PS 106 Intro to US Politics - FULL COURSE NOTES
PS 106 Intro to US Politics - FULL COURSE NOTES PS 106
Popular in Introduction to US Politics
Popular in Politics & Human Rights
This 18 page Bundle was uploaded by Jessica Rozycki on Monday October 3, 2016. The Bundle belongs to PS 106 at Marymount Manhattan College taught by Nossif in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see Introduction to US Politics in Politics & Human Rights at Marymount Manhattan College.
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Date Created: 10/03/16
Politics is a game Sides, goals, winners and losers Political opportunity when a set of events works out in the favor of making a change Elites: Royalists, southern planters, northern merchants, ~1% of the population Middle class: ~15% of the population Side C: slaves, women, poor, ~80% of the population, no power Coalition = group of people who share similar goals Fluid, change according to the political opportunity available to them Original coalitions returned after declaring independence No taxation without representation small taxes, only affected elites Got the taxes rescinded Middle class saw taxes as a way to get more representation Boston massacre Not technically a massacre, but titled as such for attention People rallied together against the crown Ideas of “we” led to events such as the Boston Tea Party Declaration of Independence specific language of “we” Articles of Confederation Able to maintain state independence while still having a unit of authority First formal bases for America’s national government until the Constitution Failed because not all states effectively participated This plus declaration of independence were not sufficient to hold the nation together Shay’s Rebellion – staged a rebellion in western Mass. that led to elites noticing the need for change Daniel Shays led a mob of farmers, who were protesting foreclosures on their land, in a rebellion against the state government Attempted to seize a federal armory, scared Congress into action Larger states vs. smaller states Larger states had a bigger population, contributed more to economy, should have more representation Smaller states thought everyone should be represented equality Framers of the Constitution Had conflicting goals and interests Guided by underlying values Constitution provides a framework for government and guides policy process Dividing power among three branches as well as state and national govt helped some of the conflicting interests among framers Bicameralism = the division of a legislative assembly into two chambers, or houses Serves as a way to balance state and local interest Wanted to prevent “excessive democracy” Involved checks and balances, staggered terms in office, and indirect election Limitations on democratic inclusion Only certain people could vote Staggered term in order to ensure a slow, deliberate change Federalism system of two sovereigns – states and the nation Dual federalism In the 19 century, states had more power than national govt Around 1930, power shifted more toward national govt Legislative Branch: House of Representatives two year terms of office, elected directly by the people, based on population Senate 2 per state, six year term Power to: collect taxes, borrow money, regulate commerce, declare war, maintain an army and navy Limits: all other powers belong to the states Necessary and proper clause (elastic clause) = provides Congress with the authority to make all laws “necessary and proper” to carry out their allotted powers Executive Branch: President is given powers based on the framers’ goal of increased power in the national government With this branch, the federal government, rather than the states, has the agency capable of timely and decisive action to deal with public issues and problems Power to: recognize other countries, negotiate treaties, grant reprieves and pardons, appoint major departmental personnel, convene special sessions of Congress, ceto congressional actions Limits: senate must approve treaties, congress can override a veto by twothirds vote Judicial Branch: The Supreme court is granted the power to resolve any conflicts that might emerge between federal and state laws Judges given lifetime appointments to protect them from popular politics and interference by the other branches Judicial review = the power of the courts to declare actions of the legislative and executive braches invalid or unconstitutional (Marbury v. Madison) Power to: resolve conflicts between state and federal laws, determine to which level of government a power belongs, decide conflicts between citizens of different states Limits: judicial appointments are made by president and approved by senate, congress creates lower courts and can change jurisdiction of the federal courts, congress can add or subtract federal judges and can change the size of the supreme court The Great Compromise Edmund Randolph proposed to make corrections and changes to the Articles of Confederation, led to a meeting This compromise promised the first branch of Congress (HOR) would have reps based on population, while Senate would be equal 3/5 ’s compromise Slave states felt they needed more representation because they have more people For every 5 black