In the News
Electoral Federalism: Centralized or Decentralized Elections?
Richard Hasen and Kevin Kosar are both concerned about the polarizing partisan divide in American political life. Hasen believes that “rampant conspiracism leads to contagion, not containment.” He argues that in the future “Federalism and decentralization will not save us from an attempt at election subversion.” Kosar is wary of centralizing elections authority at the national level, and argues that “By assigning authority to conduct federal elections to the states, the US Constitution makes it far less likely that any president or cabal of legislators can control the elections. This strikes me as a critical bulwark for our representative democracy.”… The Case for Decentralized Elections- Kosar …Certainly, conceiving of partisan election policy fights as a game should dampen our hopes that appeals to fair play and high principles will correct behavior. The players simply believe too much is at stake and fear unilateral disarmament and being played for a sucker. Nonetheless, there is no harm in escalating the costs associated with behaviors with significant collective costs. For example, “Nobody likes a sore loser” has long been part of the American ethos. We need to find ways to restore this nonpartisan “losers’ consent” expectation to all candidates and heap scorn on those who do not abide by it and corrode public trust.