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Former SUNY Fredonia Political Science professor to speak on Constitution Day
Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Former SUNY Fredonia Political Science professor Kevin J. McMahon will visit campus on Constitution Day, Tuesday, Sept. 17. He will discuss his books and research which examine the presidency, as well as the political origins and consequences of Supreme Court decisions. The presentation will take place from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in room 204 of the Williams Center.

Constitution Day (or Citizenship Day) is an American federal observance that recognizes the adoption of the United States Constitution and those who have become U.S. citizens.

While teaching at Fredonia, Dr. McMahon was honored in 2005 with the Hagan Young” Scholar/Artist Award, which recognizes an individual who has made outstanding achievements in research or creativity. In 2004, his book, "Reconsidering Roosevelt on Race: How the Presidency Paved the Road to Brown," won the American Political Science Association’s Richard E. Neustadt Award for the best book published on the American presidency. His most recent book, "Nixon's Court: His Challenge to Judicial Liberalism and Its Political Consequences," was selected as a 2012 CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title. Today, McMahon is a professor of Political Science at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn.

"Nixon’s Court" reveals a president whose public rhetoric was more conservative than his administration’s actions and whose policy toward the court was more subtle than previously recognized. Viewing Nixon’s judicial strategy as part political and part legal, McMahon argues that Nixon succeeded on both counts. In doing so, he not only shaped the course of constitutional law in the areas he most desired, but also laid the foundation of an electoral alliance that would dominate presidential politics for a generation.

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