME, FIRST SEATED

Events are free and open to all, but due to space constraints registration is requested. We generally overbook to ensure a full house. Registered guests are given priority check-in 15 to 30 minutes before start time. After the event starts all registered seats are released regardless of registration, so we recommend that you arrive early. Light refreshments will be served.

AUDIO/VIDEO RECORDING

Programs are photographed and recorded by the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies for educational purposes. Attending this event indicates your consent to possibly being filmed and photographed and your consent to the use of your recorded image by the School.

PRESS

Please email all press inquiries (photo, video, interviews, audio-recording, etc.) at least 24 hours before the day of the program to events@slu.cuny.edu. Please note that professional photography and video recordings are prohibited without expressed consent.

PRIVACY POLICY

No spam, ever. Your email address will only be used by the event sponsors to communicate with you about this event and upcoming public programs.

ACCESSIBILITY

This venue has an elevator and is accessible for wheelchair users. There is an all-gender restroom on site. Simultaneous translation into other languages is not available for this event.

Video: Blue Wave or Red Tide?

On Friday, October 16th, our community came together to process the midterm results and where the major parties — and labor — go from here. Was it a blue wave? Maybe. A red tide? Decidedly not.

In an electoral season in which the sitting presidential administration has loomed large, what do the elections tell us about the current political landscape, especially with regard to racial, gender and class voting patterns? What do the contemporary Democratic and Republican Parties stand for? What are the challenges and possibilities that face people and organizations committed to social and economic justice?

The conversation featured John Nichols, national affairs correspondent at The Nation; Esther Kaplan, editor at The Investigative fund; and SLU distinguished lecturer Basil Smikle. The panel was moderated by Daryl Khan, director of the Urban Reporting Program at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.

New Labor Forum Highlights: November 5th, 2018

The New Labor Forum has a bi-weekly newsletter on current topics in labor, curated by the some of the most insightful scholars and activists in the labor world today. Check out some highlights from the latest edition below.

With perhaps the most important midterm elections in a generation happening tomorrow, we offer you: an invitation to join us in a post-election reporters roundtable on November 16th; a video from our September 14th forum, featuring the trenchant commentary of New York City Deputy Mayor J. Phillip Thompson on whether a democratic capitalism is possible; midterm polling data that shows white working-class voters in the Midwest returning to the Democratic Party; and a summary of ballot measures in tomorrow’s elections that seek either to expand and further contract our democracy.

Table of Contents:

  1. Blue Wave or Red Tide? 2018 Post-Election Reporters Roundtable/CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies and the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY
  2. Is a Democratic Capitalism Possible?/ J. Phillip Thompson, The Murphy Institute, CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies
  3. Why are Democrats looking so strong in the Midwest?/ Perry Bacon Jr., FiveThirtyEight
  4. These are the biggest 2018 ballot measures on elections, voting rights, gerrymandering, and more/ Stephen Wolf, Daily Kos

Photo by Charlie Day vis flickr (cc-by-nd)