Halfway through the Decade: Issues, Options, and Barriers

By Arasaratnam, Roshana; Delaune, Jules M. | Kennedy School Review, Annual 2005 | Go to article overview

Halfway through the Decade: Issues, Options, and Barriers


Arasaratnam, Roshana, Delaune, Jules M., Kennedy School Review


This year, the agenda for the Kennedy School Review was set by students. Rather than setting a theme for the journal, we allowed the students at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University to tell us what they thought was important through the topics they chose and the passion with which they addressed those topics. We are gratified with the results. Two main concerns emerged. First, reflections on the 2004 elections highlighted the many domestic issues that remain politically difficult but unaddressed, including the environment, health care, and immigration policies. The second concern addressed the rancor of deep partisanship and thoughts about how to heal divided societies, both in the United States and abroad, as we all seek to make our world a better place. Inevitably, the implications of the 2004 election gave rise to a number of thoughtful pieces on the forgotten issues of 2004 and future strategies for 2008. How can the Democrats rebuild their platform? What will be the influence of the Latino vote in future elections? What happened to the environment during 2004, and how can activists put this issue back on the table?

We were fortunate to be able to have a discussion with Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (DN. Y.) and bring her thoughts to you. We are also indebted to Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) for his ideas about defense, Social Security, and the partisan divide in Washington today. Both Senators Clinton and McCain provided compelling visions for the years to come.

Neither the environment nor education reform received serious, informed debate in 2004, but in a remarkable piece of original research, Chrisanti Haretos explored the measurement of effective education reform, and Pete Didisheim considered what it will take to get the environment on the political agenda.

At a time when pressures are building on all sides of the immigration issue, Aili Palmunen provided a thoughtful look at current and potential policy. …

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Halfway through the Decade: Issues, Options, and Barriers
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