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Forum to Explore Polarized Political Pickings for the Presidency

October 05, 2012

Category: Events, Faculty, History & Politics


ForumWith the 2012 election headed to a photo finish in key battleground states, Catawba College's Community Forum slated at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 23, will offer a timely analysis of this year's elections and what they may mean for the future.  The event, to take place in Tom Smith Auditorium of Ralph W. Ketner Hall on campus, is free and open to the public.

Dr. Michael Bitzer, associate professor of political science and history, and chair of the Department of History & Politics at Catawba, will look at some key points that might help us read more from the tea leaves of this year's presidential campaign. Is North Carolina the "new" battleground state of the 2012 election?  Is the Tar Heel state more important for one candidate than for the other? Will this election be a swing voter election or a base election? What lessons from 2008 should guide the 2012 campaign?  How might the "top of the ticket" race influence the down-ballot races in the state, especially for the governor's mansion?  How much money will flood into North Carolina, and will it pay off?  While most of the attention has been paid to the presidential race, what about the state legislative races and the impact of redistricting on the NC General Assembly?  And what happens after November 6th?  Dr. Bitzer, will discuss all this and more at the October Catawba College Community Forum.

Dr. Bitzer is a graduate of Erskine College who earned an M.A. in history from Clemson University and a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Georgia.  He joined the faculty of Catawba College in 2002.  He also serves as an elections analyst for WSOC-TV and other Charlotte television and radio stations, and he is political columnist for WFAE's "The Party Line" blog.  His teaching interests include American politics and law, and his research delves into campaigns and elections in North Carolina and the United States.  Dr. Bitzer has been quoted in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, The Charlotte Observer, the Raleigh News & Observer, and The Post & Courier in Charleston, S.C.


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