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The PoliSci Newsletter

Dr. Kinney’s Paper on Idaho State Budgeting

Photo-Kinney_RichardProfessor Emeritus Dick Kinney’s paper, “Making Progress in Idaho State Budgeting: The Sequel”, is featured in The California Journal of Politics and Policy’s most current issue. The paper presents Idaho’s current demographics, political tendencies, budgeting process and economy.

Original Source: Campus Update – 8/25/15, eScholarship – 2015

Dr. Gary Moncrief at BILLD

Gary Moncrief, Professor Emeritus for the Department of Political Science, conducted two Gary Moncrief, Political Science, Studio Portraitworkshops at a legislative leadership conference for Midwestern state legislators. The conference, The 21st Annual Bowhay Institute for Legislative Leadership Development, was held at the University of Wisconsin. “In addition to its focus on leadership training, such as conflict resolution and negotiation, BILLD includes policy sessions on issues such as education, corrections, health care and economic development, as well as seminars on media relations, priority management and consensus building”.

Original Source: Campus Update – 9/26/15

Dr. Greg Raymond

Image 1Greg Raymond, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of the Political Science Department, recently gave two interviews to the Serbian daily newspaper Danas on U.S. and Russian foreign policies toward the Balkans.

Jaclyn Kettler Wins Award

Jaclyn Kettler, Political Science, Studio Portrait, Tag croppedJaclyn Kettler, Assistant Professor, has received The Christopher Mooney Dissertation Award for her dissertation, titled The Right to Party (Resources): Political Party Networks and Candidate Success.  The Christopher Mooney Dissertation Award is  a national award given by the American Political Science Association (APSA) State Politics and Policy Section for the best dissertation in American state politics and policy completed during the previous calendar year.

Dr. Kettler’s dissertation focuses on two major questions: How does the electoral organization of political parties vary across states? How does the position of candidates within the party affect their success? Dr. Kettler addresses these questions using social network analysis to study candidates’ relationships and the context around those relationships. She measures party networks with campaign finance transactions in seven states for the 2010 and 2012 state legislative elections. After a case study of Texas parties that establishes the validity of the approach, Dr. Kettler compares the structure of party networks across states. Although the party networks are relatively sparse in general, the results reveal that parties in states with competitive legislative chambers tend to be more connected. Finally, Dr. Kettler’s dissertation explores how the party structure influences candidates. By drawing upon Ronald S. Burt’s (1992, 2005) structural holes theory, she identifies influential actors and examines how their network position impacts their success in legislatures. She finds that influential candidates in the electoral party network are more likely to become a legislative leader in the following session, demonstrating an important link between electoral and legislative politics.



Dr. Justin Vaughn

VaughnJ-1209-150x150Assistant Professor Justin Vaughn was quoted in a U.S. News and World Report story about former presidents who parlay their time in office into millions through speeches, book deals, etc. Vaughn is an expert in the American presidency.  Read the article, “Cashing In”, here.


Mike Touchton Quoted in Anniston Star

Assistant Professor Michael Touchton was quoted in an article in the Anniston (Alabama) Star about plans for redevelopment of Fort McClellan as a possible retirement community. The fort was closed in 1999 in a post-Cold-War realignment. Read the story, “McClellan redevelopment picking up, but long road ahead”, at The Anniston Star.

Boise State to host 10th annual Minidoka Civil Liberties Symposium

Boise State will host the 10th annual Minidoka Civil Liberties Symposium June 24-25. The event features two days of speakers covering topics including immigration, historical civil liberties violations in America and how they still affect us today.

“The symposium was inspired by a desire to tell the story of the Japanese American incarceration during World War II as an extreme example of the violation of civil liberties of Americans,” explained political science professor Ross Burkhart. “In particular, the Minidoka camp, only a couple of hours away from Boise, makes this historical black eye close to Idahoans.”

Speakers will include former legislator Nicole LeFavour, lobbyist Bill Roden and Tom Ikeda, educator and founder of Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project, among others.

Boise State partners with the National Park Service, Friends of Minidoka, the College of Southern Idaho and the Idaho American Civil Liberties Union to produce and host the symposium. Students are welcome to attend the symposium for workshop credit or for non-credit, as are community members. Students who would like to attend the symposium for one course credit are encouraged to contact Burkhart at

The symposium will run 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. June 24-25. Registration is $70, which includes breakfast and lunch both days. For more information or to register, go to

Justin Vaughn Published in The Conversation

VaughnJ-1209-150x150Assistant Professor Justin Vaughn was recently published on the Academic website The Conversation.  His article, titled “Is George W Bush a burden or blessing for Jeb Bush’s 2016 campaign?”, examines whether the legacy of former president George W. Bush will help or hinder Jeb Bush’s bid for the Republican nomination.

Brian Wampler’s New Book

Political science professor Brian Wampler’s latest book took him and his family more than 6,000 miles to witnessWampler's second book, Activating Democracy in Brazil participatory democracy in action.

A Fulbright Scholar in 2009 and 2010, Wampler spent time in Belo Horizonte, the sixth largest city in Brazil. For the next year he studied how Brazil’s new constitution in 1988 changed life in the country. For the last two and a half decades Brazil has included citizen councils in nearly all of the country’s public policy decisions. But a major change in government policy doesn’t happen overnight and some municipalities have been more apt to change than others.


Justin Vaughn Published in New York Times

VaughnJ-1209-150x150Justin S. Vaughn authored an op-ed on the nation’s best and worst ex-presidents for The New York Times. “The Making of a Great Ex-President” was published in the Sunday edition of the Times.