Skip to main content Skip to navigation
CAS in the Media Arts and Sciences Media Headlines

Republican Handel wins Georgia House election

Republican Karen Handel won a nationally watched congressional election Tuesday in Georgia, and she thanked President Donald Trump after she avoided an upset that would have rocked Washington ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

Cornell Clayton

Both U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Washington State University professor of political science Cornell Clayton said it’s too early to tell what the results of the election will mean for the 2018 midterm elections.

Clayton, the Thomas S. Foley distinguished professor at WSU’s Foley Institute for Public Policy and Public Service, said the race became symbolic for both parties but may not be a bellwether for the 2018 midterm elections.

“I think it was overhyped,” Clayton said.

The fact that it was close in a traditionally Republican district could mean generic GOP candidates will have trouble next year, he said. On the other hand, the fact that a Democrat couldn’t win in a swing district where Trump didn’t do so well might mean 2018 won’t be a wave election.

Find out more

The Spokesman-Review

Study: Environmental views can come from pulpits, not politicos

For some, the battle lines over environmental policy are drawn on religious—not necessarily political—grounds, suggests a new study by sociologists at the University of Nebraska and Washington State University.

The study in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion found that religious ideologies are driving opposition to environmental spending. More specifically, evangelical Protestants—usually perceived as the most conservative of Christians—are less likely to support environmental spending based on a literal interpretation of the Bible.


The findings were culled from surveys collected from 1984 to 2012. Study co-author Erik Johnson, WSU associate professor of sociology, looked at three possible causes of evangelicals’ opposition to environmental spending: church attendance, political affiliation and biblical literalism. Only biblical literalism played a significant role across all three decades studied, and when comparing evangelicals to all other religious groups.

The findings may also explain why President Donald Trump felt core supporters would approve of his June 1 action to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Accord, despite its favorability to the general public. Evangelical Protestants, who largely supported Trump, tend to disagree.

Find out more

Nebraska Today

Beatrice Daily Sun

Religion News Service

Other sources:

America Magazine – click to view

Sight Magazine – click to view

The Northern Star – click to view

Noosa News – click to view

The Gazette – click to view

Trump Outpaces Clinton In Wisconsin TV Ads

Wesleyan Media Project Review Found Clinton Stopped Running TV Ads In Wisconsin Last Month.

A new survey of campaign advertising shows Donald Trump continued to run TV ads in Wisconsin over the past month while Hillary Clinton did not.

Travis Ridout

The Wesleyan Media Project, co-directed by WSU political science professor Travis Ridout, reviews broadcast television and national cable ad buys mentioning candidates. In most states, it found pro-Clinton ads significantly outnumbered pro-Trump ads between Sept. 16 and Oct. 13.

But the reverse was true in Wisconsin where either Trump or the conservative super PAC Reform America Fund aired a total of about 2,400 ads while Clinton and her allies aired none.

“I think she’s decided that she’s pretty much got Wisconsin locked up and there’s no need to invest any more resources in the state,” Ridout said. The Trump campaign’s path to victory on a national scale is much narrower than Clinton’s, which could explain why it is still advertising in Wisconsin, he said.

“Maybe they’re seeing something in their polling. Maybe they’re looking at the demographics of the state — a fairly white state — and thinking maybe they can gain some traction there if they invest in some additional advertising.”

Find out more

Wisconsin Public Radio

Trump Has Spent a Fraction of What Clinton Has on Ads

Hillary Clinton and Donald J. Trump are in the final sprint of spending on television advertising, which has been vastly lower than in previous elections.

This election year has been an interesting anomaly. Outside groups have spent far less on the presidential election this year than they did in 2012. Travis Ridout, a professor of government at Washington State University and co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project, noted that swing states were blanketed in ads four years ago.

“The groups that were investing the millions upon millions in ads in highly saturated media markets just weren’t happy with the returns they were getting,” he said.

Find out more

The New York Times

Team names under fire

Richard King

The Cleveland Indians is just one of many sports teams with controversial names.

Richard King, WSU professor of critical culture, gender, and race studies, commented on the issue, which is a focus of his ongoing research. “It’s something that most people haven’t thought about,” he said.

Watch the broadcast and find out more

The National