people, it equaled 3 white people If the slaves did not count, how did they value property Property is something the country was said to be founded on, protection of property ** Both wanted to reinforce unity for those who wanted to create a new government, reassured those who feared that the new govt would reduce the importance of their local govt Supremacy clause = states must respect all of the treaties made under the authority of the national government, was an effort to keep the states from dealing separately with foreign affairs Barron v. Baltimore Facts: Barron coowned a wharf in Baltimore Sand accumulated in harbor, which deprived Barron of the deep waters he needed Sued the city to recover financial loss Question Does the 5 amendment deny the states as well as national government the right to take private property for public use without compensating the property’s owner? Decision = 70 in favor of Baltimore Marshall cited the limitations set by the 5 amendment were specifically to limit powers of national government th Cited intent of framers and Bill of rights to argue SC had no jurisdiction because 5 amendment not applicable to the states Can’t use amendment for this case because it only applies to the federal government Dual federalism Structure shapes power McCulloch vs. Maryland Facts: Second Bank of US in Maryland State wanted to tax the bank Question Did Congress have the authority to establish the bank? Did Maryland’s act of taxing the bank unconstitutionally interfere with power of the Congress? Decision = 70 in favor of US bank Congress had power to establish bank, Maryland could not tax the bank Marshall noted that Congress possessed certain powers not explicitly outlined in constitution Even though states controlled taxation, the constitution has power over all the states State can never tax federal government Why is this important? Supports authority of nation government, superiority Concerns (page 35) 1) Tyranny 2) Promote commerce 3) Popular support 4) Excessive democracy Federalists United in their support of the Constitution Preferred a strong national government Believed government must be representative of the people but must also have a measure of autonomy from the people Property owners, merchants Antifederalists Opposed the Constitution Small farmers, frontiersmen, debtors, shopkeepers Preferred a decentralized federal government Could be considered the first nationwide political campaign in history Believed national government would lead to a popular disaffection and compel the government to use force to secure obedience ** Both wanted to place limits on the government, but differed on how to do so Bill of rights = wanted to give each of the branches clearer and more restricted boundaries, limits the power of the federal government How to amend the constitution: STEP 1 Passage in House and Senate, each by twothirds vote STEP 2 Acceptance by majority vote in the legislatures of threefourths (38) of the states OR acceptance by conventions called for that purpose in threeforths (38) of the states Amendments don’t work when they were about policy issues Rather, focused on how the constitution would work for everyone in the country Easier to amend when they change the rules of the game Looking at patterns (charts 5053) Page A21: Article IV states didn’t try to cut one another out Promote unity of the country by making sure states understood they are connected to other states Structure shapes action/policy/outcome!!!! Evolution of federalism 17891834: Nationalization – o The Marshall court interprets the constitution broadly so as to expand and consolidate national power 18351930s: Dual federalism – o The functions of the national government are very specifically enumerated o States do much of the fundamental growing that affects citizens’ day to day life Don’t want the national government medaling into their affairs 1930s1970s: Cooperative federalism – o The national government uses grantsinaid to encourage states and localities to pursue nationally defined goals Gave money for universities, wanted citizens to be educated o More partnership/relations between state and federal government o 1930s Beginning of the modern presidency 1970s: Regulated federalism – o The national government sets conditions that states and localities must meet in order to keep certain grants o The national government also sets national standards in areas without providing funding to them New federalism – the national government attempts to return more power to the states through block grants to the states 1932 = New Deal new legislation passed, government should help people who need it Relief for the unemployed and poor Recovery of the economy to normal levels Reform of the financial system to prevent a repeat depression Block grant no restrictions on what to do with the money (likely for Republicans, more power to states) Categorical grants fund given for a specific purpose (likely for Democrats, more power to the federal government) Institution group of people trying to do the same thing, run through regulations and rules, difficult to dismantle, institutionalizing something means that it is permanent Constituency = the district where the elected official is from Delegate = a representative who