Richard C. Schragger

City Power: Final Reflections on Cities and the 2016 Election



I want to thank Richard, Scott, Lee, Nestor, Kathleen, and Audrey for their generous and insightful posts about City Power (and Jack Balkin for agreeing to publish them on Balkinization). In this short reply I will be unable to do their comments justice. My goal is simply to add one more reflection with the hope that readers will view these collective comments as an invitation to pay increased attention to cities. As I argue in City Power, cities should be at the center of our collective political, constitutional, economic, and legal thinking.
A number of commentators read City Power against the backdrop of the recent election results—and how could they not?  One irony of the election is that Donald Trump—a man who grew up in New York and made his fortune building there—ran a campaign that was shot through with anti-urbanism. County-level election return maps show how stark is the geographic and cultural divide between city dwellers and those who live in rural and exurban places.  Richard, Nestor, and Scott all point with some urgency to a divided nation—one that seems to pit “cosmopolitans” in big cities against “traditionalists” who live in less dense and less globally connected places.    


Richard C. Schragger, City Power: Final Reflections on Cities and the 2016 Election, Balkinization (November 20, 2016).

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