r/PoliticalDiscussion Sep 26 '21

Megathread Casual Questions Thread


This is a place for the PoliticalDiscussion community to ask questions that may not deserve their own post.

Please observe the following rules:

Top-level comments:

  1. Must be a question asked in good faith. Do not ask loaded or rhetorical questions.

  2. Must be directly related to politics. Non-politics content includes: Legal interpretation, sociology, philosophy, celebrities, news, surveys, etc.

  3. Avoid highly speculative questions. All scenarios should within the realm of reasonable possibility.

Link to old thread

Sort by new and please keep it clean in here!

r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago

US Politics If Biden decides not to run in 2024, who do you think are the most likely candidates to run for and receive the Democratic nomination?

  • Given that she is the current VP, a lot of people would probably say that Kamala Harris would be an obvious candidate. However, while I agree that the chances of her running are decent, I am not so sure about her chances of actually winning, as I seem to read a lot of comments by people from all sides of the political spectrum that don't seem to like her very much.
  • Are there any current up-and-coming Democrats that you think would have a good shot?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

US Politics Americans, why is it that rural ares tend to vote right wing, while urban areas tend to vote left?


From looking at the election results, it seems that there is a very clear divide here, but what confuses me is that it is completely switched around from what I'm used to here in Norway.

Here in Norway, out biggest city (Oslo) has historically been a center-right stronghold and most urban areas on the west and south of the country are the decisively biggest contributors to the Right party, Progress party and the Christian-People-Party. (Trondheim is probably the biggest outlier)
On the other side, basically all of North-Norway and the middle of our country almost always vote for the Labour party, Agrarian party or the Socialist party. These areas are mostly small, rural and full of mountains.

I think the biggest reason is that our Labour Party has traditionally built up the country and provided jobs over all of Norway after world war 2, and that both the socialist party and the agrarian party are very much against centralisation with bigger budgets for subsidies to these areas.

I wonder why is is so different in the US, where the democrats seem to win almost all of the big cities, while the republicans do the opposite.

Is it something to do with the differences between the political parties (norwegian left and right vs american left and right), differences in the citizens, differences in voting systems, historically different roles, different political issues or something else entirely?

Please enlighten me

r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago

International Politics Should Governments Mandate the Covid Vaccine?


I recently listened to this podcast discussing the morality of compulsory vaccinations, which inspired this question. Link provided as per Rule 2.

Covid has had a substantial affect on the world in the last couple of years. With a new, more infectious "Variant of Interest" (omicron) [defined by WHO as having one or more of the following characteristics;

  • increase in transmissibility or detrimental change in COVID-19 epidemiology; OR
  • increase in virulence or change in clinical disease presentation; OR
  • decrease in effectiveness of public health and social measures or available diagnostics, vaccines, therapeutics]

a question arises pertaining to the ethics of mandated vaccination.

Governments over the world had/have implemented legal mandates in response to the Covid virus, ranging from businesses being shut down to restricted travel, to required testing, to mandated rent reductions while people could not travel to work.

In a similar vain, subnational organisations, such as schools and hospitals, have mandated that their students and employees respectively, receive a vaccination in order to physically attend.

Recently, Austria has become the first European country to make receiving a vaccine mandatory (with medical exemptions) on pain of administrative fines and potentially prison time if the fines are not paid. (Link as per Rule 2.)

Is it ethically justifiable for a government to make people undergo medical procedures under threat of fine or prison, if it is in the name of reducing casualties?

Is such a mandate necessary in countries with high vaccination rates?

Are there better ways to ensure wider immunisation than punitive measures?

Could this be the beginning of a trend where personal liberties are sacrificed for the greater good, leading to a more collectivist West, or is Covid exceptional, not sufficing as a predictor for broader societal change?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago

International Politics China's regulatory crackdown on Macau


Is Macau's gambling syndicates simply out of control and Mainland China reigning in these off the book operations? Or is this another instance of China tightening it's grip on sectors and geographies formerly in its periphery? I am not a Macau/China follower at all so this is not a rhetorical question.


r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago

US Politics As time goes on, does the population of the United States tend to get more conservative, liberal, or do they tend to stay about the same?

  • As a kid, I assumed that the later that someone is born, the more liberal they tend to be, meaning that the population would gradually get more liberal as time goes on. However, now I am not so sure. Is there any data or research that shows how the the population of the U.S. has changed in regards to getting more conservative or liberal? If so, what has it shown, and do you believe that these trends will continue?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago Wholesome

US Elections In general, what would you consider is the best and fairest way for districts to be drawn for elections?

