Briefing Room

First Year project releases two books

UVA Press

Key learnings from the project and a Trump evaluation via UVA Press

January 05, 2018 Thomas van der Voort

Trump’s first 100 days

Scholars discuss the Trump presidency with 100 days down, 265 to go

April 28, 2017 Natalie Russell

An unprecedented presidency

Gage Skidmore

Senator Mark Warner, Miller Center scholars, and the New York Times’ Peter Baker assess Trump’s early days

April 18, 2017 Natalie Russell

The First Year Project on CSPAN

American History TV featured the Miller Center's First Year Project on a recent broadcast

April 18, 2017 Sheila Blackford

Supreme Court appointments in the president’s first year

Trump's pick is unprecedented, but there are many and varied stories behind first year nominations

March 17, 2017 Barbara Perry

First year essay contest winners

Congratulations to the students who won the essay contest!

February 21, 2017 Stefanie Georgakis Abbott

The spike in Ike

Dwight D. Eisenhower Library

President Eisenhower rises in C-SPAN poll ranking U.S. presidents

February 20, 2017 Will Hitchcock

American Cauldron: First Year project panel on race

Henry Taylor /

Sally Yates gets hero’s welcome at Atlanta race discussion

February 16, 2017 Ernie Suggs

Coming around to a carbon tax

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library

Two former Republican secretaries of state recommend a carbon tax

February 08, 2017 Howard Witt

American Forum tackles first year issues

The Miller Center's syndicated TV show teams up with the First Year Project

February 03, 2017 Thomas van der Voort

Governing by surprise is not a recipe for success

Why "no surprises" helps the president and the cabinet

February 03, 2017 Chris Lu

Presidential communications in 2017

JStone / Shutterstock, Inc.

Will the Trump administration behave differently than the Trump campaign?

January 31, 2017 Dave Karpf

Carter Library to host First Year summit on race

Eric Holder will headline our national summit on race and the presidency, Feburary 15th in Atlanta

January 20, 2017 Thomas van der Voort

Inaugural memories

From the Presidential Oral History Program, we bring you some inaugural memories

January 20, 2017 Carah Ong

Presidential constraints

Gustavo Frazao /

How the president's success is limited by structural and institutional realities

January 19, 2017 Daniel J. Galvin

Why media relationships matter

Robert Moore, White House Photo Office

Past presidents offer Trump lessons on communications strategy

January 17, 2017 Kathryn Cramer Brownell

Speechwriting in the first year

A roundtable of former White House speechwriters offers lessons to the next president

January 17, 2017 Tony Lucadamo

First Words: James Garfield, March 4, 1881

Library of Congress

The inaugural address of James Garfield certainly falls into the category of “speeches lost to history”

January 17, 2017 Kenneth Lowande

First Words: Rutherford B. Hayes, March 4, 1877

Rutherford Birchard Hayes is perhaps one of the most underappreciated presidents

January 15, 2017 Carah Ong

First Words: James Buchanan, March 4, 1857

Library of Congress

History has not been kind to James Buchanan or his inaugural

January 14, 2017 Kenneth Lowande

First Words: James Polk, March 4, 1845

Not many Americans know James P. Polk but they should

January 13, 2017 Carah Ong

First Words: William Henry Harrison, March 4, 1841

The Inaugural Address of William Harrison is possibly the most popular and least examined speech

January 12, 2017 Kenneth Lowande

What history can teach an unprecedented president-elect

The director of the Miller Center reflects on the next presidency

December 21, 2016 William J. Antholis

Presidential Transition: Jimmy Carter

The Jimmy Carter oral history project looks at the new president's "outsider" status

December 19, 2016 Bryan Craig

Navigating the first year, from top White House alumni

Brookings Institution

Watch all or part of our half-day seminar at the Brookings Institution

December 14, 2016 William J. Antholis

Presidential Daily Briefs

What the creation of the PDBs can teach the next president about working with the intelligence community

December 12, 2016 Thomas A. Reinstein

Presidential transition: Somalia

Photo courtesy of DoD

The George H. W. Bush oral history project examines Somalia and the transition from Bush to Clinton

December 08, 2016 Bryan Craig

The long road

boreala /

The next president should build upon existing infrastructure projects such as the interstate highway system

December 07, 2016 Francesca Russello Ammon

Presidential leadership in the first year

On December 12, the First Year Project teams with the Brookings Institution for a half-day conference in D.C.

