‘State of American Public Opinion’ is topic of Weidenbaum Center forum

Morris Fiorina, author of a new book on the perceived deep divide between America’s “red” and “blue” states, will lead a discussion on “Polarization, Tolerance and the State of American Public Opinion” in a community forum at 7:30 p.m. March 28 in Simon Hall’s May Auditorium.

James L. Gibson, Ph.D., the Sidney W. Souers Professor of Government in the Department of Political Science in Arts & Sciences, will join Fiorina for public discussion of his comments.

Fiorina, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the Wendt Family Professor of Political Science at Stanford University, is the author of Culture War? The Myth of a Polarized America, which maintains that most Americans stand in the middle of the political landscape, preferring centrist candidates from either party to the extreme partisans who often emerge from the primary process.

Fiorina, who specializes in elections, public opinion and Congress, contends that political parties and the media have distorted the reality of most Americans’ actual views about the social, political and economic issues of the past 30 years.

“Increasingly, we hear politicians, interest group leaders and assorted ‘activists’ speak half-truths to the American people,” Fiorina said. “They tell us that the United States is split right down the middle, bitterly and deeply divided about national issues, when the truth is more nearly the opposite.”

Sponsored by the Weidenbaum Center on the Economy, Government, and Public Policy, the event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Melinda Warren (935-5652; warren@wc.wustl.edu); or go online to wc.wustl.edu.