David Gilmartin (NCSU): Towards a Global History of Voting: Sovereignty, the Diffusion of Ideas, and the Enchanted Individual. Alessandro Lizzeri (NYU) and Leeat Yariv (Cal Tech): Collective Self-Control. As the US gears up for Obama-Romney 2012, Andrew Gelman uncovers the (often surprising) realities of how Americans of different backgrounds vote. The first chapter from Monitoring Democracy: When International Election Observation Works, and Why It Often Fails by Judith G. Kelley. Political scientists who have studied primary systems invariably find that top-two election systems do not elect more centrist candidates. A study finds political ads by independent groups are not only common — they are more effective. Nuke ’Em: Why negative advertisements are powerful, essential, and sometimes (see “Daisy”) even artistic. Ted Brader, author of Campaigning for Hearts and Minds: How Emotional Appeals in Political Ads Work, on five myths about campaign ads. The New York Review of Magazines reviews Campaigns and Elections. A review of Understanding the Fundamentals of the U.S. Presidential Election System by Alexander S. Belenky.