December 01, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

The environment of opportunity

Linda Parton /

Leif Fredrickson argues that the next president should focus on eradicating lead poisoning

November 30, 2016 Leif Fredrickson

End of the honeymoon?

a katz /

Prospects for White House-congressional relations in 2017

November 28, 2016 Jeff Chidester, Tony Lucadamo, Molly Reynolds

Reasserting the importance of cities

f11photo /

David Dagan explores problems that “city power” will need to address to be successful

November 16, 2016 David Dagan

Launch event for volume 7

Joseph Sohm /

The Miller Center launches communications volume at Reagan Library

November 04, 2016 Tony Lucadamo

Maximizing power with diminished presidential control

Sakura Vector /

How the next president can better use the appointment and agenda-setting powers

November 02, 2016 Patrick R. O'Brien

Millennial Caucus’s straw poll

Clinton first, Trump fourth in UVA student survey

October 28, 2016 Eric Xu, Uma Mengale, and Sabrina Kim

What voters want most from the next president

Delices /

It's a pretty surprising quality that dates back to Dwight Eisenhower

October 19, 2016 Robert F. Bruner

Debate promises: defense (1980)

Paul Drabot /

Looking back at defense spending as a debate promise made by Ronald Reagan

October 18, 2016 Bryan Craig

A view from the inner circle

The Miller Center joins with Longwood to host a panel on the vice presidency

October 13, 2016 Sheila Blackford

Debate promises: Medicare (1960)

alexmillos /

Looking back at Medicare legislation as a debate promise made by John Kennedy

October 11, 2016 Bryan Craig

Debate promises: education (2000)

Our look at past debate promises continues with education

October 06, 2016 Bryan Craig

Debate promises: health care reform (1992)

Our look at past debate promises starts with health care

October 04, 2016 Bryan Craig

Moving up

bizvector /

Melody Barnes talks about ideas for how the next president can address economic inequality

September 28, 2016 Sheila Blackford

How much will the presidential debates matter?

ingibiork /

Carah Ong Whaley examines why the debates might matter more for this election

September 26, 2016 Carah Ong Whaley

Tales of transitions past

Five past-presidential transition leaders on what to do before inauguration

September 16, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

Hispanics and mobility in America

catwalker /

Why the next president needs to act

September 16, 2016 Cristina Lopez-Gottardi Chao, Volume 6 co-editor

Volume 6: Opportunity & upward mobility

Gustavo Frazao /

Coming on Sept. 19: how the next president can revive confidence in the Great American Dream

September 14, 2016 Guian McKee, Volume 6 co-editor

David Martin in The Washington Post

Here's why local police don't enforce immigration laws

September 13, 2016 Sheila Blackford

Winning over Capitol Hill

Vector pro /

An insider’s account of congressional relations in the first year

September 12, 2016 Jeff Chidester and Tony Lucadamo

Every president has a first year

UVA magazine features the First Year project

September 08, 2016 Sheila Blackford

First Year powers WNYC’s “The Takeaway”

A in-depth look at immigration from WNYC, WGBH, and Public Radio International

September 06, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

The Chinese riddle

chuyuss /

History teaches the next president that friendly initial overtures can backfire

September 05, 2016 Joe Riley

Immigrants and insecure workers

david muscroft /

Populism and scapegoating on both sides of the Atlantic

August 31, 2016 Wayne Cornelius and Daniel Tichenor

Healing the fractures

Chardchanin /

U.S. News & World Report on the First Year project's efforts to help the next president

August 26, 2016 Sheila Blackford

Managing dissent

Ryan DeBerardinis /

Boris Heersink explains how the next president will have to manage relations internally and externally

August 25, 2016 Boris Heersink

Scenario planning in extraordinary times

Jim Larkin /

Nicole Mellow argues that although Trump is no Goldwater, there may be a political realignment on the horizon

August 24, 2016 Nicole Mellow

Building the party

Mad Dog /

Laura Blessing argues that the next president should strengthen their party using message, money, and policy

August 23, 2016 Laura Blessing

Flexibility won’t go far enough

ChameleonsEye /

Benjamin Holtzman argues that the national crises of homelessness and affordable housing require federal solutions

August 18, 2016 Benjamin Holtzman

Xenophobia’s unlearned lesson

louise wateridge /

Daniel Tichenor explains why Republicans will pay a steep political price for playing the nativist card

August 17, 2016 Daniel Tichenor

The promise and perils of going local

lazyllama /

Tracy Steffes cautions that going local can exacerbate inequalities

August 16, 2016 Tracy Steffes

By the Book: Grover Cleveland

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 22nd & 24th president.

August 15, 2016 Bryan Craig

Which first year?

Reagan Presidential Library

Saladin Ambar tries to make sense of successful (and not-so successful) presidential first years

August 11, 2016 Saladin Ambar

Whose job Is it anyway?

Rob Wilson /

Anna O. Law examines how the government has managed immigration

August 09, 2016 Anna O. Law

Block parties

Tupungato /

David Dagan explains the partisan edge of the "new American localism"

August 04, 2016 David Dagan

Beyond partisanship

Top Vector Studio /

Emily Baer discusses how to fix strained congressional-presidential relations

August 02, 2016 Emily Baer

Philadelphia lessons for the next CEO of the USA

Democratic leaders consider what private sector transitions can teach our next president

August 01, 2016 Bill Antholis and Jeff Chidester

By the Book: Franklin Pierce

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 14th president

August 01, 2016 Bryan Craig

Federal fuel for New American Localism

Three ways our next president can facilitate local growth

July 27, 2016 Bruce Katz, Brookings Institution

GOP leaders ponder a CEO in chief

What private sector transitions can—and cannot—teach the next president?

