Discussion: Nuclear weapons policy and the US presidential election

By , March 2, 2020

Why should nuclear weapons be a major focus of the 2020 U.S. presidential campaign? On March 2, the day before Super Tuesday, the Bulletin hosted a global teleconference with authors from its special magazine issue on Nuclear Weapons Policy and the U.S. Presidential Election. Bulletin editor-in-chief John Mecklin moderated the conversation between John P. Holdren, former science advisor to President Obama, and Alexandra Bell, senior policy director at the Center for Arms Control & Non-Proliferation.

Read more Bulletin coverage of nuclear risk, and listen in on all of our global teleconferences.


John P. Holdren is the Teresa and John Heinz Professor of Environmental Policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Co-Director of the School’s Science, Technology, and Public Policy program, Professor of Environmental Science and Policy in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, and Affiliated Professor in the John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Science. He is also Visiting Distinguished Professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China, and Senior Advisor to the President at the Woods Hole Research Center, a pre-eminent scientific think tank focused on global climate change. From January 2009 to January 2017, he was President Obama’s Science Advisor and Senate-confirmed Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP).

Alexandra Bell is the senior policy director at the Center for Arms Control & Non-Proliferation. Previously, Bell served as a senior adviser in the Office of the Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security. She has also worked on nuclear policy issues at the Ploughshares Fund and the Center for American Progress.

John Mecklin is editor-in-chief of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

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