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International Security (2010) 35 (1): 95–109.
Published: 01 July 2010
AbstractView article PDF
Over the past two decades, political polarization has shaken the domestic foundations of U.S. grand strategy, sorely testing bipartisan support for liberal internationalism. Stephen Chaudoin, Helen Milner, and Dustin Tingley take issue with this interpretation, contending that liberal internationalism in the United States is alive and well. Their arguments, however, do not stand up to careful scrutiny. Their analysis of congressional voting and public opinion fails to demonstrate the persistence of bipartisanship on foreign policy. Indeed, the partisan gap that widened during George W. Bush's administration has continued during the presidency of Barack Obama, confirming that a structural change has taken place in the domestic bases of U.S. foreign policy. President Obama now faces the unenviable challenge of conducting U.S. statecraft during an era when consensus will be as elusive at home as it is globally.
International Security (2008) 33 (1): 170–173.
Published: 01 July 2008
International Security (2007) 32 (2): 7–44.
Published: 01 October 2007
AbstractView article PDF
According to mainstream opinion, the George W. Bush administration's assertive unilateralism represents a temporary departure from the traditional foreign policy of the United States, one that will be rectified by a change of personnel in the White House in 2009. This interpretation of recent trends in U.S. policy is illusory. The Bush administration's foreign policy, far from representing an aberration, marks the end of an era; it is a symptom, as much as a cause, of the unraveling of the liberal internationalist compact that guided the United States for more than half a century. The geopolitical and domestic conditions that gave rise to liberal internationalism have disappeared, eroding its bipartisan political foundations. In today's partisan landscape, the challenge is devising a grand strategy that not only meets the country's geopolitical needs but also is politically sustainable. A strategy that is as judicious and selective as it is purposeful offers the best hope for moving the United States toward a more stable and solvent political equilibrium.