Research Cluster co-chairs Daniel Ziblatt and Steve Levitksy published an editorial on "Why Autocrats Love Emergencies" in the January 12th New York Times. From the editorial:
"Authoritarian leaders often chafe under the constraints of constitutional rule. Democratic politics is, after all, grinding work. Family businesses and army units may be ruled by fiat, but democracies require negotiation and concessions. Setbacks are inevitable; victories always partial. A president’s most cherished policy initiatives may be savaged in the media, derailed by Congress or struck down by the courts."