Why Does U.S. Politics Tilt toward the Wealthy?

Lisa Disch
Professor of Political Science and Women’s Studies, University of Michigan

Does American public policy tilt toward the wealthy because politicians listen mostly to fat cats who write big checks? Lisa Disch probes more deeply to reveal how U.S. institutions and practices obfuscate important public issues and make it hard for majorities to organize.

Read Disch's brief here.

Learn more about Lisa Disch – her personal civic involvements and her ongoing research about citizen participation, equal representation, and the prospects for popular mobilization to represent majority interests in an era of rising economic inequalities.

Disch's argument can be usefully compared to the work of SSN scholar Martin Gilens on differential government responsiveness to the expressed preferences of rich, middle class, and poor citizens. See his brief on who gets what they want from government. Other SSN scholars who have relevant research and arguments include Nicholas Carnes, Paul Pierson and Jacob Hacker. Their briefs and research can be accessed elsewhere on this site.

December, 2012