Rice U. expert available to discuss Trump’s first year in office

Rice University
Office of Public Affairs / News & Media Relations


David Ruth

Amy McCaig

Rice U. expert available to discuss Trump’s first year in office

HOUSTON – (Jan. 19, 2018) – As the anniversary of President Donald Trump’s inauguration approaches and a federal government shutdown looms, Rice University political scientist Paul Brace is available to discuss the divided public feelings about the president’s first year in office.

Brace offers three opinions on what Trump’s presidency means for the political landscape of the United States:

  • “It is the beginning of a political realignment introduced by Trump’s unconventional politics and populism that gives voice (if not necessarily policies) to his base of largely white, middle- and lower-class voters.”
  • “It is the end of the beginning of a Watergate-like unraveling of a presidency, with each day bringing more tantalizing revelations and serious legal threats.”
  • “Or it is the beginning of the end of American democracy as Trump threatens our constitutional foundations and upends well-established political norms, with the legitimacy of the federal government, media, our electoral systems and the U.S. role in international politics under siege.”

“In truth, each perspective lays claim to important facts at this stage of the Trump presidency,” Brace said. “No one can argue with Trump’s amazing success. And yet, none of his loyalists can feel comfortable about the prospects for his presidency as the Mueller investigation proceeds.”

Brace said that Trump’s opponents, and even many supporters, also have grave concerns whether politics can be restored to normal after Trump’s “pioneering but erratic first year in office.”

“Where it is common for pundits to focus on one perspective, each of these perspectives warrants careful consideration for us to appreciate Trump’s presidency at the end of year one and within the broader context of American history,” Brace said.

Brace is the Clarence L. Carter Professor of Political Science in Rice’s School of Social Sciences. He has published widely, primarily in the areas of state politics and judicial decision-making. He is the author of “State Government and Economic Performance,” co-author of “Follow the Leader: Opinion Polls and the Modern Presidents” and co-editor of “Change and Continuity in American State and Local Government” and “The Presidency in American Politics.” He comments regularly on presidential politics.

Rice University has a VideoLink ReadyCam TV interview studio capable of transmitting broadcast-quality standard-definition and high-definition video directly to all news media organizations around the world 24/7.

To schedule an interview with Brace, contact Amy McCaig, senior media relations representative at Rice, at amym@rice.edu or 713-348-6777.


This news release can be found online at https://news.rice.edu/.

Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.

Related materials:

Paul Brace biography: https://politicalscience.rice.edu/paul-brace

Photo link: https://news.rice.edu/files/2012/09/Image.jpg

Photo credit: Rice University

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About Amy McCaig

Amy is a senior media relations specialist in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.