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Exploring "Polarization": A Conversation

December 12, 2013

Polarization

On behalf of New York University School of Law, NYU Washington, DC hosted a special program, "Exploring “Polarization”: A Conversation", co-chaired by Bob Bauer, distinguished scholar in residence and senior lecturer at NYU School of Law and Sally Katzen, visiting professor at NYU School of Law on Thursday, December 12, 2013. The program was sponsored by NYU School of Law’s new Legislative and Regulatory Process Clinic.

Through presentations and panel discussion, the program brought together experts from politics, the media and public policy to discuss how the question of “polarization” has become so prominent in our national policy debate and politics. The key questions explored were whether and in what form polarization exists; the sources, scale and impact of any such problem; and whether the solution to” polarization” lies in ordinary politics, or in legal or institutional reform.

The program concluded with remarks from Senator Tom Daschle.


Watch Senator Daschle's Remarks


Distinguished Guests

John Halpin

John Halpin

Major Garrett

Major Garrett

Karlyn Bowman

Karlyn Bowman

John Samples

John Samples

Tevi Troy

Tevi Troy

Eliot Cutler

Eliot Cutler

David Keating

David Keating

Anita Dunn

Anita Dunn

John Fortier

John Fortier

John Sides

John Sides

Richard Pildes

Richard Pildes

Rick Davis

Rick Davis


A note about NYU Law's Washington DC Clinic

The NYU Legislative and Regulatory Policy Clinic was established this fall at NYU’s campus in Washington DC. Under the leadership of Distinguished Scholar in Residence and Senior Lecturer Bob Bauer, former White House Counsel, and Visiting Professor of Law Sally Katzen, former administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs and former Deputy Director of Management of the Office of Management and Budget, students have spent a semester examining issues the multi-faceted role of the lawyer in government lawyers while gaining experience at federal agencies and congressional offices.


Co-Chairs

Bob Bauer
Sally Katzen

Bob Bauer

In Bob's 30 years of practice, he has provided counseling and representation on matters involving regulation of political activity before the courts and administrative agencies of national party committees, candidates, political committees, individuals, federal officeholders, corporations and trade associations, and tax-exempt groups.

Bob is the author of several books: United States Federal Election Law (1982, 1984), Soft Money Hard Law: A Guide to the New Campaign Finance Law (2002) and More Soft Money Hard Law: The Second Edition of the Guide to the New Campaign Finance Law (2004) and numerous articles. He also serves on the National Advisory Board of Journal of Law and Politics. In 2000, he received the prestigious "Burton Award for Legal Achievement" for his legal writing.

Bob is also the author of the weblog, www.moresoftmoneyhardlaw.com, on which he writes about campaign finance and other issues of interest to the political community. He also teaches law at the New York University School of Law, where he is a Distinguished Scholar in Residence and Senior Lecturer.

In 2013, the President named Bob to be Co-Chair of the Presidential Commission on Election Administration. Bob also served as White House Counsel to President Obama, and returned to private practice in June 2011.

Bob was General Counsel to Obama for America, the President’s campaign organization, in 2008 and 2012, and he is General Counsel to the Democratic National Committee. Bob has also served as co-counsel to the New Hampshire State Senate in the trial of Chief Justice David A. Brock (2000); general counsel to the Bill Bradley for President Committee (1999-2000); and counsel to the Democratic Leader in the trial of President William Jefferson Clinton (1999).

He has co-authored numerous bipartisan reports, including "Report of Counsel to the Senate Rules and Administration Committee in the Matter of the United States Senate Seat From Louisiana" in the 105th Congress of the United States (March 27, 1997); "Campaign Finance Reform," A Report to the Majority Leader and Minority Leader of the United States Senate (March 6, 1990); and "The Presidential Election Process in the Philippines", a bipartisan report prepared at the request of the Chairman and Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations (1986).


Sally Katzen

With immeasurable knowledge of the executive branch and the regulatory process, Podesta Group clients are fortunate to have Sally Katzen on their side. Easily guiding organizations through the complexities of the administration and the Office of Management and Budget, Sally offers sound strategic advice informed by decades of service. During the Obama-Biden transition, Sally served on the Agency Review Working Group, responsible for the Executive Office of the President and the operations of government agencies.

As a leading policy expert on budgetary issues, among others, Sally has testified before Congress more than 70 times and has participated on panels for the National Academy of Science. Serving for eight years in the Clinton administration, she was Deputy Director for Management at the Office of Management and Budget (1999-2001), Deputy Assistant to the President for economic policy, Deputy Director for the National Economic Council (1998-1999) and Administrator for the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in OMB (1993-1998), where she was the senior adviser to the president on regulatory policy and process.

Sally was the first female partner at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering, where she specialized in administrative and legislative practice for more than 25 years. A well-respected professor, she has taught at the George Washington University, University of Michigan, New York University, George Mason University, University of Pennsylvania and Georgetown University law schools, as well as at Smith College, Johns Hopkins University and the Michigan in Washington Program.

A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, she has a bachelor's from Smith College and a Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan Law School. She has served as chair of the section on administrative law and regulatory practice of the American Bar Association, president of the Federal Communications Bar Association and president of the Women’s Legal Defense Fund. She is also a fellow in the National Academy of Public Administration.

Schedule


Opening Presentation: Framing the Issue

The program will begin with a dialogue between two scholars from the fields of law and political science: Richard Pildes, Sudler Family Professor of Constitutional Law at NYU School of Law and John Sides, associate professor of political science at George Washington University, who will provide the context for the panels to follow.


“Polarization” in the “Political World”


Keynote Address

12:15 PM - 1:00 PM

Senator Tom Daschle

Senator Daschle has participated in the development and debate of almost every major public policy issue of the last three decades. In 1978, he was elected to the US House of Representatives, where he served for eight years. In 1986, he was elected to the US Senate and was chosen as Senate Democratic Leader in 1994. Senator Daschle is one of the longest serving Senate Democratic leaders in history and the only one to serve twice as both Majority and Minority Leader. During his tenure, Senator Daschle navigated the Senate through some of its most historic economic and national security challenges. In 2003, he chronicled some of these experiences in his book, Like No Other Time: The 107th Congress and the Two Years That Changed America Forever.

Since leaving the Senate, Senator Daschle has remained an active and learned voice among policy-makers. He has distinguished his experience in health care through the publication of Critical: What We Can Do About the Health-Care Crisis and, more recently, Getting It Done, a close-up look at the 2009 passage of health care reform legislation. Senator Daschle has also emerged as a leading thinker on climate change and renewable energy policy, provides clients with insightful analysis to financial services reform and telecommunication issues as well as international trade and tax developments.

In 2007, Senator Daschle joined with former Majority Leaders George Mitchell, Bob Dole and Howard Baker to create the Bipartisan Policy Center, an organization dedicated to finding common ground on some of the pressing public policy challenges of our time. Senator Daschle serves on the board of the Center for American Progress and the National Democratic Institute and is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations. He also is a member of the Health Policy and Management Executive Council at the Harvard School of Public Health as well as a member of the Global Policy Advisory Council for the Health Worker Migration Initiative.

Born in Aberdeen, South Dakota, Senator Daschle attended South Dakota State University, graduating in 1969. He then served for three years as an intelligence officer in the US Air Force Strategic Command. Following his military service, he spent five years as an aide to South Dakota Senator James Abourezk.


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