James W. Ceaser

Senior Fellow
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James Ceaser is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the Harry F. Byrd Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia and director of the Program for Constitutionalism and Democracy. He is the author of several books on American politics and American political thought, including Presidential Selection (Princeton University Press, 1979), Reconstructing America (Yale University Press, 1997), and Nature and History in American Political Development (Harvard University Press, 2006) ), and Designing a Polity (Rowman and Littlefield, 2010). He has held visiting positions at Harvard University, Princeton University, Oxford University, the University of Basel, and the University of Bordeaux. He is a frequent contributor to the popular press, most recently the Weekly Standard and the National Review.

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Recent Commentary


Irrationalism In Politics

by James W. Ceaservia The Weekly Standard
Friday, February 9, 2018

It has been over a half-century since the heralded British political theorist Michael Oakeshott published his most acclaimed work, Rationalism in Politics.


A Lack Of Ideas Has Consequences

by James W. Ceaservia The Weekly Standard
Monday, September 18, 2017

Something has gone missing from American politics. Since the beginning of the new administration in January, public debate focused on general ideas has largely disappeared.

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Shaken and Stirred

by James W. Ceaservia Hoover Digest
Friday, January 27, 2017

That tremor felt after Election Day was American democracy in action. Donald Trump’s allies and foes alike can make sure American principles stand firm. 

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Eleven Nine

by James W. Ceaservia The Weekly Standard
Monday, November 21, 2016

Americans awoke on the morning of 11/9 to a different political world. There is only one word to explain what happened, and it is called democracy.


The 269-To-269 Nightmare Scenario: What Would Happen Next If Hillary Clinton And Donald Trump Tie In The Electoral College

by James W. Ceaser, Mark J. Rozellvia New York Daily News
Friday, November 4, 2016

Unless circumstances change yet again, the country appears headed toward a close presidential election outcome.


Putin May Have Plans For Both Trump And Hillary

by James W. Ceaservia The Weekly Standard
Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Conspiracy theories vs. Occam's razor.


Do Party Platforms Still Matter?

by Daniel Disalvo, James W. Ceaservia The Atlantic
Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Despite their waning influence over the years, the process leading up to the 2016 national conventions has underscored intra-party conflicts.

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Where the Left Is Going

by James W. Ceaservia Hoover Digest
Monday, July 11, 2016

The long, strange trip of progressivism.

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The Facts and the Furious

by James W. Ceaservia Hoover Digest
Monday, July 11, 2016

Disagreements—and insults. Presidential politics, on the boil.


Thinking The Unthinkable

by James W. Ceaser, Oliver Wardvia The Weekly Standard
Monday, May 9, 2016

How to survive a Trump presidency.