votes according to preferences of constituency Trustee = a representative who votes based on what they personally think is best for the constituency Different forms of Congress representation – Page 134 Individual constituents: solve problems with agencies, provide jobs, sponsor private bills, answer complaints, provide information Organized interests: introduce legislation, intervene with regulatory agencies, obtain federal grants and contracts, make promotional speeches District as a whole: obtain federal projects, support policies that enhance economic prosperity, safety, cultural resources, etc. District lines are redrawn every 10 years based on the census Committee system = provides Congress with its second organizational structure, but it is more a division and specialization of labor than the hierarchy of power that determines leadership arrangements How a bill becomes a law (page 151) Logrolling a legislative practice wherein reciprocal agreements are made between legislators, usually in voting for or against a bill Speaker can send a bill to any House or Senate committee If they don’t want it to pass, they can send it somewhere that will shoot it down If they want it to pass, they can send it to a committee that has the same political views Examples of Congress committees: Education, budget, finance, rules, foreign relations Subcommittee each group has a specific aspect to analyze Whips = people who are sent out to see whether or not people are likely to vote to pass the bill Closed vs. open bill Closed bill does not offer amendments, open bill can be amended Political parties = teams of politicians, activists, and voters whose goal is to win control of govt Once in office, they organize legislature and attempt to put their stamp on the laws passed by Congress and the president Nominate people Party backing isn’t as important when you have a lot of money Didn’t want parties because that would divide the country Interest group focuses on a certain aspect of public policy, more specific, shape election Party wants to win an election, is an institution, long standing, runs elections Closed primary an election in which only the voters registered with the party can participate Open primary voters can choose their party affiliation on the date of the election Registering to vote has a class affect, need to have free time/means to get registered Independents: democratic leaning ind., repub leaning ind., independents Majority party holds the most seats in Congress Parties have around the same number of supporters… Why? Page 370 Could be because people have more access to be informed, want to get more involved Over the course of the government’s history, people have learned about their personal parties and then carry on these beliefs to their children Caucus = a normally closed meeting of a political or legislative group to select candidates, plan strategy, or make decisions regarding legislative matters Pros of parties Party involvement can encourage participation in voting and other aspects of democracy Advantage for the poor because they don’t have the resources to know what is going on politically – the average person’s connection to the government Simplify the electoral process, can create predictions of how the country will be led based on someone’s party affiliation Cons of parties Encourages a fight for political advantage, can make the nation blind to what is actually important and the nation’s best interest Creates a gross simplification of politics, bringing less attention to the complex issues going on in society and the multi faceted nature of government 1828 universal white male suffrage 1850s national conventions More people brought in the process of who would be nominated Strong identity of parties 1910, primary system begins (but takes a while to get instituted, conventions still existed) Parties as institutions shaping who wins Interest groups Organized to influence government decisions Different from PAC (political action committees = raises funds for election campaigns) Parties focus on personnel while interest groups focus on policy Use various strategies to promote their goals: lobbying, gaining access to key decision makers, using the courts, going public, and influencing electoral politics Lobbying costs money, but the courts are free Courts are more likely to make change based on the concept of rights State vs. national level creates a number of interest groups Pluralism = There should be multitudes of interests so that no single interest can control the others, will promote balance and compromise (proposed by Madison) Types of interest groups Tend to be directed toward segments of society with better education or more economic resources Also toward corporations because they are most affected by government actions Free riding non members of the interest group benefit from the efforts accomplished by the members o Members tend to be middle and upper class because they have the time and money Why interest groups are so popular in the US Diversity lends itself to a number of different interests The notion of individualism rather than the concept of nationalism 18001860 states rights, parties strong, number of interest groups goes down 18601910 party decline, the emergence of