This election season, the nation turned its focus on California as a barometer of public discussion and policymaking. On three of the major ballot initiatives that drew national attention, faculty from the UCLA School of Public Affairs brought their expertise into the public sphere to discuss the possible consequences of this year’s vote:
Mark Kleiman, professor of public policy, spoke extensively on Proposition 19, which brought forward to voters the possibility of legalizing marijuana for recreational use. He pointed out inherent conflict in the proposed measure, which would put it in direct conflict with federal law: "Proposition 19 was drafted by activists and pollsters rather than by people who know the laws involved." Kleiman was featured in Newsweek, Time, L.A. Weekly, and AOL DailyFinance, among other news outlets.
Matthew Kahn, professor of public policy and faculty of the Institute on the Environment and Sustainability, made several media appearances on the topic of Proposition 23, which proposed suspending the implementation of California’s landmark greenhouse gas emission legislation. His commentary appeared in/on the Christian Science Monitor, KPCC (Southern California Public Radio), and was included in a public panel discussion organized by the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability KPCC Southern California Radio and The Los Angeles Times.
Frank Gilliam, dean and professor of public policy and political science, commented to CNN on gerrymandering and Propositions 20 and 27, which would allow State legislators to redraw Congressional districts; spoke with Bloomberg and the Christian Science Monitor regarding the California gubernatorial race and provided live election night commentary on television station KTLA.
In other election-related stories, Michael Stoll, professor and chair in the Department of Public Policy, commented on CBS "Evening News" regarding the recent release of poverty figures and also appeared on American Public Media’s Marketplace about income distribution, the poverty line, and what $250,000 really buys; Paul Ong, professor of urban planning, spoke to the Voice of America about the concerns of the Asian American electorate; and Mark Peterson, professor of public policy, commented to CNNMoney about how economic issues could effect the 2012 election.
In addition to sharing their expertise with the media, several members of the UCLA School of Public Affairs faculty sat down for exclusive one-on-one video interviews tackling a wide range of election-related issues.