Thomas F. Schaller is a professor of political science at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and author of "Whistling Past Dixie." His column appears Wednesdays in The Sun.

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Thomas F. Schaller

Thomas F. Schaller

South Carolina's racist history

South Carolina's racist history

June 23, 2015

The massacre by a young white man, according to police, of nine African Americans last week at a Charleston church Bible study has drawn the nation's attention to lingering racial hatred in America. If there is a more appropriate place to draw that attention than South Carolina, I don't know it.

  • Our electoral structure not only shuts out third parties; it shuts out women

    June 9, 2015

    During lectures and public appearances, I'm sometimes asked why Libertarians and other third-party movements make ample noise yet never win a sufficient number of elected offices in the United States to at least rattle the cages of the Democrats and Republicans, who have enjoyed their two-party duopoly since the Civil War and particularly since the Progressive Era ended.

  • Can the GOP win back the White House?

    May 26, 2015

    So far, the 2016 Republican presidential primary is a complete puzzle to me.

  • Four policy changes that could improve race equality in America

    May 12, 2015

    For daring to suggest that the social unrest in Baltimore following Freddie Gray's death was about race, I received the usual spate of critical emails. Many included one or both of two victim-blaming tropes.

  • Why Baltimore burns for Freddie Gray

    April 28, 2015

    There are fires in Baltimore. This may add fuel to them, but so be it: Freddie Gray's April 19th death while in police custody is almost entirely about race.

  • What lurks in the shadowy corners of the Internet

    March 31, 2015

    Ever heard of "doxxing" or "revenge porn"? How about the names Violentacrez or Craig Brittain?

  • Md. efforts aim to reduce untimely deaths and allow timely ones

    March 17, 2015

    From gay marriage to marijuana decriminalization, Maryland has been a national leader on social issues in the new century. This year, state legislators and new governor Larry Hogan can further burnish the state's reputation by setting a national example on heroin intervention and death-with-dignity legislation.

  • A lifetime spent in service

    March 3, 2015

    After 30 years in the Senate and a half-century of public service to Maryland and the nation, Barbara Mikulski will retire from elected politics next year. She will leave a legacy as one of the state's most admired politicians and among the most influential women ever to serve in Congress.

  • Vaccines, trash, fire and the greater good

    February 17, 2015

    Thankfully, the recent vaccination controversy that dominated headlines and muddled the 2016 Republican presidential primary is mostly over. Surely we have bigger issues as a nation to confront.

  • Ben Carson should stick to medicine

    February 3, 2015

    Maryland's Ben Carson may run for president in 2016. The conservative Republican ought to think better of it, pocket the royalties from increased sales of his book and stay out of the contest.

  • Who is Larry Hogan?

    January 20, 2015

    I confess: I honestly don't know what to make of Larry Hogan, who tomorrow becomes Maryland's 62nd governor.

  • Conservatives better suited to Congress

    January 6, 2015

    The conventional wisdom is that if national Republicans continue to promote policies and politics that appeal mostly to older, white, married and religious voters in a country that is becoming younger, more diverse, less married and more secular, the party is doomed — if not now, then surely in the longer term.

  • Nowhere to go but up for Southern Democrats

    December 9, 2014

    There have been five federal elections — three midterms and two presidential cycles — since the October 2006 publication of my book, "Whistling Past Dixie." In it I argued that, given the Democratic Party's declining southern fortunes, the party should develop a non-southern national electoral strategy.

  • Tom Schaller: The right systematically manufactures bogus news

    November 25, 2014

    If you haven't heard of Jonathan Gruber, an architect of the Affordable Care Act whose testimony about transparency in passing Obamacare has gone viral, expect a rash of new stories about him.

  • Race had a role in Hogan's win

    November 11, 2014

    Larry Hogan's 5-point defeat of Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown last week in the Maryland governor's race was overshadowed by national electoral developments, notably the Republicans' recapture of the U.S. Senate majority they lost in 2006. But what a win.

  • Race, party favors and early voting key in Md. governor's battle

    October 28, 2014

    The Maryland gubernatorial race is closer than many pundits, myself included, had expected. Whoever wins Tuesday, we can take away at least five lessons from the contest between Democratic Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown and Republican businessman Larry Hogan.

  • The Connie Morella effect [Commentary]

    October 14, 2014

    The tighter the Maryland governor's race becomes, the more I think about Connie Morella.



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