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Government Ethics
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How Justice Alito is openly testing the bounds of judicial conduct

Sarat is associate provost, associate dean of the faculty and a professor of jurisprudence and political science at Amherst College. Aftergut is a former federal prosecutor in San Francisco.
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Balance of Power
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A modest proposal for taking partisanship out of the federal judiciary

Patton was the Democratic governor of Kentucky from 1995 to 2003 and has been chancellor of the University of Pikeville for seven years.

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What the courts can (and can't) do to decide the election

Organizer: McCourtney Institute for Democracy at Penn State

President Trump has made it clear that the Supreme Court is part of his strategy for winning another term. But how much say do the courts really have when it comes to reviewing claims of voter fraud and deciding who the next president will be? Are we looking at another Bush v. Gore this year?

Michael Nelson, the Jeffrey L. Hyde and Sharon D. Hyde and Political Science Board of Visitors Early Career Professor in Political Science and affiliate faculty at Penn State Law, will discuss these questions and more during a virtual Q&A session.

Location: Webinar

Big Picture
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Joe Biden unveiled a full slate of political reforms early in the campaign but has spent minimal time talking about these issues in recent months.

While you wait: What a Democratic sweep would mean for democracy reform

American democracy has taken a beating over the last four years, but Election Day may set the table for historic reforms.

The severe stress test for democratic norms can be counted on to further intensify if President Trump gets re-elected. Continuation of a divided Congress would likely perpetuate gridlock on most policy fronts. But should Joe Biden win the White House, and the Senate turn Democratic as well, the new president would take office with an ambitious stack of ready-to-go democracy reform bills on his desk — all of them strongly backed by Democrats newly in control of the entire Capitol.

And those sweeping overhauls of the laws governing campaign financing, voting rights, gerrymandering, executive branch ethics, the courts and even the inner workings of Congress would all be both on the table and viable. The question would be how high they would be on a Biden priority list and how much political capital he and his congressional allies would be willing to spend to get them done.

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