American politics dissected by US expert


“The logical choice would be Hilary Clinton, but this has not been a logical campaign” leading American academic and commentator Prof Scott Lucas told King’s School A Level Politics students.

“She’s better qualified and more reliable, but this campaign is being played out on Twitter and no matter how controversial or intolerant, Trump’s comments dominate social media.”

Formerly from Alabama, Scott Lucas, who is the founder and editor of the leading website World View and is Professor of International Relations at Birmingham University, held a special question and answer session at King’s on the Trump Clinton face off, the Syrian crisis and the vagaries of an American political system that can throw up both the brilliant and the bizarre.

“Putting it simply, Hilary Clinton will get the vast majority of the Afro Caribbean vote, the Hispanic vote and the women’s vote, so she has to play well in the what we call the Rust Belt with the essentially white male voter.”

However, Professor Lucas warned students against simplistic stereotypes of the white working class in the Mid West: “They have been hit for the last two to three decades by the loss of industrial production from the US to overseas but that is not their only concern, they are also worried about education and about race relations.”

Professor Lucas is a world authority on American foreign policy and moved on to talk about the Syrian crisis and how Obama’s and to a lesser extent Cameron’s policy of non-intervention had backfired.

When asked why the American system had a habit of throwing up people like Donald Trump, Professor Lucas was quick to defend his compatriots: “Bill Clinton is one of the sharpest minds I have ever met and Barrack Obama, who for his failures on foreign policy, has proven to be very shrewd. The American system is, in some ways, much like here, is all about money and connections and the people should not be blamed for the choices that are sometimes presented to them.”

King’s Politics Teacher Laura Christie, who invited Professor Lucas, said: “Scott Lucas is a world authority on American politics and a hugely respected academic and journalist and we are very grateful he should find time to give a such a detailed and fascinating insight into the American political animal.”