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Campaign 2012 — An Overview at the Starting Line

USC Continuing Education and Summer Programs

Fall 2011

October 25, 2011 - November 8, 2011


Instructor(s): Dan Schnur, Lead Journalist: Adam Nagourney

Program type: Short Courses
Format: Online

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The course provides a preview of the 2012 presidential campaign from its beginning stages. Dan Schnur will offer analysis of the nation's political landscape, evaluate the challenges and opportunities faced by the candidates, and discuss economic, cultural and other factors that will influence the electorate as voters consider the choices before them. Go beyond the ongoing frenzy of polling, fundraising and bickering to join a broader three-part conversation about the forces that will shape the election of our next president.

The President – Obama Prepares for a Second Lap
The Republicans – The Path through the Primaries
The American Voters – What They Want and How They'll Decide

Related Faculty and Instructors

Live online sessions:
Tuesday, Oct. 25/Nov. 1/Nov. 8, 9:00 – 9:50 PM Eastern (6:00 p.m. – 6:50 p.m. PT)
Sunday, Oct. 30/Nov. 6, 6:00 – 6:50 PM Eastern (3:00 p.m. – 3:50 p.m. PT)

Dan Schnur

Dan is the Director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at the University of Southern California, where he works to motivate students to become active in the world of politics and encourage public officials to participate in the daily life of USC.

For years, Dan was one of California's leading political and media strategists, whose record includes work on four presidential and three gubernatorial campaigns. Schnur served as the national Director of Communications for the 2000 presidential campaign of U.S. Senator John McCain and spent five years as chief media spokesman for California Governor Pete Wilson. In 2010, Schnur was appointed as Chairman of the California Fair Political Practices Commission, a position he held through that year's elections and until spring of 2011.

In addition to his position at USC, Schnur is an Adjunct Instructor at the University of California at Berkeley's Institute of Governmental Studies. Schnur has also held the post of Visiting Fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government's Institute of Politics at Harvard University and taught an advanced course in political campaign communications at George Washington University's Graduate School of Political Management. He writes regular political commentary for the Washington Post, the New York Times, and The Politico websites, and has also been an analyst and political commentator for CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and National Public Radio.

Adam Nagourney

Adam Nagourney became Los Angeles bureau chief of The New York Times in August 2010.  Previously, Mr. Nagourney had been chief national political correspondent of The New York Times since 2002, working in the Washington bureau. Mr. Nagourney covered the presidential elections of 2004 and 2008. He joined The Times as a political correspondent in January 1996.  He spent his first year at the paper in the Washington bureau, covering Bob Dole in the 1996 presidential campaign, and he moved to New York in 1997, where he covered state and city politics, including Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign for the United States Senate in 2000 and the New York mayoral race in 2001.

From 1994 until he joined The Times in 1996, Mr. Nagourney was working on a book he co-authored with Dudley Clendinen (who was, at the time, a member of The Times editorial board) on the history of the modern gay rights movement.  The book, “Out for Good,” was published in 1999 by Simon & Schuster.  In 1993, Mr. Nagourney served as White House correspondent for USA Today. Before that, he was the newspaper’s national political correspondent from 1990 to 1992.  Previously, he worked at The New York Daily News, where he served as the paper’s Albany bureau chief, and covered the 1988 Presidential election and 1989 mayoral election.  From 1977 to 1983, he worked at the Gannett Westchester Newspapers, in the paper’s Putnam County, White Plains and Albany bureaus.

Born in New York City on October 10, 1954, Mr. Nagourney received a B.A. degree in political economics from the State University of New York at Purchase in 1977.  He currently lives in Los Angeles.

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