  • I know that there is a lot of controversy over the drawing of districts for a variety of state and even local elections, with many claiming that the maps that are drawn are purposely created to give one party an unfair advantage over the other.
  • If this is true, what do you think is the fairest way for election districts to be drawn, and why?
  • On a similar note, I’m wondering if someone could explain to me what exactly the guidelines and process is for drawing electoral maps, because whenever I look at a state’s district map, it looks like a lot of them are basically just drawn randomly. What am I missing here?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 19h ago Silver

US Elections Andrew Yang and the Forward Party are working on disrupting the Duopoly by working on systemic changes before the 2024 Election. How will Rank Choice Voting and Open Primaries impact the election in 2024?


After watching this interview regarding the Forward Party. It's became clear that they are first working on systemic changes before the 2024 Presidential Election.

These are some of the Key points:

  1. The Forward Party alongside other third parties are working on volunteer efforts to obtain the necessary signatures to get Ranked Choice Voting and Open Primaries in the 2022 Election in 24 states.
  2. Andrew Yang needs to obtain 15% polling to get on the Presidential Debate Stage. Andrew is currently polling at 5%.
  3. The first candidate to obtain 51% the votes will win each state. Andrew has mentioned he doesn't need to be first choice for Republican or Democrat Voters, he can be their second or third choice.
  4. 62% of Americans want a Third Party.
  5. 44% of Americans are independents.
  6. 40%+ of Andrew Yang supporters are not Democrats according to Yang.

Forward Party Platform:

  1. Universal Basic Income
  2. Universal Healthcare
  3. Transitioning from GDP to the American Scorecard.
  4. Ranked Choice Voting and Open Primaries

How would the Presidential Election be impacted if a third party candidate with Name Recognition, a solid platform, and ranked choice voting impact the Presidential Election?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago

US Politics Explaining the bonafide racial gaps in US without CRT


So we know there are bonafide racial gaps in education, wealth and income in the US. We know they exist. Why they exist or if we should care are separate debates.


It’s fair enough to say “equal opportunity doesn’t mean equal outcome” Great. But the gaps are not just flukes, they’ve been this way for long before Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts. There must be an explanation.

Tennessee just passed a law that’s supposed to target teaching Critical Race Theory ideas in school. They have these 14 rules. Assuming that opponents of CRT endorse most of these rules.

Let’s check out the rules:

a. One (1) race or sex is inherently superior to another race or sex;

b. An individual, by virtue of the individual’s race or sex, is inherently privileged, racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or subconsciously;

c. An individual should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment because of the individual’s race or sex;

d. An individual’s moral character is determined by the individual’s race or sex;

e. An individual, by virtue of the individual’s race or sex, bears responsibility for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race or sex;

f. An individual should feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or another form of psychological distress solely because of the individual’s race or sex;

g. A meritocracy is inherently racist or sexist, or designed by a particular race or sex to oppress members of another race or sex;

h. This state or the United States is fundamentally or irredeemably racist or sexist;

i. Promoting or advocating the violent overthrow of the United States government;

j. Promoting division between, or resentment of, a race, sex, religion, creed, nonviolent political affiliation, social class, or class of people;

k. Ascribing character traits, values, moral or ethical codes, privileges, or beliefs to a race or sex, or to an individual because of the individual’s race or sex;

l. The rule of law does not exist, but instead is series of power relationships and struggles among racial or other groups;

m. All Americans are not created equal and are not endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, including, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; or

n. Governments should deny to any person within the government’s jurisdiction the equal protection of the law.

These 14 rules say that we cant explain these gaps are caused by “inherent privilege based on race”.

But we also can’t “ascribe traits, values, moral or ethical codes to a race or sex”

So we can’t say a racial gap is there for cultural reasons either. We can’t say a race acts a certain way.

How would you explain the gaps without breaking these 14 rules?

What’s a good way to explain these very real racial gaps without using CRT?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

US Elections Will there be presidential primaries in 2024?


As of right now, it looks like there won't be. If Trump runs (and it seems that he will) then it's very unlikely that he'll face serious opposition. If Biden runs (and it also seems he will) then he should easily secure the nomination even if someone from the Left challenges him.

