Matthew N. Beckmann

Associate Professor, Political Science
School of Social Sciences

Ph.D., University of Michigan

Phone: (949) 824-6219
Fax: (949) 824-8762

University of California, Irvine
3151 Social Science Plaza
Mail Code: 5100
Irvine, CA 92697

picture of Matthew N. Beckmann

Presidency, Congress, Interest Groups, Mass Media & Politics
Phi Beta Kappa
Gerald R. Ford Fellowship
Matthew N. Beckmann is an Associate Professor of Political Science at UC Irvine, where he studies Washington politics, particularly those involving the White House. He is author of "Pushing the Agenda" (Cambridge University Press, 2010), which reveals the systematic strategies presidents employ to influence Congress and the factors that determine when those strategies work – or don’t.

Beckmann's current book project (entitled "The Oval's Inner Circle") investigates how intensifying external pressures impact postwar presidents' internal decision-making. Specifically, by modeling presidents' central challenge as identifying optimal policy options under different political conditions, Beckmann shows how media pressures distort presidents' agenda, advisors, and accuracy. Predictions are tested against systematic records of presidents’ minute-by-minute activities for all presidents from Kennedy to Bush 41.

Matthew N. Beckmann received his B.A. from UCLA and his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.
Publications 2010. "Pushing the Agenda: Presidential Leadership in US Lawmaking, 1953-2004."
New York: Cambridge University Press.

Forth. “Opportunism in Polarization: Presidential Success in Key Senate Votes, 1953-2008.”
Presidential Studies Quarterly (with Vimal Kumar)

2011. “How Presidents Push, When Presidents Win: Locating Presidential Power in Congress.”
Journal of Theoretical Politics 23: 3-20. (with Vimal Kumar)

2008 “The President’s Playbook: White House Strategies for Lobbying Congress.”
The Journal of Politics. 70(2): 407-419.

2008 “Navigating the Legislative Divide: Polarization, Presidents, and Policymaking in the US.”
Journal of Theoretical Politics 202(2): 201-220. (with Anthony J. McGann)

2007 “The Policy Opportunities in Presidential Honeymoons.”
Political Research Quarterly 60(2): 250-262. (with Joseph Godfrey)

2002 “Where You Live and What You Watch: The Impact of Racial Proximity and Local Television News on Attitudes about Race and Crime.” Political Research Quarterly 55(4): 755-781. (with Franklin D. Gilliam and Nicholas A. Valentino)

2001 “What Leads to Voting Overreports? Contrasts of Overreporters to Validated Voters and Admitted Nonvoters in the American National Election Studies.” Journal of Official Statistics 17(4): 479-498. (with Robert F. Belli and Michael W. Traugott)

2001 “When the Frame is the Game: Revisiting the Impact of ‘Strategic’ Campaign Coverage on Citizens’ Information Retention.” Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly 78(1): 93-103. (with Nicholas A. Valentino and Thomas A. Buhr)

2001 “A Spiral of Cynicism for Some: The Contingent Effects of Campaign News Frames on Participation and Confidence in Government.” Political Communication 18(4): 347-367. (with Nicholas A. Valentino and Thomas A. Buhr)
Research Center Center for the Study of Democracy
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Last updated 04/28/2011