Ch 9 Campaigns Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Ch 9 Campaigns Deck (22):


the official endorsement of a candiate for office by a political party. Generally, success in the nomination game requires momentum, money, and media attention


campaign strategy

the master game plan candidates lay out to guide their electoral campaign


national party convention

the supreme power within each of the parties. the convention meets every four years to nominate the party's presidential and vice-presidential candidates and to write the party's platform


McGovern-Fraser Commission

a commission formed at the 1968 Democratic convention in response to demands for reform by minority groups and others who sought better representation



national party leaders who automatically get a delegate slot at the national party convention


invisible primary

the period before any votes are cast when candidates compete to win early support from the elite of the party and to create a positive first impression of their leadership skills



a system for selecting convention delegates used in about a dozen states in which voters must attend an open meeting to express their presidential preference


presidential primaries

elections in which a state's voters go to the polls to express their preference for a party's nominee for president. most delegates to the national party conventions are chosen this way.



the recent tendency of states to hold primaries early in the calendar in order to capitalize on media attention


party platform

a political party's statement of its goals and policies for the next four years. the platform is drafted prior to the party convention by a committee whose members are chosen in rough proportion to each candidate's strength. it is the best formal statement of a party's beliefs.


direct mail

a method of raising money for a political cause or candidate, in which information and requests for money are sent to people whose names appear on lists of those who have supported similar view or candidates in the past


campaign contributions

donations that are made directly to a candidate or a party and that must be reported to the FEC. as of 2012, individuals were allowed to donate up to $2500 per election to a candidate and up to $30,800 to a political party.


independent expenditures

expenses on behalf of a political message that are made by groups that are uncoordinated with any candidate's campaign


federal election campaign act

a law passed in 1974 for reforming campaign finances. the act created the federal election commission and provided for limits on and disclosure of campaign contributions


political action committees

Groups that raise money from individuals and then distribute it in the form of contributions to candidates that the group supports. PACs must register with the FEC and report their donations and contributions to it. Individual contributions to a PAC are limited to $5000 per year, and a PAC may give up to $5000 to a candidate for each election


Federal Election Commission

A six-member bipartisan agency created by the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1974. The Federal Election Commission administers and enforces campaign finance laws


soft money

Political contributions earmarked for party-building expenses at the grassroots level or for generic party advertising. For a time, such contributions were unlimited, until they were banned by the McCain-Feingold Act


527 groups

Independent political groups that are not subject to contribution restrictions because they do not directly seek the election of particular candidates. Section 527 of the tax code specifies that contributions to such groups must be reported to the IRS


Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission

a 2010 landmark Supreme Court case that ruled that individuals, corporations, and unions could donate unlimited amounts of money to groups that make independent political expenditures


501(c) groups

groups that are exempted from reporting their contributions and can receive unlimited contributions. Section 501c of the tax code specifies that such groups cannot spend more than half their funds on political activities


Super PACs

independent expenditure-only PACs are known as Super PACs because they may accept donations of any size and can endorse candidates. Their contributions and expenditures must be periodically reported to the FEC


selective perception

the phenomenon that people's beliefs often guide what they pay the most attention to and how they interpret events