portrait of Andrew Clarke

Prof. Andrew Clarke

A recent op-ed published in The Hill examines whether political town halls are worthwhile: Do these forums influence politicians, and do they enhance politicians’ effectiveness in Congress? The piece cites research conducted by Andrew Clarke, assistant professor of government and law, and Daniel Markovits ’20, who collaborated with Clarke as a student and is now pursuing a Ph.D. at Columbia University.

Clarke and Markovits collected data from more than 23,000 town hall meetings over the past eight years. Their data analysis revealed that the least successful lawmakers hold the fewest town hall meetings. They also found that representatives and senators who hold leadership positions are as likely to hold town halls as those who do not hold leadership positions and that those who hold the most town halls introduce the most bills dealing with meaningful policy issues.

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