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Democracy Works: Will COVID-19 Create A One-Issue Campaign?

John Sides
John Sides

The general election is going to happen in November, and candidates still need to figure out ways to get their messages out to voters. COVID-19 has changed everything about the way candidates communicate with potential voters and how they position themselves in relationship to the virus.

This episode addresses the nuts and bolts of campaigning during a pandemic, but we also discuss a broader question —at a time like this should we even be talking about political campaigns? Our guest this week makes an interesting case about why the answer is always "yes." John Sides is a professor of political science at Vanderbilt University and publisher of the Monkey Cage, a political science blog published by the Washington Post.

Sides talks about the novel coronavirus has impacted campaigns up and down the ballot, and why it's valuable to consider it as a political problem apart from a public health issue.

Note: You'll hear a reference to Bernie Sanders during the interview. We recorded on Monday April 6, before Sanders announced he was dropping out of the race. 

Jenna Spinelle is the Communications Specialist for the McCourtney Institute for Democracy at Penn State. She is responsible for shaping all of the institute's external communication, including website content, social media, multimedia, and media outreach.
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