Political scientists at Duke University draw upon a variety of theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches to produce cutting-edge research that enhances our understanding of politics. Polis is committed to showcasing political science research at Duke and to facilitating its creation.

Faculty Research & Media Hits

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Professor Kristin Goss on Gun Ownership, Indy Week

Sanford Professor Kristin Goss was quoted in the Washington Post on gun reform and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, an organization advocating for stricture gun laws founded by Shannon Watts. Approximately 140 volunteers of the organization were elected to office this past midterm election. Professor Goss, citing the work and successes of Watt’s organization, says “Nothing drives me crazier than when people say 20 [children] were killed and nothing changed. That is not true.” She argues that although Congress did not pass any sweeping gun legislation, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America have been a pivotal force in the movement. Still, Watt’s is hoping for more change. When Congress did little after Sandy Hook, she realized she needed gun-sense candidates to run for office. Goss states that the organization “knew a real key to success would not just be policy change, but a change in personnel; you needed to change who was making the decision about gun policy.” Continue reading

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Professor Frank Bruni & Mac McCorkle on the 2024 NC Governor Race, The New York Times

Sanford Professor Mac McCorkle was quoted in The New York Times on the 2024 North Carolina governor's race. NC Attorney General Josh Stein is the likeliest Democratic nominee, and Lieutenant Mark Robinson is the likeliest Republican nominee. According to the article, McCorkle said North Carolinians elected their share of firebrands like Robinson to Congress before Continue reading

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Professor Ken Rogerson on TikTok’s Threat to Government Security, WUNC

Two state lawmakers are asking Governor Roy Cooper to consider prohibiting state employees from downloading TikTok on government issued devices. This is part of a larger movement based on political concerns that the Chinese-owned company could pose a threat to national security by sharing user data with China's government. Congress passed a ban on TikTok on federal employees' work devices last month as a provision in the larger spending bill to keep federal agencies funded. Some states have followed suit with similar proposals to ban TikTok downloads on state employees’ work phones, computers and tablets. Continue reading

Congressman David Price on his life and career in the U.S. House of Representatives, The Washington Post

This January, Polis welcomed Congressman David Price back to Duke’s campus as a Polis Distinguished Fellow. He had previously served as the representative for NC’s 4th district for 30 years. The Washington Post recently wrote an article to commemorate Price’s years as a Democrat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Price spoke on the knowledge he obtained while serving in office and advice he would give to other representatives. “Don’t hesitate to be full-throated advocates for what you believe in. … At the same time, understand that not every battle can be won on the first try and that politics is a matter of striking a balance between … compromising and finding common ground where you can, and fighting where you must.” Continue reading

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Professor Mac McCorkle on the political landscape in 2023, Carolina’s Own QC News

Sanford Professor Mac McCorkle was quoted in Carolina's Own Queen City News on the North Carolina governor's race and the new faces representing NC at the federal level. The next two years could further change the political landscape drastically with the next presidential election and North Carolina’s next gubernatorial race. According to the article, McCorkle is expecting a titanic battle between Robinson and Stein, likely nominees for the 2024 NC governor's race. "Here, you're gonna have more of what I think will be viewed as a more purely progressive race, Josh Stein, even though he is not too left, and Mark Robinson, who's full out almost from the Jesse Helms tradition," McCorkle said. He also gave his professional opinion on Senator-Elect Ted Budd's transition into office, which he thinks may be tough. "Given how chaotic things are now with the Trump legacy, he's going to have some trouble in the Senate figuring out if he's going to be a Trump flamethrower as that flame may be fading." Continue reading