View Event Recording - Join the Democratic Statecraft Lab and the Miller Center's panel of experts on law, international affairs, and political science analyze constitutional crises in the United States, comparing them to the experiences of other countries. The scholars will tackle important questions: What is a constitutional crisis? Has the United States experienced one recently? What are the triggers or warning signs of a constitutional crisis? And how can we prevent them in the future?
Gretchen Helmke is a professor of political science at University of Rochester. She received her Ph.D. in political science from the University of Chicago in 2000. Her research focuses on political institutions, democratic consolidation and erosion, the rule of law, and Latin American politics. Her most recent book is Institutions on the Edge: The Origins and Consequences of Institutional Instability in Latin America (Cambridge University Press, 2017). Helmke is also one of the co-founders of Bright Line Watch, a nonpartisan organization that brings together leading political scientists to monitor democratic practices in the United States from a comparative perspective.
Sanford Levinson, who holds the W. St. John Garwood and W. St. John Garwood, Jr. Centennial Chair in Law, joined the University of Texas Law School in 1980. Previously a member of the department of politics at Princeton University, he is also a professor in the department of government at the University of Texas. Levinson is the author of approximately 400 articles, book reviews, or commentaries in professional and popular journals—and a regular contributor to the popular blog Balkinization. He also has written six books, including Constitutional Faith (1988, winner of the Scribes Award, 2d edition 2011); An Argument Open to All: Reading the Federalist in the 21st Century (2015); and, with Cynthia Levinson, Fault Lines in the Constitution: The Framers, their Fights, and the Flaws that Affect Us Today (2017).
Kim L. Scheppele
Kim Lane Scheppele is the Laurance S. Rockefeller Professor of Sociology and International Affairs in the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs and the University Center for Human Values at Princeton University. Scheppele's work focuses on the intersection of constitutional and international law, particularly in constitutional systems under stress. After 1989, Scheppele studied the emergence of constitutional law in Hungary and Russia, living in both places for extended periods. After 9/11, she researched the effects of the international "war on terror" on constitutional protections around the world. Since 2010, she has been documenting the rise of autocratic legalism first in Hungary and then in Poland within the European Union, as well as its spread around the world.
(Statecraft Lab Faculty) Since joining the University of Virginia in 2011, Mila Versteeg’s research and teaching interests include comparative constitutional law, public international law, and empirical legal studies. Most of her research deals with the origins, evolution, and effectiveness of provisions in the world’s constitutions. Her publications have appeared in the California Law Review, the New York University Law Review, the University of Chicago Law Review, the American Political Science Review, the American Journal of Political Science, the Journal of Legal Studies, the Journal of Law and Economics, the American Journal of International Law, and the Journal of Law, Economics, and Organizations. Prior to joining the law school, Versteeg was an Olin Fellow and lecturer in law at the University of Chicago Law School.