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Politics in Question

113 EpisodesProduced by Julia Azari, Lee Drutman, and James WallnerWebsite

A podcast about how our political institutions are failing us and ideas for fixing them. Join hosts Lee Drutman, Julia Azari, and James Wallner, three lively experts on American political institutions and reform, as they imagine and argue over what American politics could look like if citizens quest… read more


What is the best way to pick United States senators?

In this week’s episode of Politics In Question, Wendy Schiller joins Julia, Lee, and James to talk about how we elect senators in the United States. Schiller is Professor of Political Science, Professor of International and Public Affairs, and Chair of Political Science at Brown University. She has also experienced politics as a practitioner, having served on the staffs of Daniel Patrick Moynihan in the Senate and Governor Mario Cuomo in New York. Schiller is the author of several books, including Electing the Senate: Indirect Democracy before the Seventeenth Amendment (Princeton University Press) and Partners and Rivals: Representation in U.S. Senate Delegations (Princeton University Press). And she has published articles in the American Journal of Political Science, Legislative Studies Quarterly, Studies in American Political Development, and the Journal of Politics.

What is the best way to pick United States senators? What are the consequences of different modes of electing senators? Does direct election of senators impact their behavior inside the Senate differently than indirect election? What would happen if Americans repealed the 17th Amendment? And why are there two Senate seats up for grabs in Georgia at the same time? These are some of the questions that Wendy, Julia, Lee, and James discuss in this week’s episode.

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