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Flashcards in Unit 3 Test Deck (53)
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1

Political party

Organization created to elect like-minded candidates to office in order to control public office

2

Goal of political parties

Win elections and gain control of public agenda

3

Functions of political parties (6)

Nominate candidates
Run campaigns
Inform voters
Linkage (connect citizens to govt) they increase political efficacy
Inform voters
Articulate public policy
Coordinate policymaking between branches and between levels of govt

4

Five reasons we have a two party system

1. Winner take all election system
2. Single member voting districts - voters each district elect a single representative
3. Consensus political culture
4. Difficult for third parties to get on ballot bc of some state laws
5. Historical preference for two parties

5

Two main categories of third parties

Those that are organized around:
Individual personalities
Long-lasting goals or ideology

6

How third parties effect major parties:

1. Swinging election to another party (spoilers)
2. Innovators of new policy ideas that are often later accepted as parts of the major party platform

7

To maintain coalitions in US...

The two major parties rarely deviate far from the center of ideology

8

Main purpose of political party:

Win elections

9

Coalitions:

Allied groups/ factions

10

In parties: power flows from the- , often called a - organization

Bottom up, grassroots

11

Grassroots organizations are very -

Decentralized

12

The basic unit of primary organization at the bottom are the -

Precincts

13

Precinct

Local voting districts to which voters are assigned to vote when they are registered, where most party activity takes place

14

2 ongoing national level party institutions

1. The national committee
2. The national committee chairman

15

What does national committee do

Organize party's national convention every 4 years

16

What does national committee chairman do?

Runs day to day operations of national party

17

Most powerful national party institution is:

National convention

18

What are two main jobs of national conventions?

Write the party platform (party's 4 year policy agenda)
Nominate the officially presidential and vice presidential candidates

19

Delegates to the national convention are chosen by:

Presidential primaries

20

Era of political dominance

Periods in which one party has controlled the congress and the presidency

21

Political realignment:

Occurs when majority party becomes minority party due to shifts in party conditions

22

Coalition shifts are either:
And are usually caused by:
Elections making this shift are called:

Geographic regional shifts or economic social group shifts

Significant historical event

Critical elections

23

Dem rep era of dominance began with

Ended with:

Jefferson

Corrupt bargain of 1824 (Jackson v Q Adams), led to dem party and 1st era of dem party dominance in 1828 election

24

Eras in US history (4)

Era of dem dominance (Jackson), era of rep dominance (Lincoln, civil war),Era of Dem dominance (FDR coalition, Great Depression), Era of divided govt (1968-Present)

25

Party dealignment:

Gradual disengagement of people and politicians from parties (movement towards party neutrality)

26

Dealignment evidenced by: (4)

Declining party identification
Declining in straight ticket voting
Increase in split-ticket voting
Breakup of solid south

27

Party polarization causes dealignment due to: (6)

1. Rise of mass media as new source of info
2. Rise of voter individualism (voters educated and knowledgable enough without aid of parties)
3. Rise of candidate centered campaigns (candidate individualism: candidate managing and financing own campaign)
4. Rise of interest groups (helps candidate with money and volunteers)
5. Rise of PACS, 527s, and 501c4's
6. Democratization of election process (people pick candidates when parties used to)

28

Party machine

Local party organizations usually found in major cities, members recruited with material incentives (money, govt jobs, places to live, etc) and controlled by party bosses

29

Initiatives

Started with petition, laws written by citizens

30

recalls

Votes to remove elected official from office, petition