Parties in the Canada and the United States Organization and Structure
The Department of Political Science Presents The Effect of Partisan Stereotypes on the Evaluations of Party Leaders? Dr. Amanda BittnerDepartment of Political Science Memorial University of Newfoundland Friday February 6, 2009 SN2033 2:30pm
Debates: timing • Moderator: • Introduction 20 seconds • Opening arguments • Proponent 1 (2 minutes) • Opponent 1 (2 minutes) • Rebuttal • Proponent 2 (1.5 minutes) • Opponent 2 (1.5 minutes) • Discussion and evaluation: • Judge(s) plus rest of class (3-4 minutes)
Broad picture: • Canadian & American parties as coalitions of divergent interests • Enlist divergent interests, regions in hopes of • Winning a parliamentary majority in Canada • Capturing the Presidency in the United States • Do they fit any of these categories?
Parties in Canada • How can we describe them? • Are they • Cadre? • Mass? • Catch-all? • Cartel? • How can we tell?
Some tests How much party is there? • Party on the ground? • Party in central office(s)? • Parties in parliament and provincial legislatures? • Parties in government: • is cabinet government party government? • what is the “partyness” of government?
Some answers: • Cadre as closest fit • Skeletal structure • But, • Parties on the ground as intermittent organizations • Parties in central office – minimalist organizations • Parties government: • Legislative caucus • Cabinet
Canadian parties and how they developed 19th century parties: • Minimal formal organization • Extensive and highly charged partisanship • Politics is patronage • People know each other and know who is a Conservative and who is a Liberal
20th Century Canadian Parties More formal organization: • Conventions introduced by Liberals, 1919 • Constituency associations as intermittent organizations • The informal party: • Reliance on advertising firms • William Lyon MacKenzie King as his own eyes and ears
Contemporary Canadian parties • Increased professionalization • Increased reliance on campaign consultants • Profound separation – now legally mandated – between federal and provincial parties
American parties: Original structure: • Federations of state and local parties • But also coalitions of divergent interests • Intense organization in some places – cf. old style city and statewide machines • Minimalist, loose organization in others
National Party Organization 1820s-1970s • Parties as confederations of state and local parties • come together every four years to select Presidential and VP candidates • National Committees as committees without power • Parties in Congress: • House and Senate organized on partisan basis, with party allocation of committee assignments • But different wings and tendencies • And looser discipline: Congressmen and Senators often solo
From the 1970s: • Growth of Political Action Committees (PACs) • Development of National Committees as serious campaign organizations • Growing involvement of House and Senate Campaign Committees in each party
National Committees • Republican National Committee (RNC) emerges as super PAC in 1970s • RNC use of direct mail • Use of phone banks • Market research • Production of ads, flyers • Monitor & revise • Democratic National Committee follows
National Campaign Committees • Encourage and support new candidates • also freshmen (first term congressmen) • Assist candidates • Assist state and local party organization • No policy role
Parties as whole: • Centre is stronger in each party • But parties still profoundly decentralized • Contain multiple centres of power: • State and local parties • Candidate-centred organization – Role of Campaign Consultants • PACs as alternate centres of power • Bastions of power in the House and Senate
Bottom line: • Neither cadre nor mass nor cartel • Traces of catch-all: • Attempts to cast a broad net • Use of broad coalitional strategies • These are parties with broad horizontal bargains and loose vertical bargains • Parties as containers for conflict?
American parties • Come together as coalitions to capture the Presidency in the 1820s • Martin Van Buren’s ‘Democracy’ • Republicans established in 1856 • Periodic realignments?
The Republicans • After the civil war, the party of the north and east • Represent urban areas • Including both capital & Labour • Opposed by Democrats based in the south & west • Tendencies more pronounced after 1896
The Democrats • Date, if not from Thomas Jefferson’s Democratic-Republicans to the 1820’s • Martin van Buren’s ‘Democracy’ elects Andrew Jackson and then Van Buren to in 1828, 1832, (Jackson) and 1836 • Party splits in run up to the Civil War • Close competitor to Republican’s until 1896 • Roosevelt coalition from 1928-32 to 1960s and beyond
Democrats and Republicans today • Republicans move to the right from the 1970s • Impact of religious right, social conservatives • Democrats • Move ‘left’ in 1970s • Back to centre, centre-left under Clinton • Today?
Parties elsewhere: • What about parties in • Latin America? • Africa? • Asia? • Eastern Europe?
Reminders: • Paper topics were due two days ago, February 3rd • These should contain: • A brief statement of the topic as you propose to define it • A preliminary bibliography of sources you are likely to use • Including a brief annotation of what you expect to find in them or how you expect to use them • Party system maps due February 12th