national government, beginning increase in interest groups 19301960 big jump in number interest groups, parties still declining, bigger national government, New Deal 1970s civil rights groups increased which added more interest groups, beginning of PAC Guzzle – Target campaign toward unions because they will want they job opportunities Have someone from Save the Fish as a consultant or advisor Promise to donate money to a preservation organization Offering an opportunity for the elites to invest in stock Be selective on where this takes place in order to appease the elites who are worried about appearance and interference Beneficial for the economy Hire academics to do the research about previous environmental reports Federalist 10 1) Define the term “faction” a. A group of citizens who are united by a common goal, usually opposing the common good b. “A number of citizens, whether amounting to a minority or majority of the whole, who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion, or of interest, adverse to the rights of other citizens, or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community” 2) Why are they formed? a. They are formed to express interests contrary to the rights of others b. Driven by the diversity of opinion in political life, which could lead to dispute over fundamental issues such as what regime or religion should be preferred c. Split up between those who have and those who do not – rich/poor divide, causes different ideologies 3) How does Madison propose to deal with their evils? a. Form a republic elected representatives b. Control its effects prevent the existence of the same passion or interest in a majority at the same time, or render a majority faction unable to act 4) Can you see any problems with his approach? a. Not all factions are equal b. Whoever has more power will be likely to win, they don’t always cancel each other out and compromises are not always met Elections: The US holds frequent elections as a means of keeping politicians close to the preferences of a majority of the people The institutional features of American elections regulate who votes, what form the ballot takes, how voting districts are drawn, and what it takes to win an election The US uses a system of plurality rule in which the candidate with the most votes wins the electoral distract Plurality rule creates a strong pressure toward twoparty politics Voters who identify with a political party vote with that party nearly all of the time, issues and candidate characteristics also influence voter’s decisions Campaigns try to mobilize their candidate’s supporters and persuade undecided voters Four features of US election laws 1) Who the US provides for universal adult suffrage, all citizens over 18 can vote 2) How Americans vote in secret and choose among candidates using a form of ballot called the Australian ballot 3) Where US selects almost all elected offices through singlemember districts that have equal populations 4) What what it takes to win, the candidate who wins the most votes Australian ballot = an electoral format presents the names of all candidates for any given office on the same ballot, replaced the partisan ballot and facilitated splitticket voting Electoral college The presidential electors from each state who meet in their respective capitals after the popular election to cast ballots for president and VP Government has an agenda Laws about who can vote in order to shape how the elections go Who is allowed to vote and when? 1800 rich white men 1824 average white men 1868 race (but not really) 1919 women 1964/5 civil rights act and voting act 1972 18+ age Poll tax = helped them pay for machines, printing ballots, etc. A way to dissuade poor people from voting Mostly used in the South to keep black people from voting People stopped showing up Voter ID laws – don’t want people voting who are not registered, people voting twice Plurality: Victory goes to the individual who gets the most votes in an election, but not necessarily a majority of the votes Majority rule: To win a seat in a representative body, a candidate must receive majority (50% plus 1) of all the votes Proportional representation: A multiplemember district system that awards seats based on the percentage of the vote won Most democratic option Not having this is an example of how the states shape Congress Politically socialization = coming of age and being more politically conscious Party identification tend to identify with voting/government Buckley v. Valeo = first amendment right to freedom of speech, which includes advertising, television, etc. Supreme court agreed Candidates can spend their money however they want Raises the problem of the elections being run by who has the most money Can’t put limits on people expressing their views o Argument is that the first amendment is more important than almost everything (like the problem of people’s voices being heard) Soft money = unregulated Independent spending 501 Cs, people donate a lot of money and their name is not listed Civil Liberties = protections of citizens from improper government action Civil Rights = the legal or moral claims that citizens are entitled to make on the government Protection “by” versus “of” Liberty means you are protected