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Media Advisory

UC Berkeley professors available to comment on the upcoming Democratic and Republican conventions

20 July 2004

ATTENTION: Reporters covering the Democratic and national Republican conventions, presidential race

Contact: Media Relations
(510) 642-3734

Several professors at the University of California, Berkeley, are available to comment on the upcoming Democratic and Republican national conventions and the presidential campaign. The Democratic National Convention begins July 26 in Boston. The Republican National Convention starts Aug. 30 in New York City.

The experts below can address the political convention system, media coverage and conventions, campaign strategy, the presidential candidates' use of language, labor strife that could affect next week's convention, how Americans decide which way to vote, the public's attitude toward family values and gay marriage, and more.

A few UC Berkeley students also are available to talk about the conventions and the campaign. To reach them, please contact UC Berkeley Media Relations at the number above.

Broadcast reporters should call Julie Huang at Media Relations at (510) 642-6051 or e-mail her at jch@pa.urel.berkeley.edu.


Henry Brady
Professor of political science and public policy, director of UC Berkeley's Survey Research Center
Expertise: Brady can comment on the history of the political convention system, the nomination process, and media coverage and conventions. He is an expert on electoral politics, political participation and voting, voting systems, welfare policies, public opinion and American politics.
Phone: (510) 642-3008, (510) 642-2338
E-mail: hbrady@csm.berkeley.edu

Bruce Cain
Professor of political science, director of the Institute of Governmental Studies
Expertise: Cain is quoted often on issues involving campaign strategy, political parties, and voters. He is an expert on national politics, elections, presidential politics and California politics.
Phone: (510) 642-1474
E-mail: bruce@cain.berkeley.edu

David Karol
Acting assistant professor of political science
Expertise: Karol can comment on American politics, including political parties, interest groups, voters and elections and Congress and the presidency.
Phone: (510) 642-4648


Merrill Shanks
Professor of political science and director of the campus's Computer-Assisted Survey Methods Program
Expertise: Shanks can address how Americans make their presidential and Congressional vote choices; the political agendas of the American public; public opinion of the political parties and George W. Bush; and how surveys are done and should be done. He is co-author of the "New American Voter."
Phone: (510) 642-1104. He is available through July 28.
E-mail: jms@csm.berkeley.edu

Douglas Strand
Lecturer in political science, director of UC Berkeley's Public Agendas and Citizen Engagement Survey (PACES), a national survey that remains underway throughout the presidential election
Expertise: Strand can discuss the public's attitudes about family values in general and gay rights in particular, how Americans make their presidential and Congressional vote choices, how younger and older Americans differ in their political agendas and preferences, public opinion of the political parties and George W. Bush, and how surveys are done and should be done. Strand can provide PACES survey data concerning these points.
Phone: (510) 642-0508
E-mail: dstrand@csm.berkeley.edu

See also Henry Brady, Bruce Cain, and David Karol (National and State Politics, Campaigns, Elections)


Richard Abrams
Professor of history
Expertise: Abrams is an American history scholar. His areas of interest include political history, the history of business in America, and race relations.
Phone: (510) 527-0462

See also Henry Brady (National and State Politics, Campaigns, Elections)


Robin Lakoff
Professor of linguistics
Expertise: Lakoff is an expert on pragmatics and sociolinguistics, and her current research examines the connections between the politics of language and the language of politics. She is the author of "The Language War" and "Talking Power."

In this election, Lakoff says, people are tuning in to the candidates' gestures, facial expressions and movements, as well as the tone, intonation, pitch, speed, hesitancy and fluency of their speech. These help assess "the kind of person a speaker is, whether we like him, whether she likes us, do we want to
have dinner with them. They encode sincerity, trustworthiness, caring, decency, regular guy and
galhood, and general human beingness," she says. While these linguistic markers are never looked at closely as dealmakers and breakers, Lakoff says, "I think they will be hugely significant in this election."

Phone: (510) 841-6269
E-mail: rlakoff@socrates.berkeley.edu


Harley Shaiken
Professor of social and cultural studies in the Graduate School of Education, professor of geography, director of UC Berkeley's Center for Latin American Studies, and labor specialist
Expertise: Shaiken is an expert on labor and labor markets generally, international trade policy, information technology, the organization of work, global economic integration and trade. Frequently quoted in media reports on employee strikes, contract talks and Wal-Mart, he is available to discuss labor issues that may arise during the presidential campaign and party conventions. He also is available to talk about labor strife that might affect the Democratic National Convention in Boston.
Phone: (510) 642-9678 or (510) 847-2831
E-mail: hshaiken@socrates.berkeley.edu


Helen Ann Halpin
Professor of health policy, director of the Center for Health and Public Policy Studies (CHPPS), vice-chair of the California Health Benefits Review Program
Expertise: Halpin is an expert on access to health insurance, health care reform, consumer experiences in managed care, health insurance benefit mandates, smoking cessation benefits, integration of health promotion and disease prevention services in the U.S. health care system. Her research focuses on health insurance policy, including health insurance benefit design, health care reform, access to care, consumer experiences in managed care, and disease prevention and health promotion.

She has been quoted extensively by both print and broadcast media on issues related to national health care reform, particularly for Medicare and Medicaid. She is interviewed in the upcoming documentary, "There's Something About W," commenting about health care under the Bush Administration.
Phone: (510) 642-2862 (office) or (510) 643-1675 (CHPPS)
E-mail: helenhs@berkeley.edu
Expert bio: http://www.berkeley.edu/news/extras/experts/halpin.html


See Henry Brady (National and State Politics, Campaigns, Elections)