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Sheri and Allan Rivlin
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Sheri Rivlin and Allan Rivlin are the co-editors of They have been discussing, and sometime arguing about, politics since the Reagan Administration and married since the George H. W. Bush Administration. The Rivlins live in Washington, D.C. where Allan Rivlin is a partner with the Democratic polling and strategy firm of Peter D. Hart Research Associates. For five years Allan wrote the Poll Position column for The National Journal and

Sheri Rivlin has a B.A. in Psychology from Boston University and is a graduate of the Washington College of Law. Allan Rivlin has a B.A. in Economics from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management and was a senior advisor to the Secretary of Health and Human Services during part of the Clinton Administration.

Entries by Sheri and Allan Rivlin

The Foundational Tension That Drives Economic Divisions

(1) Comments | Posted June 23, 2015 | 9:45 AM

The inherent tension, buried deep in the foundational structure of our capitalist democracy, is the perpetual tension between one-person-one-vote democracy, and one-dollar-one-vote capitalism. The two parties each emphasize one side of this tension, driving differences on nearly every political issue currently being debated, as we are detailing in this series,...

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The Foundational Tension at the Base of Democratic Capitalism

(0) Comments | Posted June 9, 2015 | 10:42 PM

If you want to understand a tree, you must look at the roots. If the roots are healthy, the tree is healthy. But no matter how healthy the tree branches or leaves may look now, if there is a problem with the roots of the tree, the tree has a...

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What Will the Disruption of Politics Look Like?

(0) Comments | Posted April 2, 2015 | 10:20 AM

Take just one moment and think about the word "disruption." How do you feel about disruption? Do you have a positive or negative response when you contemplate disruption?

Some people will realize their reaction to disruption is very negative. These are more likely to be people who have something to...

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Democrats Answer the False Choice of Growth Versus Redistribution With Inclusive Prosperity

(2) Comments | Posted March 12, 2015 | 7:09 PM

Which do you think is the bigger problem in America today: That the economy offers too many rewards for people at the top, or that the economy is not working well enough for people in the middle and bottom? Some would say both are serious problems with emphasis on the...

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Learning From 2014 and Turning to 2016: Democrats Still Need a Compelling Economic Message

(2) Comments | Posted December 23, 2014 | 1:13 PM

Now that we are getting the second and third level dissections of Campaign 2014 from thoughtful Democratic analysts, we thought it would be a good time for a review. The starting point for the post-election discussion amounted to efforts to reassure dispirited Democrats that the 2014 election was typically unique...

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Democrats Often Leave Out the Economic Topic Sentence: "We Need to Get More Money in the Hands of Hardworking Families."

(1) Comments | Posted November 3, 2014 | 5:40 PM

On Meet the Press last Sunday, Chuck Todd asked Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) why he believes Democrats will do better than expectations in the upcoming election. Senator Schumer, one of the leading voices for the Democratic message in this cycle, gave three reasons starting with a familiar list...

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The Perpetual Frustration of the Political Vanquishment Fantasy

(0) Comments | Posted April 23, 2014 | 2:36 PM

The Buddha sat under the Bodhi tree and meditated on the meaning of life for 49 days, and after awakening, he reunited with his companions who would become his disciples and gave his first teaching on the Four Noble Truths. The First Noble Truth is the existence of suffering or...

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The First Noble Truth of Politics Is Frustration

(0) Comments | Posted April 21, 2014 | 5:35 PM

If now and then you find yourself a bit frustrated by politics, you are not alone. Politics is inherently, profoundly, maddeningly frustrating for all of us. Anyone who makes the choice to care at all about politics knows the frustration of losing a major election and seeing the other side...

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Obamacare's Long Hard Slog: And the Alternatives

(14) Comments | Posted December 9, 2013 | 6:37 PM

The problems with the launch of the Affordable Care Act have always been far less severe than Republicans have been saying, but quite a lot worse than many Democrats fully realize. This has never been just about a bad website, and it is not going to...

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After Dual Stumbles -- A Return to Parity and Paralyses

(0) Comments | Posted November 12, 2013 | 5:54 PM

We saw the Republican self-inflicted wounds coming for months and then the Democrats celebrated their advantage by shooting themselves in the foot. It is difficult to say which party is now in worse shape because the problems on both sides so fundamentally challenge each side's reason...

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Eventually a Bargain on Medicare -- Grand or Otherwise

(24) Comments | Posted February 22, 2013 | 5:20 PM

The Republicans may not deserve it, but the President still wants one and has the leverage to get a grand bargain including Medicare spending reductions on favorable terms.

Read Post Hour-by-Hour Guide to Election Night 2012 Part 3 - 8:00 to 9:00

(0) Comments | Posted November 5, 2012 | 5:30 PM

James Hazzard co-authored this guide.

8:00 p.m.: Polls close in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware , District of Columbia, , Illinois Maine , Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi<, Missouri,New Hampshire,New Jersey, Oklahoma,Pennsylvania,...

Read Post Hour-by-Hour Guide to Election Night 2012 Part 2: 6:00-8:00

(0) Comments | Posted November 5, 2012 | 12:22 PM

James Hazzard co-authored this post

6:00 p.m. polls close in most of Indiana and just over half of Kentucky. The other parts of both states are in the Central Time zone and their polls will close at 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, but if one candidate is doing well enough...

Read Post Hour-by-Hour Guide to Election Night 2012 Part 4 - 9:00 to the Bitter End

(0) Comments | Posted November 5, 2012 | 12:13 PM

James Hazzard co-authored this guide

9:00 PM Polls close in Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Mexico, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

President: The top of the 9:00 hour is likely to bring more quick calls with Romney claiming Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska,

Read Post Hour-by-Hour Guide to Election Night 2012

(5) Comments | Posted November 5, 2012 | 11:42 AM

James Hazzard co-authored this Guide.

Part 1 -- Introduction: Signs of a Wave?

Will we see a 2012 Republican wave where Democrats are swept out because Barack Obama was
elected to fix a broken economy and four years later the economy is doubtlessly still struggling? Or will we see...

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Entering Polling Darkness

(1) Comments | Posted October 31, 2012 | 2:12 PM

Even without a mega-storm blasting the Eastern states, we were headed into a period of polling uncertainty, but the storm intensifies the cloudiness of polling predictions from this point forward. Like everyone else, we will take note of every new tidbit of information, especially reputable polls in presidential swing...

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The Wrong Side of a Class War

(0) Comments | Posted September 20, 2012 | 5:29 PM

All year long we have been hearing political analysts predict a very close election. The nation, they argue, is closely divided between blocks of partisans with dramatically different views of the role of government. Well, we will let Mitt Romney explain the...

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Signs of a Wave Taking Shape?

(23) Comments | Posted August 28, 2012 | 8:52 PM

For all of this year we have rejected the widely stated conventional wisdom that the closely divided electorate means this will be a razor thin election. The electorate has been this closely divided for more than a decade (at least going back to the 2000 election that was decided by...

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Public Opinion Will Swing Against Obamacare Repeal

(89) Comments | Posted July 2, 2012 | 1:07 PM

Remember when health care reform was widely popular? In 2008 and 2009 overwhelming majorities supported reform of the health care system, but warned that public opinion would swing against the effort based on an analysis of polls taken then, and polls taken during Bill Clinton's health reform effort....

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Even With Tied Polls Now, a Wave Election Is Likely

(5) Comments | Posted May 30, 2012 | 5:39 PM

A lot of people are looking at close polls in the presidential horse race, and generic congressional preference and predicting a return to the almost evenly divided red state-blue state nation that characterized the 2000 and 2004 elections. This may well prove true, but most elections,...

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