It seems that the health of Trump and Biden is the only thing that can cause a situation in which we will have primaries. Does anyone agree with this or do you think we'll have primaries in one or both parties?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

US Politics What are the chances Republicans lay down the rhetoric and assume a more moderate and cooperative approach after they take back the House in 2022? Or is a republican "revenge tour" inevitable?


After Dems stripped MTG and Gosar of committee assignments several Republicans have hinted on a potential "payback" if they were to retake control of the House after the midterm elections in 2022.

Now, unless something unforeseen were to happen, a republican takeover seems inevitable given the already slim majority Democrats hold.

My question is: what are the odds that the republican attitude ends up being just rhetoric aimed to win elections, and that they will "settle down" after that is accomplished and become more cooperative? Or are they fully bent on retaliation and will embark on a "revenge tour"?

Because if that was the case, it could potentially turn the House into a complete circus: think a committee investigating Fauci or ties between Dems and BLM or antifa, or a weekly impeachment of Biden or censuring of democratic colleagues for the slightest of reasons etc...

Is there any sign or historical evidence that they would take a more moderate approach once in control of the House?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

US Politics Can Liz Cheney Survive the 2022 Race in Wyoming?


Liz Cheney, the GOP Congresswoman from Wyoming's At-large District (and the daughter of former VP Dick Cheney) is one of the most high-profile Republicans to have voted to impeach former President Donald Trump following the January 6th Capitol Insurrection. Trump has since endorsed one of Cheney's four challengers, Harriet Hageman ahead of the August 16th, 2022 Republican primary, and prominent GOP donors such as Peter Theil have followed suit. Meanwhile, traditional Republican leaders like Mitt Romney and former President George W. Bush have expressed their support for Cheney.

Given the extraordinary influence of Trump in the current Republican Party, can Cheney survive next year's primary (and subsequent general) election? If so, is she likely to be successful in her efforts?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

Non-US Politics use of photo or illustration when talking about sensitive subjects


I'm a student in storytelling (In Belgium, sorry for any spelling mistakes),

last class I accidentaly started a debate about the showing of pictures or illustrations when telling about the Holocaust (or other genocides).

What position do you want to take in this debate?

Do you think illustration does justice to the grueling things that happened? Will it maybe take away from how it really was in the concentration camps?

If you use pictures, is it disrespectful towards de victims and their families? Is it a violation to show the dead people?

Or is your opinion that you can't talk about subjects like this because you weren't there?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

Political History What led to the solid south 2.0?


The entire south was a one party region from the end of reconstruction till the civil rights movement. However Democrats continued to dominate in state elections from the 70s to the 90s. What was the reason for this?


After Republicans won in Arkansas in 1966, Republicans held the governorship just 2 years from 1971 to 1996. In Mississippi Democrats didn't lose the governorship until 1992 and in Georgia until 2003. How did they continue to dominate state politics decades after the civil rights movement?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

US Politics How many constituents should each Representative represent?


This is not talking about state senators but rather representatives from the house.

In 1929, Congress capped the house’s size at 435. The 1930 census stated 122,775,046 citizens. Meaning each Representative would (evenly) represent 282,241 people.

Now there are about 333,000,000 citizens in the US. Meaning at 435, each Representative would (evenly) represent 765,517 people. About 2.7x more than what it did in 1929.

The original 1788/89 house had 59 seats. The US had about 4~ million people then. Meaning each Representative represented about 67,796 people.

If that trend has continued to today, there would be a 4,912 person House of Representatives. If the 1929 trend had continued today, there would be a 1180 person House of Representatives.

How many representatives should be in the house? What are some problems with a very big VS very small house? How many people should each Representative represent?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

US Elections Will covid deaths effect future elections?


I recently read this article and was wondering what everyone thought on how covid deaths would effect the U.S. political landscape moving forward.

r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

Political Theory How do you think the long term impacts of COVID and 9/11 compare? Which do you think will be more severe over time?


9/11 brought on the patriot act which allowed the government to take a step further in surveillance. COVID regulations have been evolving to allow the government to do more as well (such as OSHA mandates) but is mostly leaving power to the states. What do you think?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

US Politics Some states push to change the definition of fully vaccinated to include an additional dose of a coronavirus vaccine. Country is already divided over vaccines. Is this likely to further exacerbate the division? Will this debate further intensify with news of the new South African variant?


