George Mason in the News…

Posted: October 29, 2004 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Following are highlights of national news coverage George Mason received during the past week:

Friday, Oct. 22, The Seattle Times

The Electoral College Is Likely with Us To Stay, Despite Critics

“Tens of millions of voters in ‘red’ or ‘blue’ states such as Texas, California and New York receive little attention from the candidates. Instead, the campaign is focused on no more than a dozen closely contested states, including such small states as New Hampshire, New Mexico and Iowa, and the number is likely to shrink by Election Day. ‘There are so many states out of play now,’ said Mark Rozell, a George Mason University public-policy professor who is re-thinking his support of the Electoral College. ‘So many people live in states where there is essentially no presidential election going on.'”

Saturday, Oct. 23, Associated Press

Not All Congressional Districts Going the Way Redistricting Intended Them

“Democrats in Tennessee succeeded in making the 4th District safer for their party, although not as safe as some had projected. Their candidate, Lincoln Davis, won with 53 percent of the vote over Republican Janice Bowling and is favored in this year’s rematch, but the conservative-leaning district could prove vulnerable for Democrats to keep long-term when Davis departs. Michael McDonald, an assistant professor and redistricting expert at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., said Democratic legislatures in the South often fail to consider a regional surge for Republicans when redrawing district lines. ‘These districts, especially the rural districts, are continuing to trend Republican,’ McDonald said. ‘Time is going to catch up with them.'”

Monday, Oct. 25, The Washington Times

Classwork Goes Home; School Lets Out, Learning Continues

“If Ms. Lewis taught 40 years ago, she likely would have had to rely solely on classroom work, since homework was viewed as punishment. ‘We’ve had a century-old love-hate relationship with homework. It’s been in vogue and out of vogue almost by the decade. Now, it’s back in,’ says Gary Galluzzo, professor of education at George Mason University. He has a doctorate in teacher education. In the 1900s, homework was seen as a way to develop memorization and self-discipline skills. High school students took home an average of two hours of homework a night, while middle school students spent one hour and elementary school students 20 minutes on their homework, Mr. Galluzzo says.”

Tuesday, Oct. 26, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Online Exchanges Let Political Junkies Invest in Shares of Candidates

“While lots of people trade or check online political stocks purely for fun, some do so because the outcome of presidential elections can have huge impact on the fortunes of different companies and on the overall economy. ‘There are lots of people sitting in Wall Street firms looking at them because people really do believe what party is in charge will matter to business interests,’ said Robin Hanson, an economist and markets researcher at Virginia’s George Mason University.”

Tuesday, Oct. 26, USA Today

New Voters are ‘X-Factor’ of Election

“Democrats say Republicans are trying to keep eligible voters from casting ballots, using ballot security as a pretext, because most of the new voters plan to vote for Kerry. ‘Democrats really have to fire up people in order to turn them out to vote on Election Day while Republicans are much more habitual voters,’ says Michael McDonald, a professor at George Mason University who studies polling. The ‘silver lining’ for Democrats, McDonald says, is that once a person is persuaded to go to the polls once, he or she is much more likely to vote again in the future.”

Thursday, Oct. 28, The Toronto Star

Record Turnout Forecast

“Few doubt that this bitter, epic struggle between Republican President George W. Bush and Democratic challenger John Kerry will result in a flood of voters. Two veteran turnout watchers, professor Michael McDonald of George Mason University and a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution, and Curtis Gans, director of the Committee for the Study of the American Electorate, estimate that between 118 million and 121 million Americans will vote next Tuesday. That would be 12 percent to 15 percent more than the previous record of 105.4 million in 2000 and approach the turnout rates of 60 percent or more of the voting-age populations in the 1960s.”

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