Feature Stories

Politics & Polls #36: Do Science and Facts Matter in the Trump Administration?

Mar 23, 2017
By:
Julian Zelizer & Sam Wang (produced by Sarah M. Binder and edited by Bonelys Rosado)
Source:
Woodrow Wilson School

President Trump’s budget blueprint proposes deep cuts to research at the National Institutes of Health and the Environmental Protection Agency. What lies ahead for scientific expertise and evidence-based policymaking? Are facts, evidence and truth under siege by the new administration?

In this episode of Politics & Polls, professors Julian Zelizer and Sam Wang interview Rush D. Holt about the current state of science in the U.S., from public opinion to its role in government decision-making.

Holt, Ph.D., is chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest multidisciplinary scientific society, and executive publisher of the Science family of journals. As a physicist and a former long-time member of the U.S. House of Representatives for New Jersey’s 12th Congressional District, Holt draws on his experiences to help researchers bridge the gap between science and politics.

ABOUT THE HOSTS

Zelizer is the Malcolm Stevenson Forbes, Class of 1941 
Professor of History and Public Affairs at Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He has been one of the pioneers in the revival of American political history. He is the author of several books including, most recently, "The Fierce Urgency of Now: Lyndon Johnson, Congress, and the Battle for the Great Society." Zelizer is a frequent commentator in the international and national media on political history and contemporary politics. He has published more than 600 hundred op-eds, including his weekly column on CNN.com

Wang is professor of neuroscience and molecular biology at Princeton University. He is known for his books "Welcome to Your Brain" and "Welcome to Your Child's Brain" and for his founding role at the Princeton Election Consortium, a blog providing U.S. election analyses. In 2004, Wang was one of the first to aggregate U.S. presidential polls using probabilistic methods. He has also developed new statistical standards for partisan gerrymandering. A neuroscientist, Wang's academic research focuses on the neuroscience of learning, the cerebellum and autism.