Stephen Farnsworth, professor of political science and director of the University’s Center for Leadership and Media Studies, recently had a co-authored research paper titled “Virginia’s 2013 Gubernatorial Race and Presidential Elections: A Comparison of News Coverage” published in the The Virginia News Letter. The Virginia News Letter is produced by the Weldon Cooper Center for Center for Public Service at the University of Virginia.
However, political observers say the tide is shifting with both major presidential candidates in 2016 pledging not to cut Social Security and one proposing a small expansion. Details are slim at the moment, but that could change heading into the fall.
“Both campaigns are still in the process of figuring out what they want to say,” notes Stephen Farnsworth, a professor of political science at the University of Mary Washington. “Perhaps as we get into the debates there will be more discussion.”
Her support of a program expansion could also have an impact on undecided voters. “If Hillary Clinton does emphasize Social Security, that might be an opportunity to win over some older voters,” Farnsworth says.
Regardless of who wins, “it seems like Social Security gridlock is what we’ll see,” Farnsworth says.
University of Mary Washington political science professor Stephen Farnsworth said he thinks Trump’s comments to the black community are actually meant for undecided white voters. Some white voters may be hesitant to vote for Trump because of the perception he is unfair to minorities, he said.
“By speaking out to African–Americans, even if the audience is nearly all white, Trump may enable some of his supporters to say that Trump isn’t as bigoted as some might think,” Farnsworth said.
He said he thought the strategy may have a “marginal positive impact,” but said Trump has to do very well with white voters to make up for the lack of support from African–Americans and Latinos.
Stephen Farnsworth is a professor of political science at the Universe of Mary Washington. “The additional choice of another Republican on the ballot if that occurs I think will help Barbara Comstock and any other vulnerable Republican who emerges in the coming weeks.”
Stephen Farnsworth is a professor at the University of Mary Washington. “Donald Trump has made it pretty clear that he’s not going to be all that sympathetic to Muslims in this country, and if a Muslim has been all that undecided about Donald Trump they might not have been paying a lot of attention.”