The 2012 Presidential Debates

September 20, 2012
Wednesday, October 3, 2012 - 9:00pm to 11:30pm
Saxbe Auditorium, Moritz College of Law, 55 W. 12th Ave

The first debate between President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney, televised live from Denver, Colorado, will focus on domestic policy.

We'll watch the debate on the giant television screen in Saxbe Auditorium at OSU's Moritz College of Law, 55 West 12th Avenue at High St.

Following the debate, we'll discuss what we've seen and heard with American political system experts: Paul Beck (Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Edward Foley (Professor of Law), and David Stebenne (Professor of History and Law.

Paul Beck

Paul Allen Beck is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Ohio State University – and Professor of Political Science, Communication, and Sociology.  From 2004 to 2008, he was Dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Ohio State.  His research and teaching interests are focused on political parties, voting behavior, and public opinion. His current research, initially funded with a grant from the National Science Foundation, focuses on the roles of the mass media, interpersonal discussion networks, and secondary organizations as primary sources of information for voters in elections in modern democracies, including the United States. He was co-principal investigator of national survey studies of the 2004 and 2012 electorates and co-founder of the Comparative National Election Project (CNEP), which brings the U.S. into comparison with more than twenty other democracies. Currently, he is working as co-editor on a book from the CNEP project and on a book on recent American electoral politics.  Among other books, he was author of Party Politics in America (1997) and co-editor of Electoral Change in Advanced Industrial Democracies (1984). He received the American Political Science Association’s 2005 Goodnow Award for distinguished service to the profession and 2007 Eldersveld Award for lifetime professional contributions to the field of political organizations and parties. His commentaries on American politics are featured regularly in American and foreign media and in community talks.

Edward FoleyEdward B. Foley, the Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer Professor for the Administration of Justice and the Rule of Law, is the Director of Election Law @ Moritz. He is also serves as a Reporter for the American Law Institute’s Election Law Project.

Professor Foley is a graduate of Columbia University School of Law and Yale College and has taught at Ohio State since 1991. His teaching and scholarship covers the full field of election law. His current research focuses the resolution of vote-counting disputes, and his recent publications include a three-part series in the Election Law Journal (volume 10) on Minnesota’s 2008 U.S. Senate election: “The Lake Wobegone Recount” (pp. 129-164), “How Fair Can Be Faster” (pp. 187-226), and “The Tale of Two Teams” (pp. 475-482).

He is also the author of The Founders’ Bush v. Gore: The 1792 Election Dispute and Its Continuing Relevance,” 44 Indiana L. Rev. 23 (2010), which he delivered at Ohio State on October 14, 2008, as the University Distinguished Lecture.  He is at work on a book about the history of disputed elections in the United States, from the Founding era to the present.

David Stebenne

David Stebenne earned a B.A. from Yale University in 1982, a J.D. and an M.A. in 1986, and a Ph.D. in 1991, all from Columbia University. He is a member of the Maryland bar, and a specialist in modern American political and legal history. He has taught at Ohio State since 1993.

Professor Stebenne has written three books, Arthur J. Goldberg: New Deal Liberal (Oxford University Press, 1996), a study of the rise and decline of New Deal era liberalism as seen from the perspective of one of its leading figures; Modern Republican: Arthur Larson and the Eisenhower Years (Indiana University Press, 2006), a study of Arthur Larson, the chief theoretician of Eisenhower-era Republicanism; and New City Upon A Hill: A History of Columbia, Maryland, co-authored with Joseph R. Mitchell (The History Press, 2007), tracing the city’s history since its beginnings in the early 1960's.  His most recent article, "Remapping American Politics: The Redistricting Revolution Fifty Years Later," was published in the ejournal Origins (Vol.5, Issue 5) February 2012.

Professor Stebenne teaches courses in OSU's History Department and Law School. He is now working on a political and legal history of the United States from the 1930's through the 1960's.

This event in the series Conversations in the Humanities with Fred Andrle is presented in cooperation with the Moritz College of Law.

Debate Flyer