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Paige Fusco

Dysfunction and direction in American politics

America’s political season is now in full swing. Thirteen states have already held primary elections, and every new controversy is weighed for its possible impact on November’s midterms. Media coverage has focused mainly on sagging confidence in President Joe Biden, the impact of Donald Trump’s endorsement on statewide races, and the battle for control of Congress over the next two years.

But there’s a bigger picture here. We’ve entered a historic moment of transition in American politics in which both parties are headed for crucial turning points. The Democrats are now led by a 79-year-old incumbent president who has a composite approval rating south of 41% and no heir apparent. Vice President Kamala Harris’s approval number is even lower than Biden’s.

The Republican Party is led by the twice-impeached, 75-year-old former President Trump, who left office in defeat with an approval rating of 34%. But there’s not yet a viable understudy here either. There are many plausible candidates for the Republican 2024 presidential nomination, but none is polling anywhere close to Trump in head-to-head matchups. And even if Trump’s brand of politics outlives the man himself, we can’t yet predict how combative political rhetoric might translate into policy.

In short, we enter this election year with no clear idea of where either party is headed.

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Is American Democracy in Danger? | GZERO World with Ian Bremmer

Is American democracy in danger?

American power was indisputable in the 20th Century. The US helped win two World Wars, developed a resilient economy, and in 1991 emerged from the Cold War as the sole global superpower. But today the country is facing unprecedented polarization caused, in part, by wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the 2008 financial crisis and the amplification of disinformation on social media. On GZERO World, Ian Bremmer asks former Obama Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes whether the American Century is truly over, or if there's anything we can do to restore the country's reputation as a "shining city upon a hill."

Paige Fusco

The Graphic Truth: Did COVID spur political division?

The pandemic has sharply exacerbated pre-existent political polarization across the world. According to a new Pew survey, a median of 60 percent of people in 17 advanced economies say COVID has increased political polarization in their countries, in some by over 30 points, while just one-third feel more united. We compare the percentage of people who see more division in 2021 to their COVID deaths per capita.

Gabriella Turrisi

How the pandemic made us hate each other

On Wednesday, the Pew Research Center released a survey on the impact of the pandemic on political attitudes across 17 advanced economies. The results are startling and alarming.

A median of 60 percent say that COVID has increased political polarization in their countries. Just 34 percent said their nation feels more united. In some cases, perceptions of polarization have jumped by more than 30 percentage points since the pandemic began.

We encourage you to read the report itself, but today we want to focus on the underlying question of WHY the pandemic has widened divisions among voters in so many countries.

Here are a few theories….

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A House Divided: Who’s To Blame?

A House Divided: Who’s To Blame?

Do Democrats Hate Republicans? And Do Republicans Hate Democrats? This week on GZERO World, we look at the political divide in America. It's widening. Can Americans all just get along?

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