Jesse Crosson will receive his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Michigan and join the faculty at Trinity University in 2019. His research agenda investigates why public policy changes when it does, and why it often fails to do so—even when many elites and citizens appear unsatisfied with the status quo. More specifically, his work traces how the rise of insecure majorities in Congress and state legislatures has encouraged legislative gridlock, influencing legislative parties and organization, interest group coalition-building, and investments in legislative capacity.
At CSDP, Jesse will focus on a book project, Polarized Pluralism, which documents the polarization of the interest group community since the 1980s. The project is coauthored with Alexander Furnas and Geoff Lorenz and builds upon the authors’ creation of IGscores, ideal points for over 2,600 interest groups in Washington. By developing a dynamic version of IGscores, Jesse and his coauthors aim to demonstrate how conflict extension among interest groups—fueled by partisan competition over majority control of Congress—has prevented groups from freely coalescing by issue area and instead sorted groups into partisan teams.