Washington, D.C. – In Does American Democracy Still Work? Alan Wolfe identifies the current political conditions that endanger the quality of our democracy. He describes how politics has changed, and calls for a democracy protection movement designed to preserve our political traditions not unlike the environmental protection movement’s efforts to safeguard the natural world. Voters who know little about issues, leaders who bend rules with little fear of reprisal, and political parties that are losing the ability to mobilize citizens have all contributed to a worrisome new politics of democracy. Wolfe concludes that Americans need to understand the danger that their indifference poses and take public policy matters more seriously.
Alan Wolfe, Professor of political science and Director of the Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life at Boston College and author of “Does American Democracy Still Work?”
Neera Tanden, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Center for American Progress
Friday, September 29, 2006
Program: 12:30 P.M to 1:30 PM
Lunch will be served at 12:00 PM
Admission is free.
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Alan Wolfe is Professor of Political Science and Director of the Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life at Boston College. He chairs a task force of the American Political Science Association on “Religion and Democracy in the United States.” He serves on the advisory boards of Humanity in Action and the Future of American Democracy Foundation and on the president’s advisory board of the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities. He is also a Senior Fellow with the World Policy Institute at the New School University in New York. In fall 2004, Professor Wolfe was the George H. W. Bush Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin, Germany. A contributing editor of The New Republic and The Wilson Quarterly, Commonwealth Magazine and In Character, Professor Wolfe writes often for these publications as well as for Commonweal, The New York Times, Harper’s, The Atlantic Monthly, and The Washington Post, among others. He served as an advisor to President Clinton in preparation for his 1995 State of the Union address and has lectured widely at American and European universities. Professor Wolfe has been the recipient of grants from the Russell Sage Foundation, the Templeton Foundation, the Smith Richardson Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, and the Lilly Endowment. He has twice conducted programs under the auspices of the U.S. State Department that bring Muslim scholars to the United States to learn about separation of Church and State. He is also listed in Who’s Who in the World, Who’s Who in America, and Contemporary Authors.
Neera Tanden has served in policy making roles in the executive branch, Congress, and at the local level. Prior to joining the Center, she was legislative director for Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) where she handled both domestic and foreign policy for the Senator. Before that Neera was the senior vice president for domestic policy for the Center for American Progress. She has also worked on educational accountability standards and fiscal equity issues as senior policy advisor to the Chancellor of the New York City Schools, Harold Levy. Prior to that she was the deputy campaign manager and policy director for the senate campaign of Hillary Rodham Clinton where she was in charge of all policies and positions for the campaign. Neera also served in the White House under President Clinton as the senior policy advisor to the First Lady and associate director in the Domestic Policy Council where she managed children and family issues for the President, including childcare, early learning and after school. She graduated from UCLA and received her law degree from Yale Law School.
The Center for American Progress is a nonpartisan research and educational institute dedicated to promoting a strong, just and free America that ensures opportunity for all. We believe that Americans are bound together by a common commitment to these values and we aspire to ensure that our national policies reflect these values. We work to find progressive and pragmatic solutions to significant domestic and international problems and develop policy proposals that foster a government that is “of the people, by the people, and for the people.”