Ben Gaskins

Associate Professor of Political Science

John R. Howard Hall 328, MSC: 12
Office Hours:

Monday 1:45-2:45 PM, Wednesday 3:00-3:30PM, or by appointment

Ben Gaskins is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Lewis & Clark College. He teaches courses in American and Comparative Politics, including classes on religion and politics, public opinion, political parties and interest groups, and the presidency. His research seeks to better understand the role of religion in structuring political attitudes, knowledge, and behavior.

Academic Credentials

BA in Political Science and Music, Furman University (2006)
M.S. in Political Science, Florida State University (2008)
PhD in Political Science, Florida State University (2011)


Fall 2023 Courses:

POLS 103: Intro to American Politics

MWF 10:20AM - 11:20AM

The politics of the founding period; interactions within and among the executive, legislative, and judicial branches; the federal division of institutionalized powers; public opinion, interest groups, and political parties; the policy process in areas such as defense, welfare, civil rights and liberties, and international affairs.
Prerequisites: None.

POLS 302: Political Parties & Elections
MWF 12:40PM - 01:40PM

Examination of the role of political parties as organizations, in the electorate, and in government. The evolution of parties in America and how they differ from interest groups. The intersection of race, identity, and ideology in American party systems and elections. How parties and elections are regulated by different levels of government, and the consequences of those regulations. The role of money in politics and the factors affecting polarization in the American electorate. Social choice theory and the construction and maintenance of democratic electoral processes.
Prerequisites: POLS 103.
Restrictions: Sophomore standing required.


Gaskins, Ben & JahAsia Jacobs. 2022. “The Effects of Race and the Prosperity Gospel on Politics in the Trump Era.” Politics & Religion, 15(3): 579–616.

Gaskins, Ben, Jason Barabas, and Jennifer Jerit. 2020. “Qualitative Quotes: The Prevalence and Effects of Survey Respondent Exemplars in Political News Coverage.” The International Journal of Press/Politics 25(1): 96–114.

Gaskins, Ben, Todd Lochner, Ellen Seljan, Katie Kowal, Zane Dundon, & Maya Gold. 2019. “From the FEC to the Ballot Box: Voter Accountability for Campaign Finance Law Violations.” American Politics Research 47(5): 1000–1035.

Gaskins, Ben. 2019. “The Effects of Religious Attendance and Evangelical Identification on Media Perception and Political Knowledge.” Politics & Religion 12(2): 346–384.

Clifford, Scott & Ben Gaskins. 2016. “Trust Me, I Believe in God: Candidate Religiousness as a Signal of Trustworthiness.” American Politics Research 44(6) 1066–1097.

Beard, T. Randolph, Robert B. Ekelund Jr., George S. Ford, Ben Gaskins, & Robert D. Tollison. 2013. “Secularism, Religion, and Political Choice in the United States.” Politics & Religion 6(4): 753 – 777.

Gaskins, Ben, Matt Golder, & David Siegel. 2013. “Religious Participation and Economic Conservatism.” American Journal of Political Science 57(4): 823-840.

Gaskins, Ben, Matt Golder, & David Siegel. 2013. “Religious Participation, Social Conservatism, and Human Development.” Journal of Politics 75(4): 1125-1141.

Gaskins, Benjamin and Jennifer Jerit. 2012. “Internet News: Is it a Replacement for Traditional Media Outlets?” 2012. The International Journal of Press/Politics 17(2): 190-213.