from the government, rights means you are protected by the government Core of the analysis – Civil liberties are rules that limit the government’s authority to interfere in certain spheres of activity, such as free speech and religion Civil rights curb the power of majorities to exclude or harm individuals based on factors such as race, gender, or ethnicity Today’s conceptions of civil liberties and civil rights have been shaped by their historical development and their interpretation by key political actors, especially the Supreme Court th 1th amendment states that the bill of rights also applies to the states 9 amendment and the protection of fundamental rights Due Process Clause = claiming something obstructs people’s rights 1954 Brown v. Board Applied to the lives of everyone in the country Instilled a change in people’s mentality Sped up the country’s acceptance that states should have to obey the bill of rights o Resistance was from the fear of a tyrannical federal government Bill of Rights began to be enforced by the federal government Emergence of a national citizenship of the country Levels of scrutiny = what the court applies based on what the case is about 1) Lowest – age, burden is on the individual 2) Intermediate – gender, mostly due to the fact the ERA was not passed, burden is shared 3) High (strict) – race, burden is on the state When the burden of proof is more on the individual, it is harder to prove th 9 amendment – if there is a right they left out of the constitution, the right still goes to the citizen and not the state Roe vs. Wade 19651973 reform movement for abortion Second wave of feminism from 19661972 * NOW (National Organization of Women) Focus on equality in the workplace Motivated by 1964 civil rights bill passing Women’s liberation movement women should have rights, a choice, she does not have to be a mother, liberate women from general stereotypes Brought about the idea that a woman’s body is her own to control Equality didn’t mean same (equality v. equal worth) Her body is her own property QUESTION: Were the Texas abortion laws constitutional? “Personhood” Pregnancy divided into three terms, more of a solid basis for a decision Focus on medical/legal aspects (rather than personal/religious): * Want to make clear to court’s audience that they knew it was a difficult decision * Rooted their decision in history to make it more justifiable Argument against Texas law More risks in pregnancy than abortion (safety argument invalid) Outdated idea that abortions were unsafe Nobody’s rights are absolute state, woman, fetus th th Women’s right to privacy is protected by 14 and 9 amendment o 14 no state should deprive someone of the equal protection of the laws o Women’s liberty is being threatened – unequal protection of law Decision (72) 16 months – no state interference, physician has to give the okay 36 months – state can only regulate to protect fetus (example: must be done in a hospital rather than a clinic) 69 months – state can say no unless woman’s health is in danger Dissent, Justice Rehnquist Doesn’t believe privacy argument is valid because it is not explicitly stated in the amendment Compelling state interest should not be part of Due Process Clause, but rather Equal Protection Clause Due Process Clause = claiming something obstructs people’s rights Similar to the 3/5ths compromise when the law says it’s okay, people agree Plessy v. Ferguson Only way to change people’s thinking is to change the laws 1940s – NAACP is founded, bring cases to the court to challenge laws 1944 = white only primaries were struck down Brown v. board of education ended segregation in schools, if everyone is equal why are they separated Federalism – power was shifted to the national government Government implemented themselves into the lives of the everyday citizen Relationship between the three branches changes Page 114115 De’jure = segregation backed up by laws De facto = based on societal norms, culture, etc. Letter From Birmingham Jail: Martin Luther King believed it was a time for change in terms of justice If you are going to break the law, you have to be ready to accept the penalty You can’t have a society that doesn’t follow laws just because they believe they are unjust Did not want to come across as promoting violence White moderates o They are aware that this is morally wrong but they don’t do anything about it o Promoted order instead of justice, against him breaking the law o Notion of moderation small steps o Problem = how long are people expected to wait for something to just happen? o Standing in the way of justice, the time has come to push Affirmative action bringing attention to rights for groups of people who are marginalized or discriminated against Early 1960s, Kennedy and Johnson administration If you have a bunch of people who are discriminated against, something needs to be done to give them a leg up Some people are against it because it’s based on groups instead of the individual Court as a political institution Very different from the executive and legislative branch Supreme Court justices are on for life, isolated from the political process o Independent judiciary is key to a successful democracy Can’t wait to initiate change, they have to wait until the opportunity