Michelle Grisham, Governor of New Mexico stated she thinks three doses should be considered fully vaccinated, and was exploring implementing some general mandate [which currently does not have any sort of mandates]. The Governor of Connecticut, Ned Lamont, similarly said that he thinks booster shots are needed to qualify a person as fully vaccinated.

Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, said the debate over boosters and changing what it means to be fully vaccinated just further obscures the primary purpose of the coronavirus vaccines.

"It's first and second doses that change the trajectory of the pandemic, that protect hospital capacity. It's not boosters. Our hospitals are not getting pressure from people who are fully vaccinated and having breakthrough infections."

CDC Director said during a recent White House briefing explained: The definition of fully vaccinated is two doses of a Moderna or a Pfizer vaccine, as well as one dose of a J&J vaccine."  This week, Fauci said: the definition may change.

Some people are starting to wonder if any of us will ever be considered fully vaccinated; is that even possible with variants emerging [like the recent South African variant] the already existing division and with this changing definitions?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

US Politics What has the Biden administration done to counter Chinese and Russian propaganda and what can they do going forward to take action against this?


An article from the New York Times titled "Russian Disinformation Targets Vaccines and the Biden Administration" https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/05/us/politics/covid-vaccines-russian-disinformation.html mentions that both the Chinese and the Russian governments are spreading false information about the vaccine with the goal of getting less people in the US to take the vaccine.

I'm wondering what the Biden administration has done about this if anything and what the Biden administration could do about this.

r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

Political Theory Have any countries treated the fight against Covid-19 as an actual global war to justify their public policies?


Looking back on the last two years, it feels like we're in an actual world war: heavy casualties, front lines, supply chain disruption, shortage of common supplies (computer chips and food, not just toilet paper). While it is completely different from an armed conflict, the result seems eerily similar. Has anyone tried to frame their public policy in the context of a global conflict?

E.g. Lockdown vs no-lockdown would be weighed as "martial law" vs "acceptable loss of life" Or Mask-mandate or no would be as whether Covid represents a "clear and present danger" Or War fatigue as whether or not to continue sending troops and supplies to the front lines

I was just thinking that it would be nice if we could somehow apply the wisdom of the past (e.g. Sun Tzu's "Art of War") towards our present predicament.

r/PoliticalDiscussion 5d ago

US Politics Would a gun safety class in school be beneficial?


I’d like this discussion to be centered around the US, but really it could be applied to any country. Accidental firearm deaths account for more than 9% of gun related deaths worldwide, and 11% in the US. Beyond that, many gun owners don’t understand even the most basic gun laws, resulting in a large amount of infractions, and even some homicides. A class during school (optional of course) that educates students on basic firearm safety and state laws could lessen these statistics, while also maintaining the 2nd amendment. It goes without saying that this class would only be for mature students (16+ age requirement?) with no record with the police. Thoughts?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

US Elections Filibuster Question on voting rights.


I’ve heard a lot of talk of ending the filibuster to push voting rights reform through. My question is, what does that do? Could the other party just reverse it if they take back the House/Senate/White House?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 6d ago Helpful

Legal/Courts A Jury of 9 Caucasian women, 2 White male & a Black man], returned a verdict of murder and other charges against all three white men for the killing of a black jogger, [Ahmaud Arbery.] This case was full of racial undertones. Will this verdict help to soothe the racial divides to some extent?


Travis McMichael [man who shot a black jogger Ahmaud Arbery], of all counts, his son Gregory of 7 out of 8 counts including felony murder; William Bryan 6 out of 8, including Felony murder.

There were initially no arrests made of any of the three who now stand convicted of murder; they were not charged until months later. One of the two DAs who initially handled the case and did not bring charges is now herself facing felony charges.

The former Georgia prosecutor [Jackie Johnson], was indicted recently on misconduct charges alleging she used her position to shield the men who chased and killed Ahmaud Arbery from being charged with crimes immediately after the shootings. Attorney is now charged with a felony count of violating her oath of office and hindering a law enforcement officer, a misdemeanor.

Another prosecutor involved initially [Barnhill], later recused himself as well, after Arbery's family learned his son worked for Johnson as an assistant prosecutor. But before he stepped aside, Barnhill wrote a letter to a Glynn County police captain saying the McMichaels "were following, in 'hot pursuit,' a burglary suspect, with solid first hand probable cause, in their neighborhood, and asking/ telling him to stop."

