As scandals increasingly dominate the political agenda, Benjamin Ginsberg and Martin Shefter argue in this illuminating book, the United States is entering an era of postelectoral politics, with media revelations, congressional investigations, and judicial proceedings replacing elections as the primary tools of political competition.In a far–reaching shift of the political landscape, contenders now seek to discredit or take hostage their opponents rather than to expand the electorate or otherwise compete for votes.In this new edition, which includes a full chapter on the politics of Bush v. Gore, the authors discuss the long-term significance of the decline of electoral competition: voters are increasingly alienated, the government's effectiveness is weakened, and the democratic process is threatened.
Benjamin Ginsberg is the David Bernstein Professor of Political Science, Director of the Washington Center for the Study of American Government, and Chair of the Center for Advanced Governmental Studies at the Johns Hopkins University. Before joining the Hopkins faculty in 1992, Ginsberg was Professor of Government at Cornell. He is the author or coauthor of 20 books including Presidential Power: Unchecked and Unbalanced; Downsizing Democracy: How America Sidelined Its Citizens and Privatized Its Public; Politics by Other Means; The Consequences of Consent; and The Captive Public. His most recent book is The Fall of the Faculty: The Rise of the All-Administrative University and Why It Matters.