What happened to the vital center? A literary event with Sidney Milkis, Nicholas Jacobs, Philip Wallach and William Galston | American Institute of Enterprise

The January 6 attack on the United States Capitol should have awakened our political parties to the need for moderation, but the Republican and Democratic parties are rushing even further towards extremism. Is it too late to revive the political center and heal our common democratic institutions?

In What happened to the vital center? Presidentialism, populist revolt and the fracture of America (Oxford University Press, 2022), Nicholas Jacobs of Colby College and Sidney Milkis of the University of Virginia trace the rise of radicalism, grandstanding and populism to weak political parties, which presidents and ideological activists have dominated since the late of the XXth century.

Please join the authors, Philip Wallach of the AEI and William Galston of the Brookings Institution for a conversation on how revitalizing party organizations could help reduce the problems caused by “executive-centric partisanship.”

Submit your questions to [email protected] or on Twitter with #AEIVitalCenter.

If you cannot attend, we invite you to watch the event live on this page. Once the event is over, a full video will be posted within 24 hours.


5:00 p.m.
Philippe WallachSenior Fellow, AEI

5:05 p.m.
Interview and discussion

Nicholas F. JacobsAssistant Professor, Colby College
Sidney M. MilkisWhite Burkett Miller Professor of Governance and Foreign Affairs, University of Virginia

William A. GalstonPresident Ezra K. Zilkha and Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution
Philippe WallachSenior Fellow, AEI

6:10 p.m.
Questions and answers

6:30 p.m.

Angela C. Hale