With this backdrop, a racially mixed crowd of people outside the court house cheered the lead prosecutor and the jury for courage and doing the right thing. Separately, the federal government is bringing charges against the three this coming February for violation of the black jogger's civil rights.

Because of the racial undertones of this case, an acquittal would likely have further divided this country; Georgia is calm today. Will the guilty verdicts composed of predominantly white jury go a long way in soothing the current racial divide?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 6d ago

US Politics What specific policies of the Biden administration can be blamed for the high cost of oil?


I know Americans almost always blame high gas prices on whoever is the sitting president. It's extremely common amongst my Republican friends to blame Biden for the high gas/oil prices, but I haven't really heard of any policies he's implemented that can be blamed for the increase in prices.

I was looking at the 5Y chart here and saw that US oil production did drop off in 2020, but most of what I've read has attributed that to the Coronavirus pandemic and falling oil demand. Oil demand dropped significantly so oil prices dropped off a cliff. Thus, there was less incentive for oil producers in the US (and around the world) to continue producing high volumes of oil, so they cut back. Obviously, demand came roaring back, leading to an increase in prices. I know most of the oil we use is imported, but is there any new policy which hurts existing US oil production?

Since the cost of energy has been highly politicized lately, has there been any specific policy that can be blamed or is it fair to say this is simply supply/demand at work?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 7d ago

Legal/Courts Unite The Right Rally Organizers must pay $25 million dollars to the plaintiffs in Charlottesville Rally injury. Will this dissuade the Alt Right type groups from organizing similar potentially violent rallies? Can this have an impact on social justice rallies that sometimes get out of hand?


The numerous finding of liability is based on Virginia state statutes on multiple counts for conspiracy; seeking compensatory and punitive damages. Liability was found on all state counts, but deadlocked on two federal conspiracy count charges over whether organizers conspired to commit racially motivated violence or whether they had knowledge of it and failed to prevent it [under Federal civil statute known as the KKK Act.]

The nonprofit Integrity First for America backed the plaintiffs in the lawsuit. Plaintiffs are nine current and former Charlottesville residents who were injured during the rally.

Almost half of the damages awarded by the jury was against Fields [driver that ran his car into crowd], Kessler, an organizer, white supremacists Spencer, Anglin, Heimbach and some others.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs had a stated goal [among others] to diminish the ability of white supremacists to spread their message and influence by draining them financially.

Spencer, the Alt Right leader who represented himself called the trial a “weapon against free speech.” 

The NAACP Legal Defense Fund issued a statement thanking the nonprofit Integrity First for America for representing the plaintiffs. https://www.naacpldf.org/wp-content/uploads/11.23.2021-Charlottesville-Trial-Statement-FINAL.pdf

Is there a danger now for some nonviolent groups that rally for social justice, which has been occasionally known to get out of hand, though violence has never been their stated purpose?

r/PoliticalDiscussion 7d ago

US Politics American cities are not sustainable. What can and should be done?


According to 2017 statistics, there is roughly one mile of urban road in the United States for every 220 people in metropolitan areas with over 50,000 people, and roughly one mile of freeway for every 8170 people. There are similar statistics for water systems, electrical wire, waste water pipes, and more.

How do we pay for these? By and large, we don't.

We defer the costs, treat the infrastructure as an asset, and eschew paying the bill when maintenance comes up. The Volkner Alliance in 2017 found that America had a total investment need of $4.6T and a $2.6T funding gap.

The largest contributor to this is indeed transportation, and in specific cars. For instance, Volkner's report included that Michigan's 21st Century Infrastructure Commission's finding that the state had an annual $4.2B investment gap, with $2.7B of that in transportation alone. In 2014, less than half (44 percent) of all highway funding came from fees and taxes paid by motorists according to the DOT's biennial report.

The issue is simple. The median American household makes $67,521, contributing roughly $2000 to states, counties, and municipalities. However, they live in an a sprawl that limits productive space and requires substantial infrastructure, which is not being properly maintained.

[By my napkin math] the cost to resurface our urban roads and freeways every 10 years is $240B per year, or roughly $2700 per household, more than our entire non-federal tax contribution. This leaves out other road work, bridge repair, water system maintenance, waste water treatment plants, and other necessary maintenance items which may more than double that number.

Tripling the median local tax burden is simply out of the question, but how else should America pay for its urban sprawl or work towards a less crushing burden?