Articles by Charlie Samuda
Charlie Samuda is a master in public policy candidate at Harvard Kennedy School. He tweets @CharlieSamuda

Checks and balances under siege

Charlie Samuda  |  6 February 2017

The first fortnight of Donald Trump’s presidency has been an unrelenting series of man-made horrors, writes Charlie Samuda Netflix’s show Designated Survivor is not very good, but it does make a point about the different sources of political power in the United States. In the very first episode an attack on Capitol Hill during the …

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‘We were all wrong’

Charlie Samuda  |  9 November 2016

Donald Trump will be the 45th president of the United States. The unthinkable became the inevitable just after 3am Eastern Time when Hillary Clinton conceded defeat. Like many, I began the night thinking there was little chance that we would ever reach this point, believing instead that demographic data and superior Democratic organisation would be …

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Letter From … New Hampshire

Charlie Samuda  |  7 November 2016

To get a sense of just how hard it is to be a Republican in a down-ticket race this election, consider the fate of Kelly Ayotte. The junior senator from New Hampshire was first elected in 2010 and is running for a second term against the current Democratic governor, Maggie Hassan. Donald Trump’s nomination presented her with a dilemma: standing too …

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Clinton and Trump double down

Charlie Samuda  |  27 September 2016

A debate in which there is disagreement over the basic facts is unlikely to produce an agreed winner. But in a conventional sense it certainly seems like Hillary Clinton had the upper hand in last night’s presidential debate. Although it was perhaps a little overdone at the start Clinton projected capability without condescension. She offered …

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Riding the wave

Charlie Samuda  |  16 September 2016

Up till now it seemed as if Conquest’s third law of politics – that the simplest way to explain the behaviour of any organisation is to assume that it is controlled by a cabal of its enemies – applied most readily to the Trump campaign. Surely only a Democratic sleeper agent buried deep inside the …

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Details matter

Charlie Samuda  |  29 July 2016

Before she took the stage last night to accept the Democratic nomination for president there was every indication that Hillary Clinton’s speech would be a very personal one. Becoming the first female nominee is a historic achievement as well as an individual one. Plenty of pundits and doubtless some of her staff had been advising …

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The sleepwalkers

Charlie Samuda  |  19 July 2016

Late last year, shortly after the protests at Yale, our professor took his students out for a beer to try to have a genuine conversation about America’s race problem. It is a conversation that has come to mind repeatedly as events in Louisiana, Minnesota and Texas have provided grim evidence that such problems have gone nowhere. …

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There are many reasons to oppose Trump – but pick one

Charlie Samuda  |  10 June 2016

Now that Bernie Sanders has all but dropped out of the race and with Barack Obama’s endorsement Clinton can turn her full attention to what at first might seem to be a simple question: What exactly is wrong with Donald Trump? It is, many of us would be tempted to conclude, obvious why Trump should …

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All shook up

Charlie Samuda  |  17 May 2016

A noted American political pundit once said that using nationwide polls as a predictor of presidential elections was like trying to measure the wealth of Warren Buffet by counting up the value of the suits in his wardrobe. Since the electoral college – a system where candidates earn points for each state weighted by population …

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Confirmation bias

Charlie Samuda  |  14 April 2016

If you are looking for a case study of contemporary American politics, forget the campaign trail for a while and take a close look at the fortunes of Merrick Garland. Apparently Garland, Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, has a resume that ‘makes you want to cry’. In his high-flying 40-year judicial career he …

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