Putin’s Electoral Result: A Not So Simple Tale

Timothy Frye

Vladimir Putin’s landslide victory — 76 percent of the vote with 67 percent turnout — in Sunday’s Presidential election has been dismissed as a sham in the Washington Post and as giving the incumbent an “overwhelming mandate” in the New York Times. The truth is more complicated.

This election was marked by all the usual shenanigans, roughly 10 million suspicious votes for the incumbent, videos of ballot-box stuffing, and blatant bias in media coverage of the race.

In some respects the violations were even wore more egregious than usual. In…


Why The Russia Investigations Are Critical for US Foreign Policy

Timothy Frye

June 6, 2017

With James Comey set to testify in Congress this week, it is a good idea to take a step back and consider why the investigation into Russia’s role in the US presidential election is so critical for US foreign policy.

To begin, candidate Trump asked a good question: “Wouldn’t it be nice if we actually got along with Russia?” Few Russia watchers — indeed few Americans — would disagree. The debate is over how and on what terms. Would easing economic sanctions on Russia promote…


The election is over and Republicans now control the Presidency, the Senate and the House of Representatives. Democratic theory tells us that unified government brings clarity of responsibility. Starting January 20, 2017 the Republicans must answer for the state of the economy, national security, and the well-being of the nation. Should they fail to deliver, they will be voted out of office. As an Indiana Trump voter worried about her firm leaving for Mexico noted: “If he doesn’t pass that tariff, I will vote the other way next time.” Accountability is central to democracy. But accountability only works as well…


On the 80th Anniversary of Havel’s Birth: A Remembrance of Plastic People and Greengrocers

In early 1990, Vaclav Havel took New York by storm. Six months earlier he had been in jail and two months earlier he had been elected President of Czechoslovakia. Yet here he was. Havel’s every visit to a pub in Greenwich Village made its way into the press, and dignitaries stood in line to meet him and he received an honorary degree from Columbia University in February.

I was in a good position to watch the festivities as I had just started as a student in…

Timothy Frye

Professor, Department of Political Science, Columbia University. Interested in social science, the NBA, and Eurasia - not always in that order.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store