Summary: The Republicans suffered disastrous defeats in both the elections of 2006 and 2008. The GOP lost both the U.S. Senate and the House in 2006, and not only did the Democrats add to their numbers in both houses of Congress in 2008, but their candidate Barack Obama was elected president. The Democrats, now fully in control in Washington, worked hard on their promised agenda and were able to make good on many of their promises, including the passing of the health care legislation. But politics continued and the Republicans stood firm on many issues. Opposition to Democrats began to solidify and harden, especially in a grass-roots movement that called itself a Tea Party. The Democrats now find themselves in an unenviable position—according to polls just weeks before the elections—of losing somewhere around 50 seats in the House and seven to eight seats in the Senate (and also losing seven to eight gubernatorial races). Is this tidal wave against the Democrats for real? And if it is, what caused it, and what will be the political consequences for President Obama and the Democrats, as well as for the Republicans. Our distinguished panel will consider all this in a conversation to which the public is invited.
Panel: The panel will be chaired by Professor David Foster (PhD, Toronto) , chair of the Department of History and Political Science at Ashland University, and the participants will be four other members of the Department: Jeffrey Sikkenga (PhD, Toronto), associate professor of political science; Christopher Burkett (PhD, Dallas), assistant professor of political science; Michael Schwarz (PhD, Kentucky), assistant professor of history; and Peter W. Schramm (PhD, Claremont), professor of political science.