Newt Gingrich Bill Clinton

The Midterms That Changed America

In 1994, Republicans swept the midterms and Newt Gingrich became Speaker of the House. His “Contract with America” was both polarizing and transformative.
Gerrymandering origins

Is Gerrymandering to Blame for Our Polarized Politics?

Gerrymandering is the process by which districts for the House of Representatives are drawn so that one party has a distinct election advantage.
Tammany Patronage

Why Did U.S. Postmasters Once Have So Much Political Cachet?

American bureaucracy used to work through patronage, an informal system of job-distribution by the party in power. Why did it change?
John Quincy Adams

What Do Ex-Presidents Do? Ask John Quincy Adams.

Many are speculating about what former president Barack Obama will do in his retirement. Perhaps he will stay as politically involved as John Quincy Adams.
Civil Rights Marchers

Does Street Protest Matter?

Americans have turned to street protests to achieve their political goals—while critics have warned that this kind of public action won’t change anything.
Nixon transcripts

What Affects Our Trust in Government?

Government distrust has been on the decline for decades, but a recent poll shows a slight increase.

The Last Formal Declaration of War

The last time Congress formally declared war was in World War II.