The Scoop Jackson Style of Politics

Hans Zeiger, a Jackson Leadership Fellow (2017) and a Washington State Senator from Puyallup, recently produced a short essay “The Scoop Jackson Style of Politics:  Lessons in relationship-building from one of the great U.S. Senators of the 20th century.” The monograph is the end result of Hans’ project for his Jackson Leadership Fellowship, and is a topic that he gravitated toward given his own commitment to and engagement in political life.  The Fellows can do a variety of initiatives as a project for their fellowship, and a few, like Hans, have chosen to do research or exploratory papers on concerns related to the Jackson legacy.

In this paper, Hans draws on interviews conducted with Jackson’s staffers and colleagues to assess whether relationships still matter in American politics, and he concludes that they do: “Jackson showed the potential of people-centered politics and proved the moral advantages of government based on human relationships.”  Throughout his thoughtful piece, he references the qualities that made Jackson successful, emphasizing that Jackson was a man of the people, a collaborator with others, a mentor, a teacher, and a student, when it was necessary. He asks, “can the Jackson style of leadership be emulated in a new century at the level of the U.S. Senate, if not the presidency?”

Hans Zeiger speaking at a Jackson Fellows event in Washington, D.C.

Hans played a quiet but formidable role himself in his Jackson Fellows cohort and continues to influence his peers in the Washington State Legislature and beyond through his own brand of collaborative, bipartisan-oriented policymaking. We are proud to have him as a Jackson Leadership Fellow alum and equally proud to share this publication with you today.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

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