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Marc J. Hetherington and Thomas J. Rudolph

Why Washington Won't Work

Polarization, Political Trust, and the Governing Crisis

University of Chicago Press 2015

New Books in American StudiesNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Political ScienceNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books Network November 16, 2015 Heath Brown

Marc J. Hetherington and Thomas J. Rudolph have written the alliteratively titled Why Washington Won’t Work: Polarization, Political Trust, and the Governing Crisis (University...

Marc J. Hetherington and Thomas J. Rudolph have written the alliteratively titled Why Washington Won’t Work: Polarization, Political Trust, and the Governing Crisis (University of Chicago Press, 2015) is professor of political science at Vanderbilt University; Rudolph is professor of political science at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Who do you trust? According to Why Washington Won’t Work, you definitely do not trust the government, especially if you are a Republican. Today, more than in the past, political trust divides the country. Hetherington and Rudolph argue that a profound, and historically high, lack of trust among the public reduces the likelihood of compromise in Congress. In an increasingly polarized political environment that is already pre-disposed to gridlock, this finding on public trust helps to further explain the inability of Washington to govern, effectively legislate, and work.