July 25, 2016 Bill Antholis and Jeff Chidester

By the Book: Franklin D. Roosevelt

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 32nd president

July 25, 2016 Bryan Craig

Empowering cities

Bruce Katz says the federal government should bypass states to interact directly with cities and metropolitan areas

July 20, 2016 Bruce Katz

“Never Trump” pushes convention test vote

History shows it can change the dynamic of a political convention

July 18, 2016 Nicole Hemmer

By the Book: Thomas Jefferson

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 3rd president

July 18, 2016 Bryan Craig

By the Book: James Garfield

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 20th president

July 11, 2016 Bryan Craig

Toward a more holistic approach

Blend Images /

How our national discourse is preventing comprehensive immigration reform

July 11, 2016 Anna O. Law

Trump and immigration

Andrew Cline /

How the issue of immigration needs Trump

July 08, 2016 Gary Freeman

Making amends for past wrongs

Patrick Poendl /

Democrats should fix the broken immigration system they helped create

July 07, 2016 Adam Goodman

Harding, Coolidge, and immigration

Library of Congress

How did these two president approach immigration policy in the 1920s?

July 06, 2016 Bryan Craig

By the Book: John Adams

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 2nd president

July 04, 2016 Bryan Craig

First Words: Abraham Lincoln, March 4, 1861

Abraham Lincoln powerfully argued for the preservation of the Union in his first inaugural address

July 01, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

American cauldron: Race relations

Miller Center

What advice do Michael E. Dyson and Elizabeth Hinton give to the next president about easing racial tensions?

June 30, 2016 Bryan Craig

What was the Bracero program?

The Bracero program and its effects on immigration to the United States

June 28, 2016 Sheila Blackford

Promises and price tags: A fiscal guide to the 2016 election

The impact of the fiscal policies proposed by Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

June 27, 2016 Maya MacGuineas, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

By the Book: Warren G. Harding

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 29th president

June 27, 2016 Bryan Craig

The Supreme Court’s real message

Rena Schild /

The Supreme Court wants immigration resolved in the political arena

June 23, 2016 David A. Martin

By the Book: Ulysses S. Grant

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 18th president

June 20, 2016 Bryan Craig

Ted Kennedy, LBJ, and immigration reform

courtesy of the National Archives

Ted Kennedy works with President Johnson to reform America's discriminatory immigration laws

June 15, 2016 Rob Martin

By the Book: Herbert Hoover

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 31st president

June 13, 2016 Bryan Craig

First Words: Herbert Hoover, March 4, 1929

Herbert Hoover's first speech as president bristled with optimism

June 10, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

The first year as an outsider: President Carter remembers

Miller Center

President Carter remembers what it was like to try to govern after winning the election as an outsider

June 08, 2016 Bryan Craig

By the Book: Chester Arthur

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 21st president.

June 06, 2016 Bryan Craig

UVA’s Illimitable focuses on the First Year

Explore the presidents' first years through this interactive piece

June 03, 2016 Sheila Blackford

First Words: John F. Kennedy, January 20, 1961

John F. Kennedy delivered one of the most memorable inaugural addresses ever

June 03, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

Millennial Caucus: national security threats facing country

Millennial Caucus, February 2016

UVA students say ISIS is top national security threat, disagree on proper response

June 01, 2016 Darby Hobbs and Uma Mengale

By the Book: James Monroe

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 5th president

May 30, 2016 Bryan Craig

First Words: George Washington, April 30, 1789

As with so much, George Washington's Inaugural Address set the stage for all that followed

May 27, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

By the Book: Calvin Coolidge

Our First Year team of experts offers essential readings on the 30th president

May 23, 2016 Bryan Craig

HBO’s “All the Way” a striking portrayal of Lyndon Johnson’s First Year

Our Guian McKee looks at HBO's historical drama

May 21, 2016 Guian McKee

First Words: Bill Clinton, January 20, 1993

In his first speech as president, Bill Clinton sought to acknowledge frustration and project hope

May 20, 2016 Thomas van der Voort

Ted Kennedy and the Troubles, part 2

Photo courtesy National Archives. Public Domain.

Kennedy works with newly elected President Bill Clinton to help start peaceful negotiations in Northern Ireland

May 19, 2016 Rob Martin

Ted Kennedy and the Troubles, part 1

Photo courtesy National Archives. Public Domain.

Read about Kennedy's work with newly elected President Jimmy Carter on the conflict in Northern Ireland

May 17, 2016 Rob Martin