Flashcards in 3.1 Elections & Voting Deck (84):
Stages of Presidential elections
1. Invisible primaries
2. Primaries and caucuses
3. Choosing the vice presidential candidates
4. National Party Conventions
5. General election campaign
6. Election Day
7. Electoral college
How many intra-party debates did the DNC have in 2015 compared to 2007-8?
6 in 2015 compared to 26 in 2007-8
Who resigned, allowing Trump to win the Republican candidacy?
Cruz, Rubio and Kasich
How many delegates did Clinton and Sanders win in the primaries and caucuses?
Clinton won 2,811 against Bernie 1,879
Who were the vice presidential candidates?
Mike Pence and Tim Kaine
Why is it surprising that there were only 5 Democratic candidates?
2016 was an open race: neither an incumbent President nor VP was running - this tends to attract a large number of candidates
Who were the 5 Democratic candidates in 2016?
When did Clinton announce her candidacy?
12th April 2015
What were Clinton's opinion poll ratings in:
Early 2015 - 61%
Sept 2015 - 40%
Late 2015 - 51.6%
What was Clinton's rating amount Democrats aged 65+?
What was Clinton's approval rating among 18-29 year olds?
How many Republicans had declared their candidacy by July 2015?
17 - largest field ever
What were Trump, Cruz and Rubio's ratings in the National Polls 31st January 2016?
What was the problem with Republican televised debates?
There were so many candidates that media outlets couldn't fit them all on one platform, so they had to run 2 debates: one in the afternoon (the "kids' table") for those in the lower half of the national polls, followed by an evening debate for the leading candidates
Who was invited to all 7 of the main debates?
Trump (but boycotted last one)
By the end of the invisible primary, what was Trump's lead over his nearest rival?
Trump has 16-point lead over Senator Ted Cruz
Which states in 2016 held caucuses? (9)
What are the 6 things states decide on about primaries?
1. Primary or caucus?
2. When to hold? Jan-June
3. How to conduct?
4. Who can vote? Closed or open?
5. Who can be on ballot?
6. How to allocate delegates? Proportional or winner takes all?
Which state was strange laws in who can be on ballot for primaries?
What was the turnout in primary elections in 2016?
What was the record highest turnout in primary elections?
30% in 2008
What are some possible further reforms of primary elections?
Series of 4 regional primaries
Further limits on money-raising and spending
Pre-primary mini-conventions to choose shortlist
States voting in order of size
What were the Feb 2016 Iowa Dem Primary results?
Clinton won by narrow margin: 49.9% to 49.6%
How much did Clinton lose by to Sanders in New Hampshire primary?
22 points - the biggest margin in New Hampshire Dem primary history
How did the exit polls of 2016 primaries show weakness for Clinton?
Only 44% of women voted Clinton
Only 25% of those earning less than $30,000 a year voted Clinton
Only 16% of 18-29 year olds voted Clinton
Of 34% who said being 'honest and trustworthy' was most important quality, 92% voted for Sanders and 6% for Clinton
How many contests did Clinton win on Super Tuesday?
How many states did Clinton win compared to Sanders in primaries?
Clinton won 28 + D.C.
Bernie won 22
How much of popular vote did Clinton win compared to Sanders in primaries?
Clinton won 56% and Sanders won 43%
How many caucuses did Clinton win and lose?
Won Iowa and last remaining 12
What is the general rule of thumb surrounding candidates' success in caucuses?
Insurgent candidates (Sanders) tend to do better in caucuses than establishment candidates (Clinton)
What percentage of Democratic delegates are Super Delegates?
What percentage of Super delegates did Clinton win?
On what policies did Clinton move towards Sanders' stance?
Wall Street reform
Who are typical Clinton voters?
Who are typical Sanders voters?
First time voters
How many primaries, how much of the popular vote and how many delegates did Sanders win?
43% of popular vote
What group of 4 insurgent Republican candidates won 2/3 of votes in the primaries?
What percentage of votes did establishment republican candidates Jen Bush and John Kasich recieve?
Jen Bush 2.8%
John Kasich 1.9%
How much money did Jen Bush raise by Feb 2016? What percentage of the vote did he get in South Carolina primary that made him leave the race?
Raised $162m - far more than any other republican candidate
Won just 7% of vote in South Carolina
Whose endorsement did Trump refuse to denounce?
David Duke, former Grand Wizard of the KKK
How many states did Trump, Cruz and Rubio win on Super Tuesday?
Who dropped out of the race for Republican candidacy after Trump's win in Florida?
How many points did Trump win by in Indiana and who dropped out of the race after?
Won by 18 points and Cruz and Kasich dropped out
What percentage of delegates and popular vote did Trump win and why could this happen?
Trump won 58% of delegates and 45% of popular vote
Could do this because some Republican primaries use winner-takes-all system
In Florida how many voters said Republican politicians had betrayed them and of them, how many voted for trump and Rubio?
60% said Republican politicians had betrayed them and of that 60%, 54% votes Trump, and only 18% votes for Rubio
Functions of national party conventions
1. Choose presidential candidate
2. Choose VP candidate
3. Decide on party platform
4. Promote party unity
5. Enthuse party faithful (delegates)
6. Enthuse ordinary voters
Controversial policies of Republican Party platform
Overturn Sup Ct. ruling on same sex marriage
Ban all types of abortion
Oppose limited on capacity of guns
Build the wall
Who endorsed Clinton in the 2016 Democratic Convention?
