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Reviews

“A hard-hitting critique of the American election process as timely as it is frightening. In a slim, cogently argued analysis, legal scholar Hasen points to four dangers threatening the voting process in 2020 and beyond . . . Required reading for legislators and voters.”

Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)


“UC Irvine law and political science professor Hasen (Voting Wars) investigates the causes of recent concerns about the integrity of American elections in this candid and disturbing account. He identifies four primary dangers for 2020 and beyond: voter suppression, inept electoral officials, foreign and domestic manipulation through social media and fraud, and “incendiary rhetoric” claiming that a particular race was stolen or rigged. While Hasen cites many examples of Republican misbehavior, he calls out Democrats as well, noting that Hillary Clinton’s claim that Wisconsin’s strict voter identification law may have cost her the 2016 election was rated “mostly false” by the fact-checking organization PolitiFact. According to Hasen, focusing on whether such laws change results gives the misleading impression that “voter suppression matters only if it affects election outcomes.” He writes that there is “reason to fear” President Trump won’t concede the 2020 election if returns show a narrow Democratic victory, but points out that Trump has been unable or unwilling to follow through on many of his authoritarian impulses. Hasen’s proposed solutions include bipartisan cooperation to remove incompetent electoral officials and the tightening of regulations related to absentee ballots. Readers hoping for immediate fixes will be disappointed, but those focused on the long-term health of American democracy will appreciate this bracing and comprehensive inquiry.”

Publishers Weekly


“There is no better work describing the astonishing attacks on the most basic element of our democracy—voting—nor a more hopeful account of the changes that could fix it. If there is a plan to establish democracy in America, this book is a central chapter.”

—Lawrence Lessig, author of They Don’t Represent Us


“Hasen’s informative and important book makes a compelling case for long-term, systemic reform of our elections.”

—Trevor Potter, Founder and President of the Campaign Legal Center


“Voters losing faith in the integrity of elections is one of the greatest risks any democracy faces. Rick Hasen chronicles why that risk is increasing in the United States and what to do about it before it’s too late.”

—Richard H. Pildes, author of The Law of Democracy


“Richard Hasen’s new book is well named, because unless we pay close attention and act fast, an election meltdown may be exactly what we get in 2020. If you want to see honest, fair elections in 2020 and beyond, you must read this book—and then act.”

—Larry J. Sabato, Director, University of Virginia Center for Politics


Election Meltdown is available for pre-order: