POLI 360 - Exam 1 Study Guide
POLI 360 - Exam 1 Study Guide POLI 360 001
Popular in American Political Parties
POLI 360 001
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verified elite notetaker
This 6 page Study Guide was uploaded by runnergal on Sunday February 7, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to POLI 360 001 at University of South Carolina taught by David C. Darmofal in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 329 views. For similar materials see American Political Parties in Political Science at University of South Carolina.
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Date Created: 02/07/16
POLI 360 – Exam 1 Study Guide Lecture One o Critiques of Political Parties Americans are skeptical of political parties. Party organizations and party leaders are corrupt, benefiting themselves at the expense of society. Party loyalties limit voters’ abilities to think independently, as well as choose the best candidates and policies. o Each Critique is Valid Parties represent distinct societal interests, as opposed to the collective interest. Representation of specific, as opposed to collective, interests is expected. Political parties have always been corrupt. Parties and the independent voter: independent voters pay attention to policy details, and they judge candidates and policies on their merit. o Positive effects of parties: Parties serve essential functions, which benefit political elites, citizens, and political society (polity) as a whole. o Aldrich theorizes that parties are elites’ creations that serve elites’ interests. o Political Elites Create Political Parties to Solve These Problems (Aldrich) Problem of Ambition. Social Choice Problem Calculus of Voting (Riker and Ordeshook, 1968) R = PB + D – C R = rewards from voting P = citizen’s probability of casting a pivotal ballot B = citizen’s policy advantage from the election of his/her favored candidate D = citizen’s psychological gain from voting C = citizen’s cost from voting Logically, citizens will not vote unless D is greater than C since P is essentially 0. Parties mobilize voters by increasing D and decreasing C for their party supporters, and vice versa for the opposing party. o Issue Ownership Issue: the idea that certain parties “own” certain issues. For example, Republicans “own” taxes and foreign policy. o Aldrich argues that elites create parties to solve problems of ambition, social choice, and collective action. A critique of Aldrich’s work is that it is too fixated on political elites and reduces citizens’ interests generating parties. Lecture Two o Parties and Citizens’ Needs Parties serve three principle interests of citizens: they make voting easier, they inform citizens, and they connect citizens to their government. Inform citizens. Connecting citizens to government. Parties and the polity: parties allow for more effective policymaking in separation of powers. They provide continuity to U.S. politics. o Parties as Flawed but Necessary Institutions: they serve the interests of elite, citizens, and the polity as a whole. Schatlschneider (1942) argues that democracy is unthinkable without political parties Lecture Three o American politics has had a competitive 2party system since 1830s, with the Democrats versus the Whigs initially, which then merged into the Democrats versus Republicans. Characteristics of This System 1. Competitive 2. Twoparty o The competitive twoparty system speaks only to national competition for the presidency. National competition is a consequence of local and statelevel rivalry. At local and statelevel, the twoparty system perseveres. For example, Democrats can still get on the ballot in South Carolina. At local and statelevel, however, competition has not always persisted. o TwoParty Competition across the United States William McKinley won the Election of 1896 against the Democratic candidate William Jennings Bryan, who pushed his party toward the populist side. That election ushered in a large Republican majority in the North. Republicans no longer needed to compete in the South to win the presidency. In return, the South became just as completely Democratic, though it was still controlled by southern conservatives. System of 1896: a competitive twoparty system is replaced by a sectional system, with oneparty Republican dominance in the North and oneparty Democratic dominance in the South, resulting in declining issue competition and voter turnout. o 50 State Party Systems Twoparty competition at the state and local levels increased with the New Deal readjustment in the 1930s, and it has continued to change over time. o Ranney Index of State Party Competition This index examines competitiveness between parties. Indicators of Party Strength: Percentage of popular vote for parties’ gubernational (governor) candidates. Percentage of seats held by parties in each house of the state legislature. Length of time and percentage of time that parties held both the governorship and majority in state legislature. Five Categories of States: OneParty Democratic State and OneParty Republican State. Modified OneParty Democratic State and Modified OneParty Republican State. TwoParty States o Local Presidential Voting Competition The Ranney Index analyzes party competition using voting for only the gubernational and state legislative races and how presidential election competition differs across the United States. o Why Does the United States Have a TwoParty System? The main difference between the United States and other countries is institutional. Duverger’s Law: singlemember (for example, the House of Representatives) election districts with plurality elections tend to produce twoparty systems. SingleMember Districts MultiMember Districts Plurality Elections Proportional Representation Elections Singlemember plurality election systems are winnertakeall systems. Proportional representative systems are not winnertakeall Systems; in this system, minority parties can still get elected. o Alternative Theories of TwoParty Systems Dualist Theories Social Consensus Theories o The TwoParty System and Third Parties Once the twoparty system was established, both major parties had compelling reasons to continue it by restricting minor party opportunities, Constraints on Minor Parties 1. Ballot Access Laws 2. Campaign Finance Laws 3. Presidential Debates Lecture 4 o Other Minority Party Hurdles 1. Campaign resources 2. Media coverage o Opportunities for Minority Party Candidates 1. Financial resources 2. Existing name identification o Majority party responses to minority parties: major parties respond to minority challengers by absorbing the minor party’s issues; this gives the majority party an opportunity to convert the minority party’s supporters into their own supporters. o State and Local Organizations Cadre Parties: Cadre parties are run by leaders and activists with little participation by the public. Main action occurs during election season. MassMembership Parties: They are focused on ideology and issues, not just elections. Members choose party leaders and activists. American political parties are modified cadre parties that are also increasingly yearround, professional organizations. o Public Participation 1. Primary voting 2. Getoutthevote efforts o Levels of Party Organization 1. Precinct, Ward, and Township Committees 2. City Committees 3. County Committees 4. District Committees 5. State Central Committees o Party Machines 1. Hierarchically structured 2. Operate through material incentives 3. Patronage positions 4. Party organizations provided business to local companies o Famous Machines 1. Chicago’s Daily Machine 2. New York’s Tammany Hall 3. Philadelphia’s Republican Machine Some cities have never had machines. o The Decline of Party Machines Opposition to corruption Civil service protection Changing ethnic makeup of cities Replacement of parties’ social welfare functions with federal social programs o Despite the decline in party machines, parties have gotten stronger, especially in the 1970s with the increase in party structure and activism. o State Committees: these committees have important powers, like… Calling and shaping party conventions. Choosing representatives for the national committee. Selecting the party’s presidential electors. Choosing some national convention delegates. Diffusing campaign assets for state and local race. Lecture Five o Historical Development of National Parties In the 1800s, Federalists and DemocraticRepublicans chose their national nominees through congressional caucuses. Nominating processes became decentralized in 1820s. State and local parties established the strongest party organizations because: 1. They selected their delegates for national conventions. 2. They had control over patronage. 3. They contested the state and local elections. Some national development, however, did occur: 1. The Democratic National Committee (DNC) was established in 1848. 2. The Republican National Committee (RNC) was established in 1856. Hill Committees were also established: 1. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) was established after the Civil War. 2. The National Republican Campaign Committee (NRCC) was established after the Civil War. 3. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) was established after the 17th Amendment was passed, which allowed the direct election of senators. 4. The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) was established after the 17th Amendment was passed, which allowed the direct election of senators. o Democratic Party Reforms The Democratic Party began to nationalize in 1952 when they imposed a loyalty oath of Southern Democrats. The McGovernFrasier Commission, formed after a questionable Democratic nomination in 1968, issued the Mandate for Reform, which required all primaries to be held in an open, timely, and representative manner. These values accidentally resulted in a shift towards primaries and away from caucuses. o Republican Party Reform Focused on increased services to states, led by RNC Chairmen Ray Bliss and William Brock. Wanted to increase the party’s competitiveness by: 1. Increasing fundraising 2. Increasing the national organization structure 3. Increasing campaign consulting resources for candidates As the Democratic Party lost its electoral competitiveness, it began to copy Republican reforms. Lecture 6 o What Activities Do Party Activists Perform 1. Mobilize people 2. Fundraise 3. Complete campaign office activities o Professionals vs. Amateurs 1. Party machines used to rely on professionals. 2. Amateurs used to get patronage to work for party machines. When party machines were dissolved in the beginning of the 20th century, however, amateurs became more ideologically motivated and primarily hoped to get certain policies enacted. o Why Do Citizens Become Party Activists 1. They want to; citizens receive participation benefits. 2. They can; citizens possess the resources necessary for participation. 3. They are asked to do so; citizens are asked by party leaders and other party activists to participate in the political process. o Benefits of Party Activism 1. Material incentives 2. Solidary incentives 3. Purposive incentives o Resources Promoting Party Activism Party activists usually have high socioeconomic states (SES). o Resources for Party Activism Time Money Skills o Mobilization for Party Activism People participate because they are asked to participate, usually by people with high socioeconomic status. o Rise of Amateurs More ideologically motivated, high socioeconomic activists, have replaced activists that were solely motivated by material incentives. Party activists are more ideologically motivated than the average voter.
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