Nicole Hemmer

Fast Facts


Areas Of Expertise

  • Domestic Affairs
  • Media and the Press
  • Social Issues
  • Elections
  • Political Parties and Movements
  • Politics
  • The Presidency

Nicole Hemmer is an expert on the history of American politics and media. As an assistant professor in presidential studies at the Miller Center, she works on a wide-ranging set of projects, both scholarly and public. She works in the Presidential Recordings program, focusing on the Nixon administration and its media relations. Her broader scholarship focuses on the history of conservatism and media. Her first book, Messengers of the Right, charts the history of conservative media activism in the United States, and her current work-in-progress is a history of conservatism in the 1990s.

Hemmer is also an active public intellectual, appearing frequently in print and on air. She is a contributing editor to US News & World Report, where she writes a weekly column on politics and history, and she also writes a syndicated columnist for Fairfax Media in Australia. She co-hosts and produces the popular history podcast Past Present. Her commentary on US politics has appeared in numerous national and international outlets, including the New York Times, Politico, Atlantic, New Republic, Vox, Los Angeles Times, and NPR’s Morning Edition. She provides regular analysis to Australian and American broadcast outlets, on both radio and television.

Hemmer holds an appointment as a research associate at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, where she was a postdoctoral fellow in 2011-12. She received her Ph.D. in U.S. history from Columbia University, and previously taught at the University of Miami. In 2015, she was a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution.

Nicole Hemmer News Feed

But pointing the finger at Miller lets Trump off the hook for his anti-immigrant policies. While it makes tactical sense for members of Congress to play that game – Trump is notoriously sensitive about any criticism lobbed his way – it is imperative that the rest of us do not fall into that trap.
Nicole Hemmer US News & World Report
This month marks the 20th anniversary of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, an affair that resulted in Bill Clinton's impeachment. As tumultuous as the Clinton years were, in retrospect they seem a bit quaint: a time when bipartisan deals could still be struck, when the nation was still trying to find a language to talk about sexual harassment, when the internet was still a delightful novelty.
Nicole Hemmer The Sydney Morning Herald
Yet the new front that has opened for #MeToo, led by writers who suggest the movement is at risk from overzealous activists, has a serious flaw. Worried about the coming backlash, these writers actually play into the same assumptions that fuel backlashes: treating women and their responses to abuse and mistreatment as the main problem in need of solving, policing their activism and their reactions, demanding perfection not only in the present but in some imagined future when their voices have gained too much power. Carried too far, their attempt to rein in the #MeToo moment may end up destroying it.
Nicole Hemmer US News & World Report
It’s not just Bannon on the decline, however. Breitbart itself has slipped from its place as left-wing bogeyman and right-wing powerbroker. The loss of Bannon once would have been seen as cataclysmic, a crippling blow to a site, and a movement, that drove so much of the tumult in American politics. But now it seems like the inevitable closing act. These days, Breitbart feels a lot like run-of-the-mill conservative media, not so different from Fox News or talk radio. That’s partly an unintended consequence of its triumph: Breitbart’s influence seeped into right-wing media on all platforms over the past two years. But if every conservative outlet sounds like Breitbart, is Breitbart still essential to Trumpism?
Nicole Hemmer The Washington Post
Nicole Hemmer, a University of Virginia professor and author of “Messengers of the Right: Conservative Media and the Transformation of American Politics,” said it was “hard to imagine” the site would abandon Trump, and that she expected Breitbart to more or less continue on its current trajectory without Bannon.
Nicole Hemmer POLITICO
The drive to erase alleged sex predators from the entertainment landscape is understandable. These men built careers exploiting the women and men over whom they had power, but they also involved the rest of us in their predation, turning us into unwitting accomplices who consumed their art and lined their pockets. Part of removing them from streaming services or public radio networks is about ending that complicity; it’s the industry’s response to the audience’s revulsion. But the decisions by the entertainment industry to pull shows represent a flattened version of an important debate.
Nicole Hemmer Vox