Chapter 7 Notes
Chapter 7 Notes POLS 1101
Popular in American Government
Popular in Political Science
This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Alexandra Reshetova on Friday December 4, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to POLS 1101 at Georgia State University taught by Jeffrey Lazarus in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 75 views. For similar materials see American Government in Political Science at Georgia State University.
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Date Created: 12/04/15
Chapter 7 Notes Political Participation Activating the Popular Will Political Participationinvolvement in activities intended to influence leadership and public policy Activities contribute to a properly functioning democratic society include voting writing to elected officials demonstrating for political causes joining political groups giving money to political candidates Concept of selfgovernmentcitizens possess a duty and a right to participate in public affairs Democraciesdiffer in the levels of participation USAcontains low levels of voter participation contains high levels of citizen participation in civic and political organizations Voter Participation Suffrageright to vote only for property owning males 50 years later this was lifted in all states 15th AmendmentAfrican Americans gain voting rights African Americansdisenfranchised through electoral trickery and intimidation distorted literacy testsprecondition of being allowed to register to vote 1960sThe Courts and Congress get rid of legal barriers 1920Women could vote 19th Amendment 26th Amendmentlowered voting age to 18 Factors in Voter Turnout The United States in Comparative Perspective Voter Turnoutthe proportion of adult citizens who actually vote in a given election Presidential Electionsvoter turnout not high higher than the midterm congressional elections Registration Requirements Americans have to register in order to vote Registrationstarted around 1900 way of preventing voters from casting more than one ballot Turnout decreased after registration started In USA registration is the person s responsibility Registration Requirements determined by state governments Motor Voter Act 1993al people register when they apply for driver s license Convenient Registration Lawshigher turnout than other states Voter Identification Cardsserves to discourage voter turnout Some states have laws that require people to have ID cards so that they may register and vote Frequency of Elections USA has more elections than other countries USA has elections for the lower chamber of national legislation 2 years USA elects president every four years USA uses primary elections to select the nominees for each party USA has elections on Tuesday Election Day in USA is NOT a national holiday Why some Americans Vote and Others do not Some Americans vote regularly Some Americans do not vote Explanations for individual differences education and income age and civic attitudes Education and Income AboveAverage voting ratescollegeeducated and upperincome Americans Those people have communication skills and financial resources Balance of power held by the middleclass voters Less educated Americans and with less incomeaffected by the registration system many do not have homes or cars less likely to be registered in advance less familiar with registration requirements and locations Young Adultsless likely to vote than older and middle aged people Senior Citizenshigher turnout rate Small percentage young people vote in local elections Young Adultsmove a lot have to reregister more likely Civic Attitudes Apathya lack of interest in politics Alienationa feeling of powerless rooted in the belief that government pays no attention to their interests some Americans do not vote because of this Civic Dutya belief that citizens ought to participate in public affairs If people hold the belief of civic duty then they vote more frequently Apathy and civic duty come from the parents Alienationcan be traced to childhood socialization has adult roots most often Political Interest and Party Identification If citizens have a strong interest in politics they will vote Political interestconsequence of partisanship Independentshave much lower voting rates than people who identify with a political party Party Loyalistsmore likely to vote than independents more familiar with the differences in the parties Party loyaltydeepens a person s involvement Conventional Forms of Participation other than Voting Votingwidespread limited form of participation Citizensvote only at a particular time just for choices on ballot Opportunities exist contribute money and time to civic and political causes Campaign and Lobbying Activities Small percentage of people work for a candidate USAfederal system with campaigns for state national and local offices one reason people in America are more active in campaigns Americansmore likely to support activities of political groups Support of the kind aboveform of monetary contribution attending public rallies and contacting lawmakers Groups depending on the contributions of peopleCommon Cause AARP Greenpeace the Christian Coalition of Americans the National Conservative Political Action Committee Virtual Participation New Setting for Political Participationnternet Examplessocial networks chat rooms emails Participation is virtual Internet Participationincreases during presidential campaigns Social Networkinggrassroots organizing force Community Activities Citizens 1can join community groups 2 let officials know their opinions on community matters 3 work to accomplish goals The activities above give people a degree of control over extent and timing of their participation Obstaclemotivation to join in Through local organizations Americans are involved in community activities business clubs neighborhood groups parentteacher association Americansless tied to local communities due to increased factors and mobility less involved in community activity Americanswork together in groups on issues of the concern of the community Social Capitalthe sum of the facetoface civic interactions among citizens in a society People interaction has decreased mainly because of television and other activities Young Peoplemore involved in communities dues to volunteer programs high school and college internships Unconventional Activism Social Movements and Protest Politics The vote gives government control over citizens Social movements political movementsa way for citizens to actively express their opposition Conventional forms of participation includes political lobbying Citizenscan protest in the streets against government Civil Rights Movementprotest movement to have a lasting effect Civil Rights Act 1964 Voting Rights Act 1965 Protesttoday a planned event means of bringing added attention to a cause The Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street Protest Movements Tea PartyApril 152009 protesters hurled tea bags to the White House Tea Party backed by wealthy donors conservative target was Republican lawmakers called for sharp restricted federal spending played a role in the Republican 2010 takeover of House of Representatives public support later declined Occupy Wall Street decline of public support because the movement would be police versus protestors came out in 2011 started small target was private wealth succeeded in turning the attention of the public to a gap between poor and rich Tea Party and Occupy Wall Streetuncertain futures The Public s Response to Protest Activity Protest Activitynot as common as in the past Public supportlow for protest activity Participation and the Political Influence Most Americansnot as highly active in politics Individualism is a reason for less participation Problem solvingAmericans want to do this on their own Lower income Americansvote less likely or participate in collective action do not have the communication skills or financial resources Elected officialsmore responsive to wealthy constituents Power in the marketplacepower in the political realm
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