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Flashcards in Exam 2 Deck (36):

Why is politics increasingly national and, consequently, less local?

- Emergence of national, mass media
- Big, national government
- Emergence of national leaders
- Greater focus on issues and ideology


How are RNC and DNC chairs selected?

In theory, state parties choose person to lead DNC, RNC. In practice, the party's presidential nominee often picks chair.


When are National Committee Chairmen most powerful? Least powerful?

- They are most powerful when party is out of power.
- They are least powerful when party is in power.


What path did Republican's take to build a national party?

- Republicans took service path.
- They started raising money through mass mailings
- They gave state parties money to do things they couldn't do otherwise.
- Improved candidate recruitment
-Tried to change party's image among certain demographics
- Pitched themselves as the party of new ideas, innovation


What path did Democrats take to building national party?

- Procedural reform path.
- Opened up delegation, primary election process so that party members (especially women and minorities) have more say in nominating process.


Who regulates political parties?

States regulate political parties.


Why did state party machines die off?

-State party machines more or less died off because of Baker v. Carr, which required equally divided electoral districts, the Voting Rights Act, which made it hard to exclude African-Americans and other minorities from the polls, and the rise of the Republican Party, which undercut Democratic support among conservatives.


Why do urban machines start to die off?

- Civil service reforms which undercut the ability of the machine to provide supporters with jobs
-Economic changes make patronage jobs less appealing
-Emergence of federal social safety nut undercuts the services of the machine
-Decline in immigration means that fewer people are in need of machine services


Two Sorts of Party Activists

- Professionals... party-first people who are pragmatic, unprincipled. They want to win even at the cost of ideological purity.
- Amateurs or Issue-Oriented Voters... put principles ahead of party. Want to win, but not at the cost of ideological purity.


What motivates people to become party activists?

- Material benefits
- Social incentives
- Issue-based
- Mixed incentives


Where do political activists come from?

-Political families
-ppl who have more education, wealth
-people w/agendas (e.g. cut taxes, increase education spending)
-people who have an ideology


Factors that cause Gender Gap

- Party ID... men trending toward GOP more than women
- Race... white men trending toward GOP at faster rate than white women
- Region... White men in north and south trending toward GOP more than white women in north and south
- Ideology... men more conservative


Has Gender Gap helped or hurt GOP?

Gender gap has benefited GOP. Men have shifted and are shifting faster to GOP than women, but both have shifted.



- A faction is a party within a party. Factions compete with one another for power within party.


Factions can be organized around...

- an individual
- region
- issue
- patronage


Republican Factions

- Progressive or Liberal
- Mainstream or Business
- Social Conservatives
- Tea Party or Libertarian


Democratic factions

- Progressive
- Blue-Dogs
- New Democrats


Options for Factions

- Voice option... faction voices concerns to party in order to get concessions
-Exit option - rarely done. the faction or members of faction leave party


Factions in Election of 1948

- Truman is the incumbent, Democratic president. He has become really unpopular and the Democratic party is divided after decades of papering over internal disagreements
- Led by Henry Wallace, Progressive faction bolts.
- Led by Strom Thurmond, segregationist faction bolts.


Why do parties identify themselves with certain issues, policy positions?

- They want to motivate their base
-They want to expand their base
- They want to maintain their image
- They want to project a new image


Critical or Realigning elections

-A critical or realigning election is an election that results in a new party system
-Realigning elections include 1800, 1828, 1860, 1896, 1932


6 Elements of a Realigning Election

- High level of voter interest
- Sharp differences between major parties on key issues
- Results in changes in voting patterns and party coalitions
- Results in large periods of unified control
- Results in change in balance of power
- Occur once a generation


Maintaining election

- an election in which dominant party wins


Deviating election

- an election in which dominant party loses


Three Types of Primaries

-open primary
- closed primary
- blanket primary


Open primary

- An open primary is a primary in which any registered voter can vote.
- Pros... helps candidates with broad appeal to win and attracts new voters
- Cons... sometimes results in nominee who does not reflect base. other parties may interfere in process


Closed primary

- Only individuals who are registered with party may vote in primary
- Pros... nominee will more accurately reflect party base. provides party better idea of who party faithful are
- Cons... partisans may nominate someone too ideologically extreme. lost opportunity to reach out to new voters


Blanket primary

- Everybody's on ballot, D's and R's
- Pros... No screening. Can elect candidate in single election if they get majority.
-Cons... No screening. can result in two candidates of the same party for general election.


Reasons why parties don't like primaries

- Primaries are divisive
- Charges raised against nominee during primary can be used during general election
- Primaries can be costly
- Primaries can create bad perception for party
- Primaries can result in more extreme, ideological candidate
-Primaries limit the influence of the party brass


3 ways party can influence primary

- persuade candidate to run or not to run
- can endorse candidates
- can provide tangible support



-started in early 20th century, but slowly dropped off until after 1968, when Hubert Humphrey won the Democratic nomination without winning any elected delegates
-McGovern commission added proportional representation and affirmative action, delegates had to be selected in calendar year of the convention, delegate selection process had to be defined and open, eliminated the unit rule.


Keys to Success in the Primary Process

- Candidate has to start running early
- has to be perceived as a legitimate candidate for president
- must win or do well early
- must continue to win or do well


Criticism of Primary Process

-current process gives disproportionate attention to early primary states, especially to Iowa and NH
-elected officials are not able to run and do their jobs
- money plays too big of a role
- participation in primaries and caucuses is very low and unrepresentative
- system gives too much power to media


What do conventions do?

- approve the party platform
- formalize the presidential nomination
- give approval to vice presidential nominee
- launch the general election campaign


1960 Democratic Nomination Process

- basically, the party insiders chose the candidate
- most voters can't vote in primary
-primaries were more or less beauty candidates
- many of the major candidates for president didn't run in any of the primaries
- many favorite-son candidacies
- no limits on campaign spending
- media had limited role
- few women, minorities involved
- outsider had little or no chance


1976 Democratic Nomination Process

- new rules made for much more open process.
-most Dems. now could vote in primaries
- primaries were no longer beauty contests. delegated were elected by proportional representation. this meant that candidates had to, more or less, compete everywhere and win primaries.
- few favorite son candidacies
- campaign finance laws mean that candidates now need to get as many donors as they can (i.e. can't rely on a handful of really rich supporters)
- more women and minorities involved in process
- media more of a factor