37 Democratic House members
7 state governors
Carter, Clinton and Obama
How did the national party conventions affect Trump and Clinton's favour ability rating?
Trump down 10
Clinton up 3
What were the pre and post convention polls?
Trump 48% Clinton 45%
Clinton 54% Trump 43%
What were the key changes from the 2002 campaign finance reforms?
National Party Committees banned from raising 'soft money'
Unions/Corporate money banned from funding ads that mention a federal candidate within 60 days of general election or 30 days of primary
Fundraising on federal property banned
Contributions from foreign nationals banned
What Sup Ct case allows Super PACs to have a significant role in campaigns?
2010 Citizens United v. FEC
When was the first televised presidential debate?
1960 between JFK and Nixon
What were two important moments in presidential debate history?
1988 Michael Dukakis v. Bush Sr. question about rape of wife Kitty Dukakis
Obama 'you're likeable enough' comment
Why are presidential debates important?
1. Only time candidates get to address voters unfiltered for 90mins at a time
2. Often large audiences
3. Sound bites collected
4. Especially important for challengers
5. Can change direction of campaign
Why aren't presidential debates important?
1. Rarely have lasting impact on outcome of election
2. Style more important that substance - memorable points usually trivial
3. Usually just confirm position of front-runner
4. Viewing figures usually decline for later debates
5. Often not real debates, just candidates giving pre-rehearsed answers
How many electoral college votes do California and Alaska have?
How many total electoral college votes?
How many electoral college votes must a candidate win to have an absolute majority?
How are electoral college votes appointed?
Whichever candidate receives the most popular votes in a states receives all votes for that state (not in Maine or Nebraska)
Who elects the president if no candidate wins 270 ECVs?
House of Representatives
Who elects the VP if no candidate wins 270 ECVs?
How many times has electoral college failed to come up with a winner?
Twice - 1800 and 1824
What are the strengths of the electoral college?
1. Preserves voice of small population states
2. Promotes 2 horse race - winner likely to receive over 50% of popular vote giving president mandate to govern
Weaknesses of electoral college
1. Small population states over-represented
2. Winner takes all distorts votes
3. Unfair to third parties
4. 'Rogue' electors vote for candidates other than the one who won the popular vote in their state
5. System used in case of electoral college deadlock could result in HoR electing president from one party and Senate electing VP from another
How much of popular vote did Trump win compared to Clinton? But how many electoral college votes did he win?
Trump 46.1% compared to Clinton 48.2% buy Trump won 304 ECVs
What percentage of the popular vote did Perot win in 1992 and how many ECVs?
Perot won 19% but no ECVs
What are possible electoral college reforms?
1. Abandon winner takes all in favour of a more proportional system e.g. Maine and Nebraska system
2. Pass laws to prohibit 'rogue' voting
3. Abolish Electoral college and decide election on popular vote (but could encourage multi-candidate election with winner gaining only 35-40% if vote)
What are the 6 trends in congressional elections?
2. Coat-tails effect
3. Spilt-ticket voting
4. Power of incumbency
5. Decline in competitive races in House elections
6. President's party tends to lose seats at mid-term elections
In 2016 what percentage of House members and senators who sough reelection won another term?
97% of House members and 93% of Senators
Between 1992 and 2012 how many House members and Senators were defeated in congressional elections?
62 House members and 8 Senators
In 2008 how many House seats and Senate seats did Obama help the Democrats to win, prompting talk of Obama being the first president since Reagan to have genuine coat-tails?
21 House seats and 8 Senate seats
Was 2016 a year of split or straight ticket voting?
In 2016 there was the highest percentage of straight ticket voting for over a century - 100% of states holding Senate elections votes for same part for Senate as for president
In the 40,years between 1969-2009 how many years were of divided government?
What is a competitive seat?
A seat that was won by the incumbent by less than 10 percentage points
What are the consequences of decline in competitive races in House elections?
1. Incumbents in safe seats tend to vote in House in a way that pleases voters from their own party, leading to increased partisanship
2. House members in safe seats have more to fear from intra-party challenge in primaries than inter-party challenge in the election, so primaries are more important
From 1915-2010 what was the average number of seats in the House and Senate the president's party lost in mid terms?
30 House seats and 4 Senate seats
In 2014 and 2010 how many House and Senate seats did the Democrats lose in mid terms?
2014 - 13 House seats and 9 Senate seats
2010 - 63 House seats and 6 Senate seats
What are the two types of proposition?
1. Direct propositions (proposals that qualify go directly on ballot)
2. Indirect propositions (proposals go to state legislature which decides on further action)
What were two state propositions in California in 2016?
Repeal or speed up death penalty
Raise tobacco tax by $2 per pack
Advantages of propositions
1. Provide way of enacting reforms on controversial issues that state legislatures often won't act upon
2. Increase accountability of state legislature
3. Increase voter turnout
4. Increase citizen interest/pressure group membership
Disadvantages of propositions
1. Lack flexibility of legislative process
2. Vulnerable to manipulation by special interests
What are referendums in the US?
A way of enacting a popular veto or changing some state constitutions