On this special Election Day episode of BackStory, the History Guys put current voting trends in historical perspective, and explore the changing face of voting in America.
When it comes to partisan politics, Americans today are deeply conflicted. We want an engaged citizenry without the deep fissures in the body politic, but can we have it both ways? Have we EVER had it both ways?
Commanders come and go—but what difference does it really make? In this hour, BackStory takes a closer look at the realities of presidential transitions. Send us your ideas, questions, and stories so you can join us on the air!
Ed Ayers interviews historian Mark Summers, Professor of History at the University of Kentucky and author of Party Games: Getting, Keeping, and Using Power in Gilded Age Politics. Prof. Summers discusses some of the hijinks associated with Gilded Age elections.
Although the memory of hanging chads still clouds the electoral mood, elections have come a long way. But how effective is our current system? Does it accurately register the will of the People? And why did America’s founders opt out of direct democracy? With the help of callers, the History Guys provide the backstory on [...]