September 15, 2020

Simon Institute talks will focus on progressive politics, foreign policy challenges

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. — Two upcoming virtual discussions hosted by Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Paul Simon Public Policy Institute will look at progressive politics in the United States and the nation’s foreign policy challenges.

John T. Shaw, Institute director, will have conversations with U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, at 10 a.m., Friday, Sept. 18, and Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, at noon, on Monday, Sept. 21. The presentations are part of the Institute’s “Understanding Our New World” series via Zoom.

Discussion will also be on their books

sherrod-brown-sm.jpgBrown, the senior United States senator from Ohio, is in his third term and is the senior Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee. He served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1993 to 2007 representing a district in suburban Cleveland. He also served as Ohio’s secretary of state and as a state representative before being elected to Congress.

Shaw and Brown will discuss Brown’s 2019 book, “Desk 88: Eight Progressive Senators who Changed America” The discussion will also touch on the “progressive tradition in America, and how this tradition can guide the United States as it confronts economic, political, social and public health challenges,” Shaw said.

“Senator Brown has attracted enormous interest across the United States because he consistently runs, and wins, elections by advancing a progressive agenda in a conservative state,” Shaw said. “If Democrats win control of the Senate in November, Sen. Brown is poised to become chairman of the Senate Banking Committee and one of the most powerful members of Congress in 2021.”

Registration is open for Brown’s conversation

Registration for the free ZOOM meeting with Brown is available in advance.

Respected think-tank

Haass has overseen the Council on Foreign Relations, considered one of the world’s most respected international affairs think tanks, since 2003.

Haass_Richard_Original-sm.jpgHaass, a veteran diplomat, served in various positions at the U.S. Department of Defense, the National Security Council and the U.S. Department of State, where he was director of policy planning and a principal adviser to then U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell. Haass also worked at the Brookings Institution, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

The author or editor of 14 books, Haass is a Rhodes Scholar and holds a bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College and master’s and doctorate of philosophy degrees from Oxford University. During their conversation, Shaw and Haass will discuss foreign policy challenges and Haass’ 2020 New York Times’ best-selling book, “The World: A Brief Introduction.”

“Richard Haass is one of our country’s most creative thinkers and prolific writers in the realm of foreign policy,” Shaw said. “He is unequalled in explaining the complexity of international affairs in a clear and comprehensible way.  He has served at the highest levels of American foreign policy and has also led our country’s most important international affairs think tank for more nearly two decades.”

Registration also open for Haass’ conversation

Registration is also underway for the free ZOOM meeting with Haass.

Participants have opportunities when they register to submit questions to Brown and Haass by email at or by including it in the “Questions and Comments” section on the registration forms.