for change is brought to them makes them the least dangerous branch because they are not directly connected to the people 2tiered court system From the notion of state’s rights State trial, appellate, and supreme courts Federal district, court of appeals Marbury v. Madison – Facts: Jefferson (antifederalist) beats Adams (federalist) for presidency Jefferson issues Madison not to give Marbury his commission because he doesn’t want federalist influence in the court 1789, Judiciary Act gave Supreme Court power to issue writs (orders), but Congress can’t amend the constitution Judicial review = court can determine whether or not a law is constitutional Marshall uses this case to establish court’s power as the only branch to interpret the constitution Decision = Marbury does not get his commission because the Supreme Court cannot make this decision 18001930 – Congress is the most powerful, period of legislative supremacy 19001930 – Transition, power shifts away from Congress and over to the President Federal government starts to help people instead of expecting them to do it themselves 1830, beginning of national conventions to elect president Political parties start to emerge More people begin to get the power to vote (all white men, black men, women, 18+) Link between president and the people grows more powerful Agenda setting = whoever sets the agenda in the country has the power (could be Congress, president, etc.) Expressed powers found in the constitution Delegated powers given by Congress Inherent powers not expressed in the constitution but are inferred from it ** How did the presidency become so powerful? More people have become involved in the elections, president strengthens the link between them and the public The president white house staff executive office of the president the cabinet *The institutional presidency consists of staff agencies, mainly collected into the Executive Office of the President, and line agencies, whose heads together make up the president’s cabinet Formal powers = written down, established powers Informal powers = sometimes the president has and sometimes they do not What makes a president good/bad? How they use the powers/resources allotted to them Who they are as a person Knowing which issues to focus on Comes in with a plan o Need to come up with unique ideas for how to adjust plan according to the status of the country Formal resources The cabinet o Don’t work together as a team o Not that important to the presidency White house staff o People that president trusts o President keeps them close Executive office of the president o Institutionalized part of the presidency o Need to be able to take there personal opinion out of their job o In a hierarchal system, they can control what the president gets to hear (what he wants to hear) Informal resources The election Having a political party backing you o Easier to get stuff through Congress o Not likely for presidents – hard to get The media Appearances from FLOTUS 6 aspects of bureaucracy 1) Division of labor specialized jobs 2) Allocation of functions everyone knows what they are supposed to do 3) Allocation of responsibility 4) Supervision 5) Purchase of fulltime employment efficiency 6) Advancement ** Often known as the forth branch of government Clientele agencies work to benefit specific groups of people World view = using the way you are situated in the world to contribute to how to view politics and other big issues Why people vote – Political ideology = system people use to make decisions Social groups (family, schools, where you live, etc.) Identity politics (religion, class, race, gender) Outgroups, groups of people who are defined not by who they are but who they are not (page 290) Media influence Marketplace of ideas National agenda what issues the country is focusing on (terrorism, abortion rights, gun control, immigration, climate change) o Not on the list = institutional racism, homelessness, poverty How do things get on the agenda? o Influenced by money, education, and popular support Rational ignorance – why people simply take cues from people or pay attention to a certain party platform to make their decisions Government as an actor Like an interest group Has an interest in shaping public opinion in the country The president wants to get public opinion behind them o Tries to form/follow public opinion rather than set it o Framing, presenting the information in a certain way to get people on your side Government was not involved in helping the poor before 1930s States were expected to run the country If people worked hard they would succeed 2 categories of poor people: deserving and undeserving After the great depression, people starting realizing anybody could be poor and not be able to do anything about it Beginning of the expectation that the government should help Social Security Act 1935 people are guaranteed money when they retire in order to help them live, welfare o Cut out the people who needed it 1965 – Medicare, insurance for old people Aimed for poor, old people Funded by the federal government Medicaid = insurance for poor people Stigma attached to it because it’s considered a hand out 1996, everyone has 5 years to get welfare
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