Image - event title plus U.S. map and ballot boxes
Past Event

2024 Travers Conference—The State of Elections in 2024: Problems, Potential Reforms and Prospects

The 2024 Travers Conference will bring together experts from around the country to assess a series of questions related to the electoral system in the United States as it stands in 2024. It will include three panels: "Is the Electoral System in the U.S. Broken?"; "Evaluating Possibilities and Prospects for Reform"; and "The 2024 Elections: How did we get here? What to expect in November?"

9:30–9:40 a.m.: Introductory Remarks by Susan Hyde, Professor and Charles & Louise Travers Department of Political Science Chair

9:45–11 a.m.: Is the U.S. electoral system broken?
This panel will examine the performance of the current electoral system in the United States. One question is how both parties ended up with prospective presidential nominees who are viewed unfavorably by many voters. More generally, the panelists will analyze how well the nomination process works in U.S. federal elections at both the presidential and congressional levels. 

Moderated by: Sarah Anzia, UC Berkeley

Seth Masket, University of Denver
Sarah Anderson, University of California, Santa Barbara
Brian Beutler, Senior Editor, The New Republic

11:15 a.m.–12:30 p.m.: Prospects and possibilities for electoral reform?  
This panel will examine potential reforms that advocates have argued would address some of the challenges currently facing U.S. elections and governance. Participants will discuss a range of alternatives from adopting a proportional representation system in the United States to adjusting the way that primaries work at the congressional level. The panel will also consider lessons learned from reforms that have been adopted in some states.

Moderated by: Terri Bimes, UC Berkeley

Thad Kousser, UCSD
Bertrall Ross, University of Virginia
Didi Kuo, Stanford University 

12:30–1:45 p.m.: Lunch Break

1:45–3 p.m.: The 2024 election—How did we get here? What to expect in November?
This panel will consider how the stage was set for the 2024 general election in the United States. It will survey the current state of the race for the Presidency and control of Congress, and examine what we know about the grounds over which these elections will be contested going forward. One focus will be on how the role of race has evolved in American elections and the broader implications of these changes.

Moderated by: Cecilia Hyunjung Mo, UC Berkeley

Lynn Vavreck, UCLA
Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times
Bernard Fraga, Emory University

April 12, 2024

Berkeley City Club
2nd Floor Ballroom
2315 Durant Ave.
Berkeley, CA 94704
United States


See speaker lineup in program description and schedule