All posts by Michael Stratford


Obama Is Equally Favored by Young Voters With and Without College, Survey Finds

Young voters who have attended college favor President Obama by the same margin as their peers without experience in college, according to an analysis of poll data released on Thursday by the Tufts University Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement.

More than half of the 18-to-29-year-old registered and extremely likely voters who were polled said they supported President Obama, compared with about a third who preferred the Republican nominee, Mitt Romney. There wa…


For Lynn U., Presidential Debate Was a Chance to Shine in National Spotlight

Lynn University was closed on Friday, as a precaution against Hurricane Sandy, which was barreling toward the region. But the campus in Boca Raton, Fla., was also recovering this week from a storm of its own making: hosting a presidential debate.

After months of intensive preparation and anticipation, the 90-minute debate on Monday came and went quickly, says Kevin M. Ross, the university’s president.

“The tens of thousands of people who came were here for about a day,” he says. “Within 24 hours…


‘We’ve Never Heard of You, Either’

As hordes of reporters and politicians descended on Lynn University for Monday night’s debate, it seemed likely that at least a few of them quipped about the small private institution’s relative obscurity.

But the university, in Boca Raton, Fla., was ready with a feisty retort: “We’ve never heard of you, either.”

T-shirts quickly became one of the most popular aspects of the debate on the Boca Raton, Fla., campus. (Lynn U. photo by Helena Suba)

That was the message emblazoned on hundreds of offi…


U.S. Voting System Has Improved Since 2000, but Problems Remain, Report Says

Technological upgrades in voting machines have significantly improved the integrity of the nation’s electoral process since the confusion that marred the 2000 presidential election, but widespread problems persist in voter-registration systems and in the growing number of absentee ballots, according to a report released last week by the Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project.

“The effort over the past dozen years to improve voting machines has paid off,” said Charles Stewart III, a professor …


In Debate, Romney Voices Support for Expanding Pell Grant Program

In the second presidential debate, on Tuesday night, the Republican nominee Mitt Romney offered some of his most explicit support yet for the Pell Grant program, while President Obama touted several of his administration’s achievements that affect higher education.

The first question in the town hall-style debate came from 20-year-old Jeremy Epstein, a junior at Adelphi University. Addressing Mr. Romney, Mr. Epstein asked about his job prospects as a college student who will graduate in 2014. Mr…


In Debate, Obama and Romney Clash Over Who Would Do More for Education

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and President Obama wave at the start of Wednesday night’s debate at the U. of Denver (Reuters/Rick Wilking/Landov).

In the first presidential debate of this fall’s campaign, which focused on domestic policy, President Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, sparred over their tax plans, the federal deficit, Wall Street regulation, and health care.

Throughout the 90-minute debate Wednesday evening at the University of Denver, both candidates…


In U.S. Senate Contest in Mass., Candidate’s Academic Post Is an Issue

Titles in academe can be a tricky issue, raising a host of complicated questions about identity, status, and etiquette.

But in one of the most closely watched Senate races this election season, the question of how to refer to a candidate who is also an academic is inherently a political one.

Elizabeth Warren (Photo by David Shankbone via Flickr/CC)

Elizabeth Warren, a professor at Harvard Law School who is running for the U.S. Senate in Massachusetts, was asked at a debate on Tuesday night wheth…


New Obama Ads Tout Goal of Cutting Tuition and Attack Romney on Pell Grants

As part of a two-minute campaign advertisement released on Thursday, President Obama outlines an economic plan, called “a new economic patriotism,” that includes his pledge to reduce college tuition and expand federal student aid.

Speaking directly to a camera, Mr. Obama says that the United States will remain competitive by ”training two million Americans with the job skills they need at our community colleges, cutting the growth of tuition in half, and expanding student aid so more Americans …


In New Ad for Hispanic Voters, Romney Hits Obama on Soaring Tuition and Student Debt

Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign released a Spanish-language ad on Friday that blames President Obama and Democrats for rising tuition and high student-loan debt.

“Four years ago, Hispanics hoped Democrats would improve education,” the ad’s narrator says. “The reality is that more than 75 percent of the population thinks that college is not accessible, now that tuition costs have increased 25 percent under the Democrats and student debt is a trillion dollars.”

The advertisement uses footage …


Student Aid Is a Recurring Theme as Obama Outlines Plans for a Second Term

Charlotte, N.C.—As he formally accepted his party’s nomination for a second term as president, Barack Obama framed this year’s election as a fundamental choice on important issues, including access to higher education.

President Obama, shown onstage with former President Bill Clinton at the convention on Wednesday, wove references to the importance of providing student aid into several parts of his acceptance speech on Thursday night. (Photo by Douglas Graham, CQ Roll Call, Getty)

In his 38-minu…